NUMERAL CONSTRUCTIONS IN SPOKEN ITALIAN AND SPANISH: FROM QUANTITATIVE APPROXIMATION TO INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS
Two general considerations can derived from all the considered data. Firstly, it is possible to trace a continuum of NuCxs based on their degree of cohesion, fixedness, specificity and idiomaticity, which correlates with the kind of approximate or vague meaning and function. The more the NuCxs become idiomatic the less they express quantity. In many cases, the constructions acquire a pragmatic value and codify a manner of express the degree of commitment, the attitude of the speakers and the kind of relationship s/he would like to enter into with the addressee. In these cases, the various levels of vagueness are often thickly intertwined and not easily untangled. Secondly, the approximate numeral constructions with small numerals seem more specified and fixed compared with those with large ones. Probably this is due to their frequency, since we know that small numerals are much more used than large numerals (Mehler&Dehaene 1992). Although it is necessary to do further research on this specific point, these results seem to be another element confirming that the means to be vague are more numerous than those that convey the opposite functions (Caffi 2007).
construcciones numerales, italiano hablado, español hablado
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