Coordinating Conjunction

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A Coordinating Conjunction is a Linguistic Conjunction where the two or more Linguistic Units (Word Mention, Linguistic Phrases, or Linguistic Clauses) are joined by a Conjunction Word.


    • 1. (grammar) A conjunction that joins two grammatical elements of the same status or construction.
      • The coordinating conjunctions in English are and, but, so, or, nor, for, and yet.
      • Or is a coordinating conjunction in the sentence I can't tell whether it's day or night, day and night both being singular nouns.
  • (WordNet, 2009) ⇒
    • S: (n) coordinating conjunction (the coordination by conjunction of linguistic units of the same status)
    • S: (n) coordinating conjunction (a conjunction (like `and' or `or') that connects two identically constructed grammatical constituents)
  • (Wikipedia, 2009) ⇒
    • In grammar, a 'conjunction' is a part of speech that connects two words, phrases or clauses together. This definition may overlap with that of other parts of speech, so what constitutes a "conjunction" should be defined for each language. In general, a conjunction is an invariable grammatical particle, and it may or may not stand between the items it conjoins.
    • The definition can also be extended to idiomatic phrases that behave as a unit with the same function as a single-word conjunction (as well as, provided that, etc.).


  • (de Vries, 2008) ⇒ Mark de Vries. (2008). “Specifying Coordination: An Investigation into the Syntax of Dislocation, Extraposition and Parenthesis.” In: Language and Linguistics: Emerging Trends, ed. by Cynthia R. Dryer. New York: Nova.
    • Typical examples of coordination involve the combination of comparable constituents by means of the coordinative conjunctions and or or. Evidently, the meaning of these two central coordinators is different, which already suggests that coordination is a syntactic construction with a varying semantics.
    • The most transparent form of specifying coordination is found in the (non-restrictive) appositional construction. Examples are my best friend, John or my neighbor, a nice guy.
    • In constructing a sentence, phrases can be combined by means of coordination. This syntactic operation is extraordinarily flexible:
      • Coordination can be applied at any level of syntactic structure.
      • Coordination can be applied both iteratively and recursively.
      • There are various coordinators, which trigger different semantic relationships between the conjuncts.


  • (Hogan, 2007) ⇒ Deirdre Hogan. (2007). “Coordinate Noun Phrase Disambiguation in a Generative Parsing Model.” In: Proceedings of the 45th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL-2007).
    • Take the phrase busloads of executives and their wives (taken from the WSJ treebank). The coordinating conjunction (CC) and and the noun phrase their wives could attach to the noun phrase executives, as illustrated in Tree 1, Figure 1. Alternatively, their wives could be incorrectly conjoined to the noun phrase busloads of executives as in Tree 2, Figure 1.


  • (Zwart, 2005) ⇒ Jan-Wouter Zwart. (2005). “Some Notes on Coordination in Head-Final Languages.” In: Linguistics in the Netherlands (LIN 2005).
    • In a structuralist tradition going back to at least De Groot (1949:112), and recently revived by Kayne (1994:12), coordinated constituents are taken to be headed by the conjunction, which takes the second coordinand as its complement. This makes it possible to classify conjunctions as initial (A [& B]) or final (A [B &]), and to consider the question whether the use of initial/final conjunctions correlates with headedness (the typological distinction between head-initial and head-final languages). This question is addressed by Stassen (2003: 775), who finds that final conjunctions occur in verb-final languages only. This statement, however, glosses over the fact that final conjunction is rare even in head-final languages.
    • Noun phrase coordination: A constituent [math]\displaystyle{ x }[/math] is a 'noun phrase coordination iff [math]\displaystyle{ x }[/math] contains two or more noun phrases realizing a single argument or grammatical relation.


  • L. Stassen. (2003). “Some Universal Characteristics of Noun Phrase Conjunction.” In: F. Plank (ed.), Noun phrase structure in the languages of Europe. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.