Saturday, 14 March 2015

Principle Behind The Ordering Of Qualities In Nominal Group Expansion

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 197):
The expansion [of the nominal group] proceeds by adding qualities … typically ordered in English from right to left according to the degree of systemicity, with the most systemic (most permanent, least particularised) at the right, the most instantial (least permanent, most particularised) at the left.  Broadly speaking these are distributed by the grammar into distinct functions as Classifier, Epithet, Numerative, and Deictic.
[Note permanence and particularisation as factors in the cline from systemic to instantial.]