Date: Mon, 7 Oct 1996 16:15:49 -0500
From: Michael Linn mlinn[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]D.UMN.EDU
Subject: Re: drop off
You are right about the German, but the "want to come with" can also be a
literal translation from Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, and Finnish as
well. That is why it is so common in Minnesota.
On Mon, 7 Oct 1996, Dennis R. Preston wrote:
You're right about the Germanness of the 'come with'; my Milwaukee wife has
Any number of things you seem to be able to rather freely delete in
'transitive' object position, I can't. Smells like age to me (since it
can't hardly be prescriptivism on my part). I hope to get a student to play
with this. Since the minimalists tell us all the grammar is in the lexicon,
it ought to be easy to show generationally.
Now I find myself flipping through the entire lexicon trying to figure out
what I can and can't say... take off, take down, put off, put down, get down,
pipe down... You ask about:
the parent would be expected to drop off and go back home
When I think about it, I would normally say "Drop them off" but I guess
intransitive "drop off," though not the usual construction, is comparable to
When shall I pick them up?
What time is pick up?
When shall I pick up?
None of which get the asterisk for me.
However, in a different construction, I've got a friend from California who
makes me shudder every time she says:
Do your kids want to come with?
Where I would say,
Do they want to come with us?
Maybe German influence from mitkommen- Kommen die Kinder mit?
Also consider...To everything there is a season...A time to drop off and a
time to pick up.
Dennis R. Preston
Department of Linguistics and Languages
Michigan State University
East Lansing MI 48824-1027 USA
preston[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]pilot.msu.edu