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ISSN : 1226-3206(Print)
ISSN : (Online)
Studies in Modern Grammar Vol.75 pp.195-214

영어 서법조동사가 나타내는 인식완화 서법표현*

박 상 수

Hedging Expressions Expressed by Epistemic Modal Auxiliaries in English.

Sangsoo Park


This paperaims to examine hedging expressions expressed by epistemic modal auxiliariesand to analyze their grammatical function, intrinsic meaning andscope in English. Meaning difference in sentences merged with an epistemicmodal auxiliary is revealed by the scope parameter between the unmarkedand marked interpretation of it. At the C-I interface, the unmarked use ofan epistemic modal auxiliary doesn't contribute to the truth-conditionalmeaning, whereas the marked use of it sometimes contributes to the truthconditionalmeaning. An epistemic modal auxiliary moves to C from T at theC-I interface, then it functions subjectively as a discourse-related informationmarker connoting an illocutionary force feature there. But when it functionsobjectively at T without movement, an epistemic modal auxiliary linksthematic relation to its subject. In order to confirm the scope of epistemicmodals, 20 native speakers checked the grammaticality of sentences thatcontaining both an epistemic modal auxiliary and a quantifier concurrently.The result shows that all the native speakers interpret the epistemic modalauxiliary as denoting wide scope, but they don’t agree one another on theinterpretation of it as denoting narrow scope.