CASA — A Constructionist Approach to Syntactic Analysis

Welcome Construction Hierarchy Lexical Items Log in


The English Constructicon is an ongoing attempt at pursuing a Construction Grammar approach to the description of English.

At present, it is very much in what one could call a pre-initial stage – both with respect to the linguistic framework employed and with respect to the technical side. At the present moment, all we can offer is a structured inventory of grammatical constructions of the English language.

The theoretical background of the descriptions provided here is formed by mainstream work on Construction Grammar inspired by the work of a large number of scholars such as Charles J. Fillmore, Ronald W. Langacker, Adele E. Goldberg, Joan Bybee, Hans C. Boas, Alexander Bergs, Holger Diessel, Gaëtanelle Gilquin, Stefan Th. Gries, Beate Hampe, Martin Hilpert, Thomas Hoffmann, Benjamin Lyngfelt, Hans-Jörg Schmid, Doris Schönefeld, Anatol Stefanowitsch, Tiago Torrent, Alexander Ziem and many others.

The particular framework underlying the descriptions is that developed by Thomas Hoffmann and myself under the name of CASA – a Construction Grammar Approach to Syntactic Analysis. Format and content of many of the constructional descriptions provided in this first version of The English Constructicon correspond to those given in a textbook we are at present working on.

The English Constructicon also provides lists of items occurring frequently in some types of constructions. These lists are based on the analysis of different corpora of present-day English such as the British National Corpus (BNC) and the Corpus of Contemporary English (COCA). Lists for the verbs in argument structure constructions are based on A Valency Dictionary of English (VDE) by Thomas Herbst, David Heath, Ian F. Roe & Dieter Götz (2004) and its online derivative, the Erlangen Valency Patternbank (Herbst & Uhrig 2009).

Present editorial and constructicographic team:

Although this project is still in a very early stage, comments and suggestions are more than welcome. Please contact me under We are planning to expand The English Constructicon soon, but hope that even in this rudimentary form the information provided will be of some use already.

Currently, two types of access structure are in place: