It might be expected that, since theis a traditional part of speech, all debates over its status and properties are over. It is far from the truth. Approaches to the have been numerous: the adverb has undergone functional-semantic analysis, syntactic analysis, the correlation of its grammatical and lexical meanings has also been studied. The stumbling-block of the research has always been the criteria that allow to treat a word as an adverb.
Both prescriptive and scientific grammars refer to this category quite miscellaneous words. Some of these words have all the typical adverbial properties, i.e. these words approach the prototype (or, in terms of the field theory, belong to the core of the field). Such adverbs as here, now, often, seldom, twice, always, wonderfully, profoundly, etc. are treated as those of the core. Here belong also adverbs, homonymous of other parts of speech: yesterday (adverb and noun), home (adverb and noun), last (adverb and adjective), cheap (adverb and adjective), hard (adverb and adjective) and so on. The rest of adverbs, exhibiting properties similar or identical of other parts of speech, form the periphery.
Adverbs were granted an independent status quite late. Early grammars (for instance, Henry Sweet’s grammar) referred adverbs to a so-called “dustbin” class of, which united all indeclinable parts of speech. Jespersen also classed adverbs as , pointing out that such words as up, immediately, and should be taken together, since they could not be accounted for as nouns, adjectives, verbs or pronouns. The inconsistency of Jespersen’s approach lies in that, on the other hand, he differentiates between prepositions, conjunctions, and adverbs, while, on the other hand, he unites them quite inconsistently under the common heading.
Strang regards adverbs as verbal adjuncts without specifying their part-of-speech status. Therefore it is not clear whether the scholar treats adverbs as an independent part of speech or as particles.
Representatives of structuralist linguistics, on the ground of the syntactic criterion, identified adverbs with so-called Class 4. Filling Class 4 position was believed to be the only property of adverbs:
|CLASS 3||CLASS1||CLASS 2||CLASS 3||CLASS 4|
Undoubtedly, this criterion helped to identify the core adverbs. The rest of them were driven out of this part of speech and distributed between the functional words. This procedure gave rise to seven word groups.
Ukrainian researchers believe that adverbs are lexical words. According to this point of view, the perfectly. He slept tightly. They are leaving tonight. An extremely urgent affair.of adverbs is to define quality and circumstances of another quality, an action or a state. It may be claimed that, in the most general sense, adverbs express a secondary quality, while actions, qualities (expressed by adjectives), and states denote a primary quality of the subject, e.g. She sang
Attempts to reconsider the adverb have been made by many linguistic schools. In particular, some scholars suggested driving some groups out of this category. Among them we may find 1) so-calleds (e.g. very, extremely, absolutely, rather, quite), 2) limiting elements (e.g. only, just, even), 3) discourse markers (e.g. nevertheless, however, furthermore, etc.), as well as not, introductory there and the in the faster the better.
Discussion have been raised concerning so-called postpositives, i.e. elements which, placed in post-position to the verb, form a semantic blend with it. This combination subjects verbs to a regular, systematic multiplication of their semantic functions: to fall – to fall out to fall in, to fall for; to give – to give in, to give out, to give up; to take – to take in, to take over, to take for; to get – to get around, to get on, to get out, to get up,etc.
The lexico-grammatical status of postpositives has been interpreted in a number of ways. Some linguists treated them as a type of adverbs (Palmer, Smirnitsky); others as preposition-like functional words (Anichkov, Amos-ova); still others as peculiar prefix-like suffixes similar to the German separable prefixes (Zhluktenko); finally, some scholars classed these words as a specific set of lexical elements functionally intermediate between words and morphemes (Ilyish, Khaimovich, Rogovskaya). The long list of possible interpretations only proves the complex character of the problem. Yet, one fundamental idea is common for all these theories, and that is the idea of the functional character of the analyzed elements. As a result, the majority of linguists regard these words as a functional set of particles, i.e. words of semi-morphemic nature. “Postpositives” is not the only term used to refer to these items. Other variants include “postpositions”, “adverbial word-morphemes”, and “adverbial postpositions”.
Following the classification, put forward by academician Vinogradov, Soviet linguists have tried to overcome heterogeneity of adverbs by distinguishing such parts of speech as particles (only, just, even, not) ands (certainly, probably, naturally). These are actually those elements that are treated by Western scientists as sentence modifying adverbs. Semantic and functional characteristics of these words do differ from core adverbs, which is obvious when comparing homonymous pairs:
James isn’t simply aware of the difficulties! (particle) – Speak simply and slowly as his English is basic, (adverb)
Naturally he was flabbergasted by my words, ( ) – She moves naturally and unaffectedly while dancing, (adverb)