Determiner Phrases

One problem with Noun Phrases is the fact that they can very complicated and difficult to explain. For example, it is quite easy to represent NP 1:

1. The girl

As we have seen, we can show this as follows:

As shown before, the is in Spec of NP.

But what about the following?

2. The tall girl

3. The three tall girls

4. A lot of tall girls

It gets quite complicated, so Noun Phrase was replaced with Determiner Phrase in order to handle the complexity.

We can keep our neat system going if we imagine that there is a DP which takes NP as its object (complement).

The solution was to say that Noun Phrases are actually Determiner Phrases (DetP). Det takes NP as its complement just as C takes IP as its complement, just as I takes VP as its complement, just as V takes NP (sorry now it’s DP!) as its complement. This keeps everything very neat and tidy.

As we can see, IP is the complement (object) of C, VP is the complement of I, NP is the complement of V. It’s all very neat! Except they are not NPs any more — they are DPs.

So NPs became DPs, with D taking NP as its complement. Very neat! Even so, how can we handle 3, repeated below?

3. The three tall girls

Where does three go in this phrase?

For some suggestions, check out the PowerPoint slides here.