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This page pertains to UD version 2.

orphan: orphan in ellipsis

This (relatively rarely used) function is required when ellipsis of a head word results in a promoted word taking a dependent whose function would be determined by the missing head. English examples for this relations are sentences such as:

Mary ate the cake, but John the cookies.

In this case, the absence of a second ‘ate’ forces us to consider two conflicting subjects and objects for the first ‘ate’. The solution is to connect John as conj to ate. To avoid treating ‘cookies’ as the object of ‘John’, the orphan relation is used instead. Coptic examples work using the same logic:

ⲉⲣϣⲁⲛ/SCONJ ⲟⲩⲁ/NUM ϫⲟⲟ/VERB ⲥ/PRON ϫⲉ/SCONJ ⲁⲛⲟⲕ/PRON ⲙⲉⲛ/ADV ⲁⲛⲅ/PRON ⲡⲁ/PRON ⲡⲁⲩⲗⲟⲥ/PROPN . ⲕⲉ/DET ⲟⲩⲁ/NUM ⲇⲉ/ADV ϫⲉ/SCONJ ⲁⲛⲅ/PRON ⲡⲁ/PRON ⲁⲡⲟⲗⲗⲱ/PROPN \n if one says I am Paul's but another one [says] I am Apollo's

ccomp(ϫⲟⲟ, ⲡⲁ-9)
nmod(ⲡⲁ-9, ⲡⲁⲩⲗⲟⲥ)
conj(ϫⲟⲟ, ⲟⲩⲁ-13)
nsubj(ⲡⲁ-9, ⲁⲛⲅ-8)
orphan(ⲟⲩⲁ-13, ⲡⲁ-17)
nsubj(ⲡⲁ-17, ⲁⲛⲅ-16)
nmod(ⲡⲁ-17, ⲁⲡⲟⲗⲗⲱ)

The second ‘says’ is missing, meaning the subject ‘another one’ will be promoted to take its place. However attaching the complement clause of the missing ‘say’ as ccomp to ‘another one’ would be misleading. We therefore use the orphan relation.


orphan in other languages: [bm] [cop] [cs] [de] [el] [en] [fi] [fr] [fro] [ga] [gsw] [hy] [it] [ja] [kk] [kpv] [myv] [no] [pcm] [pt] [ro] [ru] [sv] [swl] [tr] [u] [yue] [zh]