Continuity and change in grammar by Anne Breitbarth; et al

By Anne Breitbarth; et al

One of many central demanding situations of ancient linguistics is to give an explanation for the factors of language swap. this sort of rationalization, even though, also needs to deal with the 'actuation problem': why is it that adjustments happening in a given language at a undeniable time can't be reliably envisioned to recur in different languages, lower than it sounds as if related stipulations? The 16 contributions to the current quantity every one target to elucidate Read more...

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Ponelis 1993). As argued by Lightfoot (1979 and following), particles serve as “signposts” signalling the location of the verb with respect to the object: where a particle precedes the object, as in VO languages, the acquirer can conclude that VP is initial; where it follows, as in OV languages, VP must be final. Against this background, robust attestation of particle verbs in the MSA input would be expected to contribute a clear signal to the acquirer that the system being acquired involves a final VP.

It is not clear that Germanic or, indeed, Proto-Indo-European ever had clause-final complementisers. Complementisers in the attested Indo-European languages seem to have developed independently, and, as such, we cannot reconstruct complementisers for ProtoIndo-European (see Kiparsky 1995). Just as there is no need for a system to progress all the way down a given FOFC-determined pathway once it has “started” at one of the extremes, so there is no need for a system which undergoes FOFC-sanctioned changes to have started at one of these extremes: our proposal is simply that changes will follow the available pathways, independently of their precise starting point.

Impossible changes and impossible borrowings  (27) Hy dink dat sy [VP speel altyd Chopin] he think that she play always Chopin ‘He thinks that she always plays Chopin’ Since (27)-type structures systematically behave differently to the “verb-early” ones in (26), Biberauer (2003) proposes that only the (27)-type structures involve V2; the alternations in (26)-type structures, by contrast, feature auxiliaries located in Aux. As such, they constitute evidence that MSA permits both final ((26a)) and initial ((26b)) AuxP structures.

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