relevance conditional
Noun

relevance conditional (plural relevance conditionals)

  1. (logic, grammar) A subordinate clause, usually introduced by if, that asserts the relevance of the clause to the main clause of the sentence, but not that it entails the main clause; a construction involving such a clause.
    • 2013, Tatjana Scheffler, Two-dimensional Semantics: Clausal Adjuncts and Complements, Walter de Gruyter, page 124 ↗,
      For example, relevance conditionals are constructions in conditional shape that do not seem to express a clear conditional meaning at first glance. This has led semanticists to introduce analyses of relevance conditionals that capture many of their properties but are very specific to this construction.
    • 2016, Stephen Finlay, Confusion of Tongues: A Theory of Normative Language, Oxford University Press, page 71 ↗,
      A known grammatical marker of relevance conditionals is their resistance to linking their antecedent and consequent clauses with 'then': consider the mild oddity of 'If you want biscuits then there are some on the table.' […] This peculiarity of relevance conditionals is straightforwardly explained by the ellipsis theory, according to which the consequent clause doesn't in general express a real (logical) consequent; 'There are some biscuits on the table' is just asserted as true.



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