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4.6 Kind partitives

The semantics of kinds is relevant for the interpretation of partitive interrogatives. Here, however, we will be concerned with nouns like Soart ‘kind’ and Oard ‘kind, ‘. These nouns vary between neuter and feminine gender, though they seem to be used with neuter gender more frequently.


The noun Soart ‘kind’ may refer to a specific class of things in a bare partitive construction:

Dät is ‘n roar Soart Foulk.
that is a strange kind people
They are a strange kind of people.
‘n Uur Soart Tuvvelke.
an other kind potatoe
Another kind of potatoe.

The same remarks apply to the noun Oard ‘kind’, which also wavers between neuter and feminine gender. An example of its use in a sentence is given below:

Wäkke Oard Bäiste sunt dät?
which kind animals are that
What kind of animals are they?

It is also possible to join the kind noun to its content NP by means of the adposition fon ‘of’, as in the following example:

Wie wollen Tuwwelke fon dätsälge Oard häbe.
we want potatoes of the.same kind have
We want to have potatoes of the same kind.

Note that the kind noun appears in the PP, whereas partitives normally feature the content noun inside a PP, in case a PP occurs inside the construction. The reason for the appearance of the preposition might be that the order of kind noun and content noun is reversed, so it seems that a different construction is involved, in which the content noun is outside the partitive construction itself, being fronted to the beginning of the middle field. The example makes it clear that the kind noun can be premodified by an AP and by an article. In addition, the kind noun regularly appears in the plural, as it does in examples like the following:

Deer liegen alle Soarten [fjauerfoutige un krjopende Dierte fon ju Äide un Fugele fon dän Hemel] oane.
there lie all sorts fourfooted and creeping animals of the earth and fowls of the heaven in
There were in it all kinds of fourfooted and creeping animals of the earth and fowls of the air.

In the past, the noun Soart ‘kind’ remained in the singular following numerals, as in two Soart Hede ‘two kinds of heather’. Even in the sentence above, where the bracketed content noun is quite heavy, the two NPs in the partitive construction are not joined by the preposition fon ‘of’. Consider finally the following example, in which the content XP of the partitive construction is not a NP but a VP:

Ju häd so ‘n eenkannige Oard tou lopen.
she has such a characteristic way to walk
She has such a characteristic way of walking.

The to-infinitive is directly joined to the kind noun in this example.

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