Saturday, July 02, 2016


Counting Nouns and Verbs

Perry Link, "The Mind: Less Puzzling in Chinese?" New York Review of Books Daily (June 30, 2016):
Wanting to test my intuition that classical Chinese was more verb-heavy than its Indo-European counterparts, I opened Confucius's Analects and an English translation of Plato's Apology of Socrates and counted nouns and verbs. Confucius uses slightly more verbs than nouns. Plato uses about 45 percent more nouns than verbs.
It may well be that "Plato uses about 45 percent more nouns than verbs," but I wouldn't rely on an English translation for evidence.

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