My brain entirely misinterprets the last 2 of these words eexceptionally time I check out them:

When I hear X is "unspoken", I analyze it to expect nobody speaks around X.

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When I hear X is "misspoken", I analyze it to suppose that human being say X by mistake.

When I hear X is "outspoken", I translate it as meaning that X is spoken of (or X does speaks) however the speech has a tendency to be drowned out by others" voices.

When I hear X is "softspoken", I translate it as definition that human being tfinish to speak "softly" of X.

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Yet someexactly how, it seems the first two are correct, but the last 2 are wrong.Heck, the first 2 use to things, whereas the last 2 seem to use to people.In the first two situations, X is the subject of the sentence, however in the last two, it is the object.

Shouldn"t the consistent usage and also the "-en" conjugation intend X is the subject?

From a language standpoint, what specifically is different around these that renders their interpretations so seemingly ambiguous grammatically?

verbs prefixes past-participles
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edited Dec 22 "16 at 10:49

Mari-Lou A
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asked Dec 17 "16 at 22:09

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What"s affiliated right here is a stress between transitive and intransitive provides of the previous participle spoken.

Ordinarily a past participle employed as an adjective has actually a passive sense: the noun modified is the object of the verb, topic of the passive construction:

John did not sheight Mary"s name, yet everyone kbrand-new that he was talking around. Mary"s name was not spoken. Mary"s name was unspoken.

Only the past participles of transitive verbs have the right to be employed this way, bereason just transitive verbs have actually objects and also just transitive verbs deserve to be passivized.

Consequently, the past participles of intransitive verbs are hardly ever supplied as adjectives; but there"s a handful which are, and also in these instances the participle has an energetic and usually perfective feeling.

A extensively travelled woguy is not a womale that "has actually been travelled" widely, bereason travel is offered transitively only of places, not of persons; she is a womale that has actually travelled commonly.

A climbed dough is not a dough which "has actually been risen", because rise is intransitive (the transitive variation is raise); it is a dough which ****has risen***.

Speak has actually both transitive and also intransitive uses: one may speak a speech or a word AND one may simply "speak", loudly or softly or out or of a topic. And the compounds you adduce employ the participle in various senses:

Unspoken is a passive use—the entity modified is not spoken.There"s a verb misspeak which is practically constantly provided intransitively—"When I sassist that I misspoke"—so in theory the participle would certainly be employed as an active; however I"ve never before actually watched misspoken employed as an adjectival in any sense, and I would be substantially even more surprised to discover it used actively than passively. Outspoken derives from soptimal out; this is normally intransitive, and also in truth the adjective indicates "provided to speaking out", frequently via the implication that what is sassist is insensible or ill-taken into consideration. Soft-spoken derives from sheight soft(ly), intransitive, and also implies "offered to speaking softly" fairly than loudly or harshly.