Google Research

Identifying Phrasal Verbs Using Many Bilingual Corpora

  • Karl Pichotta
  • John DeNero
Proceedings of Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (2013)


We address the problem of identifying multiword expressions in a language, focusing on English phrasal verbs. Our polyglot ranking approach integrates frequency statistics from translated corpora in 50 different languages. Our experimental evaluation demonstrates that combining statistical evidence from many parallel corpora using a novel ranking-oriented boosting algorithm produces a comprehensive set of English phrasal verbs, achieving performance comparable to a human-curated set.

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