Quantification forms a significant aspect of cross-linguistic research into both sentence structure and meaning. This book surveys research in quantification starting with the foundational work in the 1970s. It paints a vivid picture of generalized quantifiers and Boolean semantics. It explains how the discovery of diverse scope behaviour in the 1990s transformed the view of quantification, and how the study of the internal composition of quantifiers has become central in recent years. It presents different approaches to the same problems, and links modern logic and formal semantics to advances in generative syntax. A unique feature of the book is that it systematically brings cross-linguistic data to bear on the theoretical issues, covering French, German, Dutch, Hungarian, Russian, Japanese, Telugu (Dravidian), and Shupamem (Grassfield Bantu) and points to formal semantic literature involving quantification in around thirty languages.


“Extraordinary scholarship. A superb technical exposition, and an invaluable resource on the nature of quantification cross-linguistically.” --Christopher Potts, Stanford Linguistics

“The discovery of a notation to represent reasoning with quantifiers was a Copernican moment in the history of logic. It led generations of scholars to seek some reflection of the quantifiers of the idealized notation in the vicissitudes of natural language. No one has done more to shake loose the simplifications and idealizations that have resulted than Anna Szabolcsi. Her long awaited volume is essential reading for any philosopher, logician, or linguist interested in the myriad ways in which natural languages express quantification.” --Jason Stanley, Department of Philosophy, Rutgers University