Friday, 21 June 2019

Interdependency: Rejected Terminology

Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 440n):
An earlier name for the higher term in the dependency relation, that on which something is dependent, was terminant. The problem with this turns out to be that it is too readily misinterpreted as ‘coming last in sequence’. The dependency relation, however, is neutral as regards the sequence in which the elements occur. Another possible set of terms would be ‘main clause’ for the dominant clause and ‘subordinate clause’ for the dependent clause. However, this could lead to confusion since ‘subordination’ has usually been used to refer to both hypotaxis and embedding without the critical distinction between the two. Further, the term ‘parataxis’ does not correspond to ‘coordination’ (in contrast with ‘subordination’); it covers not only ‘coordination’ but also ‘apposition’.