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# Scalar implicatures

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scalar implicatures have received more attention than any other type of Q-implicature. Theories of scalar implicature have been deeply inuenced by Horns (1972) dissertation work. This inuence hasnt been all for the best.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scalar implicatures have received more attention than any other type of Q-implicature. Theories of scalar implicature have been deeply inuenced by Horns (1972) dissertation work. This inuence hasnt been all for the best.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scalar implicatures have received more attention than any other type of Q-implicature. Theories of scalar implicature have been deeply inuenced by Horns (1972) dissertation work. This inuence hasnt been all for the best.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Horn scales
A Horn scale is a sequence of expressions ordered according to strength:

some, many, most, all clever, brilliant warm, hot, scalding ...

Scales are used to generate, by means of simple substitution, alternative sentences the speaker could have uttered:

Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff occurs to the right of on some Horn scale.

## Horn scales: examples

[1] Sentence: Wilma had many of the pears

Horn scale: some, many, most, all Alternatives: Wilma had most of the pears Wilma had all of the pears Scalar implicatures: Wilma didnt have most of the pears Wilma didnt have all of the pears Horn scale: okay, brilliant Alternative: Barneys essay is brilliant Scalar implicature: Barneys essay isnt brilliant Horn scale: or, and Alternative: Betty had an apple and a pear Scalar implicature: Betty didnt have an apple and a pear

## Horn scales: examples

[1] Sentence: Wilma had many of the pears

Horn scale: some, many, most, all Alternatives: Wilma had most of the pears Wilma had all of the pears Scalar implicatures: Wilma didnt have most of the pears Wilma didnt have all of the pears Horn scale: okay, brilliant Alternative: Barneys essay is brilliant Scalar implicature: Barneys essay isnt brilliant Horn scale: or, and Alternative: Betty had an apple and a pear Scalar implicature: Betty didnt have an apple and a pear

## Horn scales: examples

[1] Sentence: Wilma had many of the pears

Horn scale: some, many, most, all Alternatives: Wilma had most of the pears Wilma had all of the pears Scalar implicatures: Wilma didnt have most of the pears Wilma didnt have all of the pears Horn scale: okay, brilliant Alternative: Barneys essay is brilliant Scalar implicature: Barneys essay isnt brilliant Horn scale: or, and Alternative: Betty had an apple and a pear Scalar implicature: Betty didnt have an apple and a pear

## Horn scales: examples

[1] Sentence: Wilma had many of the pears

Horn scale: some, many, most, all Alternatives: Wilma had most of the pears Wilma had all of the pears Scalar implicatures: Wilma didnt have most of the pears Wilma didnt have all of the pears Horn scale: okay, brilliant Alternative: Barneys essay is brilliant Scalar implicature: Barneys essay isnt brilliant Horn scale: or, and Alternative: Betty had an apple and a pear Scalar implicature: Betty didnt have an apple and a pear

## Horn scales: examples

[1] Sentence: Wilma had many of the pears

Horn scale: some, many, most, all Alternatives: Wilma had most of the pears Wilma had all of the pears Scalar implicatures: Wilma didnt have most of the pears Wilma didnt have all of the pears Horn scale: okay, brilliant Alternative: Barneys essay is brilliant Scalar implicature: Barneys essay isnt brilliant Horn scale: or, and Alternative: Betty had an apple and a pear Scalar implicature: Betty didnt have an apple and a pear

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Philosophical scruples

Horn scales may be viewed as way of evading the problem of relevance. What are scales and where do they come from? What does this have to do with conversational implicature?

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Philosophical scruples

Horn scales may be viewed as way of evading the problem of relevance. What are scales and where do they come from? What does this have to do with conversational implicature?

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Philosophical scruples

Horn scales may be viewed as way of evading the problem of relevance. What are scales and where do they come from? What does this have to do with conversational implicature?

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Downward entailment
In a downward entailing (DE) environment, entailment relations are reversed: (1) a. Freds car is Ferrari red Freds car is red b. Freds car isnt Ferrari red Freds car is red c. Freds car isnt red Freds car isnt Ferrari red Negation creates a DE environment. (2) a. Every car is Ferrari red Every car is red b. Every red car is cheap Every car that is Ferrari red is cheap In a sentence of the form every is , is a DE environment, but isnt.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Downward entailment
In a downward entailing (DE) environment, entailment relations are reversed: (1) a. Freds car is Ferrari red Freds car is red b. Freds car isnt Ferrari red Freds car is red c. Freds car isnt red Freds car isnt Ferrari red Negation creates a DE environment. (2) a. Every car is Ferrari red Every car is red b. Every red car is cheap Every car that is Ferrari red is cheap In a sentence of the form every is , is a DE environment, but isnt.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Downward entailment
In a downward entailing (DE) environment, entailment relations are reversed: (1) a. Freds car is Ferrari red Freds car is red b. Freds car isnt Ferrari red Freds car is red c. Freds car isnt red Freds car isnt Ferrari red Negation creates a DE environment. (2) a. Every car is Ferrari red Every car is red b. Every red car is cheap Every car that is Ferrari red is cheap In a sentence of the form every is , is a DE environment, but isnt.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Downward entailment
In a downward entailing (DE) environment, entailment relations are reversed: (1) a. Freds car is Ferrari red Freds car is red b. Freds car isnt Ferrari red Freds car is red c. Freds car isnt red Freds car isnt Ferrari red Negation creates a DE environment. (2) a. Every car is Ferrari red Every car is red b. Every red car is cheap Every car that is Ferrari red is cheap In a sentence of the form every is , is a DE environment, but isnt.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Downward entailment and scalar implicatures

Since scalar implicatures are based on the relative strength of scalar expressions, and downward entailment affects relative strength, downward entailment and scalar implicature are bound to interact. (3) Fred read many of these novels entailment: Fred read some of these novels implicature: (Fred read all of these novels) (4) Fred didnt read many of these novels entailment: Fred didnt read all of these novels implicature: (Fred didnt read some of these novels) = Fred read some of these novels

## Downward entailment and scalar implicatures

Since scalar implicatures are based on the relative strength of scalar expressions, and downward entailment affects relative strength, downward entailment and scalar implicature are bound to interact. (3) Fred read many of these novels entailment: Fred read some of these novels implicature: (Fred read all of these novels) (4) Fred didnt read many of these novels entailment: Fred didnt read all of these novels implicature: (Fred didnt read some of these novels) = Fred read some of these novels

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scale reversal

It is often said that scales are reversed under negation and in other DE environments. This is misleading at best: it is entailment relations that reverse. The assumption that scales are ordered in terms of strength is redundant: it is the environment that orders the elements of scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scale reversal

It is often said that scales are reversed under negation and in other DE environments. This is misleading at best: it is entailment relations that reverse. The assumption that scales are ordered in terms of strength is redundant: it is the environment that orders the elements of scale.

## Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

Scale reversal

It is often said that scales are reversed under negation and in other DE environments. This is misleading at best: it is entailment relations that reverse. The assumption that scales are ordered in terms of strength is redundant: it is the environment that orders the elements of scale.

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures

## Scalar implicatures with Horn sets

Replace Horn scales with Horn sets, like {all, some, most, many}, {brilliant, clever}, etc. Let be a sentence, where is an expression in . is an alternative to iff , H, where H is a Horn set, and

is stronger than (i.e. entails but not vice versa). Sentence: Alternatives: Sentence: Alternatives: Betty ate many of the tarts Betty ate most of the tarts Betty ate all of the tarts Betty didnt eat many of the tarts Betty didnt eat some of the tarts

Examples:

Moral: For the purpose of calculating Q-implicatures, strength is measured at sentence level, not below.
Bart Geurts & Nausicaa Pouscoulous: Scalar implicatures