from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Linguistics The placement of the topic at the beginning of a sentence, as in That movie, you couldn't pay me to see.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The placing of the topic of a sentence at the beginning.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. (linguistics) emphasis placed on the topic or focus of a sentence by preposing it to the beginning of the sentence; placing the topic at the beginning of the sentence is typical for English
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Outside of poetic writing and certain syntactic alternations like topicalization, the word order of Modern English is Subject-Verb-Object.
As linguists themselves note (see Appendix), definitions are not yet available which are stringent enough to allow tagging for topic, topicalization, and focus according to anything like a straightforward algorithm.
In addition, the terms "topic," "topicalization," and "focus" are used in very different ways in the linguistic literature.
For instance, they used inflectional markers in an inconsistent way and often failed to respect the structure-dependence of the rules governing topicalization in that language. [