Glossary of Linguistic Terms



Here are two senses of question:

  1. A question is an illocutionary act that has a directive illocutionary point of attempting to get the addressee to supply information.
  2. A question is a sentence type that has a form (labeled interrogative) typically used to express an illocutionary act with the directive illocutionary point mentioned above. It may be actually so used (as a direct illocution), or used rhetorically.


Here are some examples of sentences, ordered to illustrate the two senses of question above:

  1. An illocutionary act that attempts to obtain information from an addressee
  • Tell me your name.
  • Give me your address.


      2. Sentences with inverted word order or interrogative pro-forms

  • What’s your name?
  • Did you sleep well?