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3 Modification of NPs

Nouns can be modified by certain elements which restrict their meaning (denotation). In the example below, the adjective jele ‘yellow’ restricts the denotation of the noun Ate ‘peas’:

Jele ate.
yellow peas
Yellow peas.

Modifiers like APs precede the noun, but there are also modifiers which must follow the noun.


Nouns can be premodified by the following elements:

  • Determiners (see also: Quantifiers, determiners and predeterminers, 7)
  • Adjective Phrases
  • Possessors

They can be postmodified by:

  • Adpositional phrases
  • Adverbial clauses,
  • Relative clauses
  • Clefts
  • Infinitival relative clauses.

More information can be found in the topics below:

All modifiers may be stacked and coordinated. It is just that semantic considerations put a practical upper limit on stacking and coordination, but in principle there is no formal restriction on iteration or recursion.

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