Definition of copula in English:

copula

Syllabification: cop·u·la
Pronunciation: /ˈkäpyələ
 
/

noun

Logic & Grammar
  • A connecting word, in particular a form of the verb be connecting a subject and complement.
    More example sentences
    • In such cases they fulfil the basic requirement of Syriac sentence structure (namely, that the predicate must be conjugated for person) twice: once within the copula, and once within the verb of existence.
    • For linguists it is now standard to think of indefinite descriptions following the copula as always being predicational, and it is a widespread belief that definite descriptions following the copula are often predicational.
    • In Hungarian, the zero copula occurs only in the third person, and in AAVE it is not permitted in the first person singular.

Derivatives

copular

Pronunciation: /ˈkäpyələr/
adjective
More example sentences
  • AAVE is like Finnish in that it has a separate copular verb of negation meaning ‘not be’, pronounced ain't, and you need that here.
  • There are some cases where we can't tell whether there is a triple-re-ordering, fronting with subject-aux inversion, or just a strange copular order.
  • It can't be used on a non-verbal predicate (so in sentences like ‘The man is a teacher’ or ‘The woman is tall’ - there's no copular verb), but that's not a perfect argument.

Origin

early 17th century: from Latin, 'connection, linking of words', from co- 'together' + apere 'fasten'.

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