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– Extraposing a relative clause out of the subject
– Extraposing a relative clause out of the object
– Extraposing a prepositional phrase out of the subject
– Extraposing a prepositional phrase from a predicative adjective phrase
– Extraposing a content clause from the subject element

Clause Bound Extraposition

– Extraposition cannot occur out of an embedded clause
Failed attempts to extrapose out of a subject clause, relative clause, and adjunct clause
– Fronting discontinuities can easily front a constituent out of an argument clause
– Scrambling discontinuities cannot displace a constituent from one clause into another

Obligatory Extraposition

– Extraposition is obligatory when ‘it’ appears
Failed sentences due to the obligatory nature of extraposition
– Extraposed constituent is usually a clause, not a prepositional phrase
– ‘It’ functions as a cataphor, pushing the clause it stands for to the end of the sentence
– Prepositional phrases cannot be extraposed due to their inability to appear in the position of a clause

Motivation for Extraposition

– Extraposition is motivated by the desire to reduce processing load
– Extraposition reduces center embedding and increases right-branching
– Right-branching structures in English are easier to process
– Extraposition increases rightward growth in sentence structure
– Shifting is another mechanism that increases rightward growth

Theoretical Analyses of Extraposition

– Derivational theories analyze extraposition in terms of movement or copying
– Representational theories assume feature passing instead of movement
– Movement-type analysis involves generating the embedded clause in its canonical position and then moving it rightward
– Feature passing analysis involves passing features instead of moving constituents
– Different theories of syntax have different analyses of extraposition


– Branching is a linguistic phenomenon.
– It refers to the structure of a sentence.
– It involves the arrangement of words and phrases.
– Different languages have different branching patterns.
– Branching can be classified as left-branching or right-branching.


– Catena is a concept in dependency grammar.
– It refers to a sequence of words.
– It represents the linear order of words in a sentence.
– Catena can be used to analyze syntactic dependencies.
– It helps in understanding the hierarchical structure of a sentence.


– A constituent is a grammatical unit.
– It can be a word, phrase, or clause.
– Constituents can be combined to form larger constituents.
– They play a role in the syntactic structure of a sentence.
– Identifying constituents helps in understanding sentence structure.

Dependency grammar

Dependency grammar is a syntactic framework.
– It focuses on the relationships between words in a sentence.
– It represents these relationships as directed links or dependencies.
Dependency grammar emphasizes the head-dependent relationship.
– It provides a different perspective on sentence structure compared to phrase structure grammar.


– Discontinuity refers to non-adjacent elements in a sentence.
– It involves the separation of words or phrases by intervening material.
– Discontinuity can be analyzed in terms of movement or extraposition.
– It challenges the traditional linear view of sentence structure.
– Understanding discontinuity is important for analyzing complex sentences. Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extraposition

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