Unit 11 Intonation of Incomplete Statements

1 Enumeration.

If a sentence contains enumeration, all non-final intonation-groups are usually pronounced with the Low Rising nuclear tone. The final intona­tion-group is pronounced with Low Fall if the choice of enumeration is exhausted.

e.g.: On the ground floor | there is a kitchen, a pantry, a dining-room

and Dr. Sandford’s study.

2 Non-final intonation-groups are widely used with Low Rise. The function of LRhere is to indicate that the utterance is incomplete, is not finished and a continuation is implied.

Non-final (or incomplete) intonation-groups are formed not only by



a) enumeration, but by b)adverbial phrases, c)subject groups, d)parenthesis, e)initial subordinate clauses of complex sentences, f)initial direct address and g)initial author's words.

e.g. :

b)In front of the house there is a green lawn.

c) Mr. Brighton’s daughter studies in college.

d) As far as I know, he’s quite right.

e) When Betty Smith studied at college, she had many companions.

f) Sally, will you get it for me.

g) His younger sister says, | she's eager to become a teacher.

3 Sometimes non-final intonation-groups are pronounced with the Falling-Rising nuclear tone. It is used to emphasize the prominent word of the intonation-group or contrast it to another part of the sen­tence. Such intonation-groups sound incomplete as well as closely connec­ted in meaning with the continuation.

e.g.: I have a younger sister. My younger sister says she’s eager to become a teacher? (emphasis)

In front of the house there is a play ground. Be hind it there is a little orchard.(contrast)

4 A non-final intonation-group may be pronounced with the Low Fal1ingnuclear tone. Then it sounds relatively complete, independent, sometimes categoric and is not so closely connected with the continuation. This tone is used in initial clauses of compound sentences.

e.g.: The room is large and it is comfortable.

The bowl is on the shelf in front of the window.



Ex. 1Read the text. Find the intonation of non-final groups.

Whenwe got there we walked in the front door and it was very dark in the hall and there wasn't anyone about. I thought we might have come to the wrong house. So I stopped. And Toddy stopped. Anyway we went to the top of the house. There was a door locked on the stairs, so there might have been another floor, but we didn’t see anyone. (H. Pinter "The Room")


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