Practical Work 3
Grammar Development

Templates with Arguments

Download grammar2.lfg and take a good look at it. Expand it so that the following sentences are assigned a sound analysis:

The verb give ist a three-place verb. Assume the following subcateogrization frame: SUBJ, OBJ, OBJ2. Assume that the object is always to the right of the verb in English.

Your grammar should contain the following:

Feature Unification

These sentences should not work:

That is, make sure that subject-verb agreement works right and that singular count nouns appear with a determiner (e.g., cf. Lesson 2 for the count noun template).

Remember that there are several ways to formulate constraints on f-structures.


Create a testsuite of sample sentences and keep testing your progress with respect to the testsuite (see XLE Documentation for many details). Remember to do regression testing to make sure your grammar does not lose capabilities you had already implemented.

Lexical Rules, First look at PPs

The file grammar2.lfg also already contains a lexical rule for the passive. It also contains a simplified treatment of PPs. Use these as a basis for building a lexical rule for the English Dative Shift. See the part on templates and lexical rules in the XLE documentation for more information.

This lexical rule should interact with the lexical rule for the passive so that one can also parse passives of ditransitive verbs.

Update your templates for transitive and ditransitive verbs using the two lexical rules (in interaction, if applicable).

Expand your grammar so that the following sentences also work:

These sentences should not work:

That is, you need to make sure that the NPs and PPs appear in the right order.

Be sure to add all of the sentences to your (growing) testsuite. Mark the ones that should not work with a 0!. See the part on Test Files and Tree Banks in the XLE user documentation for more information.

Your grammar should contain (at least) the following: