Mary Dalrymple

Professor of Syntax
Fellow of the British Academy
Member of Academia Europaea

Centre for Linguistics and Philology,
Walton Street,
Oxford, OX1 2HG

Tel: +44-(0)1865 280403
Secretary Tel: +44-(0)1865 280400
Fax: +44-(0)1865 280412
E-mail: Email addresses in the Centre are of the form

I am regularly away from Oxford during Hilary Term.
I will retire in Spring 2021, and so I am no longer able to accept students for supervision for the DPhil degree.
Research Interests
My research centers on syntax, the syntax-semantics interface, and semantics, particularly within the framework of Lexical Functional Grammar. I am interested in the syntactic properties of human languages and how they can guide the process of assembling meanings of words and phrases into meanings of larger phrases and sentences. I am also interested in language description and documentation, and in Austronesian and Papuan languages.
Tutorial topics for FHS and graduate syntax are available on Weblearn.
Syntax reading/discussion group: Weekly meetings during term: check the Weblearn page for more information. If you are interested in syntax, please come to listen or participate! Undergraduates are welcome.
Advanced Core Training in Linguistics: short graduate-level courses in core topics in linguistics, offered free of charge in the autumn and spring at University College London
SE-LFG: the South of England LFG meetings, held at SOAS, London, bring together research students, researchers and academic staff working on or interested in Lexical Functional Grammar.
Digital language resources in Oxford
Projects and grants
2019-2022: Enggano in the Austronesian family: Historical and typological perspectives (co-investigators: I Wayan Arka, Australian National University; Bernd Nothofer, Goethe-Universitšt Frankfurt am Main) Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK.
2017-2018: SynSem: From Form to Meaning - Integrating Linguistics and Computing (fellow at the Centre for Advanced Study at the Norwegian Academy of Sciences, Oslo; project leaders: Dag Trygve Truslew Haug and Stephan Oepen, University of Oslo)
2012-2013: Plurals: Morphology and semantics. Leverhulme Research Fellowship.
2011-2014: The syntax and information structure of unbounded dependencies (researcher; principal investigator: Alex Alsina, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona). Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, Gobierno de España.
2010-2011: "Multimodal language documentation for Dusner, an endangered language of Papua" (co-investigator: Suriel Mofu). Leverhulme Trust, UK.
2009-2010: "On-line language documentation for Biak (Austronesian)" (co-investigator: Suriel Mofu). Economic and Social Research Council, UK.
2008-2010: "Understanding Indonesian: developing a machine-usable grammar, dictionary and corpus" (partner investigator; principal investigators I Wayan Arka, Avery Andrews, Australian National University; Jane Simpson, University of Sydney). Australian Research Council.
2008-2009: "Machine-readable grammatical resources for Indonesian" (co-investigator: Suriel Mofu). Economic and Social Research Council, UK.
2004-2007: "Verb-initial grammars: a multilingual/parallel perspective" (with Louisa Sadler, University of Essex). Economic and Social Research Council, UK.
2004-2006: "Noun phrase agreement and coordination" (with Louisa Sadler, University of Essex). Arts and Humanities Research Board, UK.
Papers and publications
Linguistics on the web
The Linguist List ( provides a wealth of on-line information on language and linguistics.
The Stanford Linguistics Meta-Index ( contains links to many linguistic websites.
The Glottopedia ( is an on-line encyclopedia of linguistics, continuously being updated.
The Linguistics Assocation of Great Britain has compiled a glossary of grammatical terminology.
The Lexical Functional Grammar webpage, and how to subscribe to the LFG List.
The Linguist List Student Portal
Conventions for interlinear glosses: the Leipzig Glossing Rules
Standards for citing linguistic data: the Austin Principles of Data Citation in Linguistics
On-line help with linguistic tools: The University of Melbourne's video series on ELAN; Vimeo's instructional videos on SIL's Language Explorer (FLEx)
How to write conference abstracts: model abstracts from the Linguistic Society of America; Maggie Tallerman's Writing Linguistic Abstracts
Publishing your work in a journal: The Linguist List Journals Index; why you should not submit the same article to more than one journal at a time; submitting your work and dealing with feedback
Your CV: Advice from Oxford's Careers Service, a list of irritating mistakes
Getting a job: Academic Job Interview Guidelines from the LAGB
The importance of networking
Funny linguistics example sentences