This volume is a collection of current work at the interface of linguistics and conversation analysis. The focus is on linguistic items in their action contexts: syntactic structures and lexical items in data from natural conversations in six European languages: Danish, English, Finnish, German, Italian and Swedish. Some of the studies deal with similar practices in two different languages, which enables cross-linguistic comparisons. The notion of 'construction' is brought together with an interactional perspective; the fact that constructions cannot always be clearly analysed as either syntactic or lexico-semantic has its reflection in this volume. So far, there have been fewer attempts at interactionally oriented work on lexical and semantic phenomena than on syntactic constructions. In this volume, several papers show the interactional relevance of word selection and lexical semantic issues. In the future, studies on syntax and lexico-semantics in interaction will enrich realistic grammars of our languages, and cross-linguistic description of comparable practices of organizing talk in interaction will be invaluable for the study of both inter-European and international communication.