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Converted to A

The behaviour of present participles converted to adjectives can be studied in the following four adjectival key constructions: the attributive construction, the complementive predicative construction, the partitive construction, the adverbial construction.


Present participles are not generally ambiguous between a process reading and a permanent state reading, as are past participles: they have the process reading. However, some present participles have been lexically converted to adjectives. so they may be ambiguous between the process reading and the state reading. Consider the following minimal pair:

Example 1

a. De laitsjende feint
the smiling young.man
The smiling young man
b. De ynnimmende feint
the captivating young.man
The captivating young man

The two readings can be teased apart by using the test of comparative formation, which is only allowed for 'real' adjectives:

Example 2

a. *De laitsjend-er feint
the smiling.CPR young.man
The more smiling young man
b. De ynnimmend-er feint
the captivating.CPR young.man
The more captivating young man

Present participles with a permanent state reading may have undergone lexical shifts in meaning that are characteristic of morphological conversion.

The complementive predicative construction and the partitive construction feature only present participles which have been converted to adjectives.

The adverbial construction freely features present participles that have been converted to adjectives, whereas verbal present participles only occur in certain expressions that are idiomatically fixed.