On Defining Motion Verbs and Spatial Prepositions

  • Ellen M. Hays
Conference paper
Part of the Informatik-Fachberichte book series (INFORMATIK, volume 245)


In a computational system for describing and understanding descriptions of spatial relations and motion events in natural language (city scenes or soccer games, for example), there is a need for a referential semantics of motion verbs and spatial prepositions that is both structurally coherent and (ideally) general enough to be used for both interpretation and generation of such descriptions. I propose an approach to defining those spatial terms that takes the form of a multidimensional hierarchy of definitions, incorporating some of the elements of Herskovits’ approach to interpreting (static) locative expressions as well as ideas from the relatively new study of cognitive linguistics.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ellen M. Hays
    • 1
  1. 1.SFB 314: VITRA Fachbereich 10 - Informatik IVUniversität des SaarlandesSaarbrücken 11Federal Republic of Germany

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