One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(in transformational grammar) the structure of a well-formed phrase or sentence in a language, as opposed to its underlying logical form.‘rules of transformation change deep structure into surface structure’Contrasted with deep structurecount noun ‘those types of sentences which have deep structures identical to their surface structures will be called base sentences’
- ‘The theory postulates that the two sentences have the same order in deep structure, but the question transformation changes the order to that in surface structure.’
- ‘Possibly, the present verbal dual task interferes mostly with the phonological surface structure of the spatial sentence and not with the underlying propositional content.’
- ‘That is, switching should occur at points where the surface structures of the two languages map onto each other.’
- ‘While this set of sentences has the surface structure of a formal argument, its persuasive force lies at a different level.’
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