The Smith-Stark hierarchy, a version of the Animacy Hierarchy, offers a typology of the cross-linguistic availability of number. The hierarchy predicts that the availability of number is not arbitrary. For any language, if the expression of plural is available to a noun, it is available to any noun of a semantic category further to the left of the hierarchy. In this article we move one step further by showing that the structure of the hierarchy can be observed in a statistical model of number use in Russian. We also investigate three co-variates: plural preference, pluralia tantum and irregularity effects; these account for an item’s behaviour being different than that solely expected from its animacy position.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Brown, Dunstan; Corbett, Greville G.; Fedden, Sebastian; Hippisley, Andrew R.; and Marriott, Paul, "Grammatical Typology and Frequency Analysis: Number Availability and Number Use" (2013). Linguistics Faculty Publications. 64.