Preposition construction patterns

A construction pattern attempts to characterize the usage of each sense in such a way that it can be used to disambiguate among the several senses of a word. Constructions are becoming more widely used, as described in Atkins & Rundell, The Oxford Guide to Practical Lexicography. The authors describe patterns for verbs, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs, but they do not describe such patterns for prepositions.

Construction patterns for prepositions should consist of two components, characterizing the preposition complement and the point of attachment. They should be written as clues that operate as regular expressions, but with much greater functionality, since they need to encapsulate both syntactic and semantic attributes.

The guidelines for preposition construction patterns need to be developed. As a model for clues, we are using (1) the style guide for the Hector dictionary project, as followed in Senseval-1, and (2) the Corpus Query Language, as used in the Word Sketch Engine. These are not sufficient for our purposes, but they provide a suitable starting point.

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