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pred. vs. postpos. / praed. vs. nachgestellt  
von cameron-coombe (NZ), 2018-11-12, 03:25  like dislike  Spam?  
Forgive the new post but I think we need to further clarify what is meant by the pred. and postpos. tags, which tom reminded us of a few days ago:

I understand it in the following way, though I may be wrong and am as such open to further discussion. Here's a quote from the guidelines that sums it up, quoted by Wenz:

(1) -- [attr.] for adjectives used only before nouns they modify and which cannot be used after verbs of being or becoming;
(2) -- [postpos.] for adjectives used only after nouns they modify or verbs they accompany;
(3) -- [pred.] for adjectives used only after verbs of being or becoming.

Here are what I understand to be some correct examples from our entries:

(1) attr.: He is a former policeman
I need a copper pot
The then prime minister signed the bill through

We cannot say: He is a policeman former [postpos.]; but: He is a policeman no longer
We cannot say: The policeman is former [pred.];

(2) postpos.: I lived there three years ago
They have cats galore
She is a writer extraordinaire

We cannot say: They have galore cats [attr.]; but: They have a lot of cats
We cannot say: The writer is extraordinaire [pred.]; but: The writer is extraordinary

(3) pred.: The dog is asleep
That girl is alone
The party is over

We cannot say: The asleep dog [attr.]; but: The sleeping dog
We cannot say: I feel sorry for that girl alone [postpos.]; but: I feel sorry for that girl, alone by herself.

I provide the attr. examples for completeness. But it is the pred and postpos. examples that seem to be particularly confusing. Take a recent disputed entry:

When I suggested that "in bad repair" be labelled pred., BHM correctly pointed out that the phrase can appear in postpositively: Google: "a house in bad repair"

The problem, then, is that some adjectives, particularly adjectival phrases, can be used both postpositively and predicatively. The postpos. examples above, however, cannot be used predicatively. The predicative examples above can sometimes be used postpositively, though this is not a true postpos. as it requires a relative clause (which implies a verb of being/becoming): The dog (that is) asleep on the mat; The girl (who is) alone by herself; The party, (which was) over in just three hours, was a bomb.

What to do with adjectival phrases such as "in bad repair", and the many, many others that we have labelled postpos. then? They can be used both postpositively AND predicatively. But to indicate this would only further cloud the individual entries. Is there a third term that covers the unique nature of adjectival phrases? Or what are the other options? I myself am not happy with leaving them labelled all as postpos., as it confuses them with true postpos. adjectives: galore, ago, extraordinaire.

Finally, there is a similar mess on the German side of things with postpos., praed., nur praed., and nachgestellt. We will need to define these terms as well so they can also be used responsibly.
To add to the confusion ...  #899910
von Badger (US), 2018-11-12, 04:36  like dislike  Spam?  
I would just point out that at least in some contexts "copper" can be used predicatively. E.g. "The pot is copper, not alumin(i)um" meaning that it's made of copper. I think that "attr" is actually mostly added to show that a word generally considered a noun is being used attributively.
von aphoenix (US), 2018-11-12, 05:26  like dislike  Spam?  
The problem is that, as Badger notes, most adjectives can be used in multiple ways, e.g.
She admired the flowers, their delicate petals touched with pink. (postpos.)   /  
The delicate petals were touched with pink. (pred.)

Thus I think the key word in the three definitions is "only"
(1) -- [attr.] for adjectives used ONLY before nouns they modify and which cannot be used after verbs of being or becoming;
(2) -- [postpos.] for adjectives used ONLY after nouns they modify or verbs they accompany;
(3) -- [pred.] for adjectives used ONLY after verbs of being or becoming.

That would mean that if an adjective or adjectival phrase can be used both after verbs of being or becoming and either before or after the noun they modify, then the adjective or adjectival phrase should be classed as an adjective and  none of the additional labels labels above should be applied.
von cameron-coombe (NZ), 2018-11-12, 06:32  like dislike  Spam?  
I like your proposal aphoenix. I wonder if an alternative solution would be "never attr." for adjectival phrases. Then that covers postpos. and pred. without crowding up with tags. Either way, we should eventually seek to remove all of these postpos. that many contributors, myself included, have been adding in over the last wee while, as they suggest that adjectival phrases cannot be used predicatively.

Yes Badger, I think attr. adjectives are generally the most flexible. That's especially the case with colours. Common colours act like regular adjectives whereas uncommon ones tend to be attr.: A blue car, the car is blue; a caramel sweater, but, typically, the sweater is caramel-coloured. Nouns used attributively as adjectives also usually have a slow journey before becoming pred. as well. For example, a factory worker. I have suggested "mostly attr." in some entries, which is often accepted by other voters too. In fact, I wouldn't mind a re-open for the copper with a "mostly attr." tag.
GL 9.1. says that the tags [attr.], [postpos.], and [pred.] CAN be added when an adjective is used ONLY in that position.  #899926
von tomaquinaten (US/DE), Last modified: 2018-11-12, 11:47  like dislike  Spam?  
The GL says that these tags constitute optional additional information, i.e. they need not be added, and thus, in doubt, it is best to ignore them. Language is flexible, and to virtually every rule there are  exceptions. That is the case with these rules for positioning adjectives; thus adjectives that are normally predicative can often be used as postpos. attributive adjectives; this construction is in effect an abbreviated relative clause in which the adjective is predicated of the noun it modifies. e.g.
     "He is without pretence."
     "He is a man without pretence."   = "... a man who is without pretence".
     "As a man without pretence, he was highly esteemed by his co-workers."   =  [ditto]
This being the case, adjectives of this type should NOT be given a position-tag.

Unfortunately,*adjectives which recently had been erroniously tagged as "postpos." are now being corrected to "pred."*, but, as the above examples indicate, this is NOT CORRECT: it would be better to leave them without a position tag. I regret and beg your pardon, that I myself encouraged these changes in my earlier posting. In arguing against the incorrect use of "postpos." i didn't envisage launching a wave of re-openings, to substitute "pred."

This is a classic example of how dangerous it is to rely simply on one's spontaneous feel for the language without doing any research. Before adding one of these tags it is best to check a reliable dictionary to see if such a qualification is given there. As to phrases, it is best to check them out in Google Books to see how they are used. Thus, (to my surprise !!!) I found that almost all the examples for "without pretence" [Google: "without pretence" ] and for "without pretense" show the phrase being used either as an adverb or as a postpos. attribute. For this reason, I havenow had to re-open the corresponding entries, eliminating  the tag [pred.] and adding the wordclass "adverb".

There is, however, one rule of thumb. if an adjective phrase normally used predicatively must be set off by dashes or at least commas when used attributively, then it is safe to tag it [pred.].
von ddr (AT), 2018-11-12, 12:40  like dislike  Spam?  
IMHO ist das Problem, das wir uns seit Neuestem zu viel mit Grammatik beschäftigen. ist doch ein Wörterbuch, es kann kein Lehrbuch ersetzen.

Die Unterscheidung zwischen attr. und pred. ist ja sicher nützlich bei Adjektiven, die nicht beides sein können, aber was pred. verwendet wird, kann doch meist auch postpos. verwendet, oder irre ich mich?
von aphoenix (US), 2018-11-12, 14:22  like dislike  Spam?  
4;ddr, das stimmt, dass ein Adjektiv das pred. verwendet wird, kann meist auch postpos. verwendet werden.  Es gibt aber Ausnahmen.  Borrowing cam's examples:

(1) former [attr.]
attributive: He is a former policeman.  YES
postpositive: He is a policeman former. X NO
predicative:  As a policeman he is former. X NO

(2) galore [postpos.]
attributive:They have galore cats. X NO  
postpositive:  They have cats galore.  YES
predicative:  Their cats are galore. X NO

(3) asleep [pred.]
attributive:  The asleep dog is...  X NO  
postpositive:  The dog asleep is... X NO
predicative:  The dog is asleep.  YES


(3a) asleep by the fireside
attributive:  The asleep by the fireside dog is... X NO
postpositive:  The dog asleep by the fireside is... YES
predicative:  The dog is asleep by the fireside.  YES

As cam notes, there are alternatives to some of the incorrect options:
(2) They have many cats.  Their cats are many.
(3) The sleeping dog is...

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