60 Ditransitive constructions with ‘give’

This feature is described more fully in chapter 60.


Ditransitive constructions with the verb ‘give’ have an agent, a recipient and a theme argument. Here we ask how the adpositional or case coding of the recipient and theme compare with the coding of the patient of the ordinary transitive (monotransitive) construction (following WALS feature 105, by Martin Haspelmath). If the recipient receives special marking (generally by a preposition, or by a serial verb), and the theme is coded like the monotransitive patient, we are dealing with an indirect-object construction (something like “I gave book to John”, cf. monotransitive “I bought book”). If the theme receives special marking, and the recipient is coded like the monotransitive patient, we are dealing with a secondary-object construction (something like “I gave John with book”, cf. monotransitive “I saw John”). If neither the recipient nor the theme receive special marking, and both are coded like the monotransitive patient, we have the double-object construction (something like “I gave John book”). Only full NP recipients and themes are taken into account for this feature.


Martin Haspelmath, Susanne Maria Michaelis and the APiCS Consortium


Double-object construction312960
Indirect-object construction162844
Secondary-object construction011

Language Value Lexifier Details Source
Id Primary text Analyzed text Gloss Translation Type Language Audio Details