Proof-Theoretic Semantics for Subsentential Phrases

Nissim Francez, Roy Dyckhoff, Gilad Ben Avi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The paper briefly surveys the sentential proof-theoretic semantics for fragment of English. Then, appealing to a version of Frege’s context-principle (specified to fit type-logical grammar), a method is presented for deriving proof-theoretic meanings for sub-sentential phrases, down to lexical units (words). The sentential meaning is decomposed according to the function-argument structure as determined by the type-logical grammar. In doing so, the paper presents a novel proof-theoretic interpretation of simple type, replacing Montague’s model-theoretic type interpretation (in arbitrary Henkin models). The domains of derivations are collections of derivations in the associated “dedicated” natural-deduction proof-system, and functions therein (with no appeal to models, truth-values and elements of a domain). The compositionality of the semantics is analyzed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-401
Number of pages21
JournalStudia Logica
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010


  • Proof-theoretic semantics
  • natural-language
  • Frege’s context principle
  • subsentential phrases
  • proof-theoretic semantic value
  • proof-theoretic type interpretation


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