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INDEFINITES
1. Introduction
The theory of pronominal anaphora that was developed in the last chap
ters deals with a range of phenomena that is comparable to the empirical
coverage of classical Montague Grammar or one of its variants. Mod
ern postMontagovian semantics has focused on kinds of anaphora that
transcend the limitations of Montague’s framework. The central obser
vation (which can be traced back to medieval or even ancient philosophy)
is the fact that some bound pronouns can occur outside the syntactic
scope of their binders. Typically, the binder in these cases is an indeﬁ
nite NP. There are several patterns of this kind of “dynamic” binding.
To start with, binder and pronoun may occur in diﬀerent clauses or even
in diﬀerent sentences.
(1) [A man]
i
walked. He
i
talked.
Here, the existential force that is prima facie connected with the indeﬁ
nite article extends beyond the sentence boundary such that the pronoun
in the second sentence can be bound by the indeﬁnite in the ﬁrst one.
Also, an indeﬁnite which is embedded in another quantiﬁer can bind
a pronoun outside its scope. This is one pattern of the classical donkey
sentences.
(2) a. Most farmers who own [a donkey]
i
beat it
i
.
b. No farmer who owns [a donkey]
i
beats it
i
.
Here, the indeﬁnite takes narrow scope with respect to the subject
determiner (most or no) in the preferred readings of these examples.
It can it nonetheless bind a pronoun inside the VP, i.e., outside its
213
214 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
scope.Furthermore, the syntactic complement of the main subject deter
miner (most or no in the example) seems to appear both in the restrictive
clause and the nuclear scope of the corresponding quantiﬁcational struc
ture. While the indeﬁnite always corresponds to an existential quantiﬁer
in the restrictor, it is ambiguous between an existential and a univer
sal reading in the nuclear scope. These two readings have been called
strong and weak in the literature. They are paraphrased for (2a) in
(3a) and (3b) respectively.
1
(3) a. Most farmers who own a donkey beat every donkey they own.
b. Most farmers who own a donkey own and beat a donkey.
Finally, indeﬁnites that occur in the if clause of a conditional can bind
pronouns in the main clause. This is the second brand of donkey sen
tences. Here, the quantiﬁcational force of the indeﬁnite in question is
determined by the adverb of quantiﬁcation in the main clause. If no such
adverb is present, the quantiﬁcational force is universal/generic. So (4a)
is interpreted as the paraphrase in (4b).
2
(4) a. If [a man]
i
walks, he
i
talks.
b. Every man who walks talks.
These and related data have inspired the development of quite a few
novel semantic frameworks, notably various versions of Discourse Rep
resentation Theory (Lewis, 1975, Kamp, 1981, Chapter 2 of Heim,
1982, and Kamp and Reyle, 1993) and of Dynamic Semantics (like
Chapter 3 and 4 of Heim, 1982, Barwise, 1987, Rooth, 1987, Staudacher,
1987, Groenendijk and Stokhof, 1991a, Groenendijk and Stokhof, 1991b,
and many descendants of the work of Groenendijk and Stokhof). It also
stirred considerable controversy on the nature of linguistic meanings and
the relation between syntax and semantics. Recently, Dekker, 2000 has
made a proposal that seems to combine the best aspects of both fami
lies of theories and perhaps ﬁnally resolves these controversies. Like the
systems of Dynamic Semantics, Dekker’s theory lends itself to a compo
sitional treatment of the phenomena described above, and like systems
of DRT, it assumes a classical, static notion of truth.
Our goal in the next three sections is a modest one. As it turns out,
Dekker’s semantics of pronouns is perfectly compatible with the theory
1
Usually each donkey sentence either favors the strong or the weak reading, but a consensus
has been reached in the literature that both readings are structurally available. For a detailed
discussion of this ambiguity, see Kanazawa, 1994.
2
Conditional donkey sentences also exhibit a systematic ambiguity called the “proportion
problem”. To keep things simple, I will skip over this point here.
Indeﬁnites 215
sketched in Chapter 4. His treatment of indeﬁnites lends itself readily
to a type logical reformulation as well.
3
I will thus conﬁne myself to a
TLG implementation of Dekker’s system which ignores the proportion
problem. It is not very diﬃcult though to translate your favorite DRT
or dynamic treatments into Dekker’s system, and thus into TLG. In
other words, this part supplies Dekker’s ﬁrst order system with a type
logical syntaxsemantics interface. In the second part of the chapter, I
will focus on the treatment of the descriptive content of indeﬁnites. The
basic idea is that constituents containing indeﬁnites are to be interpreted
as functions, and that the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite supplies the
domain of this function. So I will introduce partiality into the semantics.
In the third and ﬁnal part of the chapter, I will apply this grammar of
indeﬁnites to the phenomenon of sluicing, an area where anaphora and
indeﬁniteness interact.
2. Dekker’s Predicate Logic with Anaphora
Montague Semantics holds it that the meaning of a sentence is exhaus
tively deﬁned by its truth conditions, and that the meaning of complex
linguistic signs is composed from the meanings of their parts. Both
DRT and Dynamic Semantics challenge this view. The standard argu
ment runs as follows: The sentences (5a) and (5b) are truthconditionally
equivalent. Nevertheless, (5c) can be a followup to (5a), but not to (5b)
with an interpretation where the pronoun refers to the man mentioned in
the ﬁrst sentence. If one contends that anaphora is a semantic phenom
enon, either (5a) and (5b) are not synonymous, or else the composition
of sentences in discourse is not compositional.
(5) a. A man walks.
b. It is not the case that no man walks.
c. He whistles.
Stalnaker, 1998 objects to this argument. According to him, (5a) and
(5b) are semantically equivalent, but their pragmatic usage conditions
diﬀer. While (5a) can be used with referential intentions, (5b) cannot,
and it is the intended referent of the indeﬁnite description that supplies
a value for the pronoun in the subsequent discourse.
Dekker, 2000 takes up Stalnaker’s argumentation, and he gives a
formal reconstruction of the Stalnakerian program. If a sentence like
(5a) is used with referential intention, its satisfaction can only be eval
uated with respect to this referent. Satisfaction of a sentence is thus
3
The signiﬁcance of Dekker’s work for the program of variable free semantics was pointed
out in Szabolcsi, 2000.
216 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
relativized to sequences of individuals which supply the referents of the
referential indeﬁnites occurring in the sentence. The existential impact
of indeﬁnites comes in by means of a distinction between satisfaction
and truth: A sentence is true iﬀ it can be satisﬁed. The meaning of a
sentence is identiﬁed with its satisfaction conditions. Satisfaction is
recursively deﬁned as a relation between models, assignment functions,
sequences of referents, and formulae. So as in Dynamic Semantics, the
meaning of a sentence is richer than its truth conditions, but neither
notion is dynamic in any way. Techniques from Dynamic Semantics are
used though in the interpretation of the logical connectives of negation
and conjunction: negation negates the truth conditions of its operand
rather than its meaning, and conjunction is noncommutative in a way
that allows forward binding but not backward binding.
Dekker carries out his program for a version of ﬁrst order predicate
logic that he calls Predicate Logic with Anaphora, abbreviated as
PLA. The language of PLA is that of ﬁrst order predicate logic without
function symbols, but it divides the set of individual constants into two
subsorts: the set of ordinary constants C, and the set of pronouns
P = ¦p
1
, p
2
, . . .¦. The usual abbreviational conventions apply; , ∧ and
∃ are basic connectives, while ϕ ∨ ψ abbreviates (ϕ ∧ ψ), ϕ → ψ
abbreviates (ϕ ∧ ψ), and ∀xϕ abbreviates ∃xϕ.
A central nonclassical parameter of a formula is the number of
referential existential quantiﬁers occurring in it. It is called the length
of a formula and can be deﬁned recursively:
Definition 45 (Length of a formula)
n(Rt
1
. . . t
m
) = 0
n(∃xϕ) = n(ϕ) + 1
n(ϕ) = 0
n(ϕ ∧ ψ) = n(ϕ) + n(ψ)
Another way to look at the notion of length is to say that the length
of a formula is the number of discourse referents that are introduced by
the usage of this formula. Existential quantiﬁers—as the formal coun
terpart of indeﬁnites—introduce discourse referents, and both existen
tial quantiﬁcation and conjunction are transparent for discourse markers
introduced in their scope. That means a discourse marker which is in
troduced in their scope can be accessed outside this scope. Negation
however closes oﬀ the referential potential of indeﬁnites occurring in its
scope. Therefore the length of a negated formula is always 0.
Indeﬁnites 217
I now turn to the compositional deﬁnition of satisfaction for PLA.
Models for PLA are standard ﬁrst order models, i.e., they consist of a
domain of individuals D and an interpretation function E that maps
ordinary individual constants to elements of D and nplace predicate
symbols to nplace relations over D. The denotation of individual con
stants and variables is deﬁned relative to a model M, an assignment
function g and an inﬁnite sequence of individuals e. Satisfaction is a
relation between a model M, an assignment function g, a sequence of
individuals e, and a formula ϕ. Following standard practice, I write
ϕ
M,g,e
= a iﬀ the denotation of ϕ relative to M, g and e is a, and
I write e
M,g
ϕ iﬀ ϕ is satisﬁed relative to M, g, and e. I suppress
the index for the model where convenient. Also, I use the notation e
i
to refer to the ith element of the sequence e (where the counting starts
with 1). e − n is the sequence that results if you remove the ﬁrst n
elements from e, i.e., it is the sequence e
n+1
, e
n+2
, e
n+3
, . . .. Finally, if c
is a ﬁnite sequence and e is a (ﬁnite or inﬁnite) sequence, ce is the result
of concatenating c and e.
The semantics of PLA is given by the following recursive deﬁnition:
Definition 46 (Interpretation of PLA)
x
g,e
= g(x)
p
i

g,e
= e
i
e
g
Rt
1
. . . t
m
⇐⇒ ¸t
1

g,e
, . . . , t
m

g,e
) ∈ E(R)
e
g
∃xϕ ⇐⇒ e −1
g[x→e
1
]
ϕ
e
g
ϕ ⇐⇒ ∃c ∈ D
n(ϕ)
: ce
g
ϕ
e
g
ϕ ∧ ψ ⇐⇒ e
g
ψ and e −n(ψ)
g
ϕ
The interpretation of variables is determined by the assignment func
tion g. A pronoun p
i
picks its value from the sequence of available
discourse referents e. The index of the pronoun determines which ref
erent is chosen. p
1
refers to the topmost element, p
2
to the second etc.
The interpretation of atomic formulae is standard. The central innova
tion is the clause for existential quantiﬁcation. To satisfy ∃xϕ, it is not
suﬃcient that there is a witness for x that veriﬁes ϕ, but this witness
has to be present as the topmost element in the sequence of referents e.
Once this witness is supplied and the quantiﬁed variable is mapped to
it, ϕ is evaluated relative to the remaining sequence of referents e − 1.
So as in Dynamic Semantics, an existential quantiﬁer introduces a novel
discourse referent, but this dynamic aspect is part of the evaluation pro
cedure and not of the denotation of the formula in question.
218 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
A negated formula ϕ is satisﬁed if ϕ is not satisﬁable, i.e., if it is
impossible to extend e in such a way that it satisﬁes ϕ. As we will see
shortly, this amounts to saying that ϕ is satisﬁed in e iﬀ ϕ is not true
in e.
The noncommutative semantics for conjunction incorporates the
idea from Dynamic Semantics that discourse referents that are intro
duced in the ﬁrst conjunct can be readressed in the second conjunct,
but not vice versa. If a conjoined formula ϕ∧ψ is satisﬁed relative to e,
this means that e contains the witnesses for the existential quantiﬁers in
both ϕ and ψ. In an intuitive sense, ψ is interpreted “later,” therefore
its contribution constitutes a preﬁx of e. ϕ is thus interpreted relative
to e − n(ψ), i.e., e with the contribution of ψ stripped oﬀ, while ψ is
interpreted relative to e itself.
Dekker distinguishes between satisfaction and truth. A formula ϕ is
true relative to a sequence e iﬀ it is possible to extend e with witnesses for
the existential quantiﬁers in ϕ in such a way that the extended sequence
satisﬁes ϕ.
Definition 47 (Truth in PLA)
ϕ is true with respect to g and e iﬀ ∃c ∈ D
n(ϕ)
: ce
g
ϕ.
So the existential impact of ∃ is not part of its meaning as such, but
it comes in (1) in the deﬁnition of truth, which existentially quantiﬁes
over witnesses for existentially quantiﬁed variables, and (2) in the clause
for negation which denies the truth of the formula in the scope of the
negation. This is reminiscent of the operations of existential closure in
DRT, which apply both to the top level DRS and to DRSs in the scope
of negation, universal quantiﬁcation and implication (which are deﬁned
in terms of negation in PLA).
Let us see how the key features of Dynamic Semantics are repro
duced in PLA by going through the central examples.
(6) a. [A man]
i
walked. He
i
talked.
b. ∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) ∧ talk’p
1
Note that the pronoun he is translated as a pronoun in PLA, not as a
variable as in standard translations. The intended interpretation of the
pronoun is managed by choosing the appropriate index in PLA. Apply
ing the semantic clauses to (6b) gives the truth conditions
Indeﬁnites 219
∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) ∧ talk’p
1
is true wrt. g and e ⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.ce
g
∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) ∧ talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.ce
g
∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) and ce
g
talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.e
g[x→c]
(man’x ∧ walk’x) and ce
g
talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.e
g[x→c]
man’x and e
g[x→c]
walk’x and ce
g
talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.c ∈ E(man’) and e
g[x→c]
walk’x and ce
g
talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.c ∈ E(man’) and c ∈ E(walk’) and ce
g
talk’p
1
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.c ∈ E(man’) and c ∈ E(walk’) and c ∈ E(talk’)
These are just the truth conditions of ∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x ∧ talk’x)
(both classically and in PLA). The “dynamic binding” from the existen
tial quantiﬁer in the ﬁrst conjunct to the pronoun in the second conjunct
is possible because the existential quantiﬁer increases the length of the
formula by 1, and thus adds one referent to the sequence of evaluation.
This referent can be picked up by the pronoun. Compare this to:
(7) a. It is not the case that no man walks. He talks.
b. ∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) ∧ talk’p
1
Due to the fact that the length of (7b) is 0, its truth conditions are
∃x(man’x ∧ walk’x) ∧ talk’p
1
is true wrt. g and e ⇐⇒
∃c ∈ D.c ∈ E(man’) ∧ c ∈ E(walk’) ∧e
1
∈ E(talk’)
In fact, there is no index of the pronoun which would render (7b) equiv
alent to (6b).
Given the “dynamic binding” equivalence
∃xϕ ∧ ψ(p
n(ϕ)+1
) ⇐⇒ ∃x(ϕ ∧ ψ(x))
the treatment of donkey sentences in PLA is straightforward.
(8) a. Every farmer who owns a donkey beats it.
b. ∀x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx) → beat’p
1
x)
Using the abbreviational conventions for universal quantiﬁcation and
implication, together with the equivalence given above, we can transform
(8b) as follows (note that ϕ ⇐⇒ ϕ provided n(ϕ) = 0):
∀x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx) → beat’p
1
x) ⇐⇒
∀x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx) ∧ beat’p
1
x) ⇐⇒
∀x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx)) ⇐⇒
∀x∃y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx) ⇐⇒
∀x∀y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx) ⇐⇒
∀x∀y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx → beat’yx)
220 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
A similar analysis can be given for the conditional donkey sentence
(9) a. If a farmer owns a donkey, he beats it.
b. ∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx)) → beat’p
1
p
2
∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx)) → beat’p
1
p
2
⇐⇒
∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx)) ∧ beat’p
1
p
2
⇐⇒
∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx) ∧ beat’p
1
x) ⇐⇒
∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx)) ⇐⇒
∃x∃y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx) ⇐⇒
∀x∀y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx) ⇐⇒
∀x∀y(farmer’x ∧ donkey’y ∧ own’yx → beat’yx)
Dekker’s system thus has the same coverage as both classical DRT (in
the sense of Kamp, 1981) and Dynamic Predicate Logic (Groenendijk
and Stokhof, 1991b), and it combines insights from both sources. PLA
is compositional (in particular it has a compositional noncommutative
conjunction and a compositional counterpart of the indeﬁnite article)
like Dynamic Predicate Logic. Like DRT, it uses a Tarski style static
semantics, and it makes crucial use of existential closure over sequences
of individuals.
In the subsequent sections, I will explore the compatibility of Dek
ker’s PLA with the treatment of anaphoric pronouns that was developed
in Chapter 4 within the framework of LLC, and I will develop an ex
tension of LLC which integrates crucial aspects of Dekker’s treatment
of indeﬁnites.
3. Bringing PLA into TLG
What exactly is the semantics of pronouns that is embodied in Dekker’s
PLA? Consider a simple sentence containing a pronoun like (10a), which
is translated as (10b).
(10) a. He walked.
b. walk’p
i
The formula (10b) is satisﬁed by a sequence e iﬀ the ith element of e
falls into the extension of walk’. So the meaning of the formula has two
aspects: the descriptive part of it is just the denotation of the predicate
walk’, while the structural aspect determines how the pronoun is to be
resolved in a larger discourse.
Compare this to the interpretation that the same sentence would
receive under LLC
Indeﬁnites 221
(11) He walked – λxwalk’x : s[np
Here the meaning of the sentence coincides with the descriptive part of
its PLAsemantics. The structural aspect is missing. The reason for
this is simple: In Dekker’s system, anaphora resolution is part of the
translation procedure from English to PLA. In LLC, it is part of the
grammar of English, and there is no need for an intermediate level of
representation where anaphors are resolved. So apart from the locus of
anaphora resolution, the semantic contribution of anaphoric pronouns
in PLA and in LLC is virtually identical.
Now compare this to the PLAsemantics for indeﬁnites. Let us
ignore the descriptive part of indeﬁnite descriptions for the moment and
limit our attention to indeﬁnites like someone (against the background
of a universe of discourse that only consists of humans). Sentence (12a)
is to be translated to the PLA formula (12b).
(12) a. Someone walked.
b. ∃xwalk’x
This formula is satisﬁed by a sequence e iﬀ the ﬁrst element of e falls
into the extension of walk’. This means that the descriptive aspect of
the meaning of this formula is identical with the descriptive aspect of the
meaning of (11). The fact that the descriptive meaning—a function from
individuals to truth values—has to be applied to the ﬁrst element of the
current sequence follows from the way that this descriptive meaning is
syntactically expressed. In other words, (10b) and (12b) are semantically
equivalent, but they implicitly belong to diﬀerent syntactic categories.
To make this point clear, consider the case where i = 1 in (10b). Then
(10b) and (12b) will be satisﬁed by the same sequences, but they never
theless make diﬀerent contributions to the meaning of complex formulae,
and they have diﬀerent truth conditions. This is due to the fact that
existential quantiﬁers have an impact on the length of a formula, but
pronouns do not. To keep this in line with the principle of composi
tionality, we have to assume that the length of a formula is part of its
syntactic category.
To implement this in TLG, we have to assume that the semantic
contribution of indeﬁnites and pronouns are identical, i.e., that their de
ductive behavior leads to identical CurryHoward terms, but that their
syntactic categories are nevertheless distinct. Since the semantic con
tribution of the indeﬁnite in a sentence like (12a) is identical to the
semantic contribution of the pronoun in (10a), I assume that the seman
tic composition of the two sentences is similar. So the denotation of the
indeﬁnite NP someone is the identity function, just like the denotation
222 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
of the pronoun he. Their syntactic categories are distinct though; I thus
enrich LLC with yet another type of implication to model indeﬁnites.
Definition 48
If A and B are types, then A
B
is a type as well.
The intuitive idea behind this connective is that A
np
is the category of a
sign that is like a sign of category A except that it contains one indeﬁnite.
The category of an indeﬁnite NP itself is thus np
np
. The corresponding
semantic type is a Skolem function, which is lexically speciﬁed to be the
identity function over individuals. So the natural mapping of categories
to types would be τ(A
B
) = ¸τ(B), τ(A)). However, the semantic im
pacts of walks, he walks, and someone walks diﬀer, even though they are
analyzed as having the same denotation. To take this diﬀerence into ac
count, we have to mirror their diﬀerence in their syntactic categories as a
diﬀerence in their semantic types. Therefore I assume a richer structure
of semantic types from now on:
4
Definition 49 (Semantic Types)
1 e and t are types.
2 If A and B are types, so are ¸A, B), A[B, and A
B
.
The syntax of the term language has to be adjusted accordingly:
Definition 50
1 Every variable x : A is a term.
2 If M : A is a term and x : B is a variable, then λxM : ¸B, A),
λxM : A[B, and λxM : A
B
are terms.
3 If M : ¸A, B) and N : A are terms, then (MN) : B is a term.
4 If M : B[A and N : A are terms, then (MN) : B is a term.
5 If M : B
A
and N : A are terms, then (MN) : B is a term.
I revise the categorytotype correspondence from Deﬁnition 38 on page
121 in the following way:
4
This is mainly a matter of convenience. Pragmatic notions like truth and entailment ulti
mately depend both on the denotation of a sign and its syntactic category. While the λterms
represent the denotation of a sign, its type (in the sense used here) represents those aspects
of its syntactic category that are pragmatically relevant.
Indeﬁnites 223
Definition 51 (Category to type correspondence) Let τ be a
function from CAT(B) to TYPE. τ is a correspondence function
iﬀ
1 τ(A¸B) = τ(B/A) = ¸τ(A), τ(B))
2 τ(A[B) = τ(A)[τ(B)
3 τ(A
B
) = τ(A)
τ(B)
Even though the four implications from the enriched system (henceforth
referred to as LLC+
∧
) are now distinguished in the syntax of terms,
they are uniformly interpreted as function space formation.
Definition 52 (Domains)
The function Dom is a semantic domain function iﬀ
1 the domain of Dom is TYPE,
2 for all A ∈ TYPE, Dom(A) is a nonempty set, and
3 Dom(¸A, B)) = Dom(B[A) = Dom(B
A
) = Dom(B)
Dom(A)
Since the same term may have diﬀerent types in the extended version
of the λcalculus that we use here and henceforth, it is convenient to
introduce some syntactic sugar into the syntax of terms such that the
typing of terms becomes unambiguous again. I thus use the following
conventions:
1 If the type of λxM is A
B
, I write εxM instead of λxM.
2 If the type of λxM is A[B, I write πxM instead of λxM.
Note that these are just orthographic conventions, neither the oﬃcial
syntax of the term language nor its semantics are aﬀected by this.
The grammatical contribution of the pronoun in (10a) is governed
by the rule [I. Since the indeﬁnite in (12a) behaves similarly, there must
be an analogous rule for indeﬁnites. This holds with one qualiﬁcation
however: While the [I rule takes the possibility into account that several
pronouns may be coreferent (without being resolved), this is impossible
with indeﬁnites. So the counterpart of the [Irule should be restricted to
n = 1. The sequent formulation and the sequent style natural deduction
formulation of this rule coincide; both rules take the form
X, x : A, Y ⇒ M : C
∧
X, y : A
B
, Y ⇒ εz.M[(yz)/x] : C
B
224 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
Anaphoric pronouns receive their interpretation from the preceding lin
guistic material. This is not the case for indeﬁnites. According to
Dekker (and Stalnaker), their value is ﬁxed by the extralinguistic con
text, rather than by the linguistic context. Thus there cannot be a
counterpart of the [Erule for A
B
. The rule given above is the only log
ical rule governing the behavior of the new connective. (Therefore its
label is just “
∧
”.)
The resulting system can be seen as a variablefree reformulation
of Heimstyle DRT. According to Heim, both indeﬁnites and pronouns
(alongside full deﬁnites, which will be ignored here) introduce a free vari
able into the semantic representation. The NoveltyFamiliarity Condi
tion requires that the variable that comes with an indeﬁnite is novel while
the variable that comes with a pronoun is familiar. Here, both kinds of
NPs are interpreted as identity functions which functioncompose with
their semantic surroundings. This is the closest approximation to the
notion of a free variable in a variablefree setting. The anaphora reso
lution rule [E enables pronouns to ﬁnd antecedents (corresponding to
the Familiarity Condition). Since there is no corresponding rule for in
deﬁnites, they never have antecedents—this is the counterpart of the
Novelty Condition.
Since the rule
∧
is isomorphic to one instance of [L, the Cut elimi
nation proof for LLC extends immediately to LLC+
∧
, the extension of
LLC with the new connective for indeﬁnites. Accordingly, decidability
and the ﬁnite reading property are preserved.
The tree style natural deduction version of the new rule is analogous
to the corresponding rule [I:
Definition 53 (Natural deduction for
∧
in tree format)
Let α be a proof tree with the conclusion sequence X, M : A
B
, Y , and β a
proof tree with X
, x : A, Y
as sequence of undischarged premises (where
X
, Y
are like X, Y except that all formulae are labeled with variables)
and N : C as single conclusion. Then γ is a proof tree as well, where γ is
the result of 1. replacing x in β with My, 2. replacing all occurrences of
variables occurring in X
, Y
by the corresponding terms from X, Y , and
3. merging the two graphs by identifying all nodes with identical labels
and having M : A
B
immediately dominate My : A, and 4. extending the
resulting graph by a new node εyN : C
B
;
∧
with N : C as only premise.
The proofs of Cut elimination, strong normalization, and the Normal
Form theorem of the naturals deduction calculus for LLC can readily
be extended to LLC+
∧
by basically repeating the corresponding clauses
for [I. So these properties are preserved as well.
Indeﬁnites 225
In the graphical notation, the tree format natural deduction rule
∧
takes the shape given in Figure 6.1.
.
.
.
M : A
B
i
Mx : A
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
N : C
∧
, i
εxN : C
B
Figure 6.1. Natural deduction rule for
∧
in tree format
Informally put, the rule expresses that we can temporarily ignore the
exponent of a category A
B
, provided we retrieve this exponent later
(i.e., further down) in the derivation.
As indicated above, I assume the (somewhat simpliﬁed) lexical entry
(13) for the indeﬁnite NP someone.
(13) someone – εx.x : np
np
The derivation of (12a) thus comes out as in Figure 6.2.
someone
lex
εx.x : np
np
i
x : np
walked
lex
walk’ : np¸s
¸E
walk’x : s
∧
, i
εx.walk’x : s
np
Figure 6.2. Derivation of (12a)
As was the case in connection with anaphora, the category of a sentence
need not be s here, but it can for instance be s
np
, or any category
corresponding to a sentence containing an arbitrary number of indeﬁnites
and unresolved pronouns. Therefore, a precise deﬁnition of the notion
“sentence” must be recursive. A sign is a sentence if it can be assigned
a sentential category, and the latter notion is deﬁned as follows:
Definition 54 (Sentential Category)
1 s is a sentential category
2 If A is a sentential category, so are A
np
and A[np.
226 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
(I disregard unresolved ellipses here. If they are to be incorporated, the
deﬁnition can easily be adjusted accordingly.) Due to the variable free
character of TLG and its strict categorytotype correspondence, the
polymorphism that is implicit in Dekker’s system is thus made explicit
in the deﬁnition of a sentential category. It should be noted that decid
ability and the ﬁnite reading property are nevertheless preserved, since
the complexity of the category of a sentence is always bounded by the
number of indeﬁnites and pronouns occurring in it, so we always have
to consider only ﬁnitely many candidate categories for a given string.
I can now give a PLA style semantics for English sentences. Two
qualiﬁcations are necessary though: First, PLA employs two notions of
interpretation, satisfaction and truth. I will do something similar: I will
deﬁne a notion of truth on top of the standard interpretation function for
λterms. There is thus no need for an independent notion of satisfaction
here. Second, truth is a metanotion that is deﬁned as a property of
denotations of English sentences. However, sentences may have identical
denotations but diﬀerent truth conditions in case they diﬀer in their
syntactic and semantic types. Truth is thus deﬁned as a relation between
a denotation and a semantic type. Since denotations depend on models
and assignment functions, truth is implicitly relativized to them.
Now let an interpretation function   for the typed λcalculus
(in the sense of Deﬁnition 16 on page 32) be given, and let e be a
metavariable that ranges over sequences of elements of Dom(e). I write
e [= α : A iﬀ the sequence e veriﬁes the sentence denotation α relative
to the (sentential) syntactic type A.
Definition 55 (Truth)
1 e [= α : t iﬀ α = 1
2 e [= α : A[e iﬀ e −1 [= αe
1
: A
3 e [= α : A
e
iﬀ ∃c ∈ Dom(e).e [= αc : A
So in short, all slots corresponding to indeﬁnites are existentially bound,
while the slots corresponding to pronouns are ﬁlled by the sequence of
evaluation e.
In the derivation of a sentence containing an indeﬁnite, the type of
the indeﬁnite, np
np
, is temporarily replaced by a hypothesis of type np
that is discharged later. Thus the deductive behavior of indeﬁnites is
similar to that of quantiﬁers. Crucially, this temporary nphypothesis
can antecede subsequent pronouns. This leads to conﬁgurations where a
pronoun is bound by an indeﬁnite, as for instance in example (14). The
derivation is given in Figure 6.3 on the facing page.
Indeﬁnites 227
(14) Someone
i
met his
i
mother.
someone
lex
εx.x : np
np
i
[x : np]
j
met
lex
meet’ : (np¸s)/np
his mother
lex
mother’ : np[np
[E, j
mother’x : np
/E
met’(mother’x) : np¸s
¸E
meet’(mother’x)x : s
∧
, i
εx.meet’(mother’x)x : s
np
Figure 6.3. Derivation of (14)
According to the recursive truth deﬁnition given above, the truth con
ditions of this sentence are computed as follows:
e [= εx.meet’(mother’x)x
g
: t
e
⇐⇒
∃c ∈ Dom(e).e [= εxmeet’(mother’x)x
g
c : t ⇐⇒
∃c ∈ Dom(e).e [= meet’(mother’x)x
g[x→c]
: t ⇐⇒
∃c ∈ Dom(e).¸c, mother’(c)) ∈ meet’
In words, the sentence is true iﬀ there is an individual that stands in
the meeting relation to its mother. More generally, the εoperator is
ﬁnally interpreted as an existential quantiﬁer, but its existential impact
is not due to its contribution to the denotation of a term (recall that ε
is just a notational variant of λ), but it is due to the truth deﬁnition.
This is reminiscent of DRT, where free variables are existentially bound
by default. The following fact generalizes this. Here and henceforth, I
tacitly assume that the classical ﬁrst order connectives ∧, ∨, , ∃ and ∀
have their usual truth functional interpretation when used as part of the
λcalculus.
Fact 1
Let M be a term of type t, / be a model, g an assignment function,
and e a sequence of individuals. Then it holds that
e [= εv
1
εv
n
M
M,g
iﬀ e [= ∃v
1
∃v
n
M
M,g
Proof: Immediate from the deﬁnitions. ¬
An extension of TLG to the discourse level goes beyond the scope of
this book. Therefore we cannot reproduce Dekker’s analysis of cross
sentential anaphora. The treatment of crossclausal anaphora within one
228 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
sentence is unproblematic; it works in a manner parallel to the example
given above. I simply admit that indeﬁnites take arbitrary wide scope
(the issue of the scope of indeﬁnites will be further discussed in Section
5); therefore indeﬁnites can antecede any subsequent pronoun within
the same sentence. Since the scopal mechanism of indeﬁnites is formally
independent of ordinary quantiﬁer scope (i.e., from qE), a restriction
of the latter to the local clause, say, would not eﬀect this analysis of
indeﬁnites.
An example of crossclausal anaphora is given in (15) with the
derivation in Figure 6.4.
(15) Someone
i
walked and he
i
talked.
someone
lex
εx.x
np
np
j
[y]
i
np
walked
lex
walk’
np¸s
¸E
walk’y
s
and
lex
λpq.q ∧ p
(s¸s)/s
he
lex
πx.x
np[np
[E, i
y
np
talked
lex
talk’
np¸s
¸e
talk’y
s
/E
λq.q ∧ talk’y
s¸s
¸E
walk’y ∧ talk’y
s
∧
, j
εy.walk’y ∧ talk’y
s
np
Figure 6.4. Derivation of (15)
As the reader can easily verify, the sentence is predicted to be true in this
reading if and only if there is an individual that is both in the extension
of walk and in the extension of talk.
4.
In Dynamic Predicate Logic, negation is externally static, and this prop
erty is inherited by all operators that are deﬁned in terms of negation,
like the universal quantiﬁer and implication. This property is ceteris
paribus inherited by Dekker’s PLAnegation. An existential quantiﬁer
that resides inside the scope of a negation cannot bind a pronoun outside
the scope of this negation. This is achieved by existentially binding oﬀ
Donkey Sentences
Indeﬁnites 229
all indeﬁnites in the scope of the negation. Negation is therefore im
plicitly polymorphic in PLA; its semantic clause makes reference to the
length of the formula in its scope. In the type logical reformulation, this
polymorphism has to be made explicit.
I will deﬁne this polymorphic negation in an indirect way. First, I
will introduce the auxiliary notion of static closure. This is an operation
from sentential denotations to sentential denotations that neutralizes the
anaphora licensing potential of indeﬁnites without aﬀecting the truth
conditions or the anaphoric potential of the sentence. (The analogous
operation in Dynamic Predicate Logic neutralizes the dynamic potential
of a formula; this motivates the name.)
Strictly speaking, static closure is a twofold operation: It operates
both on the level of (sentential) syntactic types and on the level of de
notations. As an operation on types, it simply eliminates all argument
slots corresponding to indeﬁnites. I overload the symbol “↓” by using it
both for static closure on (syntactic and semantic) types and for static
closure on denotations. Here and henceforth, I use the upper case letter
S as a metavariable over sentential types.
Definition 56 (Static closure)
1 ↓ s = s
2 ↓ t = t
3 ↓ (S[e) = (↓ S)[e
4 ↓ (S[np) = (↓ S)[np
5 ↓ (S
e
) =↓ S
6 ↓ (S
np
) =↓ S
The parallel recursion on syntactic categories and on semantic types
ensures that static closure commutes with the map from categories to
types, i.e., τ(↓ A) =↓ τ(A).
As an operation on denotations, static closure has the eﬀect of exis
tentially closing all argument places corresponding to indeﬁnites, while
the argument slots that come from pronouns remain unaﬀected. (The
letter c is used as metavariable over elements of the individual domain
Dom(e).)
Definition 57 (Static closure of sentential denotations)
1 ↓ (α : t) = α : t
2 ↓ (α : S[e) = λc. ↓ (αc) :↓ S[e
230 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
3 ↓ (α : S
e
) =
c∈Dom(e)
↓ (αc) :↓ S
Finally, we can deﬁne static closure as a syntactic operation on terms,
i.e., as syntactic counterpart of the corresponding semantic operation.
(The symbol “↓” is highly overloaded now; it symbolizes an operation
on syntactic categories, an operation on semantic types, a functor in
the term language and an operation on modeltheoretic objects. The
context, however, always makes clear what the intended meaning is.)
Definition 58 (Static closure of terms)
1 If M is a term of a sentential type S, then ↓ M is a term of type
↓ S.
2  ↓ M =↓ M
Like the global truth deﬁnition, static closure existentially binds all vari
ables that are bound by ε, while it has no impact on variables that are
bound by π. This can be made precise by the following generalization.
Fact 2
For all models / and assignment functions g, it holds that
 ↓ πxM
M,g
= πx ↓ M
M,g
(↓ εxM) : t
M,g
= ∃x ↓ M
M,g
Proof: Immediate from the deﬁnitions. ¬
The (polymorphic) negation of a sentential denotation is now easily de
ﬁnable as the settheoretic complement of the static closure of this de
notation.
5
Formally, negation is an operation on typed CurryHoward
terms.
Definition 59 (DekkerNegation)
1 If M is a term of type S, then ∼ M is a term of type ↓ S.
2  ∼ M : S
g
= ↓ M
g
: S
Dekkernegation performs static closure on its operand, i.e., it induces
existential closure on all εbound variables. In the special case that its
operand has type t, it coincides with classical negation.
5
Following the usual practice, I do not distinguish between sets and their characteristic
functions. Strictly speaking, the negation of a sentence denotation α is the characteristic
function of the complement of the set {xαx = 1}. Also, I take the complement of a truth
value to be the opposite truth value.
Indeﬁnites 231
Fact 3
For all models / and assignment function g it holds that
 ∼↓ M
M,g
=  ∼ M
M,g
 ∼ (M : t)
M,g
= M
M,g
 ∼ πxM
M,g
= πx ∼ M
M,g
Proof: The ﬁrst part immediately follows from the fact that static closure
on denotations is idempotent, i.e.
↓ (↓ (α : S) :↓ S) =↓ (α : S)
To see why this is so, observe that ↓ S is a type of the form t[e [e for
arbitrary sentential types S. It follows immediately from the deﬁnition
of static closure on typed denotations that it is the identity operation if
applied to denotations of such a type.
The second part and the third part follow immediately from the
deﬁnitions of Dekkernegation and of static closure. ¬
Let us illustrate this notion of negation with an example. I assume the
lexical entry in (16) for the negation auxiliary doesn’t.
(16) doesn’t – λx. ∼ x(λy.y) : q(vp/vp, S, ↓ S)
This seemingly complex entry basically expresses the idea that doesn’t
occupies the position of an auxiliary while its semantic impact is negation
with scope over the entire clause.
Now consider the following sentence.
(17) Someone doesn’t beat his donkey.
This sentence is fourway ambiguous, since the pronoun may be free or
bound, and the indeﬁnite may take narrow or wide scope with respect
to negation. These four readings correspond to four diﬀerent TLG
derivations.
6
They are given in the ﬁgures 6.5 – 6.8.
Successively applying the deﬁnitions and facts given above leads
to the following derivation of the truth conditions for the reading from
Figure 6.5 on the following page.
6
When the pronoun is free, a spurious ambiguity arises because the I may be applied before
or after qE, but this choice does not aﬀect the truth conditions.
232 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
someone
lex
εx.x
np
np
k
v
np
doesn
t
lex
λy ∼ y(λz.z)
q(vp/vp, S, ↓ S)
j
u
vp/vp
beat
lex
beat’
(np¸s)/np
his donkey
lex
donkey of’
np[np
i
donkey of’w
np
/E
beat’(donkey of’w)
np¸s
/E
u(beat’(donkey of’w))
np¸s
¸E
u(beat’(donkey of’w))v
s
∧
, k
εv.u(beat’(donkey of’w))v
s
np
[I, i
πwεv.u(beat’(donkey of’w))v
s
np
[np
qE, j
∼ πwεv.beat’(donkey of’w)v
s[np
Figure 6.5. First derivation of (17)
someone
lex
εx.x
np
np
k
v
np
doesn
t
lex
λy ∼ y(λz.z)
q(vp/vp, S, ↓ S)
j
u
vp/vp
beat
lex
beat’
(np¸s)/np
his donkey
lex
donkey of’
np[np
i
donkey of’w
np
/E
beat’(donkey of’w)
np¸s
/E
u(beat’(donkey of’w))
np¸s
¸E
u(beat’(donkey of’w))v
s
[I, i
πw.u(beat’(donkey of’w))v
s[np
qE, j
∼ πw.beat’(donkey of’w)v
s[np
∧
, k
εv ∼ πw.beat’(donkey of’w)v
(s[np)
np
Figure 6.6. Second derivation of (17)
Indeﬁnites 233
someone
lex
εx.x
np
np
k
[v]
i
np
doesn
t
lex
λy ∼ y(λz.z)
q(vp/vp, S, ↓ S)
j
u
vp/vp
beat
lex
beat’
(np¸s)/np
his donkey
lex
donkey of’
np[np
[E, i
donkey of’v
np
/E
beat’(donkey of’v)
np¸s
/E
u(beat’(donkey of’v))
np¸s
¸E
u(beat’(donkey of’v))v
s
∧
k
εv.u(beat’(donkey of’v))v
s
np
qE, j
∼ εv.beat’(donkey of’v)v
s
Figure 6.7. Third derivation of (17)
someone
lex
εx.x
np
np
k
[v]
i
np
doesn
t
lex
λy ∼ y(λz.z)
q(vp/vp, S, ↓ S)
j
u
vp/vp
beat
lex
beat’
(np¸s)/np
his donkey
lex
donkey of’
np[np
[E, i
donkey of’w
np
/E
beat’(donkey of’v)
np¸s
/E
u(beat’(donkey of’v))
np¸s
¸E
u(beat’(donkey of’v))v
s
qE, j
∼ beat’(donkey of’v)v
s
∧
, k
εv ∼ beat’(donkey of’v)v
s
np
Figure 6.8. Fourth derivation of (17)
234 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
e [=  ∼ πwεv.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g
: s[np ⇐⇒
e [= πw ∼ εv.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g
: s[np ⇐⇒
e −1 [= πw ∼ εv.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g
e
1
: s ⇐⇒
e −1 [=  ∼ εv.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g[w→e
1
]
: s ⇐⇒
e −1 [=  ∼ ∃v.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g[w→e
1
]
: s ⇐⇒
e −1 [= ∃v.beat’(donkey of’w)v
g[w→e
1
]
: s ⇐⇒
,∃c ∈ Dom(e).¸c, donkey of’
g
e
1
) ∈ beat’
g
In words, the sentence is true in this reading relative to a sequence e
iﬀ the donkey of e
1
isn’t beaten by anyone. By similar calculations, we
can derive that the sentence is true in the second reading relative to e
iﬀ there is someone who doesn’t beat e
1
’s donkey. The third reading is
true iﬀ nobody beats his donkey, and the fourth reading is true if there
is someone who refrains from beating his donkey. So the interaction
between indeﬁnites and negation works as it is supposed to.
The third essential nonclassical ingredient of PLA, next to exis
tential quantiﬁcation and negation, is conjunction. I will not use it to
model the semantics of the English word and here; as was shown above,
a classical semantics for and is compatible with the anaphora facts, given
LLC+
∧
. However, implication is deﬁned in terms of negation and con
junction in PLA, and therefore we need a version of Dekker’s conjunction
nevertheless.
The crucial nonclassical aspect of PLAconjunction is the fact that
it enables binding of pronouns in the second conjunct from indeﬁnites
(i.e., existential quantiﬁers) in the ﬁrst conjunct. The mapping of in
deﬁnites and pronouns is determined both by the linear order of the
existential quantiﬁers and the indices of the pronouns. The latter kind
of information is absent from our type logical reformulation of PLA. On
the other hand, unresolved pronouns have scope in LLC+
∧
, and the
scopal order of pronouns can be used to manage the mapping between
pronouns in the second conjunct and their binders in the ﬁrst conjunct.
The basic idea is that the ﬁrst indeﬁnite in the ﬁrst conjunct binds
the ﬁrst pronoun (i.e., the pronoun with widest scope) in the second
conjunct, the second indeﬁnite binds the second pronoun and so forth.
Pronoun slots that are not bound in this way are inherited by the con
junction as a whole. Likewise, pronoun slots from the ﬁrst conjunct are
inherited by the conjunction as a whole. Finally, all slots corresponding
to indeﬁnites are inherited by the conjunction as a whole as well.
These considerations lead to the following (re)deﬁnition of Dekker’s
conjunction. Analogously to negation, I ﬁrst deﬁne an operation on types
(static closure in the case of negation) before I give the corresponding
deﬁnition for sentential meanings. Both indeﬁnite slots and pronoun
Indeﬁnites 235
slots from either conjunct are inherited by the conjunction as a whole,
with the single exception of clause 3. If an indeﬁnite slot in the ﬁrst
conjunct is matched by a pronoun slot in the second conjunct, the in
deﬁnite binds the pronoun, and thus only the indeﬁnite slot is inherited
by the conjunction as a whole.
Definition 60 (Dekkerconjunction on terms)
Let S
1
and S
2
be sentential types. If M : S
1
and N : S
2
are terms, then
S
1
& S
2
is deﬁned as follows:
t & S
2
= S
2
S
1
[e & S
2
= (S
1
& S
2
)[e
S
e
1
& S
2
= (S
1
& S
2
−1)
e
where
t −1 = t
S[e −1 = S
S
e
−1 = (S −1)
e
Like static closure, conjunction of types can be deﬁned on syntactic
categories as well. The deﬁnition runs completely analogously:
Definition 61
s & S
2
= S
2
S
1
[np & S
2
= (S
1
& S
2
)[np
S
np
1
& S
2
= (S
1
& S
2
−1)
np
where
s −1 = s
S[np −1 = S
S
np
−1 = (S −1)
np
Based on this syntactic notion, we can give a recursive deﬁnition for
Dekker style conjunction as an operation on typed sentential denota
tions. (If both conjuncts have type t, Dekkerconjunction coincides with
Boolean conjunction. The twoplace operation min captures this; it
takes two truth values as arguments and returns the smallest of them.)
Definition 62 (Interpretation of Dekkerconjunction)
M & N
g
= M
g
& N
g
236 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
where
1 (α : t) & (β : t) = min(α, β) : t
2 (α : t) & (β : S[e) = λc.α & (βc) : S[e
3 (α : t) & (β : S
e
) = λc.α & (βc) : S
e
4 (α : S
1
[e) & (β : S
2
) = λc.(αc) & β : (S
1
& S
2
)[e
5 (α : S
e
1
) & (β : S
2
) = λc.(αc) & (β : S
2
+ c) : (S
1
& S
2
−1)
e
where
6 (β : t) + c = β
7 (β : S[e) + c = (βc)
8 (β : S
e
) + c = λd.((βd) : S) + c
As with the other counterparts of the PLAconnectives, there are some
useful facts about the properties of Dekkerconjunction and its interac
tion with the other connectives.
Fact 4
For all models / and assignment functions g, it holds that
M : t & N : t
M,g
= M ∧ N
M,g
(πxM) & N
M,g
= πx(M & N)
M,g
provided x is not free in N
εxM & πyN
M,g
= εx(M & N[x/y])
M,g
provided x is not free in N
and y is free for x in N
M : t & εxN
M,g
= εx(M & N)
M,g
provided x is not free in M
Proof: Immediately from the deﬁnitions. ¬
The third clause is especially noteworthy here, since it directly corre
sponds to dynamic binding in Dynamic Predicate Logic and its counter
part in PLA.
We are now ready to put the pieces together and to implement
the PLA analysis of donkey sentences in TLG. I start with conditional
donkey sentences. Consider example (18).
Indeﬁnites 237
(18) If someone walks, he talks.
The only missing building block is the lexical entry for the complemen
tizer if. Restricting attention to if clauses in topicalized position for
simplicity, I assume the following entry:
(19) if – λpq. ∼ (p & ∼ q) : (↓ (S
1
& ↓ S
2
))/S
2
/S
1
To improve readability, I introduce another abbreviational convention:
M → N
.
= ∼ (M & ∼ N)
The lexical entry for if thus becomes
(20) if – λpq.p → q : (↓ (S
1
& ↓ S
2
))/S
2
/S
1
The semantic label is a direct translation of the PLAtreatment of im
plication. Since the implicit polymorphism of conjunction and negation
in PLA becomes explicit in TLG, the syntactic category (and thus the
semantic type) of if is polymorphic. Its speciﬁc instantiation depends
on the number of donkey pronouns occurring in its scope. In the donkey
reading of (18), the type of if comes out as s/s[np/s
np
. The syntactic
derivation is given in Figure 6.9 (where I skip over the composition of
the two clauses since these are analogous to previous examples).
if
lex
λpq.p → q
↓ (S
1
& ↓ S
2
)/S
2
/S
1
someone walks
εxwalk’x
s
np
/E
λq.εxwalk’x → q
↓ (s
np
& ↓ S
2
)/S
2
he talks
πytalk’y
s[np
/E
εxwalk’x → πytalk’y
s
Figure 6.9. Derivation of the donkey reading of (18)
The semantic representation of (18) thus comes out as
εxwalk’x → πytalk’y
According to the truth deﬁnition (Deﬁnition 55 on page 226), this term
(and thus sentence (18)) is true with respect to a sequence e and an
assignment g iﬀ
εxwalk’x → πytalk’y
g
= 1
238 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
Expanding the abbreviation for → gives us
 ∼ (εxwalk’x & ∼ πytalk’y)
g
= 1
According to Fact 3, this can be rewritten as
 ∼ (εxwalk’x & πy ∼ talk’y)
g
= 1
Making use of Facts 3 and 4, we get
 ∼ εx(walk’x & talk’x)
g
= 1
Fact 3 gives us
 ∼↓ εx(walk’x & talk’x)
g
= 1
and thus according to Fact 2, we have
∃x(walk’x ∧ talk’x)
g
= 1
According to the mundane semantics of ﬁrst order logic, this is true iﬀ
every walking individual is also a talking individual.
Now let us consider the classical donkey pattern, where two indeﬁ
nites in the if clause bind one pronoun each in the main clause each.
(21) If someone owns something, he beats it.
The if clause is (spuriously) ambiguous, depending on whether the sub
ject or the object receive wide scope. In either case the syntactic category
of the clause is (s
np
)
np
, but the semantic representations diﬀer. They
are given in (22a) and (b).
(22) a. εxεy.own’xy : (t
e
)
e
b. εyεx.own’xy : (t
e
)
e
The main clause is ambiguous in a similar way: either the subject pro
noun or the object pronoun may take wide scope. In either case the
category of the clause is (s[np)[np, and the two semantic representations
are
(23) a. πxπy.beat’xy : (t[e)[e
b. πyπx.beat’xy : (t[e)[e
So there are four ways to derive the ﬁnal category s for the whole sen
tence. The accompanying CurryHoward terms are
Indeﬁnites 239
(24) a. εxεy.own’xy → πxπy.beat’xy
b. εyεx.own’xy → πxπy.beat’xy
c. εxεy.own’xy → πyπx.beat’xy
d. εyεx.own’xy → πyπx.beat’xy
After a series of calculations that are similar to those of the previous
example (but somewhat more complex), we end up with the truth con
ditions
∀c∀d(¸c, d) ∈ own’
g
→ ¸c, d) ∈ beat’
g
)
both for (24a) and (d). Likewise, we obtain the truth conditions
∀c∀d(¸c, d) ∈ own’
g
→ ¸d, c) ∈ beat’
g
)
for (24b,c). (This reading does not exist because it would involve a
gender clash.)
This example illustrates that the structural ambiguity between nest
ing and crossing is dealt with in the syntaxsemantics interface.
What if both pronouns (or, more generally, more than one pronoun)
are dynamically bound by the same indeﬁnite? Such a reading would
lead both to a gender clash and a binding deviance in the previous
example, but good examples are easily constructed, as for instance
(25) If something bothers someone
i
, he
i
turns his
i
head.
There are two aspects of the corresponding derivation that are notewor
thy. First, since it is the object of the if clause that binds the pronouns
in the main clause, the object has to receive wide scope in the derivation
of this clause. Thus, its semantic representation has to come out as
(26) εyεx.bother’xy
Second, the coreference between the subject pronoun and the object
pronoun in the main clause has to be dealt with in the syntax. This
can be achieved by using an instance of the [I rule where n = 2. The
derivation is given in Figure 6.10 on the following page.
The type of if is thus instantiated as s/s[np/((s
np
)
np
), and the
semantic representation of (25) comes out as
(27) εyεx.bother’yx → πz.turn’(head’z)z
This formula is true with respect to a sequence if everybody who is
bothered by something turns his head.
240 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
he
lex
πx.x
np[np
i
z
np
turns
lex
turn’
(np¸s)/np
his head
head’
np[np
i
head’z
np
/E
turn’(head’z)
np¸s
¸E
turn’(head’z)z
s
[I, i
πz.turn’(head’z)z
s[np
Figure 6.10. Derivation of the main clause of (25)
Finally, the question arises how to treat a conﬁguration where the
if clause contains indeﬁnites and the main clause contains a pronoun,
but the pronoun remains free or is bound by some operator in superor
dinate position. I only consider the former case, the latter is analogous.
An example is given in (28).
(28) If something
i
happens, he
j
will resign.
The crucial aspect in the derivation of this kind of example is that the
composition of the if clause with the main clause is done prior to the
application of [I which binds the anaphora slot that comes from the
pronoun. So again the relevant binding (or better: nonbinding) pattern
is dealt with in the syntax. The basic structure of this derivation is
sketched in Figure 6.11 on the next page.
The semantic representation of the sentence (28) in the intended reading
is thus
(29) πy.εz(happen’z) → resign’y
This formula is true with respect to a sequence e iﬀ either nothing hap
pens or e
1
will resign. So the slot corresponding to the pronoun remains
free at the sentence level and is ﬁlled by means of the extralinguistic
context.
Let us now turn our attention to the other variety of donkey sen
tences, where an indeﬁnite inside the restrictor of a quantiﬁer binds a
pronoun outside its scope. A simple example is
Indeﬁnites 241
if
lex
s/s/s
np
λpq.p → q
something
lex
εx.x
np
np
j
z
np
happens
lex
happen’
np\s
\E
happen’z
s ∧
, j
εz.happen’z
s
np
/E
λq.εz(happen’z) → q
s/s
he
lex
πx.x
npnp
i
y
np
will resign
lex
resign’
np\s
\E
resign’y
s
/E
εz(happen’z) → resign’y
s
I, i
πy.εz(happen’z) → resign’y
snp
Figure 6.11. Derivation of (28)
(30) Every farmer who owns something beats it.
PLA follows DRT and Dynamic Semantics in the assumption that this
kind of construction requires the same analysis as conditional donkey
sentences. Technical diﬃculties arise if one attempts to follow this strat
egy too closely in TLG,
and I will thus deviate from it somewhat. It turns out, however, that
this decision is linguistically wellmotivated.
Consider the semantics of the common noun phrase farmer who
owns something in the example above. Its CurryHoward term is
(31) (εxλy.farmer’y ∧ own’xy)
So the denotation of this phrase is a (curried) binary relation between
individuals. The two argument places are of diﬀerent type though. The
ﬁrst argument place that corresponds to εx is introduced by an indeﬁnite
and creates a type A
e
for some type A. The second argument place
(corresponding to λy) is rooted in the semantic type of common nouns
and leads to a type of the form ¸e, A).
A similar distinction between argument places can be made for the
VP beats it in the above example (which denotes a binary relation as
well). Its semantic representation is
(32) πxbeat’x
The outermost argument place corresponds to a pronoun and creates
a type of the form A[e, while the second argument place (which is left
242 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
implicit in the λterm) corresponds to the subject position of the verb
and creates a type of the form ¸e, A). In the sequel, I will call argument
positions that create types of the form ¸A, B) structural, while argu
ment positions that correspond to indeﬁnites or anaphors (i.e., argument
positions that create types of the form A[B or A
B
) will be called non
structural. Notationally, structural argument positions are marked
with λ, and nonstructural ones with π or ε. This distinction is impor
tant for the analysis of quantiﬁcational donkey sentences because the
determiner every in (30) binds the highest structural argument place
both of its restrictor and its scope, no matter how many nonstructural
argument places these items may have. To formalize this analysis, I in
troduce the operation of structural function application. Applying
a function f structurally to an argument x means that x ﬁlls the ﬁrst
structural argument place of f, while all nonstructural argument places
are passed on to the result of the operation. I will write f¦x¦ for the re
sult of applying f structurally to x. The operation is deﬁned recursively
as follows:
Definition 63 (Structural function application)
1 (M : ¸B, A))¦N : B¦ = (MN) : A
2 (M : A[B)¦N : C¦ = πx.(Mx)¦N¦ : D[B (where D is the type
of (Mx)¦N¦)
3 (M : A
B
)¦N : C¦ = εx.(Mx)¦N¦ : D
B
(where D is the type of
(Mx)¦N¦)
Note that structural function application is a partial operation. If M
does not have structural arguments, or if the highest structural argument
of M has another type than N, then M¦N¦ is undeﬁned.
The intuitive motivation for introducing structural function appli
cation is the insight that determiners only bind the highest structural
argument both of their restrictor and their scope. This is at odds with
the DRT/PLA analysis which assumes that determiners unselectively
bind both structural and nonstructural arguments. As discussed above,
unselective binding only predicts one of two readings for examples with
every, and it predicts an entirely wrong reading for other determiners.
The empirically correct generalization is that structural arguments are
bound by the determiner while all other arguments are either bound
universally or existentially (which leads to strong and weak readings
of donkey sentences, respectively). I assume that determiners are sys
tematically lexically ambiguous between a weak and a strong reading.
These ideas are formalized in the following two lexical entries for the
determiner every:
Indeﬁnites 243
(33) a. every
weak
–
λPQ.∀x(↓ P¦x¦ →↓ (P¦x¦ & Q¦x¦)) : q(np, S, s)/N
b. every
strong
–
λPQ.∀x(↓ P¦x¦ → (P¦x¦ → Q¦x¦)) : q(np, S, s)/N
Here, I use N as a metavariable over categories of common noun phrases
that contain an arbitrary number of pronouns and indeﬁnites. The mo
tivation for the semantic representations for the weak and the strong
readings will become clear as we go along. First, consider the syntactic
category of every, q(np, S, s)/N. Both the restrictor and the scope of
the determiner are assumed to be polymorphic, i.e., they may contain
an arbitrary number of indeﬁnites and pronouns. Combining every with
its restrictor yields a quantiﬁer that occupies an npposition. Scoping
this quantiﬁer has the eﬀect of static closure; the result of scoping is a
clause with category s. (Of course the scope of the quantiﬁer may con
tain pronouns that are free or bound from the outside. These have to be
scoped after scoping the quantiﬁer. Likewise, speciﬁc indeﬁnites in the
restrictor or the scope of every are scoped after scoping the quantiﬁer
headed by every.)
Consider the weak reading of (30). The derivation (which is struc
turally identical for the weak and the strong reading) is schematically
given in Figure 6.12 on the following page, and it leads to the semantic
representation in (34).
(34) ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & πu.beat’uz))
Some elementary manipulations using the equivalences from the facts
stated above lead to the equivalent term
(35) ∀z(∃x(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
∃x(farmer’z ∧ own’xz ∧ beat’xz))
This ﬁrst order formula can further be simpliﬁed to
(36) ∀z(farmer’z ∧ ∃xown’xz → ∃x(own’xz ∧ beat’xz))
So in its weak reading, (30) is true iﬀ every farmer who owns something
beats something that he owns.
Now consider the strong reading that arises if we use the second
lexical entry for every. The syntactic derivation is identical to the weak
reading, and replacing the ﬁrst lexical entry for every by the second
leads to the semantic representation
244 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
e
v
e
r
y
l
e
x
λ
P
Q
.
∀
z
(
↓
P
¦
z
¦
→
↓
(
P
¦
z
¦
&
Q
¦
z
¦
)
)
q
(
n
p
,
S
,
s
)
/
N
f
a
r
m
e
r
w
h
o
o
w
n
s
s
o
m
e
t
h
i
n
g
ε
x
λ
y
.
f
a
r
m
e
r
’
y
∧
o
w
n
’
x
y
n
n
p
/
E
λ
Q
.
∀
z
(
↓
ε
x
.
f
a
r
m
e
r
’
z
∧
o
w
n
’
x
z
→
↓
(
ε
x
.
(
f
a
r
m
e
r
’
z
∧
o
w
n
’
x
z
)
&
Q
¦
z
¦
)
)
q
(
n
p
,
S
,
s
)
i
w
n
p
b
e
a
t
s
i
t
π
x
.
b
e
a
t
’
x
(
n
p
¸
s
)
[
n
p
j
b
e
a
t
’
u
n
p
¸
s
¸
E
b
e
a
t
’
u
w
s
[
I
,
j
π
u
.
b
e
a
t
’
u
w
s
[
n
p
q
E
,
i
∀
z
(
↓
ε
x
.
f
a
r
m
e
r
’
z
∧
o
w
n
’
x
z
→
↓
(
ε
x
.
(
f
a
r
m
e
r
’
z
∧
o
w
n
’
x
z
)
&
(
π
u
.
b
e
a
t
’
u
z
)
)
)
s
(37) ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →↓ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
πu.beat’uz))
According to the abbreviational convention for →, this is shorthand for
F
i
g
u
r
e
6
.
1
2
.
D
e
r
i
v
a
t
i
o
n
f
o
r
(
3
0
)
Indeﬁnites 245
(38) ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓∼ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & ∼ πu.beat’uz))
Here we can commute Dekkernegation and πu and perform dynamic
binding. This leads to
(39) ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓∼ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’xz & ∼ beat’xz)))
Further elementary manipulations yield the equivalent ﬁrst order for
mula
(40) ∀z(∃x(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
∃x(farmer’z ∧ own’xz ∧ beat’xz))
Due to the laws of ﬁrst order logic, this is equivalent to
(41) ∀z∀x(farmer’z ∧ own’xz → beat’xz)
So (30) is true in its strong reading if every farmer beats everything that
he owns.
I conclude the discussion of quantiﬁcational donkey sentences with
the remark that this treatment is not conﬁned to the ﬁrst order deﬁnable
determiner every. It easily extends to a general scheme for all determin
ers. If det is a determiner, I assume two lexical entries for it, namely
(where det’ is the generalized determiner, i.e., the relation between sets
that corresponds to det)
(42) a. det
weak
– λPQ.det’(λx ↓ P{x})(λx ↓ (P{x} & Q{x})) :
q(np, S, s)/N
b. det
strong
– λPQ.det’(λx ↓ P{x})(λx ↓ (P{x} → Q{x})) :
q(np, S, s)/N
5. Indeﬁnites and Scope
In the previous two sections, it was demonstrated how the binding pat
terns from PLA can be implemented in a type logical setting. The dis
cussion however was conﬁned to indeﬁnite NPs with a trivial descriptive
content. In this section, I will extend the framework to indeﬁnites with
arbitrary content. Let us start with a brief discussion of the issue of the
scope of indeﬁnites in general.
Since the work of Fodor and Sag, 1982 it has been generally known
that indeﬁnites diﬀer remarkably from genuine quantiﬁers with respect
to their scopal behavior. While the scope of a quantiﬁer like every movie
is usually restricted to its local clause, the scope of indeﬁnites is basically
unbounded. This is illustrated by the following minimal pair.
246 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
(43) a. Some girl will be happy if every movie is shown. [∃ > ∀]
*[∀ > ∃]
b. Every girl will be happy if some movie is shown. [∃ > ∀][∀ >
∃]
Fodor and Sag, 1982 suggest that indeﬁnites are ambiguous between
a quantiﬁcational and a referential (= speciﬁc) reading. This predicts
though that indeﬁnites take either local or global scope. The existence
of intermediate readings has been established by several authors, how
ever, notably by Farkas, 1981 and by Abusch, 1994. The following two
examples are taken from Kratzer, 1998 (they are slight modiﬁcations of
examples from Abusch, 1994):
(44) a. Every professor rewarded every student who read some book
he had recommended. ∀ > ∃ > ∀
b. Every one of them moved to Stuttgart because some woman
lived there. ∀ > ∃ > because
The conclusion that has to be drawn from the investigations of the au
thors mentioned and others is that the scope of indeﬁnites is structurally
unrestricted, even if local and global scope readings might be preferred
pragmatically. The sharp contrast between indeﬁnites and other quan
tiﬁers suggests that diﬀerent mechanisms are at work here. Existential
closure in the sense of DRT is an obvious candidate for a mechanism
to assign scope to indeﬁnites. It leads to mispredictions though if the
indeﬁnite has a nontrivial descriptive content. The following example
from Reinhart, 1995 illustrates this point.
(45) a. If we invite some philosopher, Max will be oﬀended.
b. ∃x((philosopher’x ∧ invite’xwe’) → offended’max’)
Analysing (45a) in a DRTstyle way without employing any further scop
ing mechanisms leads to a semantic representation like (45b) for the spe
ciﬁc reading of (a), where the existential impact of the indeﬁnite some
philosopher takes wide scope, while the descriptive content remains in
the antecedent of the conditional. As already observed in Heim, 1982
for a parallel example, (45b) does not represent the truth conditions
of the speciﬁc reading of (45a). The former is true if there is one non
philosopher, while (45a) in the widescope reading requires the existence
of a philosopher x with the property that Max will be oﬀended if we
invite x. Since the existence of the nonphilosopher Donald Duck is suf
ﬁcient to verify (45b) but not (45a), this problem is sometimes called
the Donald Duck problem in the literature.
Indeﬁnites 247
To overcome this and related problems, several authors have pro
posed to employ choice functions for the analysis of indeﬁnites (see for
instance Reinhart, 1992, Reinhart, 1995, Reinhart, 1997, Kratzer, 1998,
Winter, 1997). To cut a long story short, according to these theories,
the semantic counterpart of an indeﬁnite determiner is a variable over a
choice function, i.e., a function that maps nonempty sets to one of their
elements. This variable is subject to existential closure in a way akin to
the treatment of free individual variables in DRT. (45a) would therefore
come out as
(46) ∃f(CH(f) ∧ (invite’f(philosopher’)we’ →
offended’max’))
The extension of the predicate constant CH is the set of choice functions
of type ¸¸e, t), e), i.e.,
∀f(CH(f) ↔ ∀P(∃xPx → P(fP)))
(46) in fact represents the truth conditions of (45a) in an adequate way.
Generally speaking, the choice function approach solves two problems
in one stroke. Since it uses unselective binding to assign scope to in
deﬁnites, it covers the fact that the scope of indeﬁnites is structurally
unrestricted. Second, the choice function mechanism makes sure that
the existential impact of an indeﬁnite is not unduly divorced from its
descriptive content.
On the other hand, the choice function approach faces at least two
serious problems. First, what happens if the extension of the descriptive
content of an indeﬁnite is empty? Consider a slight variation of (45a):
(47) If we invite some Polish friend of mine, Max will be oﬀended.
If the indeﬁnite some Polish friend of mine receives a speciﬁc reading,
the sentence can be paraphrased as There is a certain Polish friend of
mine, and if we invite him, Max will be oﬀended. Suppose I don’t have
any Polish friends. In this scenario the sentence is false in the relevant
reading. The choice function approach as such does not supply clear
truth conditions in this case, since the argument of the choice function
f in the term f(polish friend of mine’) denotes the empty set. Both
Reinhart and Winter suggest mechanisms that make the smallest clause
containing such a term false. This works ﬁne for simple sentences such
as
(48) We invited some Polish friend of mine.
248 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
This sentence is in fact false if there are no Polish friends of mine. This
very fact would make (47) true though, while the sentence should come
out as false. Let us call this problem the empty set problem.
The second problem arises if the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite
contains a pronoun that is bound by some superordinate quantiﬁer. The
following example (from Abusch, 1994) can serve to elaborate this point.
(49) Every professor
i
rewarded every student who read some book he
i
had recommended.
According to the choice function approach, the sentence should have a
reading which can be represented as
(50) ∃f(CH(f) ∧ ∀x(professor’x →
∀y(student’y ∧ read’(f(λz.book’z ∧ recommend’zx)) →
reward’yx)))
Suppose two professors, a and b, happened to recommend exactly the
same books to their students. Then the expressions
λz.book’z ∧ recommend’za
and
λz.book’z ∧ recommend’zb
denote the same set, and thus the terms
f(λz.book’z ∧ recommend’za)
and
f(λz.book’z ∧ recommend’zb)
denote the same individual. So the reading that is described in (50)
can be paraphrased as follows: Every professor has a favorite book. He
recommends this book (possibly along with other books), and he awards
students that read his favorite book. Furthermore, if two professors rec
ommend the same books, they have the same favorite book. The last
condition is entirely unnatural, and the sentence has no such reading.
This problem is discussed among others by Kratzer, 1998 (who at
tributes the observation to Kai von Fintel and P. Casalegno) and Winter,
1997. Again, the literature contains several proposals regarding how to
circumvent this kind of overgeneration, but so far no suggested solution
is really satisfactory. I will call this problem the bound pronoun problem
bound pronoun problem.
Indeﬁnites 249
These and a variety of other problems for the choice function ap
proach have been pointed out by several authors, see for instance Re
niers, 1997, Geurts, 2000 and Endriss, 2001. The works mentioned also
contain discussions of the possible solutions of these problems, and argu
ments why they are not fully satisfactory. The conclusion that has to be
drawn from the discussion in the literature so far is that the choice func
tion approach is not a viable alternative to a quantiﬁcational treatment
of indeﬁnites.
So an adequate theory of indeﬁnites should avoid the problems that
were discussed in this section so far. At the same time, such a theory
should take the fact into account that the scope taking behavior of in
deﬁnites is virtually unrestricted, and it should be able to deal with the
peculiar pronoun binding abilities of indeﬁnites which were the subject
of the previous two sections. The theory I sketched there already meets
the ﬁrst two requirements. The scope of indeﬁnites is syntactically han
dled by the rule
∧
, and its applicability is determined by the scope of
static closure. In other words, an indeﬁnite is predicted to take scope
either over an entire sentence or over a constituent that is subject to sta
tic closure. If we assume that clause embedding operators like verbs of
propositional attitude etc. apply static closure to their arguments, this
generalization is empirically correct. The scope of ordinary quantiﬁers
on the other hand is syntactically modeled by means of the rule qE in
our type logical framework. While I only gave a formulation of this rule
that does not take domains of its applicability into account, the clause
boundedness of quantiﬁer scope can easily be modeled by means of mul
timodal techniques, as for instance Morrill, 1994 demonstrates. While
multimodality goes beyond the scope of this book, it is important to
point out that the scoping mechanisms for indeﬁnites and for quantiﬁers
are independent from each other in our framework, and it is thus not
surprising that they are subject to diﬀerent constraints.
In the previous two sections, I demonstrated how the “dynamic”
binding abilities of indeﬁnites can be modeled in TLG. It remains to be
shown how this framework can take the descriptive content of indeﬁnites
into account, thereby avoiding the Donald Duck problem, the empty set
problem, and the bound pronoun problem.
The basic idea underlying my proposal can be sketched as follows.
Recall that I assumed that an indeﬁnite like something denotes the iden
tity function over individuals. Let us extend this idea to other indeﬁnites.
For some philosopher, I assume that it denotes the identity function as
well, but the domain of this function is conﬁned to the set of philoso
phers. The application of this function to nonphilosophers is not de
ﬁned. This function combines with its linguistic environment in the
250 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
manner discussed above for indeﬁnites with trivial descriptive content.
A sentence like
(51) John invited some philosopher.
will denote a partial function f from individuals to truth values. Ap
plying f to a philosopher that was invited by John yields the value 1.
Applying f to a philosopher that was not invited by John yields the
value 0. The application of f to nonphilosophers is not deﬁned. The
sentence is true with respect to a sequence e iﬀ there are individuals c
such that applying f to c yields the value 1. This is the case iﬀ there is
at least one philosopher that was invited by John. Likewise, the static
closure of the denotation of (51) is 1 iﬀ there is a c such that fc = 1 and
0 otherwise. So the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite is interpreted
as a domain restriction for the argument place that corresponds to this
indeﬁnite. Existentially closing such an argument place has the eﬀect of
asserting the existence of an element of this domain. This makes sure
that the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite always has the same scope as
its existential impact. Thus we avoid the Donald Duck problem. If this
domain happens to be empty, both static closure and the global truth
deﬁnition lead to falsehood, so there is no empty set problem either. Fi
nally, since the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite always has the same
scope as its existential impact, a wide scope reading for the indeﬁnite
in (49) is excluded, since then the pronoun could not be bound by the
quantiﬁer. So the bound pronoun problem does not arise either.
7
To formalize this idea, I extend the term language. εabstraction
now optionally comes with an explicit domain of the function that is
created. I thus add the following clauses to the syntax and the semantics
of the term language respectively:
Definition 64
1 If x is a variable of type A, M is a term of type t, and N is a
term of type B, then εx
M
N is a term of type B
A
.
2 εx
M
N
M,g
= ¦¸c, N
M,g[x→c]
)[c ∈ Dom(A) ∧ M
M,g[x→c]
=
1¦
7
A very similar analysis could probably be carried out within an unselective bind
ingframework if the descriptive content of indeﬁnites is analyzed as a restriction on the
corresponding variables, and if restricted variables are assumed to be undeﬁned if their value
does not obey their restriction. Farkas, 1999 points out that the Donald Duck problem can
be avoided by using restricted variables, but she does not develop a semantics with a partial
interpretation function.
Indeﬁnites 251
So the denotation of εx
M
N is similar to the denotation of λxN, except
that the domain of this function is restricted to the extension of λxM.
The truth deﬁnition and the deﬁnition of semantic closure on de
notations have to be adjusted accordingly. Basically, while existential
closure of εarguments involves existential quantiﬁcation over the whole
domain of the type of the bound variable, we now only quantify over the
extension of the restriction.
Definition 65 (Truth)
1 e [= α : t iﬀ α = 1
2 e [= α : A[e iﬀ e −1 [= αe
1
: A
3 e [= α : A
e
iﬀ ∃c ∈ Dom(α) : e [= αc : A
Definition 66 (Static closure of sentential denotations)
1 ↓ (α : t) = α : t
2 ↓ (α : S[e) = λc. ↓ (αc) :↓ S[e
3 ↓ (α : S
e
) =
¦(↓ (αc) :↓ S)[c ∈ Dom(α)¦
There are some noteworthy facts concerning the behavior of restricted
abstraction.
Fact 5
1 e [= εx
1,M
1
εx
n,M
n
N : t iﬀ e [= ∃x
1
.M
1
∧ ∧∃x
n
.M
n
∧N
2 (↓ εx
M
N) : t = ∃x(M∧ ↓ N)
3 εxM[((εz
N
O)x)/y] = εx
N[x/z]
M[(O[x/z])/y]
provided x is free for z in O and N, and no variable in N that
is bound on the left hand side is free on the right hand side
Proof: Immediate from the deﬁnitions. ¬
The ﬁrst two parts simply state that existential closure of restricted ε
abstraction turns it into restricted existential quantiﬁcation. The third
part is basically a restricted version of βreduction for εabstraction. If
we apply an εabstract εz
N
O to a variable x that is itself εbound, we
may perform βreduction (subject to the usual restrictions) and thus
simplify the function application to O[x/z], but the restriction N on z
has to be passed on to the εoperator that binds x. The side condition
ensures that no variable in N may become unbound by this operation.
252 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
Indeﬁnites are still analyzed as identity functions, but these are
created by restricted εabstraction, and the common noun phrase of an
indeﬁnite NP supplies the restriction on the abstract. So the lexical
entry for the indeﬁnite determiner some comes out as in (52). (The
indeﬁnite article a is treated analogously.)
(52) some – λPεx
Px
x : np
np
/n
In the remainder of this section I will demonstrate that this treatment of
the descriptive contents of indeﬁnites adequately extends the treatment
of indeﬁnites of the previous two sections to the general case, and that it
avoids the problems of the unselective binding approach and the choice
function approach that were discussed above.
Let us start the discussion with a simple example like
(53) John invited some philosopher.
The syntactic derivation does not diﬀer from previous examples where
the descriptive content of the indeﬁnite was empty. It is given in Fig
ure 6.13 for completeness.
John
lex
john’
np
invited
lex
invite’
(np¸s)/np
some
lex
λPεx
Px
x
np
np
/n
philosopher
lex
philosopher’
n
/E
εx
philosopher’x
x
np
np
i
(εx
philosopher’x
x)y
np
/E
invite’((εx
philosopher’x
x)y)
np¸s
¸E
invite’((εx
philosopher’x
x)y)john’
s
∧
, I
εy.invite’((εx
philosopher’x
x)y)john’
s
np
Figure 6.13. Derivation of (53)
The semantic representation of the sentence is (54a). According to the
third part of Fact 5, this is equivalent to (54b), which in turn has the
same truth conditions as (54c).
(54) a. εy.invite’((εx
philospher’x
x)y)john’
Indeﬁnites 253
b. εy
philospher’y
.invite’yjohn’
c. ∃y(philospher’y ∧ invite’yjohn’)
I continue with another look at the interaction between indeﬁnites and
negation. Example (55) is analogous to (17) apart from the fact that
someone has been changed to some farmer.
(55) Some farmer doesn’t beat his donkey.
The syntactic derivations of (55) are structurally identical to the four
derivations of (17) (which are given in the ﬁgures 6.5 – 6.8). They lead
to the four semantic representations in (56).
(56) a. ∼ πwεv.beat’(donkey of’w)((εx
farmer’x
x)v)
b. εv ∼ πw.beat’(donkey of’w)((εx
farmer’x
x)v)
c. ∼ εv.beat’(donkey of’((εx
farmer’x
x)v))
((εx
farmer’x
x)v)
d. εv ∼ beat’(donkey of’((εx
farmer’x
x)v))
((εx
farmer’x
x)v)
According to the third part of Fact 5, these terms can be rewritten by
the equivalent
(57) a. ∼ πwεv
farmer’v
.beat’(donkey of’w)v
b. εv
farmer’v
∼ πw.beat’(donkey of’w)v
c. ∼ εv
farmer’v
.beat’(donkey of’v)v
d. εv
farmer’v
∼ beat’(donkey of’v)v
Some further elementary transformations render these representations
truth conditionally equivalent to
8
(58) a. πw∃v(farmer’v ∧ beat’(donkey of’w)v)
b. πw∃v(farmer’v ∧ beat’(donkey of’w)v)
c. ∃v(farmer’v ∧ beat’(donkey of’v)v)
d. ∃v(farmer’v ∧ beat’(donkey of’v)v)
So in all four readings, the restriction on εabstraction is always turned
into a restriction of an existentially quantiﬁed variable. This fact ac
counts for the absence of a Donald Duck problem in the present ac
count. Reconsider the critical example (45), which is repeated here in
8
The calculation for (b) makes use of the fact that εx
M
πyN and πyεx
M
N are truth condi
tionally equivalent if y is not free in M, which follows directly from the deﬁnitions.
254 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
a slightly modiﬁed form as (59a). Giving the indeﬁnite wide scope over
the conditional leads to the semantic representation (59b).
(59) a. If John invites some philosopher, Max will be oﬀended.
b. εx(invite’((εy
philosopher’y
y)x)john’ →
offended’max’)
Transferring the restriction on the inner ε to the outer ε leads to (60a).
Expanding the abbreviational convention for →gives us (b), and employ
ing the correspondence between the Dekkerconnectives and the classical
ﬁrst order connectives makes this equivalent to (c). This in turn is truth
conditionally equivalent to (d).
(60) a. εx
philosopher’x
(invite’xjohn’ → offended’max’)
b. εx
philosopher’x
∼ (invite’xjohn’ & ∼ offended’max’)
c. εx
philosopher’x
(invite’xjohn’ ∧ offended’max’)
d. ∃x(philosopher’x ∧ (invite’xjohn’ → offended’max’))
Note that the truth conditional equivalence between (59b) and (60d)
holds for all models, including those where philosopher’ has an empty
extension. If there are no philosophers, the sentence is predicted to
be false. So the present account avoids the empty set problem. The
semantic reason for this is the fact that the denotation of (59a) is a
function from philosophers to truth values. If there are no philosophers,
this is the empty function. A truth valued function is true according to
our truth deﬁnition iﬀ there are arguments for which the function returns
the value 1. The empty function never returns any value, therefore the
sentence is false in such a model.
Let us now turn our attention to a runofthemill conditional don
key sentence like the classical
(61) If a farmer owns a donkey, he beats it.
The syntactic derivation of this sentence is analogous to the one for (21).
It leads to the semantic representation
(62) εx
farmer’x
εy
donkey’y
own’yx → πzπwbeat’wz
Expanding the deﬁnition of → leads to (63a). Dynamic binding makes
this equivalent to (b). Employing the interaction between the Dekker
connectives, static closure and the classical connectives allows us to
rewrite (b) as (c). Using the second part of Fact 5 twice, we get (d), and
this is ﬁrstorder equivalent to (e).
Indeﬁnites 255
(63) a. ∼ (εx
farmer’x
εy
donkey’y
own’yx & ∼ πzπwbeat’wz)
b. ∼ εx
farmer’x
εy
donkey’y
(own’yx & ∼ beat’yx)
c. ↓ εx
farmer’x
εy
donkey’y
(own’yx ∧ beat’yx)
d. ∃x(farmer’x ∧ ∃y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx ∧ beat’yx))
e. ∀x(farmer’x → ∀y(donkey’y ∧ own’yx → beat’yx))
Quantiﬁcational donkey sentences are analyzed in a similar way. Apart
from the form of the indeﬁnite, the example in (64) is analogous to
(30), which was discussed in the previous section. Again, the syntactic
derivation is analogous (cf. Figure 6.12 on page 244), and we end up
with the semantic representation in (64b,c) for the weak and the strong
readings, respectively.
(64) a. Every farmer who owns a donkey beats it.
b. ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’((εy
donkey’y
y)x)z) →
↓ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’((εy
donkey’y
y)x)z) &
πu.beat’uz))
c. ∀z(↓ εx(farmer’z ∧ own’((εy
donkey’y
y)x)z) →
↓ (εx(farmer’z ∧ own’((εy
donkey’y
y)x)z) →
πu.beat’uz))
βreduction leads to
(65) a. ∀z(↓ εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓ (εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & πu.beat’uz))
b. ∀z(↓ εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓ (εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) → πu.beat’uz))
Expanding the deﬁnition for → and performing dynamic binding (to
gether with some minor routine manipulations) leads to the reformula
tions
(66) a. ∀z(↓ εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓ εx
donkey’x
.(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & beat’xz)
b. ∀z(↓ εx
donkey’x
(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
∼↓ εx
donkey’x
.(farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & ∼ beat’xz)
Crucially, all εoperators in these representations are immediately pre
ceded by ↓. Due to Fact 5, this amounts to existential quantiﬁcation
over the corresponding argument places, i.e., we get
(67) a. ∀z(↓ ∃x(donkey’x ∧ farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
↓ ∃x(donkey’x ∧ farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & beat’xz)
256 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
b. ∀z(↓ ∃x(donkey’x ∧ farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
∼↓ ∃x(donkey’x ∧ farmer’z ∧ own’xz) & ∼ beat’xz)
This in turn is equivalent to
(68) a. ∀z(∃x(donkey’x ∧ farmer’z ∧ own’xz) →
∃x(donkey’x ∧ own’xz ∧ beat’xz))
b. ∀z(farmer’z → ∀x(donkey’x ∧ own’xz → beat’xz))
So to sum up this point, the domain restriction on εbound variables is
always turned into a restriction on the corresponding existential quan
tiﬁer when this εslot is existentially bound. This avoids the Donald
Duck problem, and the treatment of donkey constructions that was pro
posed in the previous section carries over to indeﬁnites with nontrivial
restrictions without problems.
It remains to be shown how the present system handles cases where
the descriptive part of an indeﬁnite contains a bound pronoun. A simple
example is
(69) Every girl
i
visited some boy that she
i
fancied.
In the indicated binding conﬁguration, the subject quantiﬁer must take
scope over the indeﬁnite object because otherwise the corresponding
proof tree would not be wellformed (cf. the discussion of this issue on
page 167 in Chapter 4). So the only derivation of (69) is the one that is
sketched in Figure 6.14 on the next page.
9
The semantic representation of (69) is thus
(70) ∀x(↓ girl’¦x¦ →↓ (girl’¦x¦ &
(λuεv.visit’((εy
boy’y∧fancy’yu
y)v)u)¦x¦))
According to the laws of structural function application,this is equivalent
to
(71) ∀x(↓ girl’x →↓ (girl’x &εv.visit’((εy
boy’y∧fancy’yx
y)v)x))
βreduction leads to
(72) ∀x(↓ girl’x →↓ (girl’x &εv
boy’v∧fancy’vx
.visit’vx))
Some elementary transformations lead to the equivalent ﬁrst order for
mula
9
I use only the weak reading of every here since the strong reading leads to an equivalent
result.
Indeﬁnites 257
e
v
e
r
y
g
i
r
l
λ
Q
.
∀
x
(
↓
g
i
r
l
’
¦
x
¦
→
↓
(
g
i
r
l
’
¦
x
¦
&
Q
¦
x
¦
)
)
q
(
n
p
,
S
,
s
)
i
[
u
]
j
n
p
v
i
s
i
t
e
d
l
e
x
v
i
s
i
t
’
(
n
p
¸
s
)
/
n
p
s
o
m
e
l
e
x
λ
P
ε
y
P
y
y
n
p
n
p
/
n
b
o
y
t
h
a
t
s
h
e
f
a
n
c
i
e
d
π
z
λ
w
.
b
o
y
’
w
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
w
z
n
[
n
p
[
E
,
i
λ
w
.
b
o
y
’
w
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
w
u
n
/
E
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
n
p
n
p
k
(
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
)
v
n
p
/
E
v
i
s
i
t
’
(
(
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
)
v
)
n
p
¸
s
¸
E
v
i
s
i
t
’
(
(
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
)
v
)
u
s
∧
,
k
ε
v
.
v
i
s
i
t
’
(
(
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
)
v
)
u
s
n
p
q
E
,
i
∀
x
(
↓
g
i
r
l
’
¦
x
¦
→
↓
(
g
i
r
l
’
¦
x
¦
&
(
λ
u
ε
v
.
v
i
s
i
t
’
(
(
ε
y
b
o
y
’
y
∧
f
a
n
c
y
’
y
u
y
)
v
)
u
)
¦
x
¦
)
)
s
(73) ∀x(girl’x → ∃v(boy’v ∧ fancy’vx ∧ visit’vx))
According to these truth conditions, the sentence could also be true in
a situation where two girls fancy the same boys but visit diﬀerent boys.
This is in line with the semantic intuitions. As discussed above, the
F
i
g
u
r
e
6
.
1
4
.
D
e
r
i
v
a
t
i
o
n
o
f
(
6
9
)
258 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
choice function approach furthermore predicts a nonexistent reading
where girls that fancy the same boys must visit the same boy to make
the sentence true. It might be argued that this reading is actually there
but hard to detect, because it is logically stronger than the ordinary
narrowscope reading (73). This is not the case anymore though if we
use a downward monotonic quantiﬁer in subject position, as in
(74) At most three girls visited a boy that they fancied.
According to the choice function approach, this sentence should have the
reading given in (75a), which is truthconditionally equivalent to (75b).
(75) a. ∃f.CH(f)∧[λx.girl’x∧visit’(f(λy.boy’y∧fancy’yx))x[ ≤
3
b. [λx.girl’x ∧ ∀y((∃z(boy’z ∧ fancy’zx) →
boy’y ∧ fancy’yx) → visit’yx)[ ≤ 3
Under the assumption that every girl fancies some boy, the prediction
is that the sentence has a reading that is synonymous to At most three
girls visited every boy that they fancied. Intuitions are fairly solid here
that such a reading does not exist.
Intuitively, this bound pronoun problem in connection with the
choice function approach is similar to the Donald Duck problem of un
selective binding: In both approaches, the interpretation of the descrip
tive content of an indeﬁnite is divorced from its existential impact, while
these two semantic components of indeﬁnites always occur in tandem.
Modelling the scope of indeﬁnites by means of existential closure over
partial functions covers this fact.
It deserves to be mentioned that the bound pronoun problem of the
choice function approach has been taken as evidence by Geurts, 2000
and by Endriss, 2001 that the scope of indeﬁnites is assigned by means
of some form of syntactic movement. The present solution proves that
this conclusion is not inevitable. The scope of indeﬁnites is assigned in
an entirely surface compositional way here, without making reference to
transformations between syntactic representations. (Recall that the ma
nipulations of the semantic representation that I used in the discussion
above are meaning preserving reformulations in the semantic representa
tion language without any signiﬁcance for the meanings that the theory
assigns to natural language expressions.)
6. Sluicing
Donkey anaphora is an empirical domain where the grammar of indef
inites is intricately linked with the grammar of anaphora. The same
Indeﬁnites 259
holds for the phenomenon of sluicing. After a brief recapitulation of
the basic issues that arise in connection with this form of ellipsis, I will
demonstrate that the LLCtreatment of anaphora in combination with
the analysis of indeﬁnites that was developed in the previous sections
can easily be combined in a natural approach to sluicing.
Brieﬂy put, sluicing is a version of ellipsis where under certain con
textual conditions, a bare whphrase stands proxy for an entire (em
bedded or matrix) question. The phenomenon was ﬁrst systematically
described in Ross, 1969, where also the name is coined. Typical examples
are
(76) a. She’s reading something, but I don’t know what.
b. Some guy knows how to get in here. Do you have any idea
who?
c. They hired a new system administrator. Guess who!
As with VP ellipsis, sluicing involves a source clause and a target clause.
The source clause is typically a declarative clause which contains an
indeﬁnite NP. The target clause is (interpreted as) the question that is
obtained if this indeﬁnite is replaced by a whphrase. At the surface
structure, everything but this whphrase is deleted. So on the face of it,
the examples above are related (via deletion, reconstruction or whatever)
to the nonelliptical counterparts
(77) a. She’s reading something, but I don’t know what she’s read
ing.
b. Some guy knows how to get in here. Do you have any idea
who knows how to get in here?
c. They hired a new system administrator. Guess who they
hired!
Interestingly, sluicing constructions remain grammatical in cases where
the nonelliptical counterpart involves an island violation of the wh
phrase. Consider the following example (like some of the subsequent
examples, it is taken from Merchant, 1999).
10
(78) a. They wanted to hire somebody who speaks a Balkan lan
guage, but I don’t know which.
10
I follow the standard assumption that the deletion of the common noun phrase inside the
whphrase (i.e., which instead of which Balkan language) is independent of sluicing, and I
will ignore this kind of ellipsis.
260 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
b. *They wanted to hire somebody who speaks a Balkan lan
guage, but I don’t know which Balkan language they wanted
to hire somebody who speaks.
In the nonelliptical version (78b), the whphrase which Balkan language
binds a gap inside a relative clause island. Therefore the example is
ungrammatical. Nonetheless, the corresponding sluicing construction
(78a) is impeccable.
The same point can be made with regard to a whole range of syntac
tic island constraints. The following list is not meant to be exhaustive.
Adjunct islands.
(79) a. Ben will be mad if Abby talks to one of the teachers, but she
couldn’t remember which.
b. *Ben will be mad if Abby talks to one of the teachers, but
she couldn’t remember which of the teachers Ben will be mad
if Abby talks to.
(from Merchant, 1999)
Complex NP islands.
(80) a. The administration has issued a statement that it is willing
to meet with one of the student groups, but I’m not sure
which one.
b. *The administration has issued a statement that it is willing
to meet with one of the student groups, but I’m not sure
which one the administration has issued a statement that it
is willing to meet with.
(from Chung et al., 1995)
Sentential subject islands.
(81) a. That certain countries would vote against the resolution has
been widely reported, but I’m not sure which ones.
b. *That certain countries would vote against the resolution has
been widely reported, but I’m not sure which ones that would
vote against the resolution has been widely reported.
(from Chung et al., 1995)
Embedded question islands.
(82) a. Sandy was trying to work out which students would be able
to solve a certain problem, but she wouldn’t tell us which
one.
Indeﬁnites 261
b. *Sandy was trying to work out which students would be able
to solve a certain problem, but she wouldn’t tell us which
one Sandy was trying to work out which students would be
able to solve.
(from Chung et al., 1995)
Coordinate structure constraint.
(83) a. Bob ate dinner and saw a movie that night, but he didn’t say
which.
b. *Bob ate dinner and saw a movie that night, but he didn’t
say which movie Bob ate dinner and saw that night.
(from Merchant, 1999)
These facts suggest that sluicing does not involve syntactic operations
like reconstruction or deletion. Rather, an approach that requires some
form of semantic correspondence between source clause and target clause
seems viable. On the other hand, the morphological form of the remnant
whphrase is not arbitrary. In languages with overt case marking, the
whphrase has to have the same case as the indeﬁnite in the source. The
following German example is from Ross, 1969, where this eﬀect (as well
the island insensitivity of sluicing) was ﬁrst observed.
(84) a. Er will jemandem schmeicheln, aber sie wissen nicht ¦wem /
*wen¦.
He wants someone
DAT
flatter but they know not
¦who
DAT
/ *who
ACC
¦
b. Er will jemandem schmeicheln, aber sie wissen nicht, ¦wem
/ *wen¦ er schmeicheln will.
he wants someone
DAT
flatter but they know not
¦who
DAT
/ *who
ACC
¦ he flatter wants
‘He wants to ﬂatter someone, but they don’t know who (he
wants to ﬂatter)’
(85) a. Er will jemanden loben, aber sie wissen nicht ¦*wem / wen¦.
He wants someone
ACC
praise but they know not
¦*who
DAT
/ who
ACC
¦
b. Er will jemanden loben, aber sie wissen nicht, ¦*wem / wen¦
er loben will.
he wants someone
ACC
flatter but they know not
¦*who
DAT
/ who
ACC
¦ he praise wants
‘He wants to praise someone, but they don’t know who (he
wants to praise)’
262 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
The German verbs schmeicheln (‘to ﬂatter’) and loben (‘to praise’) gov
ern dative case and accusative case respectively on their object. The
sluiced whphrases in the (a)examples have to have the same case mark
ing as the corresponding indeﬁnites in the source clause. In other words,
they must have the same case marking that they would have in the corre
sponding nonelliptical constructions. Under a pure identityofmeaning
approach, this morphological correspondence would seem mysterious.
A third peculiarity of sluicing is the fact that the whphrase in the
target clause and the corresponding indeﬁnite in the source clause must
have parallel scope. (This has been pointed out by Chung et al., 1995.)
Recall that in (43b)—repeated here as (86a)—the indeﬁnite some movie
may have narrow scope or wide scope relative to the quantiﬁer every
girl. If this sentence is used as a source clause in sluicing, only the wide
scope reading is possible.
(86) a. Every girl will be happy if some movie is shown. [∃ > ∀][∀ >
∃]
b. Every girl will be happy if some movie is shown, but I don’t
know which movie. [∃ > ∀] *[∀ > ∃]
As I will try to demonstrate in the remainder of this section, the theory
of indeﬁnites that was developed in the previous sections lends itself
naturally to a TLG account of sluicing that is based on LLC and covers
the empirical generalizations just discussed. Let us consider a simple
example like
(87) John invited someone, but it is unclear who John invited.
The details of the semantics of questions that one adopts are of minor
importance for the subsequent discussion. Therefore I remain neutral in
this respect and represent the semantics of the sluiced question who John
invited as (88a). The interrogative pronoun who has the lexical entry in
(88b). So the missing piece of meaning that is required to interpret the
ellipsis in (87) is (88c).
(88) a. ?x.invite’xjohn’
b. who – λP?xPx : Q/(s/np)
c. λx.invite’xjohn’
The denotation of the term in (88c) is identical to the denotation of
the source clause John invited someone according to the semantics of
indeﬁnites given above. So the adequate reading can easily be derived
via anaphora resolution if we assign the interrogative pronoun who the
additional lexical entry
Indeﬁnites 263
(89) who – λP?xPx : Q[(s
np
)
The semantics of the two readings of who is identical. In the sluicing
version, who is an anaphor that needs a declarative clause containing
an indeﬁnite as antecedent to yield a question. This is just a formal re
formulation of the informal description of sluicing patterns given above.
Note that the only diﬀerence between the two lexical entries for who lies
in the fact that they use diﬀerent substructural versions of Intuitionistic
implications. This is similar to the relation between the ordinary English
auxiliaries and their VPEcounterparts. They too have pairwise identi
cal meanings, and their categories diﬀer with regard to the implication
they use (vp/vp versus vp[vp). An analogous lexical ambiguity has to be
assumed for all interrogative pronouns and interrogative determiners.
What happens if the descriptive content of the indeﬁnite is non
trivial, as in (90)?
(90) John invited some philosopher, but it is unclear which philoso
pher.
Here, the missing piece of meaning is also λx.invite’xjohn’, but the
meaning of the source clause is the partial function
εx
philosopher’x
.invite’xjohn’
We can transform this partial function into a total function by means of
an operation tot’, which is deﬁned as
∀f, c.tot’fc =
1 iﬀ fc = 1
0 else
So for the sluicing version of the interrogative determiner which we have
to assume the lexical entry
11
(91) which – λPλR?x.Px ∧ tot’Rx : Q[(s
np
)/n
The (simpliﬁed) syntactic derivation for (90) is thus as in given in Fig
ure 6.15 on the following page.
The semantic representation which corresponds to this derivation is
(92a), which is truth conditionally equivalent to (92b). (I treat but as
synonymous with and.)
11
The correct analysis of the semantic contribution of the restrictor of which is an intricate
issue since it gives rise to a de re/de dicto ambiguity (cf. the discussion in Groenendijk and
Stokhof, 1984, pp 89). I think that an analysis using Boolean conjunction as in the entry in
(91) can be maintained if we admit free world indexing of common nouns in the restrictor
of operators, which is arguably necessary anyway. The issue is orthogonal to our present
concerns, so I omit further discussion.
264 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
J
o
h
n
l
e
x
n
p
i
n
v
i
t
e
d
l
e
x
(
n
p
¸
s
)
/
n
p
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m
e
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x
n
p
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n
p
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i
l
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p
h
e
r
l
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/
E
n
p
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p
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n
p
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¸
s
¸
E
s
∧
,
i
[
s
n
p
]
j
k
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b
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l
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x
(
s
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s
)
/
s
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t
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s
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n
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l
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a
r
s
/
Q
w
h
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c
h
l
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x
Q
[
(
s
n
p
)
/
n
p
h
i
l
o
s
o
p
h
e
r
l
e
x
n
/
e
Q
[
(
s
n
p
)
[
E
,
j
Q
/
E
s
/
E
s
¸
s
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E
s
∧
,
k
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n
p
F
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g
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r
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6
.
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.
D
e
r
i
v
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f
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(
9
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)
Indeﬁnites 265
(92) a. εx.(εy
philosopher’y
invite’yjohn’)x∧
unclear’?z.philosopher’z∧
tot’(εy
philosopher’y
invite’yjohn’)z
b. ∃x.philosopher’x ∧ invite’xjohn’∧
unclear’?z.philosopher’z ∧ invite’zjohn’
Let us now change the example slightly to
(93) John invited some philosopher, but it is unclear who.
Here, the descriptive content of the indeﬁnite in the source clause does
not coincide with the restrictor of the whphrase in the target. Never
theless, (93) is synonymous to (90). To derive this fact, I have to revise
the lexical entry of who slightly. The example (93) demonstrates that
the antecedents of whosluices may be partial functions. Therefore, the
totalizing function tot’ has to be incorporated into the semantics of
sluicingwho as well. The modiﬁed entry is thus
12
(94) who – λP?xtot’Px : Q[(s
np
)
Given this, the interpretation of (93) comes out as in (95a), which is
truthconditionally equivalent to (92b) as well.
(95) εx.(εy
philosopher’y
invite’yjohn’)x∧
unclear’?z.tot’(εy
philosopher’y
invite’yjohn’)z
The fact that the descriptive content of the source indeﬁnite always
serves as an additional restriction of the remnant whphrase in the
sluiced question was ﬁrst observed (and accounted for) in Chung et al.,
1995. It provides a major stumbling block for any theory that analyzes
sluicing via syntactic copying or deletion.
The prime obstacle for a purely syntactic approach to sluicing is of
course the lack of island sensitivity of sluiced constructions. Ross, 1969
suggested that syntactic island constraints only apply to phonetically
nonempty structures. Versions of this idea recur at several places in
the relevant literature, most recently—in a qualiﬁed form—in Merchant,
1999.
A full discussion of how this problem is dealt with in TLG would
of course require a discussion of islandhood within this framework. Like
the problem of restrictions on quantiﬁer scope, this issue goes beyond the
12
We may as well assume that ordinary who has the same semantics and thus maintain the
synonymy between the two readings, since the argument of who in ordinary questions is
always a total function and the presence of tot’ does not make any diﬀerence.
266 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
scope of this work, and the interested reader is referred to the relevant
discussion in Morrill, 1994. However, quite independently of the precise
type logical analysis of islandhood that we adopt, it should be clear that
sluicing is predicted to be insensitive to it. Consider again a relevant
minimal pair such as
(96) a. They wanted to hire somebody who speaks a Balkan lan
guage, but I don’t know which one.
b. *They wanted to hire somebody who speaks a Balkan lan
guage, but I don’t know which Balkan language they wanted
to hire somebody who speaks.
The whphrase which one in (96a) has the syntactic category Q[(s
np
).
So it acts as a question as soon as the linguistic context supplies an
antecedent of category s
np
—a clause containing a wide scope indeﬁnite.
The source clause in (96a) has this category, provided the indeﬁnite a
Balkan language is given wide scope there. The (ungrammatical) non
elliptical question in (96b) plays no role in the analysis of (96a), so no
matter how we exclude (96b), this analysis will not aﬀect the analysis
of (96a). Instead, we predict that the locality constraints in sluicing
exactly mirror the locality constraints for the scope of indeﬁnites. Since
the latter is in principle unbounded, so is sluicing.
The discussion in the previous paragraph readily suggests an expla
nation of one half of the scope parallelism facts mentioned above. Note
that the source clause in (96a), taken in isolation, is ambigous between
a narrow scope reading and a wide scope reading of the indeﬁnite a
Balkan language. According to the present theory of indeﬁniteness, this
semantic diﬀerence is reﬂected in the syntactic category of this clause.
If the indeﬁnite has narrow scope, the matrix clause has the category
s. Wide scope of the indeﬁnite corresponds to the category s
np
for the
matrix clause, and only in this category may it serve as antecedent for
the sluice in the second conjunct.
These considerations derive one half of the scope parallelism con
straint: the indeﬁnite in the source clause that licenses sluicing must at
least have scope over the entire source clause. We predict that it may
have wider scope though. The derivation in Figure 6.15 on page 264
already provides an example. If crossclausal binding of pronouns by
indeﬁnites is analyzed in the way done here, i.e., by assuming that the
binding indeﬁnite takes scope over the entire construction, this conclu
sion is desired and even inevitable. Nonetheless in examples like (97),
only the reading where the indeﬁnite and the whphrase take exactly
parallel scope (i.e., some girl takes narrow scope with respect to knows)
is possible.
Indeﬁnites 267
(97) Everybody knows that John wants to marry some girl, but John’s
mother still doesn’t know which one (John wants to marry).
This might be due though to the fact that constituent questions trigger
existential presuppositions. So the sluiced question in (97) triggers the
presupposition John wants to marry some girl (with a girl having wide
scope). If the indeﬁnite takes wider scope than the whphrase, this
presupposition has to be bound via bridging, while it can be directly
bound if the scopes are parallel.
Let us now turn to the third empirical generalization discussed
above, the morphological parallelism between the licensing indeﬁnite
in the source clause and the remnant whphrase in the target. I repeat
Ross’ example.
(98) a. Er will jemandem schmeicheln, aber sie wissen nicht ¦wem /
*wen¦.
He wants someone
DAT
flatter but they know not
¦who
DAT
/ *who
ACC
¦
‘He wants to ﬂatter someone, but they don’t know whom’
b. Er will jemanden loben, aber sie wissen nicht ¦*wem / wen¦.
He wants someone
ACC
praise but they know not
¦*who
DAT
/ who
ACC
¦
‘He wants to praise someone, but they don’t know who (he
wants to praise)
For a detailed discussion of the treatment of morphology in TLG, I
have to refer the reader once again to Morrill, 1994, but for the present
purposes a sketch will do. Suﬃce it to say that basic categories in a
morphologically informed version of TLG are not unstructured atoms
but (atomic) ﬁrst order formulae, i.e., they consist of a predicate (unary
predicates suﬃce) which takes complex terms as arguments. Morpholog
ical feature structures can be coded as ﬁrst order terms. Underspeciﬁed
aspects of the morphological structure can be represented as universally
quantiﬁed individual variables. Morphological feature structures can
thus be incorporated into a ﬁrst order version of LLC+
∧
.
In such a ﬁrst order version of TLG, the category of a dative NP in
German will be an atomic formula of the form np(...dat...), where dat
is a (possibly complex) term representing the case information “dative”.
Let us abbreviate this category with np(dat). Likewise, the category of
accusative NPs shall be sketched as np(acc). The German interrogative
pronouns wem (dative) and wen (accusative) thus have the syntactic
categories Q/(s/np(dat)) and Q/(s/np(acc)) respectively, i.e., they bind
an npposition with the matching case information in the interrogative
clause.
268 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
The case features of an indeﬁnite NP appear at two places: at the
argument and the result of the substructural implication in its syntactic
category. An indeﬁnite in dative case has the category np(dat)
np(dat)
,
and likewise for other cases. A clause containing a widescope indeﬁnite
in dative thus has the category s
np(dat)
. The sluicing version of the dative
interrogative pronoun has the category Q[(s
np(dat)
), i.e., it requires a
clause as antecedent that contains a wide scope indeﬁnite with dative
case. The ungrammatical versions of (98) are excluded because the case
features of the anaphoric whphrase do not match with the corresponding
feature in the antecedent.
Among the analyses of sluicing from the literature, the present one is
probably closest to the one from Chung et al., 1995. These authors adopt
a DRT style unselective binding analysis of indeﬁnites. According to
them, sluicing invokes the copying of the LF of the IP of the source clause
into the target clause. So after this copying operation, our previous
example (99a) would receive approximately an LF as (99b).
(99) a. John invited some philosopher, but it is unclear who.
b. ∃x[
IP
John invited some philosopher
x
], but it is unclear who
x
[
IP
John invited some philosopher
x
].
So the indeﬁnite some philosopher introduces a free variable both in the
source clause and the target clause. This variable is bound by unse
lective existential closure in the source and by the whoperator in the
target. If the source did not contain a free variable (i.e., an indeﬁ
nite), vacuous binding in the target and thus ungrammaticality would
ensue. Furthermore, the copying mechanism ensures that the descriptive
content of the indeﬁnite contributes to the interpretation of the target
question. Finally, the connection between the whoperator in the target
and the variable that it binds is not established via movement and thus
not predicted to be sensitive to island constraints.
The main problem of Chung et al.’s (1995) approach is inherited
from the unselective binding approach as such—it is susceptible to the
Donald Duck problem. The example (100a) will receive the LF (100b).
(100) a. Max will be oﬀended if we invite some philosopher, but it is
unclear who.
b. Max will be oﬀended if we invite some philosopher, but it
is unclear who
x
[
IP
Max will be oﬀended if we invite some
philosopher
x
].
So the question part of this sentence can be paraphrased as which x is
such that Max will be oﬀended if x is a philosopher that we invite. Given
Indeﬁnites 269
that Donald Duck is not a philosopher, “Donald Duck” should be a good
answer to this question, but it isn’t.
To sum up the discussion of sluicing, it can be said that the present
theory covers the core facts of this kind of ellipsis in a simple and ad
equate way. However, our theory is essentially an identityofmeaning
theory, and the literature contains quite a few instances of sluicing that
prima facie do not lend themselves easily to such an analysis. The most
problematic cases are those where sluicing is not licensed by an overt in
deﬁnite; implicit existentially quantiﬁed arguments in the source clause
can do that job as well. Chung et al., 1995 call this version of sluicing
“sprouting”. The following illustrate this phenomenon
(101) a. She served the soup, but I don’t know to whom. (from Chung
et al., 1995)
b. She was reading, but I couldn’t make out what. (from Chung
et al., 1995)
c. He’s writing, but you can’t imagine where/why/how fast.
(from Ross, 1969)
While it might be suggestive to assume that here, the licensing indeﬁnite
is somehow incorporated into the verb, such an analysis won’t work in
examples like the following (also from Chung et al., 1995).
(102) Joan ate dinner but I don’t know with whom.
Here, the source clause does not entail that Joan ate dinner with some
one, so the elided material in the target clause is not present in its en
tirety in the source clause, no matter what identity criterion we assume.
So a plain identityofmeaning theory like the present one has nothing
to say about these cases. One might argue that these cases seem to
involve some version of bridging, a phenomenon that is well attested in
all classes of anaphora.
7. Summary and Desiderata
The main purpose of this chapter was to demonstrate that the LLC
analysis of anaphoric pronouns can be extended to donkey pronouns.
However, the diﬃcult part of the analysis of donkey anaphora is not
how to analyze pronouns but how to analyze indeﬁnites, so most space
was devoted to this problem. The chapter consisted of three parts. In the
ﬁrst part, I introduced Dekker’s Predicate Logic with Anaphora, and I
showed how the PLAanalysis of indeﬁnites can be combined with the
LLCtreatment of pronouns. I thereby extended LLC to the Categorial
logic LLC+
∧
. Basically, indeﬁnites are treated analogously to pronouns,
270 ANAPHORA AND TYPE LOGICAL GRAMMAR
with the crucial diﬀerence that indeﬁnites cannot be resolved. Another
way to look at it is to say that I gave a type logical reformulation of
Heimstyle DRT, where free variables are replaced by identity functions.
The Novelty Condition for indeﬁnites is reconstructed as the absence
of resolution rules. By translating Dekker’s analyses of the standard
logical connectives of conjunction and negation into the term language
accompanying LLC+
∧
, we were able to reproduce the core of the DRT
analysis of donkey anaphora within TLG.
The second part focused on the issue of how the descriptive content
of indeﬁnites is to be analyzed. I suggested that indeﬁnites in general de
note (possibly partial) identity functions over individuals, and that the
descriptive content of an indeﬁnite supplies the domain of this function.
These functions functioncompose with their linguistic environment, and
the descriptive content of an indeﬁnite is thus inherited by the denota
tions of its superconstituents. I showed that this mechanism, paired
with an operation of existential closure of argument slots, circumvents
certain problems which plague other current theories of the scoping of
indeﬁnites.
The last part of the chapter applied these ﬁndings to the problem
of sluicing. I showed that the functional semantics of indeﬁnites, paired
with the LLCmechanism of anaphora, lends itself naturally to a simple
identityofmeaning theory for sluicing. The basic empirical generaliza
tions about this kind of ellipsis fall out immediately.
Each of these three topics is of considerable complexity, and a host
of issues has to remain untouched, let alone resolved. As for our ac
count of donkey anaphora, this analysis basically reformulates “classi
cal” Dynamic Semantics (i.e., Dynamic Predicate Logic in the sense of
Groenendijk and Stokhof, 1991b), even though the philosophical under
pinning is diﬀerent. This of course means that the empirical weaknesses
of DPL are inherited.
Our account of the scoping of indeﬁnites is conﬁned to singular NPs.
The issue becomes considerably more intricate if plural NPs are taken
into account. Weak quantiﬁers like three men are as unrestricted in their
scope taking behavior as singular indeﬁnites, so one would expect the
same mechanisms to be at work. However, with plural indeﬁnites, two
scoping mechanisms are involved. For instance, sentence (103a) (taken
from Winter, 1997 who attributes it to Ruys, 1995) has a reading that
can be paraphrased as (103b).
(103) a. If three relatives of mine die, I’ll inherit a fortune.
b. There are three relatives of mine, and if each of them dies,
I’ll inherit a fortune.
Indeﬁnites 271
The speciﬁc reading of three relatives of mine thus actually involves
two quantiﬁations, a wide scope existential quantiﬁcation over sets of
relatives of mine with the cardinality three, and a narrow scope universal
quantiﬁcation over elements of this set. It seems that the former is
as unrestricted as the existential impact of singular indeﬁnites, while
the universal quantiﬁcation is conﬁned to the local clause (i.e., obeys
the same constraints as other nonindeﬁnite quantiﬁers). Reniers, 1997
gives a TLG analysis of these facts using two versions of Moortgat’s in
situ binder. A reformulation into the present framework, where locally
restricted quantiﬁcation is handled by qE and unrestricted existential
quantiﬁcation by
∧
is easy to provide. However, a lot of issues remain
open in in connection with this issue, such as the question of which
quantiﬁers exactly can be subject to a double scope interpretation, and
what properties qualify a determiner to belong to that class. These issues
have been discussed in diﬀerent theoretical frameworks in Szabolcsi, 1997
and Endriss, 2001. It remains to be seen whether the ﬁndings of these
authors are compatible with the present theoretical setting.
Finally, the analysis of sluicing presented here remains somewhat
sketchy for two reasons. First, a detailed semantics of questions has to
take intensionality into account. While there is no fundamental obsta
cle against a CurryHoward style intensional semantics,
13
the syntax
semantics interface becomes considerably more complex and less trans
parent if relativization to possible worlds is added. Therefore, this issue
was left out throughout this book. Second, I believe that an adequate
treatment of sluicing requires a theory of presupposition resolution and
a theory of bridging, and it has to take the eﬀects of information struc
ture into account. While there is no lack of formal approaches to these
phenomena, they are completely independent of the type logical aspects
of anaphora. The discussion was therefore conﬁned to those aspects that
have a direct bearing on the topic of the book as a whole.
13
See for instance Morrill, 1994 for a fully worked out formalization.