SSWL (Syntactic Structures of the World's Languages)

SSWL (Syntactic Structure of the World's Languages) is a open-ended database of syntactic, morphological and semantic properties. Each language is characterized by a set of property-value pairs (e.g., Object Verb: Yes), and examples that illustrate these property value pairs. A rich variety of search functions are available, as well as mapping and the creation of similarity trees. The database is open-ended in the sense that (a) new language experts may sign up to add new languages, and (b) new properties may be added. If you are interested in becoming a language expert, just log onto the SSWL site, and sign up. If you are interested in creating a new set of properties, contact Prof. Hilda Koopman of UCLA (Senior Editor of SSWL).

The database is meant to be a tool for the entire linguistic community, including formal linguists, typologists, computational linguists, and descriptive fieldworkers. Properties are written so that they can be applied by language experts from a wide variety of backgrounds.

The ultimate goal of the project is to represent every language on earth with 1000s of linguistic properties, so we need your help!!

If you have any questions, please contact Prof. Hilda Koopman (UCLA) or Prof. Chris Collins (NYU) at

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