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The Nonevidence for a Cross Relative from Spain Author(s): Susan Plann Reviewed work(s): Source: Linguistic Inquiry,

Vol. 11, No. 3 (Summer, 1980), pp. 607-613 Published by: The MIT Press Stable URL: . Accessed: 19/06/2012 11:56
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Squibs and Discussion


In a recent squib in this journal, John Knowles (henceforthK)

in Spanishshouldbe reformulated as arguesthat Relativization

a cross-categorial rule which applies to both NP and AP. K

Susan Plann, UCLA

concedes that in order to justify this claim it is necessary to show that the constructions which he considers do actually
contain relative clauses. In what follows I will argue that the

constructionsanalyzed by K do not contain relative clauses, and that consequentlythere is no motivationfor such a crosscategorial rule of Relativization.

Consider K's examples (2) and (4), which I repeat as (1)

and (2):1

(1) 6Te has dado cuenta de lo borracho que esta este senior? 'Have you realized how drunkthis man is?' (2) ZVi6Ud. lo interesadoque se puso de pronto? 'Did you see how interestedhe suddenlybecame?' K correctly concludes that the structuresunder consideration are NPs, since they can occur in base NP positions and are subject to the transformational rules that apply to NPs. He proposes the following structure:
(3) NP




borracho 1 interesado


* I am gratefulto Carlos Otero for his helpful comments on an earlierversion of this squib. 1 These constructionsare discussed more fully in Plann (to appear).





Several objections can be raised about this structure: 1. The lo which occurs in these constructions behaves differently from the lo which is the DET of an NP. K notes that lo occurs in paradigms in which it is in complementary distribution with the determiners el, la, los, las. For example:

(4) a.

{L} que es divertidoes mejor.

'The rthing1 that is amusingis best.'


{L } divertidoes mejor.
'The amusing{thing} is best.' onef


I accept K's claim that the lo which occurs in (4) is indeed the DET of an NP. But there are crucial differences between the lo of (1) and (2) and the lo of (4) which lead us to reject the claim that the lo of (1) and (2) is the DET of an NP. Observe that when lo occurs in constructions like (4), the following adjective always occurs in the [-GENDER] or "neuter" form:2 (5) a. Lo que es divertido/*divertida/*divertidos/*divertidas es mejor. 'The thing that is amusing[-G]/*amusing[+G, + F, -PL]/*amusing[+G, - F, +PL]/*amusing[+G, +F, +PL] is best.' Lo divertido/*divertidal*divertidos/*divertidas


es mejor.
'The amusing[-G]/*amusing[+G, +F, -PL]/ *amusing[+G, -F, +PL]/*amusing[+G, +F, +PL] thing is best.' Put more generally, the DET of an NP and a following adjective must always agree in number and gender. For example:3

In the glosses which follow I will include the features [tGEN(= [+F]), [?PLURAL] (= [tPL]) in

DER] (= [+G]), [tFEMININE]

the following combinations:[-G] = "neuter", [+G, -F, -PL] = "masculine singular",[+G, +F, -PLI = "femininesingular",[+G, -F, +PL] = "masculineplural", [+G, +F, +PL] = "feminineplural" .
3 In Spanish the [-G] or "neuter" form of the adjective is the same as the [+G, -F, -PL] or "masculinesingular"form. Thus, in (6) di',ertido actually has two possibilities, [-G], as indicatedin the gloss, or [+G, -F, -PL]. In subsequentexamples in which the two possibilities exist I will continue to mention only the former in the gloss.




(6) La divertida/*divertido/*divertidos/*divertidas es mejor. 'The[+G, +F, -PL] amusing[+G, +F, -PL]/*amusing[-G]/*amusing[+G, - F, +PL]/*amusing[+G, +F, +PL] one is best.' These facts are accounted for by assigning to (5a) and (5b) partialstructuressomethinglike (7a) and (7b), respectively, in which a DET occurs before a phonologicallyunrealizedhead noun; the DET and the adjectivemust of course agree with the head noun: (7) a. [ DET [-G] N [-G] AP [-G] A [-IG] lo 4 divertido lo 5 que es divertido[-G] DET [-GI NP b. NP [-GI N [-G] S

On the other hand, the lo of (1) and (2), unlike the lo of (5), can occur before all forms of the adjective. If lo were the DET of a head A, as K suggests, we would expect the DET to agree with its head in numberand gender, yet such agreement does not occur, as (8) shows: (8) a. b. c. 4Vi6 Ud. lo/*la interesadaque se puso Maria? 'Did you see how interestedMarybecame?' ,Vio Ud. lo/*los interesadosque se pusieronlos nifios? 'Did you see how interestedthe boys became?' 6Vio Ud. lo/*las interesadasque se pusieron las ninias? 'Did you see how interestedthe girls became?'

Clearly,then, the lo of (1), (2), and (8) does not behave like the lo of (4); that is, it does not behave like the lo which is the DET of an NP. 2. In (1), (2), and (8) it is an NP in the embeddedclause which determinesthe numberand gender of the adjective. Thus, in (8a), for example, interesadamust agree with Maria in number





and gender. Compare(8a) with (9): Ud. lo interesado/interesados/interesadas que (9) *%,Vi6 se puso Maria? 'Did you see how interested[-G]/interested[+G, -F, +PL]/interested[+G, +F, +PL] Mary became?' This agreementbetween an NP of the embedded S and what K takes to be the head A would be difficultto account for in a non-ad hoc way, yet this would be necessary were we to accept structure(3). 3. The lo + Adj constructionof (1), (2) is understoodto refer to quantity, while the constructionsof (4) are not. Related to this observation is the fact that lo can occur before certain quantifiers.For example: (10) No sabes lo mucho/pocoque hemos dormido. 'You don't know how much/littlewe've slept.' The quantifierneed not be overtly realized, as (11) shows: (11) No sabes lo 4 que hemos dormido. 'You don't know how much we've slept.' from the lo which The lo of (10) and (11) must be distinguished is DET of an NP and which is part of the paradigmof the definite article. The lo of (10) and (11) is the SPEC of a QP whose head need not be overtly realized. Whenlo is the SPEC of a QP it is in complementarydistributionwith the other specifiersof Q, but not with the definitearticlesel, la, los, las: (12) a. b. No sabes lo/*la/*el/*los/*laspoco que hemos dormido. 'You don't know how little we've slept.' No sabes cudn poco hemos dormido. 'You don't know how little we've slept.'

In my analysis the lo of (1), (2), and (8) is the SPEC of a QP whose head Q is not overtly realized, the same as the lo of (11). The partialstructureof (8) is (13): (13) QP SPEC I lo AP A Q I interesado Iinteresados interesadas


The presence of the QP here accounts for the fact that the lo




+ Adj constructionsof (1), (2), and (8) are understoodto refer to quantity. 4. A fourth problemfor K's analysis has to do with subjectverb agreementand the form of the predicateadjective. When the construction in which lo is the SPEC of a QP occurs in for person/number subjectposition, the verb form is unmarked (thatis, it is "thirdperson singular"),and if there is a predicate adjective it is unmarkedfor number and gender, even if the adjective afterlo is markedfor gender and/ornumber: (14) Lo divertidas que son estas ninias{es asombroso/ *son asombrosas}. 'How amusing[+G, +F, +PL] these girls are {is surprising[-G]/*are surprising[+G,+F, +PL]}.' But it is well known that the verb must agree with the subject NP in person and number,and a predicateadjectivemust agree with the subject in numberand gender. This is seen in (15), in which the DET of an NP occurs before an adjective, and in (16), in whichthe DET of an NP occurs beforea relativeclause: (15) a. Las [N 4] divertidas {son asombrosas/*es asombroso}. 'The amusing ones[+G, +F, +PL] {are surprising[+G, +F, +PL]/*is surprising[-G]}.' Los [N 4] divertidos {son asombrosos/*es asombroso}. 'The amusing ones[+G, -F, +PL] {are surprising[+G, -F, +PL]/* is surprising[-G]}.' Lo [N o] divertido {es asombroso/*sonasombrosos}. 'The amusing thing[-G] {is surprising[-G]/ *are surprising[+G,-F, +PL]}.' Las [N O] que son divertidas{son asombrosas/ *es asombroso}. 'The ones[+G, +F, +PL] that are amusing {are surprising[+G, +F, +PL]/*is surprising



(16) a.



Los [N O] que son divertidos{son asombrosos/ *es asombroso}. 'The ones[+G, -F, +PL] that are amusing {are surprising[+G, -F, +PL]/*is surprising[-G]}.' Lo [N 4] que es divertido{es asombroso/*son asombrosos}. 'The thing[-G] that is amusing {is surprising[-G]/*are surprising[+G, -F, +PL]}.'





Given K's claim that in (14) the adjective after lo is the head of the NP (a claim which is neverjustified),it wouldbe difficult to account for the lack of agreementbetween the adjective, which for K appears to be "subject", and the verb and the predicateadjectivein (14). This is especially so in view of the fact that NPs with relative clauses, which K assumes have the same structureas these constructions, do require agreement, as has been seen in (16). As K notes, examples like (1) display the characteristics of Wh Movement given in Chomsky (1977). In the analysis which I propose, this fact, as well as the facts considered above, is accountedfor by claimingthat an AP which contains a QP is generatedin a structuresomethinglike (17) and undergoes Wh Movement: (17) NP


Mriase puso


(The SPEC of the QP is realized as lo after Wh Movement.) Structuresof the form [NP WH S] are motivatedin Jackendoff (1977, section 9.3), for headless relative clauses in English. However, structureslike (17), which differ from free relatives in that what undergoesWh Movementis an AP and not an NP, are not discussed by Jackendoff. Structure (17) accountsfor the fact thatthese constructions behave like NPs. It also accounts for the lack of agreement between lo, the SPEC of Q, and the following A; lo here must agree with Q, not with A. The agreementbetween the adjective interesada and Maria, the NP it '"modifies",is also accounted for in a naturalway. Structure(17) also explains why it is that when such a constructionis the subject of an S, as in (14), the




verb (and the predicateadjective, if there is one) occur in the unmarked form. The AP here is clearlynot the head of the NP, so the verb and predicate adjective would not be expected to agree with it. I conclude, then, that the data from Spanish provide evidence not for but against the cross-categorialrule of Relativization formulatedby K. The examples of (1) are indeed NPs, and they are instancesof constructionsin which WhMovement applies, but they are not relative clauses. Furthermore,there appearsto be no evidence for the type of structureK proposes, in which an adjectiveis the head of an NP. References Chomsky,N. (1977) "On Wh-Movement," in P. W. Culicover, T. Wasow, and A. Akmajian,eds., Formal Syntax, Academic Press, New York.
Jackendoff, R. (1977) X Syntax: A Study of Phrase Structure,

LinguisticInquiryMonograph 2, MITPress, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Knowles, J. (1978) "A Cross Relative from Spain," Linguistic
Inquiry 9, 505-510. Plann, S. (to appear) Relative Clauses in Spanish without Overt Antecedents and Related Constructions, University of

CaliforniaPress, Berkeley, California.


Dresher and Hornstein (1979) state clearly the details of a crosslinguistic claim they understand "trace theory" (henceforth TT) to make: . . . it is a claim of trace theory that the left-right asymmetryin movementrules [in English/GKP] is a consequenceof the left-right asymmetry of the conditions on bound anaphora,and not some separatepropertyof NP movement rules. There is no logical necessity for the left-right asymmetriesof NP movementrules to be related to the conditions on bound anaphora-it may in fact turn out that the generalizationwhichtrace theoryis attempting to capture is spurious. Evidence for this would come if one were to find a languagein which the conditionson boundanaphora are reversed (that is, the antecedentmust be on the right)but in which leftward movementrules that leave unfilledtraces also exist. (p. 66) Applied to English, the claim is that the anaphoric relations in (1) (1) a. b. c. d. Susani respects herselfi. *Herselfi respects Susani. The girlsi trust each otheri. *Each otheri trust the girlsi.

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