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8.5: X-bar Phrase Structure

  • Page ID
    9679
  • \( \newcommand{\vecs}[1]{\overset { \scriptstyle \rightharpoonup} {\mathbf{#1}} } \) \( \newcommand{\vecd}[1]{\overset{-\!-\!\rightharpoonup}{\vphantom{a}\smash {#1}}} \)\(\newcommand{\id}{\mathrm{id}}\) \( \newcommand{\Span}{\mathrm{span}}\) \( \newcommand{\kernel}{\mathrm{null}\,}\) \( \newcommand{\range}{\mathrm{range}\,}\) \( \newcommand{\RealPart}{\mathrm{Re}}\) \( \newcommand{\ImaginaryPart}{\mathrm{Im}}\) \( \newcommand{\Argument}{\mathrm{Arg}}\) \( \newcommand{\norm}[1]{\| #1 \|}\) \( \newcommand{\inner}[2]{\langle #1, #2 \rangle}\) \( \newcommand{\Span}{\mathrm{span}}\) \(\newcommand{\id}{\mathrm{id}}\) \( \newcommand{\Span}{\mathrm{span}}\) \( \newcommand{\kernel}{\mathrm{null}\,}\) \( \newcommand{\range}{\mathrm{range}\,}\) \( \newcommand{\RealPart}{\mathrm{Re}}\) \( \newcommand{\ImaginaryPart}{\mathrm{Im}}\) \( \newcommand{\Argument}{\mathrm{Arg}}\) \( \newcommand{\norm}[1]{\| #1 \|}\) \( \newcommand{\inner}[2]{\langle #1, #2 \rangle}\) \( \newcommand{\Span}{\mathrm{span}}\)

    X-bar theory makes the simple proposal that every phrase in every sentence in every language is organized the same way. Every phrase has a head, and each phrase might contain other phrases in the complement or specifier position.
    Thumbnail for the embedded element "8.2 X-bar Phrase Structure"

    A YouTube element has been excluded from this version of the text. You can view it online here: https://ecampusontario.pressbooks.pub/essentialsoflinguistics/?p=150

    Check Yourself

    1. In this tree diagram, what position does the DP my coffee occupy?

    alt
    • Head.
    • Specifier.
    • Complement.

    2. In this tree diagram, what position does the D my occupy?

    alt
    • Head.
    • Specifier.
    • Complement.

    3. In this tree diagram, what position does the NP Hamilton occupy?

    alt
    • Head.
    • Specifier.
    • Complement.
    Answers

    8.5: X-bar Phrase Structure is shared under a CC BY-SA 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Catherine Anderson (eCampusOntario) via source content that was edited to conform to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.