The article deals with headlines of American newspapers. The basic aim was a complex analysis of headline grammar on statistical principles from these aspects: 1) The frequency of verbal headlines (at least one verbal phrase or its part is present, i.e. both finite and non-finite verbal phrases are included) versus non-verbal headlines (no verbal phrase or its part is present). 2) In verbal phrases: their finite or non-finite character and the application of voice, tense and time, and modality. 3) Complementation of the verbal phrase: the expression of individual functions (subject, object, complement and adjunct) and the respective representation of the means in these functions. 4) Nominal phrases in various functions. 5) Clauses functioning as various elements of the sentence. Besides the five areas, condensation and figures of speech, i.e. lexical-semantic phenomena, are mentioned. The corpus consists of 2400 headlines chosen from American daily press (12 titles with 200 headlines from each) in the Internet form. A byproduct of the analysis is a comparison of American broadsheets (B) and descendants of the former American tabloids (T), each of them making one half of the corpus. All patterns used in newspaper headlines have been identified, classified and counted in order to make it clear what kind of specific structure they have. The second major finding is establishing that the language of American broad-sheets (B) and of descendants of the original American tabloids (T) tends to be similar in many linguistic respects, even though in T it is more varied than in B, especially in grammatical phenomena, such as tenses.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.