Abstract

This paper examines verb valency in Urhobo, using minimalism as a theoretical framework.  The method of data collection is group into two: the primary and the secondary sources. The primary source is the intuitive knowledge of the native speaker, while the secondary involves documented materials from internet, Journals, conference proceedings and documented books. The study reveals that where we have one argument structure, we have one theta function. Where there are two place predicates, we have two theta roles or functions, and also, three arguments predicates possess three theta roles. This goes a long way to say that Urhobo verbs can take different levels of arguments and its syntactic and semantic well-formeness will still be intact. It also reveals that it involves entity to perform an action, such as òvwèrẹ̀ (sleeping event) in the Urhobo language. Finally, the paper identifies three valency classes in the Urhobo language (Mono-valent verb- takes or involves one entity, Di-valent verb- takes or involves two entities, and Tri-valent verb- takes or involves three entities).

Keywords

Canonical usage Di-valent verb Mono-valent verb Tri-valent verb Urhobo language Valency

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