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General Editor
(University of Ottawa)


Advisory Editorial Board

Henning Andersen (Copenhagen); Raimo Anttila (Los Angeles)
Thomas V.Gamkrelidze (Tbilisi); Hans-Heinrich Lieb (Berlin)
J.Peter Maher (Chicago); Ernst Pulgram (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
E.Wyn Roberts (Vancouver, B.C.); Danny Steinberg (Tokyo)

Volume 36
Larry D. King & Catherine A. Maley (eds.)
Selected Papers from the
XIIIth Linguistic Symposium
on Romance Languages




Chapel Hill, N.C., 24-26 March 1983

Edited by


University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, N.C.



Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data

Linguistic Symposium on Romance Languages (13th: University of North Carolina at
Chapel Hill: 1983)
Selected papers from the XIIIth Linguistic Symposium on Romance Languages, Chapel
Hill, N.C., 24-26 March 1983.
(Amsterdam studies in the theory and history of linguistic science. Series IV, Current
issues in linguistic theory, ISSN 0304-0763; v. 36)
1. Romance languages - Congresses. I. King, Larry D. (Larry Dawain), 1949-. II. Maley,
Catherine A. III. Title. IV. Title: Selected papers from the 13th Linguistic Symposium
on Romance Languages. V. Series.
ISBN 90-272-3525-2
Copyright 1985 - John Benjamins B.V.
No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, by print, photoprint, microfilm, or
any other means, without written permission from the publisher.


Since its initial gathering at the university of

Florida in 1971, the Linguistic Symposium on Romance
Languages (LSRL) has been held annually and hosted by a
North American university: the University of Illinois in
1972, Indiana University in 1973, the University of
Texas-Austin in 1974, the University of Michigan in 1975,
the University of Montreal in 1976, Cornell University
in 1977, the University of Louisville in 1978, Georgetown
University in 1979, the University of Washington in 1980,
the University of Texas-San Antonio in 1981, the Pennsyl
vania State University in 1982, the University of North
Carolina-Chapel Hill in 1983, and the University of
Southern California in 1984. The 1985 meeting will be
held at Boston University, and the 1986 symposium is
tentatively scheduled to return to the University of
Texas-Austin. LSRL has grown through the years in its
number of participants and in its impact on current
research in linguistics, and it is now generally recog
nized as the premiere forum devoted to the linguistic
analysis of the Romance Languages.
This volume reports the proceedings of the Thir
teenth Annual Linguistic Symposium on Romance Languages,
held at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill,
March 24-26, 1983. Twenty-one of the thirty-one papers



presented at the symposium are included: eleven deal with

the analysis of Spanish, seven treat issues pertaining
to French, one deals with Portuguese, one with Gascon,
and two are analyses of General Romance. The diversity
of the linguistic topics encompassed by the papers con
forms to the principal goal of the conference that
through the years has remained constantto contribute
to the synchronic and diachronic description and analysis
of the Romance Languages within the context of current
developments in linguistic theory.
The planning and execution of LSRL XIII, as well as
the publication of the proceedings, would not have been
possible without the help of several individuals. We
wish to acknowledge the financial support provided by
Samuel R. Williamson, Jr. (Dean, College of Arts and
Sciences) and Edward D. Montgomery, Jr. (Chairman, De
partment of Romance Languages).
The quality of the
papers presented at the symposium was assured by the
excellent work done by the abstract selection committee:
Jean Casagrande, Randy Hendrick, Jim Lantolf, Carlos
Piera, Carol Rosen, and Carmen Silva-Corvaln. Our work
through the months was rendered considerably less hectic
by the efficiency of the symposium secretary, Katrina
Braxton. We also wish to thank Joe Emonds, who kindly
consented to present the Keynote Address for the confer
ence, and Margarita Suer for delivering an invited
paper. The publication of the proceedings would not have
been possible without the generous support provided by a
University Research Council Publications Grant and an
Arts and Sciences Assistance for Scholarly Publications
Grant. The advice and encouragement provided by Konrad
Koerner, general editor of the series to which this



volume belongs, and Claire Benjamins of the John Benja

mins Publishing Company, must also be acknowledged. We
especially wish to thank Lois Davis and her associates
at Business Specialties of Chapel Hill, whose diligent
and quality work was complemented by a great deal of
patience in trying to replicate the seemingly strange
configurations of which linguists are so fond.
Most importantly we would like to thank all those
who presented papers, chaired sessions, or otherwise
participated in the symposium.
Although the Thursday
morning opening of LSRL XIII coincided with the first
significant snowfall of the season, we hope that the
cooperative weather on Friday and Saturday, which pro
vided a taste of Springtime in central North Carolina,
made the visit a pleasant memory.

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

August, 1984




Constraints on the Structure
De + Modifier in French

Clausal Case-Marking and the CRP


Clitics and Binding


The Necessity of Three-Cornered Comparative Syntax


Speech Act Markers in Modern Gascon



Mechanisms of Change in the Position of Object
Pronouns: From Classical Latin to Modern French . . . . . .


The Resolution of Phonological Ambiguity in a
Simulated English-Spanish Borrowing Situation


Autosegmental Phonology and Liquid
Assimilation in Havana Spanish



On Opening Black Boxes:
in Hispano-Romance

Latin -nge- and -ng'l



The D i s t r i b u t i o n of t h e French C l i t i c En
and t h e ECP


The Unagreement Hypothesis


The Syntax of Code-Switching: Spanish and English


Vowel Epenthesis in Romance: a Metrical Analysis


Individuation: Its Role in Clitic Sequences in French


On the Three-Tiered Syllabic Theory and
Its Implications for Spanish


On the Representation of Higher Order Complex Words . . .


On Passives and Word Order in Spanish


Apparent Non-Matching Relative Clauses in Spanish


The Filling of the Gap: Pro-Drop Rules
in Brazilian Portuguese


On Closed Syllable Adjustment in French


Lexical Subjects in French Infinitives








of Texas,


Postnominal adjectival modification in French admits

two structural possibilities, namely the simple NOUN +
MODIFIER and the disjunctive NOUN + de + MODIFIER. While
modification in the first paradigm is a priori unre
stricted except by semantic appropriateness considera
tions, the second pattern is highly constrained.
The sentences in (1) illustrate one type of restric
(1) a. Encore une affaire facile.
'Another simple matter'
b. *Encore une affaire de facile.
'Another simple matter'
c. Encore une affaire facilite.
'Another simplified matter'
d. Encore une affaire de facilite.
'Another matter simplified'
Sentence (ld) illustrates what will hereafter be called
the DE-construction and indicates in the English gloss a
subtle but non-trivial semantic difference between it and
(lc). Comparison of (lb) and (ld) suggests a constraint
on the nature of the modifier, whereby the DE-construc
tion in (ld) permits past participles and excludes unde-


rived adjectives. Since acceptable modifiers appear to

be those belonging to a category marked [+V] (cf. Ross,
1969; Chomsky, 1982:48) minus members of the traditional
grammatical category ADJECTIVE, I will provisionally call
The sentences in 2 suggest another type of struc
tural restriction.
(2) a. Voil un mot d'crit.
'There's one word written'
b. Voil cinq/plusieurs mots d'crits.
'There're five/several words written'
c. *Voil ce/le mot d'crit.
'There's that/the word written'
d. *Voil ces/les mots d'crits.
'There're those/the words written'
These data reveal that numerals and the indefinite quan
tifier plusieurs are permitted, while definite and demon
strative articles are not.
The apparent difference
between (2a,b) and (2c,d) may be stated in terms of
binding functions: (2c,d) suggest coindexing with some
extrasentential NP, while (2a,b) do not. As a grammaticality seems to depend on the function of the determiner
or quantifier, I will for the time being refer to this
In this paper it will be shown that the CATEGORY
points of departure: two members of a considerably larger
set of limitations on DE-constructions. After elabora
ting on these constraints, I will offer a plausible
account for their presence. The framework adopted will
borrow from the work of Kuno (1975) and Erteschik-Shir
(1979), and will accommodate some of the restrictions
alluded to within an outline of the types of predications


possible in DE-constructions.
Some of the conclusions of the present study are
complementary to those of Huot's (1981:253-301) excellent
chapter, "De + Adjectif/Participe Pass."
It will be
seen that her analyses of permitted modifiers and ele
ments preceding (de + modifier are essentially correct,
but underelaborated.
Particular attention will also
be paid to certain contestable items in Huot's data,
specifically sentences containing nouns determined by
definite articles.
Finally, the validity of all proposed constraints
will be reinforced by native speaker acceptability
judgments of the relevant sentences. The items in ques
tion are indicated in the far right margin of the text
by underlined numbers representing means of acceptability
ratings by 12 native subjects.
Ratings are supplied
along a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being totally unacceptable, 5
being perfectly acceptable. Thus, means from 1 to 2.3
correspond to *, 2.4 to 3.6 correspond to ?, and 3.7 to
5 correspond to OK. Acceptability of sentences with de
+ MODIFIER is characteristically difficult to judge by
native speakers.
Individual subjects in the present
study demonstrated ambivalence and inconsistency in their
judgments, and there was a dramatic lack of agreement
among subjects for certain items. The implications of
this behavior will be discussed in the concluding

Constraints on the Nature of the Modifier

1.1 Derivational Accounts. Since as early as Damourette

and Pichon (1911-1950), it has been argued that the modi
fiers possible in the DE-construction are essentially


verb-like (verbeux). This, of course, is in keeping with

the original formulation of the CATEGORY CONSTRAINT which
allows only the past participle form of active verbs as
modifiers. Is it possible that permitted DE-constructions are derived from passives?
This possibility is
doubtful for two reasons. First, while sentences like
(3) are acceptable,

Voil trois mots d'crits.

'There're three words written'
sentences like (4) are judged as questionable:
(4) ?Voil trois mots d'crits par Jean.
'There're three words written by John'
Generally speaking, configurations suggesting a verbal
source for the modifier are awkward in DE-constructions.
Specifically, PP's that are sentential are allowed, but
those under V ' are stylistically odd. This restriction
would extend to sentences like (5) as well, where toute
vitesse can only be understood as under the verb.
(5) ?Voil trois mots d'crits
toute vitesse.
'There're three words written at top speed'
This restriction is perhaps best confirmed by the minimal
pair in (6): in the questionable (6a) the PP is under the
verb, while in (6b) the PP is sentential.
(6) a. ?Voil trois mots [d'crits au
tableau noir].
b. Voil trois mots d'crits [au
tableau noir].
'There're three words written on
the blackboard'
It appears thus that traditional verbal derivations for
modifiers in DE-constructions may be subject to a filter
which deletes not only surface agents but any other


phrases under the putative original V''.

Even more damaging to the transformational account
are sentences like (7):
(7) Marie a une matine de libre.
'Mary has a morning free'
Quite obviously, it is impossible to derive (7) from an
underlying passive. In fact, any account which assumes
that modifiers in DE-constructions are exclusively pas
sives, be they lexical or transformational, is compro
mised by data like (7).
1.2 Prototypes. Recent research by Odlin (1983) (see
also Roscn, 1975; Maratsos and Chalkley, 1980; Coleman
and Kay, 1981) has suggested that speakers have knowledge
of the prototypical features of membership in the prin
cipal syntactic categories.
Assuming this claim is
valid, speakers of French might intuitively accept the
more verb-like modifiers in DE-constructions and reject
the more adjectival ones.
While such an account is
"squishy" enough to handle much of the preceding data,
it would not do justice to (7), nor to (8) below:
(8) J'ai deux colis de prts.
'I have two packages ready'
1.3 Lexical Marking of Permitted Modifiers. Huot (255)
lists succinctly those modifiers permitted after de:
past participles and certain adjectives like libre, dis
ponible, occup, and bloqu. Huot characterizes these
items semantically as indicating the result or end of a
(This semantic characterization will be dis
cussed later.)
Difficulties for such an elegant account are pre
sented by the existence of modifiers whose status as past


participle or adjective is ambiguous. For such modifiers

(e.g., connu, respect), a test borrowed from Wasow
(1977) might appropriately be applied. As a rule, modi
fiers which are allowed in DE-constructions are not in
tensifiable by trs. (9) exemplifies the relevant sym
(9) OK N+trs connu
N+de connu
OK N+trs respect
N+de respect
N+trs libre
OK N+de libre
N+trs disponible OK N+de disponible
As seen in (9), unintensifiability by trs in the simple
postnominal construction is a criterion for lexical list
ing of modifiers permitted in DE-constructions. Such a
rule would obviate division of modifiers into lists of
permitted past participles and permitted adjectives, and
would allow for lexical inclusion of modifiers not men
tioned by Huot, e.g., prt.
1.4 Caveat. Stylistic anomalies often crop up, as exem
plified in the divergent ratings of semantically related
past participles:
(10) a. Voil trois femmes de retrouves.
'There're 3 women found'
b. *Voil trois femmes de cherches.
'There're 3 women looked for'
Comparison of (10c) below with (10b) suggests that inter
actions with head nouns may produce irregularities in
acceptability ratings.
c. ?Voil quatre bouquins de cherchs.
'There're 4 books looked for'
Examples such as (10b,c) also suggest that, though a
given modifier may not be intensif iable by trs, it is
not automatically acceptable in otherwise licit DE-con-


structions. Beyond this, it should be noted that certain

past participles like dgnr have both a verbal reading
('degenerated') and an adjectival reading ('degenerate');
the former is not intensifiable and it alone may occur
in DE-constructions.

Constraints on Quantifiers

2.1 Articles and Numerals. While indefinite pronouns

in DE-constructions (e.g., Quelqu'un d'intressant) and
indefinite adjectives (e.g., Plusieurs mots d'crits
(2b)) are impeccably analyzed in Huot, her data with
definite articles conflict with those of the present
study. Huot's example 5.10c (257) replicated in (11)
below, is treated as an acceptable sentence.
(11) J'ai ce roman de termin.
However, sentences like (2c,d) are systematically rated
low by subjects in the present study. Sentences (12a-g)
display the relevant data.
(12) a. Voil un pain de coup.
'There's a/one (loaf of) bread cut'
b. Voil du pain de coup.
'There's some bread cut'
c. Voil des pains de coups.
'There're some breads cut'
d. ?Voil le pain de coup.
'There's the bread cut'
e. *Elle a les lettres d'crites.
'She has the letters written'
f. ?J'ai toutes les lettres d'crites.
'I've all the letters written'
g. *Voil les lettres d'crites.
'There're the letters written'


It is clear that the use of definite articles (and, quite

naturally, demonstrative articles (cf. (11) is not per
fectly compatible with DE-constructions.
In addition,
DE-constructions framed with numerals, if preceded by
definite articles, are rejected as well:
(13) *Voil les cinq hommes d'arrts.
'There're the five men arrested'
Apparently, all definite constructions, even those con
taining numerals, are ruled out. One way of formalizing
this constraint would be to exclude anaphoric reference
to extra-sentential c-commanding antecedents.
Such a
principle would also exclude sentences like (14a-d):
(14) a. *C'est une lettre d'crite.
'It's/That's a letter written'
b. ?Ce sont trois lettres d'crites.
'They're/Those're three letters
c. *Ce sont cinq hommes de noys.
'They're/Those're five men drowned'
d. *Ce sont trois vertbres de dplaces.
'They're/Those're three vertebrae
In such sentences, ce is generally understood as anaph
oric (cf. Coppieters, 1976, for discourse arguments).
An entirely different type of constraint would be
necessary to handle sentences like those in (15):
(15) a. Elle a trois lettres d'crites.
'She has three letters written'
b. *Elle a trouv trois lettres
'She found three letters written'
c. *Trois lettres d'crites taient
dans sa main.
'Three letters written were in her hand'


That numerals in some configurations are possible while

in others they are not, suggests that applying conditions
to types of quantifiers works in the case of definite
articles, yet fails to generalize in the case of numer
In fact, such a conclusion is grossly misguided.
What is relevant is not the type of determiner at all but
the verb preceding the DE-construction (15b) or the syn
tactic function of the noun modified (15c). The superfi
ciality of the QUANTIFIER CONSTRAINT thus becomes evi

Review of Constraints

The constraints discussed so far go well beyond the

original restrictions on category and quantifier.
recapitulate, permitted modifiers in DE-constructions (A)
may be expressed in a lexical listing of certain past
participles and adjectives (none of which are intensifiable by trs), and (B) imply--for most speakers in the
present study--restrictions on prepositional complements
following them. Further, DE-constructions (C) do not,
at least for most subjects, allow for modification of
nouns extrasententially c-commanded (determined by anaph
oric definite articles or introduced by c'est/ce sont).
Finally, DE-constructions (D) may not appear in subject
position, nor (E) as complements of a large class of
active verbs.2
In the following sections, the nature of these con
straints will be explored in more depth. Attempts will
be made to integrate these disparate restrictions within
pre-existing theoretical frameworks which appeal to gen
eralized discourse constraints.




A Possible Discourse Account for the Constraints

Recalling that Huot identified permitted modifiers

in DE-constructions as those denoting result or end of a
process, it is natural to assume that semantic or dis
course features determine acceptability. A brief com
parison with a modification paradigm in Classical Latin
illuminates the semantics of DE-constructions.
In the
Classical period, sentences like (16) were commonplace:
(16) Habeo epistolam scriptam.
$J'ai lettre crite.
'I have letter written'
It is generally believed that sentences like (16) were
later reanalyzed from a reading like 'I have letter writ
ten' to 'I have written letter'; that is, from something
like $J'ai lettre crite to $J'ai crit lettre, the lat
ter being the modern-day compound past or pass compos.
The earlier reading, as in (16), insisted on the full
verbal meaning of habere, while in the pass compos the
finite form of avoir is an auxiliary. (16) also employed
the past participle adjectivally, with no necessary iden
tity of subject with agent.
A very similar interaction of semantics and syntax
is maintained in modern-day DE-constructions. Sentence
(17) is arguably the semantic equivalent of (16),
(17) J'ai une lettre d'crite.
though it is also nearly synonymous with the pass com
pos given in (18).
(18) J'ai ecrit une lettre.
Sentence (17), however, does not identify subject with
Thus participles employed in DE-constructions
are not necessarily passive participles, as may be seen
in (19) below:




Voil trois hommes de disparus.

'There're 3 men (who've) disappeared1
Nevertheless, passives or not, something akin to change
of state is implicit in the earlier paradigm and in the
modern one as well. Such changes are implicated in (7)
and (8), which might reasonably be paraphrased with the
past participles librs and prpars, respectively.
Sentences like (16) and DE-constructions thus differ
from their cousins in the pass compos, and likewise
differ along aspectual lines from 'simple' modifications
like (la). The aspectual characteristics of the DE-construction appear compatible with Vendler's (1967) frame
work of achievement and accomplishment (see also the more
refined analyses of aspect of Lujan, 1981, and Smith,
In this way we can describe the intuitively-appeal
ing affinity of DE-constructions with active verbs. Re
calling Huot's description, DE-constructions reflect
completion of activity pertinent to the nouns modified,
and so mark the change from a former or typical condition
to another state. Following Bolinger (1967), modifiers
in DE-constructions might be seen to function as predica
tives, not as attributives. This distinction, as well
as relevant aspectual differences, may be observed in
pairs such as 'the stolen jewels' (attributive) versus
'the jewels stolen' (predicative) (Bolinger, 1967:3).
The preceding description should be understood as a
prelude to a plausible discourse analysis of DE-construc
tions. The analysis to be sketched will borrow from Kuno
(1975) the notion of focus of the speaker's empathy and
from Erteschik-Shir (1979) the notion of discourse domi
nance. For simplicity's sake, non-pertinent differences
between the two accounts will be overlooked; it will be



assumed that dominance and focus both refer to what is

intended by the speaker to be the main point, message,
or assertion of the sentence.
If we agree that DE-constructions function as predi
cations, we have reason to claim that such a predication
is a logical candidate for the focus or dominant element
of a sentence.
Recalling Kuno's (1975:321) explicit
claim that sentences cannot have conflicting or multiple
foci, we can account for the questionable native speaker
ratings of sentences (4), (5), (6a). Here the modifier
crits is presumably one predication; the agent by-phrase
in (4) and the PP's in (5) and (6) are, arguably, con
flicting with this focus or dominant element (cf. Con
straint B ) .
Along these lines predictions about acceptable syn
tactic and semantic functions of DE-constructions can be
made. For example, as modifiers of subjects, DE-con
structions would conflict with the matrix verbal predi
cation about the subject. This could account for the
exceptionally low rating of sentence (15c) and would
justify the existence of Constraint D. As modifiers of
direct objects in sentences like (15b), DE-constructions
would clash with the most plausible focus or dominant
element, namely what was found (cf. Constraint E ) .
Constraint C--exclusion of anaphoric NP's in DE-con
structions--is more problematic, as it stands in direct
violation of Erteschik-Shir's (1979:448) articulation of
dominance: "The usual purpose in employing a definite
article is to indicate to the hearer that the speaker
takes for granted that the hearer has the referent of
the NP in mind and that it is not intended as dominant
material." Thus the conflicting dominant element argu
ment would not hold. Alternatively, along the lines of



truth-conditional semantics (or even information theory),

it might be argued that definites and anaphoric referents
carry a set of presuppositions that are themselves kinds
of predicates, and that the sequence de + modifier cannot
attach to such nouns because of a language-specific prag
matic principle that would prohibit overloading of propositional content within the noun phrase.
following Givn's (1979) well-known arguments, such a
pragmatic or discourse constraint could become or is
becoming syntactic.
Though the ultimate motivation of Constraint C
remains obscure, it is nevertheless instructive to point
out that DE-constructions in their most constraint-free
instantiations are modifications of indefinites: indefi
nite pronouns (quelqu'un d'intressant / d'autre / de
sincre/ etc.)/ WH-words (quoi de neuf), and the clitic
en ( j'en ai de bons). In no case can nouns modified in
DE-constructions be replaced by the definite clitics le,
la/ les; only by the indefinite clitic en. Thus,

a. *Le/La/Les voil de MOD

b. En voil de MOD
Moreover, proper nouns and unique referents--intuitively,
the most definite of nouns--are not altogether acceptable
in DE-constructions:
(21) ?Voil Giscard de sauv.
The issue of definiteness may also be instructively
viewed from the perspective of restrictive versus appositional relative clauses.
Huot (1981:258ff.) demon
strates the essential equivalence of DE-constructions
and relatives; however, the question of what kind of
relatives may paraphrase DE-constructions is not raised.
Sentences (23a,b) below suggest that DE-constructions do
not lend themselves to expression as reduced appositives.



J'ai trois lettres d'crites qui

attendent votre signature.
b. *J'ai trois lettres, d'crites, qui
attendent votre signature.
'I've got three letters written
that await your signature'
Birdsong (1983) argues that the more definite the NP,
the more likely it is to lend itself to appositional
modification in the form of prenominal modifiers (par
ticularly, past participles intensifiable by trs). Thus
*Un trs tonn homme a perdu aux lections is unaccept
able, while Le trs tonn Giscard a perdu aux lections
is acceptable. The apparent functional and distribution
al mirror-imagery of prenominal modifications and DE-constructions merits further study.



The fact that so many items do not elicit absolute

positive or negative acceptability ratings suggests that
a grammar of DE-constructions should be flexible and sen
sitive to stylistic considerations. Thus, a strict syn
tactic formulation, or even a discourse account which has
been overly-formalized, are likely to make predictions
which do not match the data.
A final set of data demonstrates the need for cau
tion in the analysis of DE-constructions.
ratings of sentences containing de + crit are compared
below with ratings of minimally-varying items framed with
de + libre.
(23) a. Elle a trois lettres d'crites.
b. Elle a une lettre d'crite.
c. *Elle a la lettre d'crite.



*Elle a les lettres d'crites.

*Elle a oubli une lettre d'crite.
*Elle a oubli deux lettres d'crites.
*C'est une lettre d'crite.
?Ce sont trois lettres d'crites.
*Trois lettres d'crites taient
retrouves dans sa chambre.
(24) a. Elle a deux matines de libre(s).
b. Elle a une matine de libre.
c. Elle a la matine de libre.
d. Elle a les matines de libre(s).
e. Elle a oubli une matine de libre.
f. Elle a oubli deux matines de
g. C'est une matine de libre.
h. Ce sont trois matines de libre(s)
i. Deux matines de libre(s) taient
marques sur son calendrier.
The ratings of these sentences suggest that subjects'
"grammars" of DE-constructions may vary as a function of
factors not yet examined. It is quite possible that the
locution matine (journe, soire, etc.) de libre is fro
zen, that is, it has become a fixed, unanalyzable phrase.
Perhaps the use of this particular DE-construction
is so pervasive as to have replaced the simple modifica
tion paradigm (matine libre) altogether, assuming at the
same time its distributional characteristics. Such exam
ples reveal that future analyses of DE-constructions must
meet the true challenge of accounting for seemingly anom
alous production data.



1. The restrictions posited by Huot (255) are as follows:

" S i EN quantitatif n'est pas present en surface, on observe une
srie de limitations.
L'lment que suit DE ADJECTIF est ncessairement non-prposi
tionnel et postverbal, sinon la phrase est inacceptable.
Le verbe prcdant cet lment appartient une classe ferme:
AVOIR, IL Y A (le plus frquemment), mais aussi: POSSEDER, RENCON
Seuls les participes passs sont admis aprs DE, les adjectifs
ordinaires tant exclus, quelques exceptions prs (LIBRE, DIS
PONIBLE). Cela veut dire, plus prcisment, que ne peuvent fonc
tionner dans cette construction que les units lexicales indiquant
soit le rsultat d'un processus (participes passs), soit une
qualit susceptible d'tre l'aboutissement d'un processus (LIBRE,
As regards the "EN QUANTITATIF", none of the constraints to be
discussed in the present study applies when this EN appears on the
Further, none
operates when what is modified is an indefinite pronoun (e.g., QUEL
PETENT SUR CE SUJET (Huot's 5.13 c, p. 259)). The reader interested
in analyses of such structures is referred to Huot, as the present
study is intended to complement and refine mainly the first and
third items in the 'srie de limitations' listed above.
2. See the second of Huot's restrictions, above. Exactly why
DE-constructions are permitted as complements of these verbs is not
clear. This restriction will be discussed in a forthcoming expanded
study of modification paradigms in French.

Birdsong, David. 1983. "Prenominal Past Participles in French".
Papers from the XII Linguistic Symposium on Romance Languages,
ed. by Philip Baldi, 37-50. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Bolinger, Dwight. 1967. "Adjectives in English: Attribution and
predication". Lingua 18.1-34.
Chomsky, Noam. 1982. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
Coleman, Linda, and Paul Kay. 1981. "Prototype Semantics". Language
Coppieters, Ren. 1976. Point of View in French Syntax. Unpublished
Harvard Ph.D. dissertation.
Damourette, Jacques and Edouard Pichon. 1911-1950. Des mots la
pense: essai de grammaire de la langue franaise. Paris:

DE + M O D I F I E R



Erteschik-Shir, Nomi. 1979. "Discourse Constraints on Dative Move

ment." Syntax and Semantics, 12, ed. by Talmy Givn, 441-467.
New York: Academic Press.
Givn, Talmy. 1979. On understanding Grammar. New York: Academic
Huot, Hlne. 1981. Constructions infinitives du franais: le sub
ordonnant de. Geneva: Droz.
Kuno, Susumu. 1975. "Three Perspectives in the Functional Approach
to Syntax". Papers from the Parasession on Functionalism, ed.
by Robin E. Grossman et al., 276-336. Chicago: Chicago Linguis
tic Society.
Lujan, Marta. 1981. The Spanish Copulas as Aspectual Indicators.
Lingua 54.165-210.
Maratsos, Michael and Mary Ann Chalkley. 1980. "The Internal Lan
guage of Children's Syntax: The ontogenesis and representation
of syntactic categories". Children's Language, ed. by Keith
Nelson, 127-214. New York: Gardner Press.
Odlin, Terence. 1983. Part-of-Speech Anomalies in a Second Language.
unpublished university of Texas Ph.D. dissertation.
Rosch, Eleanor. 1975. "Cognitive Representation of Semantic Categor
ies". Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 104.192-233.
Ross, John Robert. 1969. "Adjectives as Noun Phrases". Modern Stud
ies in English: Readings in transformational grammar, ed. by
David Reibel and Sanford Schane, 352-360. Englewood Cliffs:
Smith, Carlota. 1983. "A Theory of Aspectual Choice". Language
Vendler, Zeno. 1967. Linguistics in Philosophy. Ithaca: Cornell
university Press.
Wason, Thomas.
1977. "Transformations and the Lexicon". Formal
Syntax, ed. by Peter Culicover, Thomas Wasow, and Adrian
Akmajian, 327-360. New York: Academic Press.





Stowell (1981) has noted that projections of Caseassigning categories, for example, verbs and preposi
tions, cannot themselves be assigned Case.
He has
claimed, in addition, that English tensed and infinitival
clauses may not be assigned Case, but gerundive clauses
may. He derives the latter result from: (a) the cate
gory system in (1); (b) the assumption that [+ Tense] is
a Case-assigning feature; and (c) the Case Resistance
Principle (CRP) stated in (2).
(1) Tensed clauses
[+N, -V, +Tense, +Past]
[+N, -V, +Tense,
[+N, -V,
[+N, -V, -Tense]
(2) The Case Resistance Principle (CRP)
Case may not be assigned to a category
bearing a Case-assigning feature.
In addition to banning tensed and infinitival
clauses from Case-marking environments, the CRP prevents
PP and VP from being Case-marked, since they are headed
by Case-assigners.
In conjunction with the Adjacency Condition on Case
assignment (see Stowell, 1981), the CRP predicts that if



a verb subcategorizes for both an NP and a clause, the NP

will be adjacent to the verb, and subcategorized PPs will
not have a fixed order, as shown in (3) and (4).
(3) a. I forced John to go.
b. *I forced to go John.
(4) a. I talked to Mary about John.
b. I talked about John to Mary.
In this paper, I want to argue that the CRP does not
exist. Notice that it is a rather strange principle,
unparalleled in universal Grammar, in that it requires
opposite values for a feature in the governor and the
In addition, its particular application to
clauses relies on a dubious system of features where lack
of specification counts as distinctive and where infini
tives, contrary to most linguists' assumptions, are
specified [+Tense]. I will not base my arguments, how
ever, on these theoretical objections, but rather on the
empirical consequences of this principle. In particular,
I will argue (a) that Stowell's CRP makes incorrect pre
dictions with respect to the distribution of clauses, and
(b) that the effects which Stowell attributes to the CRP
for the distribution of PP and VP derive from independent
principles of universal Grammar.
If I can establish
these two claims, the existence of the CRP can be seri
ously questioned.
Before proceeding, it should be pointed out that
Stowell accepts Chomsky's (1981) reduction of the Case
Filter to the Theta Criterion in terms of Aoun's Visi
bility Hypothesis, as in (5).
(5) An argument is assigned a Theta role
if and only if its chain has Case
(or is headed by PRO).
Now, in the case of English tensed and infinitival



clauses, there seem to be contradictory requirements

imposed by the CRP on the one hand and by the Theta Cri
terion on the other: the CRP does not allow them to be
assigned Case, but the Theta Criterion requires them to
be in a Case-marked chain. Stowell's solution to this
dilemma is to allow clauses to "escape" Case-marked po
sitions by applications of Move a . Thus subjects move
to topic position, and objects are extraposed, yielding
structures like (6).

a. [TOP That the problem is hard] i

S[ei is obvious]
b. They said [e]i [that the problem was hard].
In this way, the clauses in question are assigned a
Theta role by virtue of their being coindexed with a
trace which is Case-marked, but they are not assigned
Case directly.
We may note in passing that under the reasonable
assumption that traces share all features with their
antecedents, these structures still violate the CRP. In
order to derive the right results, Stowell is forced to
stipulate that the feature [+Tense] does not show up in
the trace of the displaced clause.
We are now ready to argue for our first claim, name
ly that the CRP makes incorrect predictions with respect
to clauses.
The examples in (7) show that Spanish infinitival
and tensed clauses do occur in Case-marking environments,
specifically governed by prepositions.
(7) a. Me conformo con que haya pan.
'I am happy with there being bread'
b. Me conformo con comer pan.
'I am happy with eating bread'
The examples in (8)-(10) suggest that Spanish



clauses must be assigned Case.

(8) a. Juan quiere leer.
'John wants to read'
b. Juan trata de leer.
'John tries to read'
c. Juan quiere que llueva.
'John wants it to rain'
d. Juan trat de que Marta se fuera.
'John tried for Martha to leave'
(9) a. Planean construir un puente.
'They plan to build a bridge'
b. El plan de construir un puente...
'The plan to build a bridge...'
c. Proponen que vayamos a playa.
'They suggest that we go to the beach'
d. La propuesta de que vayamos a la playa...
'The proposal that we go to the beach...'
(10) a. No recuerdo haber escrito esa carta.
'I don't remember having written
that letter'
b. No me acuerdo de haber escrito esa carta.

Olvid que llegabas hoy.

'I forgot you were arriving today'
d. Me olvid de que llegabas hoy.
The presence of the preposition cie in the (b) and
(d) examples can be explained if clauses, just like NPs,
require Case-assignment. In the (a) and (c) examples,
the clause is assigned Case by the governing verb, which
is transitive; but in the (b) and (d) examples, the
clause is either governed by an intransitive verb or by
a nominal at D-structure. Since neither one can assign



Case, de-Insertion is triggered. One must assume, then,

that Spanish clausal arguments follow principle (5) just
like NP arguments, i.e., they are made visible for the
purposes of Theta role assignment by direct Case-marking.
Now what about English? Is there a parameter which
prevents English clauses from being assigned Case direct
ly? This seems likely, given the ungrammaticality of

a. *John insisted on that Mary leave.

b. *We talked about that Mary got a raise.
But if Klima (1965) and Emonds (1976) are right in
assuming that subordinating conjunctions are really pre
positions that take clausal complements, one cannot main
tain that English clauses do not appear in Case-marking
environments, as shown in (12).
(12) Mary came home [PP after [S, the rain
stopped] ]
In addition, it is well known that clauses headed
by a WH-phrase can occur in Case-marking environments:
(13) a. We were talking [PP about [S, who we
should help] ]
b. We were talking [PP about [S, whether
we should help them or not] ]
Stowell explains cases like (13a) as follows: Assume
that the CRP applies to the lexical head of a phrase and
that COMP is the head of S'. Then a clause headed by
who differs crucially from a clause headed by that, , or
for. That and have the feature [+Tense], and for has
the feature [-N], both of which are Case-assigning fea
tures. But who has the feature [+N], which is not a
Case-assigning feature. Consequently, a clause headed
by who can be assigned Case directly without violating
the CRP. There are serious objections to this account,



however. Apart from the technical problem of how the

feature [+N] of the WH-phrase can eliminate the feature
[+Tense] present at D-structure, notice that for this
account to work, both who in (13a) and whether in (13b)
must have the feature [+N]. While this is perfectly
natural for the former, it is totally ad hoc for the
latter. Notice also that this account does not extend
to sentences like (12).
What all this suggests is that clauses are not
resistant to Case-marking environments, and that the ex
planation for the facts that seem to indicate that they
are must be something other than the CRP. I suspect that
these facts result in part from subcategorization proper
ties of individual prepositions, e.g., about, on subcategorize for interrogative clauses in the manner suggested
by Grimshaw (1979), but not for declarative clauses,
hence the contrast between (11) and (13). In addition,
there might be deletion of specific prepositions before
certain complementizers in the phonological component of
the grammar. Notice that there cannot be a filter pro
hibiting the sequence P that, because of cases like the
following (from Emonds, 1976):

They are unwise in that they are trying to

which, incidentally, constitute additional counterexam
ples to the CRP.
This concludes the first part of this paper. In
the second part, I want to consider the possibility that
an appropriately modified version of the CRP might be
needed, in order to predict the distribution of PPs and
VPs. I will suggest in what follows that this is not the
Consider PPs. The expected effect of the CRP would



be to prevent them from occurring in Case-marking envi

ronments. But it would be wrong to do so, in view of ex
pressions like the following:
(15) a. from [PP inside the barrel]
(Jackendoff, 1977:79)
b. por [PP sobre la mesa]
over the table
c. hacia [PP dentro de la casa]
inside of the house
It could be argued that these PPs are disguised NPs,
since they can occur as subjects, as in (16).
(16) Is inside the barrel a good place
to hide the jewels?
But this could certainly not be said of PPs with overt
subjects, as in (17), where I assume Stowell's (1981)
small-clause analysis.
(17) Con [PP Pel en el equipo], no podemos perder
'With Pel on the team, we can't lose'
So it seems that PPs must be allowed to occur in
Case-marking environments, which means that if the CRP
is at all responsible for PP not being assigned Case, it
is not due to its preventing the PP from occurring as a
complement adjacent to a Case-assigner. The same is true
of VP. Relevant examples are given in (18), following
Stowell (1981) for English and Zagona (1982) for Spanish.
(18) a. I saw [VP Peter run]
b. Vi [vp correr a Pedro]
Let us see if we can derive the correct results,
namely no Case assigned to PP or VP, without recourse to
the CRP.
I will make the following assumptions, all
fairly uncontroversial:


A Case assigner assigns its Case

optionally to any category it governs.



A Case assigner can only assign one Case

(Alternatively, A Case assigner cannot
assign any more Cases than the number of
phrases it subcategorizes for).
c. All categories have subjects (Stowell,
d. The governor of a small clause X also
governs the subject of X.
e. Each argument bears one and only one
Theta role, and each Theta role is
assigned to one and only one argument
(Chomsky's (1981) Theta Criterion).
f. PRO is ungoverned (theorem of the
Binding Theory).
g. The Visibility Hypothesis (5).
The distribution of PP is derived as follows. Sup
pose first that the PP in question is not lexically gov
erned, as in (20).
(20) a. [PP PRO con suerte], ganaremos el partido.
'With luck, we'll win the game'
b. *[PP Juan con suerte], nadie le gana.
'John with luck, nobody beats him'
By (19c), this PP must have a subject. By the Binding
Theory and the Theory of Government, this subject can only
be PRO, since that position is ungoverned. This predicts
the difference between (20a) and (20b). In neither case
can the PP be assigned Case, since it is ungoverned.
Suppose now that the PP is lexically governed, as
is the case with the internal PP in (21).
(21) a. [PP PRO con [PP Pel en el equipo ] ],
no podemos perder.
'With Pel on the team, we can't lose'
b. *[PP PRO con [PP PRO en el equipo ] ],



no podemos perder.
'With PRO on the team, we can't lose'
Consider first (21a). The PP in question satisfies
(19c), i.e., it has a subject. If Case is assigned to
this PP, by (19b), the NP Pel receives no Case, and by
the Visibility Hypothesis it cannot be assigned a Theta
role. But since the preposition con governs both the
lower PP and its subject (by (19d)), it can assign Case
to the latter (by (19a)). By (19b), this means PP gets
no Case. Only under this option is the structure well
Consider now (21b). Regardless of whether Case is
assigned to the lower PP or to its subject, the structure
is ill-formed because it violates (19f), since the lower
PRO is governed. Presumably, the lower PP cannot have
pro as its subject because the identificational require
ments of this empty category are not met (see Chomsky,
Since the correct results are directly derivable
from the interaction of independent principles of Univer
sal Grammar, i.e., the theory of small clauses (itself a
part of X-bar Theory), the theory of Government, Case
Theory, and the Binding Theory, it is not clear what the
independent contribution of the CRP would be. This dem
onstration can be extended in a straightforward fashion
to the distribution of VPs.
I have said nothing about the facts in (3). These
remain a problem, and I can only offer some speculations
on them. Recall that under Stowell's CRP, clauses cannot
be assigned Case directly. NPs, on the other hand, must
be assigned Case. Given the Adjacency Condition on Case
assignment, the facts in (3) follow. But we have seen
that Clauses can receive Case directly. We could then



suppose that the Adjacency Condition holds of NPs but not

of clauses. This would also explain the facts in (3)/
provided the Clause could be assigned Case somehow. Just
how this might be accomplished is not clear, but there
are a couple of alternatives. First, it could be that
English Case-assigners can assign as many Cases as cate
gories they subcategorize for. Thus force would assign
Case to both John and the clause to go. Or it could be
that the structure of the VP in (3) is binary, and John
is assigned Case by the "complex verb" forced to go, as
suggested in Bach (1979). Under this alternative, if the
process that combines force and to go takes place in the
lexicon, the clause might not require Case. The latter
alternative has the advantage of allowing for a more re
strictive theory of subcategorization where only binary
structures are generated, but the details of such an
analysis remain to be worked out.
To conclude, let me point out an implication for
Raising and Exceptional Case-assignment constructions
like those in (22).
(22) a. Johni seems [ ti to be happy]
b. I believe [ John to be happy]
The standard Government-Binding analysis of these
sentences assumes S' deletion, so a is S. These con
structions, however, pose a problem for the reduction of
the Case Filter to the Theta Criterion by principle (5),
since neither of the embedded clauses can be assigned
Case: the one in (22a) because seems is an intransitive
verb, and the one in (22b) because believe must assign
its Case to the embedded subject.
Stowell's (1981) proposal that all categories have
subjects provides a possible account of these cases. If
we assume that is VP, not S or S', it needs no Case, so



the problem disappears. Under this assumption, one might

dispense with the lexical feature "S'-deletion."
proposal differs crucially from earlier VP analyses like
Brame's (1975) or Bresnan's (1978) in that it assumes an
obligatory subject, which may or may not be lexically
filled. Thus it meets the conditions which have been
taken in the past to be indicative of a clause. What
would remain unexplained under this analysis would be the
fact that other verbs selecting VP complements, for in
stance causatives and perception verbs, take bare infin
itives without to, which is not the case with the verbs
in (22). But the fact that the alternative suggested
here solves the problem relating to the Theta Criterion
makes it worthy of consideration.
Summing up, I have shown that Stowell's CRP makes
incorrect predictions with respect to clauses, since they
must be assigned Case directly, in spite of surface
appearances to the contrary. I have also demonstrated
that a suitably modified version of the CRP applying to
projections of V and P is unnecessary, since the relevant
properties of these categories derive from independent
principles of Universal Grammar.

Bach, Emond. 1979. "Control in Montague Grammar". Linguistic Inquiry
Brame, Michael. 1975. "On the Abstractness of Syntactic Structure:
The VP controversy". Linguistic Analysis 1.191-203.
Bresnan, Joan. 1978. "A Realistic Transformational Grammar." Lin
guistic Theory and Psychological Reality, ed. by Morris Halle,
Joan Bresnan, and G.A. Miller. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.




Emonds, Joseph. 1976. A Transformational Approach to English Syntax.

New York: Academic Press.
Grimshaw, Jane. 1979. "Complement Selection and the Lexicon". Lin
guistic Inquiry 10.279-326.
Jackendoff, Ray. 1977. X Syntax: A study of phrase structure. Cam
bridge, Mass.: MIT Press.
Klima, Edward. 1965. Studies in Diachronic Syntax. Harvard Univer
sity Ph.D. dissertation.
Stowell, Timothy. 1981. Origins of Phrase Structure. M.I.T. Ph.D.
Zagona, Karen. 1982. Government and Proper Government of Verbal Pro
jections, university of Washington Ph.D. dissertation.






Cliticization and Agreement

In this paper I would like to present an analysis

on clitics and binding, which is compatible with previous
work of my own and others (in particular Chomsky (1981),
(1982) and references cited there). I will assume that
the VP structure in SVO languages such as the Romance
languages and English is essentially (1), which reflects
a hierarchy of verb complements.

In (1), where numerals represent the number of bars,

NP and PP under V1 are objects, PP under V2 is anoth-



er kind of subcategorized complement (e.g., 'About NP' in

'Talk about NP' ), and XP is a postposed subject--a time,
manner, or a non-subcategorized space complement.
In (1) V governs all the complements, but it mini
mally governs its objects.
The hierarchy of comple
ments in (1) is similar to others already proposed in the
literature (e.g., Keenan and Comrie (1976)) and can be
justified from a syntactic and a semantic point of view.
For example, passivization and relativization are more
constrained as we proceed from bottom to top, while the
opposite is true for some other movement rules (e.g., PP
Movement). Moreover, the first level, V , is more sub
ject to local movement than other levels, as with DativeMovement in English. Furthermore, (1) defines a param
eter with respect to clitics in Romance languages: com
plements internal to V are always subject to cliticization (the unmarked case), while complements internal
to V are cliticized only in some of the Romance languages. Moreover, XP is not subject to cliticization.2
Obviously each complement NP can contain other PP's,
but in this paper I will restrict my attention to the
complements in (1) and to clitics internal to V . I will
also assume that in the Romance languages, verbal suf
fixes and clitics are attached to the verb stem essen
tially as in (2), which represents the D-Structure:

In (2) Cl can be taken to be a sequence of a set of



features (probably organized as a template--cf. Perlmut

ter (1971)with some language variation) which include
Number (N), Gender (G), Person (P) and Case (C).
As for AGR, I will follow Chomsky (1982) in assuming
that it is a set of the features N, G, P and, variably,
Case. That is, in pro-drop languages AGR is a "pronomi
nal" because it contains all relevant features, including
Case, but not in French and English, where it lacks Case.
Moreover, I will consider Af a similar set of features.
Consequently, in pro-drop languages, subject agreement
is a chain of identical pronominal features, very much
the same as object agreement, that is cliticization.
what follows I will call Agreement the matching process
in which Case feature is present, and agreement any other
similar process where Case is not involved, and I will
indicate the first one by cosuperscripting.
Another point I want to make is that in my analysis,
subject position is always governed in tensed clauses.
Therefore sentences with a postposed subject, like (3)
in Spanish, can be derived through Move a if we take VP*
not to be a maximal projection, in which case Juan c-com
mands [e] .
(3) e[vp*[vphablo]Juan]
spoke Juan
Now, if we take Agreement to be expressed by cosuper
scripting, then subject Agreement would produce struc
tures like (4) in Spanish and Italian where cosuper
scripting indicates identity of the above-mentioned
(4) N P i [ I n f l AGRi] ... [Af AGRi] ...
The same would be true for object Agreement, which
applies to NP and PP under V1 that bear a -role (as
Jaegli (1982) points out) and are specific,4 as sen-



tences (5) and (6) show.5

(5) a. Estiro la pata? (from Jaegli 1982)
Idiomatic expression similar to
'Did he kick the bucket?'
b. *S, la estir.
'Yes, he kicked it'
(6) a. Quieres ensalada?
'Do you want salad?'
b. *S, la quiero.
'Yes, I want it'
I will come back later to object Agreement. For
the time being I would like to point out that according
to the hypothesis I have sketched, object Agreement in
Italian and Spanish is essentially the same as subject
Agreement, but not so in French where AGR doesn't contain
the same features as in Italian or Spanish. Therefore
it could be possible to collapse object and subject
Agreement in Spanish and Italian, but not in French.
Notice, incidentally, that there are two "landing sites"
for Agreement in Spanish and Italian, pre- and post-ver
bal, but only one in French: pre-verbal. Now, when sub
ject Agreement doesn't apply in Spanish and Italian,
clitics are postposed, as if they were to occupy the
landing site for AGR, but not in French (except for im
peratives) as (7) and (8) show:

a. Quiero verla.
b. *Quiero la ver.
'I want to see her'
(8) a. Je veux la voir.
b. *Je veux voir la.
In other words, the generalization to be captured is
that in languages that have subject and object Agree
ment, clitics can be post-verbal, but not in languages



that have only object Agreement.6

This doesn't mean that subject Agreement and Cliticization are to be regarded exactly as the same process.
In fact, they are quite distinct (clitics allow movement,
i.e., Clitic Climbing, but not AGR, etc.) but from a cer
tain level of abstraction they belong to the same process
of encoding in the verbal 'word' the thematic grid of the
clause--up to certain level and specification. Now, this
is true for languages with a rich verbal inflection and/
or cliticization, but not for languages such as English.
Notice that by taking cliticization as an Agreement
process, I discard the possibility of taking the postverbal gap as a trace and the clitic as an argument with
a -role. I will come back to this issue later on.
Now I would like to revise the kind of NPs that can
be sources for clitics. In Chomsky (1982) it is sus
tained that besides traces there are three kinds of NPs-lexical, PRO and pro--and that their differences account
for their distribution.
Chomsky (1982) also suggests
that the differences between empty categories could be
defined functionally. Here I will pursue this last trend
which is compatible with a previous hypothesis of mine
(D'Introno, 1978) where I show that the phonological
matrix of clitics must be defined after the syntax. This
must be so because clitics present many morphological
changes that cannot be explained in the syntax (see for
example the spurious-se rule of Spanish). The same is
true for pronouns, where in the Romance languages, as
well as in English, Case is morphologically relevant.
In any event, on the basis that clitics as well as Case
for pronouns and anaphors must be spelled out after the
syntax, we can say that all non-nominal NP's (i.e., pro
nouns and anaphors), besides WH-phrases, are empty at the



D-structure. Therefore at D-structure we would have full

NP's, empty NP's and WH-phrases. Application of Move
would leave a gap, represented perhaps by a set of fea
tures, including [-pronominal] which would be redundantly
specified as [-anaphoric] if -bound and [+anaphoric] if
A-bound. As for empty NP's, these would be a set of
features freely inserted in the D-structure. Such fea
tures would include N, G, P and also Animate, Human,
etc., and [+pronominal], [+anaphoric]. In other words
pronouns and anaphors would be empty at D-structure and
would be spelled out at S-structure, or maybe in PF,
under some conditions that I will propose later on.
Notice that with this perspective, which I consider sim
ilar to Chomsky (1982) in some respects, the empty NP at
D-structure with the set [-pronominal] [-anaphoric] would
give rise to an -bound variable, distinct from a WHtrace. This NP is then a variable bound by an empty
operator (the 0 operator of Chomsky, 1982), or a.resump
tive pronoun (in one of the two possible analyses for
such an element proposed in Chomsky, 1982)) or a parasit
ic gap. As for the other possible sets of features, they
would give rise to pronouns, full or empty, anaphors,
full or empty, and PRO. Let's see how these facts can
be accounted for. Consider S-structures like (9-11),
the first one for subject and object Agreement languages
(e.g., Spanish), the second one for object Agreement
languages (e.g., French), and the last one for languages
without Agreement (e.g., English).
(9) NPli AGRi [VP ... Clj V AGRi ... NP2j ...]




... Clj V

... NP2j ...]





... V ... NP 2 ...]



Now, extending the notion that of two elements a and ,

related by Move-, where is in a -position (for ex
ample, WH-phrases) and is in a -position, -binds ,
to the case of Agreement, or any matching process (for
example, Case-marking), we can say that AGR -binds NPl
in (9) but not in (10) and (11). Pairways NP2 is -bound
by Cl in (9) and (10) but not in (ll). 7 Given that, we
can stipulate the spelling out condition for pronouns and
anaphors as follows:

An empty NP is spelled out (i.e., receives a

phonological matrix at S-structure), unless
it is ungoverned or
it is locally -bound < and it is not
Animated and Emphatic >
From (12) we can deduce that in (9), NPl and NP2 are not
spelled out if they are non-nominal. This is possible
also for NP2 in (10), but not for NPl in (10) and NPl and
NP2 in (11). Notice also that (12a) together with the
Binding Theory accounts for the empty pronominal anaphor
of infinitives, for example.
(12) can also be applied
to clitics (which are governed and A-bound, if they are
bound) and to traces. Example (12b) explains the fact
that (real) WH-traces are not spelled out except in long
distance movement through a resumptive pronoun.
also explains the postposed subject case (3), that I take
to be in -position, and Topicalization cases, where [e]
cannot receive a phonological matrix. To account for the
passive and raising cases (12b) must be reformulated to
make references to A-bound empty NPs.
As we can see (12) accounts for the generalization
about missing subjects and objects in the Romance lan
guages, but doesn't explain why in Spanish and Italian,
pronominal subjects can be spelled out in some cases.



Obviously, (12) is not specific enough and it should be

supplemented by a parameter (which I have tentatively
included in (12b)) that has to refer to some features
such as Animate, (or Human), Emphatic (e.g., in contrastive context, or in focus position), etc., and maybe to
some extrasentential and extralinguistic
same parameter explains the fact that in Spanish, and
also in some French and Italian dialects, an object pro
nominal A-bound by a clitic can be spelled out, as in
(13) Yo lo vi a l.
'I saw him'
Now I would like to go back to the Agreement rule
for clitics. Let's say that the syntactic features of
the object NP are "assigned to" or matched with those of
the clitic exactly as in subject Agreement, then the rule
could tentatively be stated as in (14).

(14), where NP is minimally governed by the

stands for a set of features, together with
condition (12), explains the complementary
of clitics in standard French or Italian as
the standard Spanish cases (16).
(15) a. Luigi lo ha visto (*lui).
'Luigi saw him'
b. Luigi (*lo) ha visto Giovanni.
'Luigi saw Giovanni'
(16) a. Pedro lo vio (a l).
'Pedro saw him'

verb and SF
the spelling
in (15), and




Pedro (* la) vio a Mara.

'Pedro saw Maria'
In fact, (14) can apply only in (15a) and (16a), and
only in this last example the pronoun l can be spelled
out because of the parametrized condition on the spelling
out of empty NP's.
The analysis I have developed explains the general
or unmarked cases, but doesn't explain others. For exam
ple the lack of cliticization in some Italian and French
cases like (17), for which (14) needs some minor techni
cal modification, to prevent it from applying in contrastive, and/or coordinated, structures.10
(17) Io sposo lei e tu sposi lui.
'I marry her and you marry him'
Other cases where my analysis doesn't make the right pre
diction is in the Spanish doubling of the Dative and, in
some dialects, of the Accusative nominal NP's.
account for the first doubling, we can restate (14) as
(18), where I have included the marked context that gives
rise to the parametric variation.

(18) states that in the general case there is a clitic

if the NP is not nominal, and in the marked case of
Spanish, for example, there is a clitic even when the NP



is nominal and oblique, as in (19).

(19) Pedro le entreg el libro a Juan.
'Pedro gave the book to Juan'
As for doubling in cases like (20), we can assume that
the insertion of a with direct objects (animate and spe
cific), produces a structure like (21), as suggested in
Jaegli (1982), and a allows for an optional oblique Casemarking of the NP.
(20) Pedro la vio a Mara.
(21) [ a [NP Maria]
Given this, we can say that in dialects that allow (20)
the relevant Case for clitic formation is Oblique, that
is in these dialects rule (18) is extended to direct
objects with a.12
Until now I have talked about clitics that are
linked to NPs that are arguments, but as we know there
are clitics that are not linked to NPs bearing a -role.
This is the case of inherent reflexives for example, as
in arrepentirse 'to repent' in Spanish, and other constructions, 13 where the clitic doesn't correspond to
an argument and cannot be doubled nor can be linked to
an NP in Topic position, therefore they must "appear" in
the clitic position of D-structure, i.e., Agreement does
not apply to match them with an argument NP. Notice that
in any theory of clitics this must be stipulated, because
a difference must be established between those clitics
that can be linked to arguments and those that cannot.
To conclude this section I would like to point out
that the analysis I have proposed for clitics, where
these are taken more to be morphological markers of
object Agreement than real pronouns, doesn't run into the
difficulties encountered in a transformational analysis
where clitics are analyzed as arguments bearing a -role,



and the gaps related to them as traces. For example, it

becomes really difficult in Chomsky's (1982) analysis to
explain why the gap of the clitic--or the clitic--does
not license a parasitic gap. But this fact is a conse
quence of my analysis. In fact, in my hypothesis the gap
is an empty pronominal (or anaphor) that can also be
spelled out, in a pair with resumptive pronouns, which,
as Chomsky notices, do not license parasitic gaps.

Binding and Clitics

Let's turn now to the interpretation of pronouns,

anaphors, and clitics, keeping in mind that in my hypoth
esis these are all empty in syntax and probably also
where Binding and Control Theories apply, since these
are not sensitive to the phonological content of the
elements they affect.
Control Theory determines the antecedent, if any,
for the ungoverned subject of infinitives, for example,
and for the time being, I'll assume that it is essen
tially Chomsky's
Binding Theory is stipu
lated in Chomsky (1981) as (22):
(22) a. An anaphor is bound in its governing
b. A pronominal is free in its governing
c. An R-expression is free.
Governing categories are NP and S, but I will limit my
discussion to S. (22) doesn't explain the relation be
tween la and the object NP, nor between the subject and
AGR in (23).
(23) (El) la vio (a ella).
'He saw her'



There are a few possible solutions to this problem, but

I think that the right one is to restrict Binding to Abinding and consequently to NP's in argument positions.
That is, the relation between a clitic and the object NP,
for example, is not to be attributed to Binding but to
the free indexing discussed in Chomsky (1982) or simply
to the cosuperscripting between the clitic and the ob
ject. Binding would apply only to the object NP--the
source of the clitic--relating or not this NP to an ante
cedent in an A-position. This interpretation would then
percolate to the clitic through cosuperscripting.15 In
other words -binding is not part of the Binding Theory
but of the cosuperscripting
On the basis of
this assumption, let's say that in the structure (24),
where -binds , the interpretation of is transmitted
to .
(24) [ ... i ... i ... i ... ]
Another phenomenon that is not explained by (22) is
that an anaphor is always bound, an object pronoun is
always free, but a non-object pronoun, like (25), is not
free and can be coreferential with an antecedent NP in
the same clause, in this case the subject.



This is true for Spanish, Portuguese, French, and (albeit

some "exceptions") Italian. These facts suggest then a
modification of (22b) of the Binding Theory, along the
lines of (26): 17
(26) (for 22b) A pronoun is free (i.e.,
obviative) in its governing category
< if and only if it is -bound, otherwise
it is free-in-reference (i.e., proximate)>
(26), which contains a parameter, asserts that in lan
guages like Spanish, the pronoun is free only if it is
-bound, for example by a clitic or AGR, otherwise is
free-in-reference and can therefore be associated with
an antecedent in the same clause, as is the case in
(25). 18
(26) distinguishes languages with (verbal) clitics,
such as the Romance languages, from languages without
such clitics, such as English and German. This predi
cation is born out to some extent, but as we know, at
least in English, object pronouns are always obviative,
but not non-object pronouns. For example in (27) him
can refer to John, as well as in (28) when it is heavily
stressed. 19
(27) John saw a book near him.
(28) John will only talk about HIM. (himself)
Another problem is that some Brazilian Portuguese social
dialects that don't have clitics (in other social dia
lects of the same community clitics are regularly used)
behave like Spanish with respect to Binding. It seems
then, that (26) only captures one aspect of the problem.
That is, the interpretation of pronouns should be related
to the presence or absence of clitics on the one hand,
and to the hierarchy of complements in the structure (1)
on the other hand. In other words, (26) should probably



be replaced by a more parametrized version, which would

include the unrestricted case of Binding (essentially
Chomsky's) for German-like languages, then the English
like version (referring to subcategorized complements),
etc., and finally the very restricted version for lan
guages with clitics. This new approach would be more
adequate if properly formulated, and should specify that
in cases where a condition would not be met, by default
the pronoun should be interpreted as free-in-reference.
To conclude, I would like to point out that in many
languages there exist clause-binder morphemes, which, if
they are independent, i.e., word-like, can be added to
anaphors and pronouns, as for example mismo 'self' and
propio 'own' in Spanish. These elements in languages
like Spanish, can be added to non-object pronouns, which
become "anaphors," creating a three-way system (as in
(29)) that suggests a dissolution of reflexives forms
(e.g., si) in these languages and, as I said before, a
more parametrized interpretation of the Binding Theory.
(29) a. Pedro le hablar a Juan de l.
(= Pedro, Juan, or someone else)
'Pedro will talk to Juan about him'
b. Pedro le hablar a Juan de l-mismo.
(= Pedro or Juan)
c. Pedro le hablar a Juan de s-mismo.
(= Pedro)
It goes without saying that the problem posed by (29)
can be easily solved by taking l-mismo as an anaphor,
but there remains the problem of why in these languages
a non-object PP cannot be free. The solution is in my
opinion to relate this fact to cliticization, as stipu
lated in (26), because only non-cliticizable PP's behave
as in (29). Notice for example that in French, the sub-


categorized PP de NP of parler
under some conditions


'talk' can be cliticized

that I will not try to stipulate.

However, the important thing is that if the PP is cliti



en--, the PP cannot be spelled

out, as

we have seen, and the empty PP--as well as the clitic-20

cannot be linked to the subject,
because as (26)
stipulates, a pronoun -bound

(by a clitic) must be free.

Jean en parlera.
'Jean will talk about that/him/her...'

But if the PP is not cliticized, as in (31), the pronoun



case, lui, is

f ree-in-ref erence




dicts) and can refer to Jean.


Jean parlera de lui.

'John will talk about him'

In other words, (26) makes the right distinction


(30) and (31) and the right prediction about their inter

Therefore, I take it to be an essential part

of the Binding Theory.

1. From the previous discussion, it can be seen that I take
Government as structure dependent, but independent of subcategorization.
2. In Italian and French we find examples such as (i-iii),
which do not exist in Spanish, but not (iv).
i. (Di Pietro) ne parliamo domani
'(Of Peter) we will talk tomorrow of him'
ii. (A Roma) ci vado domani.
'(To Rome) I will go tomorrow'
iii. Ti si seduto vicino.
'He sat near you'
iv. *Ti ho visto un serpente vicino.
'I saw a snake near you'
As for other examples and cliticization of subject, see Burzio
(1981) and Rizzi (1982).
3. Here Agreement is taken to be a matching of a free superscripting process.
When cosuperscripting doesn't occur in the
appropriate environment, the sentence is ruled out.



4. Sentences like (i) are marginal; (ii) is better.

i, *? Pedro les regalo libros a nios y nias.
'Pedro gave books to boys and girls'
ii. Pedro regalo libros a nios y nias.
Notice also that pronouns are [+specific], therefore Spanish sen
tences with clitics doubled by pronouns are always possible:
iii. Pedro les regalo libros a ellos, pero no a ellas.
'Pedro gave books to them ( m a s c ) , not to them (fem.)'
5. (5b) and (6b) cannot be answers to (5a) and (6a) respective
ly, but they are grammatical in other contexts.
6. Portuguese has subject and object Agreement.
But with
infinitives clitics are preverbal because the infinitive agrees with
the subject which confirms my hypothesis.
7. In these cases the binder is in a A-position and governs the
NP bound. If we eliminate government as a condition for A-binding,
and we replace it with c-command, then traces can fall under the
same analysis.
8. The condition for the spelling out of pronominals must be
extended to deitic pronominals, which cannot be empty. A similar
situation exists in Japanese, where pronominals are empty, except
for kore-type pronouns that seem to have deitic value. Moreover,
subject pronouns can be spelled out under contextual conditions
entirely extrasentential, as for example the intersentential "dis
tance" between the antecedent and the pronoun. For object pronouns
(and anaphors) in Spanish, the condition could be related to the a
that precedes the pronoun. Maybe this is the right condition be
cause a PP for clitic that has an "indefinite" preposition, as for
example Ethical Dative, generally cannot be spelled out.
(1982) gives the following example; taken, I think, from Perlmutter
i. Me te compraste la moto (*P m ) .
'You bought the motorcycle on me'
What makes things more complicated is that all this information is
semantically relevant, and it is difficult to sort out the right
approach to this matter.
9. [a pronominal - anaphoric] includes pronouns and anaphors
but not full NPs nor WH-traces (these are [-pronominal, -anaph
(15) excludes NP-traces which are not Case-marked.
cases like (i), where we have a WH-phrase, a WH-trace, and a clitic,
some other conditions must be determined.
i. El hombre a quien le entregaste t el libro...
'the man to whom you gave the book...'
10. (14) doesn't apply either when the pronoun is deitic, nor
in some cases when there is another clitic under the verb and the
sequence is blocked by Perlmutter's filter (Perlmutter, 1971). See
also Kayne (1975).
11. However, things are a little bit more complicated because
the clitic in (19) is not obligatory for all speakers. Moreover,



the doubling of an oblique NP is sensitive to some features of the

NP and of the verb. For example, besides (19) we have sentences
like (i) where _le is not possible because the NP is inanimate, but
if the verb is dar 'give', le is possible even with inanimate
i. Pedro entrego los libros a la biblioteca.
'Pedro gave the books to the library'
ii. Pedro le dio una patada a la mesa.
'Pedro gave a kick to the table'
12. In rule (18) instead of Oblique we could have Dative. If
so, then the new case in (21) should be called Derived Dative. This
solution could be more appropriate because it would be consistent
with the fact that the preposition selected in (21) is a and not,
let's say por. Another interesting fact about (21) is that the
oblique Case-marking doesn't seem to displace Accusative marking.
That is, the object would have a dual marking. For some rules the
relevant case would be Oblique, as for clitic doubling, and, in the
"leista" dialects (dialects that use le instead of lo), for clitic
spelling. Notice that this makes sense because in these last dia
lects the clitic is spelled out _le only if the object is animate
and specific, and, of course, has a. Therefore, a insertion, dou
bling and "leismo" can be traced back to the same factors that
trigger the first rule.
Notice however that, to the best of my knowledge, there are no
dialects that use sentences like (ii), with doubling and le, except
for right dislocation.
i. Pedro le vi a Juan.
This should be possible according to my analysis unless, as I have
said, the Oblique Case can be taken into account only in one rule,
for reasons that I don't understand.
It is also important to observe that rule (18), with minor
modification, is effective in other languages besides Spanish and
in some Italian dialects. In fact, as it has been pointed out many
times, doubling occurs when the object is Case marked by a preposi
13. For example ci in ci hai freddo 'you are cold' in some
Italian dialects, en in French in s'en aller 'leave,' and perhaps
the reflexive Ethical Dative in Spanish.
14. It seems to me that Chomsky's Control Theory is not entire
ly adequate for the Romance languages because the empty pronominal
subject of infinitives, when not controlled, behaves like a pronoun.
It is worth pointing out that in my hypothesis there is no PRO
with some semantic or syntactic content, besides its features. Its
distribution can be accounted for by the Binding Theory, as Chomsky
(1982) shows, and the fact that it can be interpreted as arbitrary
is to be attributed to lack of Control, and obviously Agreement.
However, there is some indication that we might need a "spe
cial" PRO with the feature [+Animate] or [+Human], because of the
difference between (i) and (ii), a fact that still requires an ex-




i. *Es difcil llover.
'It is difficult to rain'
ii. Es difcil que llueva.
'It is difficult that it rains'
15. This hypothesis makes it impossible for inherent reflexives
to be interpreted _(indirectly) by the Binding Theory, precisely
because they don't X-bind an NP. In fact with arrepentirse, e.g.,
Juan se arrepinti 'Juan repented', we can talk of an agreement
between the clitic and the subject, but we cannot talk of correferentiality strictu sensu; se in this case doesn't have a referential
16. This means that, with regards to the Binding Theory,
clitics and AGR are not real pronominals that need to determine
their referentiality. Notice also that in cases like Pedro la vio
a Mara it would not make sense to say that la binds Maria, so Abinding here is just cosuperscripting.
In Bek-Bennema (1981) cosuperscripting between a clitic and the object is called, maybe more
appropriately, Morphological-binding.
17. Instead of (26) we could expand the set of governing cate
gories to include PP, but this would be an incorrect solution be
cause on the one hand it would not predict, for example, the dif
ferences between Spanish and English that I will point out later
on, and on the other hand would create a problem for anaphors.
18. (26) also predicts, redundantly, that in (i) the pronominal
subject could not be associated with Juan.

'He/she talked about Juan'

19. Carolyn Quintero has pointed out to me that for him to have
a coreferential reading in (27) it cannot be heavily stressed, while
this is the case in (28). If so, the difference in syntactic beha
vior here is paralleled by a phonological one.
20. En is [-anaphoric] and generally corresponds to a non-human
PP. However sometimes it can refer to a third person human. Anoth
er example of this is (i).
i. Jean en vu rien savoir (de Pierre).
Jean doesn't want to know anything about him (Pierre)

Burzio, Luigi. 1981. Intransitive Verbs and Italian Auxiliaries.
Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.



D'Introno, Francesco. 1978'. "Alternancia lo/le en el espaol de

Caracas: anlisis transformacional". Corrientes actuales en la
dialectologa del caribe hispnico, ed. by H. Lopez Morales,
51-71. San Juan: Editorial Universitaria.
Jaegli, Oswaldo. 1982. Topics in Romance Syntax. Dordrecht: Foris
Kayne, Richard. 1975. French Syntax: The transformational cycle.
Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Keenan, Edward and Bernard Comrie. 1976. "Noun Phrase Accessibility
and Universal Grammar". Linguistic Inquiry 8.63-93.
Perlmutter, David. 1971. Deep and Surface Structure Constraints in
Syntax. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Rizzi, Luigi. 1982. Issues in Italian Syntax. Dordrecht: Foris Pub


university of


As the empirical basis of this paper, I want to con

sider some aspects of verb morphology and of how modality
can be expressed in three different language types. The
three types are English, Korean-Japanese,1 and, of
course, for this volume, Romance.
I wish to contrast English with Korean-Japanese
(KJ), and at the same time, show how much closer Romance
is to KJ than to English with respect to verb morphology
and modality. This "three-cornered" comparison will sug
gest a claim about how Universal Grammar should express
a fundamental dichotomy (or "parameter") of natural lan

AUX Movements

I will be concerned with a universal constituent

called AUX, which I take to be a theory-neutral term. In
the version of generative grammar developed recently by
Chomsky (1981), this constituent is called INFL(ection).
As in Emonds (1976:Ch.6), the English AUX includes unin
fected modals and the finite forms of the grammatical



"auxiliary" verbs which can invert with the subject in

questions and which appear in tag questions.2 As in
Emonds (1978, 1980), the French (and Italian and Spanish)
AUX includes only the various verbal inflections (sub
junctive vs. indicative, the future-conditional morpheme,
the personal tense endings, and possibly the present par
ticiple and infinitival endings).
Again, as in Emonds (1976), I assume throughout that
in English deep structures, the AUX node is an obligatory
sister to the NP and to the VP.3
KJ resembles the Romance languages in that the ele
ments that render a clause finite, and hence are prime
candidates for membership in AUX, are verbal inflections.
These elements include the present and past tense mark
ers, the mood ending, the progressive marker, and the
subject-honorific marker. Unlike English, KJ has no mor
phemes which render a clause finite which can be sepa
rated from the verb by a noninflection. Such morphemes
do exist in English and are called the "modals":

He will probably leave. Will he leave?

Jim runs faster than he says Sam can.
The contrast between English and Romance-KJ is fur
ther underscored by the fact that the infinitival marker
in English, arguably a member of AUX, is also a word
separate from V, while the infinitival markers in Romance
and KJ are suffixes.
(2) To really do that well, you have to practice.
He doesn't want to. It would be a mistake to
not be on time.
There are morphemes other than verbal inflections
that unambiguously indicate that a Romance clause is
finite (the introductory que, the subject clitics in
French), but these are not candidates for a deep struc-



ture category that expresses tense, modality, and/or

aspect. Except for the COMP(lementizer), such morphemes
are like inflections in that they cannot be separated
from the verb by morphemes that can appear unattached to
a verb; that is, they are clitics.
As a first formalization of the "inflectional" prop
erty of KJ and of Romance, I suggest the following: in
the deep structures provided by Universal Grammar, the
AUX node appears as a sister to the subject NP and the
VP, just as in English; it is moreover restricted to ex
pressing tense, mood, aspect, and grammatical features
of the subject. In certain languages, e.g., KJ and Ro
mance, a suffixation requirement holds: in phonological
form, AUX must appear in the configuration [@ V - AUX].
This condition, however, is not strong enough to
express the effects of the inflectional nature of AUX
throughout the syntax in KJ and Romance. After all, many
grammatical formative categories in many languages are
subject to lexical restrictions of this sort; for exam
ple, in English, the complex [AUX, -MODAL] (that is, the
present and past tense endings) and also n' t must be
The apparently minimal difference between KJ-Romance
and English is the following:
(3) a. English: In Phonological Form, every
element of TENSE (= AUX, -MODAL)
appears in the configuration
[@ v ].4
b. KJ and Romance: In Phonological Form,
every element of AUX appears in the
configuration [ @ V ].
As a means of expressing the ways in which the minimal
difference in (3) has ramifications throughout syntax,



I propose that a principle of Universal Grammar is in

(4) Suffixation Principle: If a category C is
suffixal in a language, the only movement
in which C can be a target predicate in
that language is one which produces the
suffixation structure itself.
This principle does not require that the suffixation of
a bound morpheme category C be brought about by moving
C; the host category D can also move to the position of
C, as happens with the finite verb raising rule for V
proposed for French in Emonds (1978). The Suffixation
Principle is rather concerned with blocking any other
movement of C.
The effect of the Suffixation Principle can be
exemplified by considering the English "affix movement"
of the subcategory TENSE of AUX. By (4), TENSE alone can
undergo no other movement rule in English. One might
think that TENSE is the target predicate in the lastcyclic inversion exhibited in Down the street strolled
John, but it can be argued that the target predicate in
this inversion is V, and not TENSE (Emonds, 1980). For
example, this rule moves a category necessarily adjacent
to the subject NP in the input, and this category is V,
not TENSE.
Since there are separate words for AUX in English,
there can be movement rules which involve this category
other than suffixation rules. Two such rules are the
well-known subject-AUX inversion rule and the tag ques
tion rule which produces a copy of the AUX in English
(e.g., John will be on time, will he?). Because KJ and
Romance have no separate AUX words (=they are subject to
(3b)), the Suffixation Principle prohibits them from



having counterparts to the English tag question or subject-AUX inversion rule.

For example, by (4), Japanese is forbidden to have
a tag question rule by means of which a tag consisting
of the inflectional ending of the main verb is copied at
the end of the sentence.
Note that (3b) alone only
requires that a member of AUX appear somewhere as an
inflection; it is (4) which extends this to all posi
tions. I am not aware of any inflections in any language
which can sometimes be bound and sometimes not; if this
happens, it is rare.
Another type of situation excluded by (4) is a rule
like English do-support in the Romance languages. Thus,
a dialect of Spanish could not develop a rule for direct
questions in which an auxiliary finite verb (e.g., ser
'be') follows the preposed WH constituent, with the main
verb remaining in its postsubject deep position.
(5) *Qu libro ser Juan leer?
'Which book will-be John read?'
*Cundo eran tus amigos llegar?
'When were your friends arrive?'
In order for such a rule to exist, the fronting of the
TENSE would have to be effected by an inversion rule in
dependent of V, much as in English. But since, by (3b),
AUX is a suffix in Spanish, any such movement of AUX oth
er than onto V violates (4). Hence, Universal Grammar,
via (4), excludes any "helping verb rule" like do-support
in any position which is not otherwise a V position.
We may be rather confident that the Suffixation
Principle is universal because it is motivated by the
complete absence in two quite unrelated language types,
KJ and Romance, of any noninflectional tokens for AUX and
of any rules which can manipulate AUX independently of V.



Were it not for the fact that the comparison with English
is "three-cornered" in this way, the absence of do-support rules or of noninflectional realizations of AUX in
Romance might be taken as accidental.
The Suffixation Principle alone is not sufficient
to rule out all the non-occurring possibilities of V and
AUX movements. For example, why could a Romance language
not have a syntactic rule like English AUX-inversion that
involves only TENSE? More crucially for descriptive con
cerns, why do English and KJ seem to pattern together in
not having rules which move V itself?
After answering
the first question briefly, I will turn to the question
of V movements in Section 2.
To answer these questions, a division must be made
between movement rules which affect semantic interpreta
tion and those that do not. In the model of Chomsky and
Lasnik (1977), the rules that affect interpretation pre
cede the "S-structure" level. Following recent informal
terminology, we can say that rules preceding S-structure
are syntactic, while those following it are "phonologi
cal," though of course the latter is a misnomer. The
following universal restriction on syntactic rules can
be imposed:
(6) Syntactic Integrity of Categories: Rules
in the syntax cannot mention subcategories
of grammatical formative categories.
It now follows that any English or Romance rule which
involves the subcategory TENSE of AUX must apply "in the
Most such rules, besides being invisible
for purposes of semantic interpretation, are also local,
i.e., involve adjacent categories. In fact, most move
ment rules in this component are essentially morphologi
cal, in the wide sense of producing inflection. One



example of such a rule is English affix movement; another

is the French rule of finite verb raising.
By (3a), the verbal affix rule for English involves
TENSE rather than the entire AUX; it then follows that at
S-structure, the English AUX is always exterior to VP,
which is the correct result for a variety of reasons
which involve a proper formulation of null-VP interpreta
tion, appearance of the auxiliary do in tag questions,
It has not been excluded here that local rules apply
in the syntax; it is in fact necessary that affix move
ment onto V in Romance languages optionally precede Sstructure, both so that inversion rules which feed seman
tic interpretation can be stated and perhaps also for the
proper statement of the "pro-drop parameter" (Chomsky,
1981: Section 4.5).

Verb Movements

I now want to contrast Romance with English along a

different dimension. In Section l, the relative indepen
dence of AUX from V in English was contrasted with the
bound nature of AUX in Romance and KJ. In this section,
the ability to move a V itself in Romance will be related
to principles of Universal Grammar which make the English
verb more "stable" in the VP, while a clause-final V as
in KJ has yet a third type of behavior open to it.
An obvious question that must be posed about V move
ments is how they exist at all, since corresponding N and
A movements apparently do not. I propose to answer this
question by rephrasing a constraint of Schwartz (1972) in
bar notation terms:7
(7) Head Stability



A lexical head X cannot move to another

position within its X 2 maximal projec
tion (X2 = NP, AP, PP, VP).
(ii) Throughout a derivation, a specifier
SP(X) must C-command the lexical item
dominated by X .
In cases where X2 = x m a x and where an obligatory
SP(X) such as DET does not move, Head Stability predicts
that X cannot move at all. Thus, N, A, and P do not
move, except in a case like English particle movement,
where P can move out of an otherwise empty p m a x when
there is no specifier morpheme. (When there is a speci
fier, movement is impossible: John took the books right
in vs. *John took in the books right.)
As mentioned in Note 3, I claim the universal particularity of V in the bar notation to be that V2
Rather, V m a x = V 3 = S.
This hypothesis and
Head Stability taken together predict that V can only
move into the boxed positions numbered 1-4 in (8). The
circled labels in (8) represent my hypotheses for nodes

not previously integrated into the bar notation.

Before discussing particular movements of V in

English, Romance, KJ, a second verb-final language type
(Dutch-German, henceforth DG), and a verb-first family



(Celtic), I introduce the final principle that I think

is needed to discuss inversion rules in Universal Gram
mar, the Structure-Preserving Constraint (Emonds, 1976:
Ch.l). For our purposes, the constraint can be stated
as follows:
Structure-preservation: A movement of a
constituent C is either
(i) to a position where C could be
generated in deep structure,
(ii) to a position outside the Ccommanded domain of any SP(X), or
(iii) around an adjacent constituent.9
There have been many recent proposals to subsume
parts of the content of (9) under other principles, but
most of them have to do with rules I have argued to be
structure-preserving (option (i) in (9)).
Head Sta
bility, together with the bar notation restriction that
each maximal projection have a unique lexical head, ex
cludes any structure-preserving movements of V in any
case. Moreover, under the plausible assumption that only
a lexical deep structure V can take a complement, the
simple requirement that structure-preserving substitu
tions not delete material irrecoverably also excludes
structure-preserving V movements.11
It therefore follows that Structure Preservation
(9) restricts V-movements to root operations (option ii)
or local operations (option iii). In my view, this pre
diction accords very closely with the range of V move
ments whose existence grammarians have established in
the well-studied languages, as I now wish to show.
Be defining root operation as in (9ii), I allow a
constituent to be Chomsky-adjoined to a nonembedded S,
but it cannot be daughter-adjoined to it. This is more



restrictive than my previous formulations; it allows root

attachments to S in (8) only in position 1 and 4, and
then only of one type.
The existence of root operations on V's is clearly
attested by a V-final language which allows fronted V.
In KJ, fronted V are typically considered to be complete
ly excluded. However, M.-J. Jo in work in progress shows
that Korean poetry allows a main verb to be optionally
fronted, but never a subordinate verb. Thus, there is a
root transformational operation which can move a V out
of VP. This fronting conforms to the limitation imposed
by part (ii) of Head Stability (7), since by (3b) the
inflectional AUX in Korean becomes a sister to the V, and
therefore C-commands V through the entire derivation, as

More generally, a root fronting of V or AUX which

permitted by Structure Preservation yields either

But, by part (ii) of Head Stability, (10b) is allowed

only if AUX C-commands the lexical V; that is, only if
AUX has become an inflectional sister to V, so that in
fact (10b) must be as in (10c):

(10c) represents the structure of the fronted V in

Korean poetry, but root frontings which yield (10a,c)
are also attested in a very obvious way in both English
and Dutch-German. Dutch and German are verb-final lan
guages which, moreover, pattern like Romance in that



their AUX is always inflectional. It is well-known that

in main clauses only, the verb is obligatorily fronted
to post-COMP position in these languages. (10a) is the
structure that results from English subject-auxiliary
inversion, and (10c) is the structure of a main clause S
in Dutch-German.
Before moving on to consider all local movements of
V, it is appropriate to note that the structures (10a,c)
generated by root operations on V and AUX can just as
well result from local operations. In fact, it seems
that each of the root frontings so far mentioned has a
local counterpart, as summarized in table (11). I return
below to discussing these local rules one by one.

Movement of


Optional; interacts

Literary or

(V) + AUX


with question inter




Root, since con


ditions on local


English AUX inversion


rules violated;
Note 9

Local, because AUX

is attached to V
before fronting


Romance V-fronting



simple V
Note 6

From table (11), it can be seen graphically just how the

structure-preserving constraint allows the autonomous



syntactic restrictions to be factored out of the eventual

proper formulations of the interpretive components. The
columns of table (11) correspond to different uses of
the uniform output structures (10a,c) at various levels
of interpretation. The distinction between the two rows
of the table is completely accounted for by Universal
Grammar and the independently stated distinction between
English and languages where AUX is always an inflection
The table also illustrates how important it is to
consider several language types in formulating generali
zations about language-particular rules. By looking at
only English and Romance, one might think that fronting
of the inflected element necessarily interacts with
question formation; by considering just the languages
other than English, one might think that V is crucially
involved in frontings of the inflected element; by ignor
ing KJ or Dutch-German, it would be easy to conclude that
V (or, more generally, non-phrases) never move in a non
local manner. These pitfalls are avoided by a theoreti
cally informed comparative syntax.

Local Movements of V

I now first discuss the various types of local move

ments of V possible in various languages to the positions
indicated in (8). Local rules are typically languageparticular, as seems to be recognized by many authors
(Emonds, 1980, argues this point in detail).
In English, as argued in Section 1, the AUX is
always present in an S-structure derived from (8), at
least during all processing on the S-cycle. This means
that the English V can move locally only to the AUX posi-



tion, and not to the front of the S. Such movement to

AUX does exist: the unmarked verb be moves to the AUX
position 2 or 3, depending on how affix movement is for
mulated in the syntax prior to rules like AUX-inversion
and tag question formation (Emonds, 1976:Ch.6). On the
last cycle (which I take to be the cycle of the unemDedded E node), the morphology-creating affix movement
rule applies, and this allows V to move locally around
the now adjacent NP into position 1, yielding the simple
verb inversion found in parentheticals (..., said John)
and after preposed directionals (Down the street strolled
In the Romance languages, by contrast, there are
significantly more possibilities for local movements of
V. These are created by the fact that the AUX can be
come an inflection on the verb in the syntax, as dis
cussed in Section 1. Thus, in a language in which the V
is VP-initial and the AUX is not expressed by separate
words (e.g., Romance), the structure-preserving con
straint allows local movements of V to position 1 in (8),
the presubject position. Such local rules are exempli
fied by the V-fronting rule of Spanish discussed in Torrego (1981), and by the AUX-to-COMP rule of Italian dis
cussed in Rizzi (1979). Although detailed argumentation
would take me too far afield, the Stylistic Inversion
rule of French (Kayne, 1972) is also possibly a movement
of the verbal complex V' (Emonds, 1978) over the subject
NP, as suggested in Klein (1982), and not a movement of
the subject NP at all. If so, it is essentially the same
as Torrego's rule in Spanish, as far as its status in
the syntax is concerned.
Another local V movement in French is the finite
verb raising rule of Emonds (1978), by which the first V



moves to position 2 (immediate post-subject position)

"in the phonology."
A final local V-fronting rule in Romance is the rule
which produces a V, - V 2 sequence, where V1 is a
causative verb (e.g., French faire 'make', laisser 'let')
with an S (or perhaps S) complement. In such cases, the
subject of the embedded S is lexical. In the potential
English counterpart to such a construction, the causa
tive V-, and the embedded complement V 2 would be nec
essarily separated by two lexical constituents at Sstructure, the subject NP and the AUX to, and so no local
rule could unite V 1 and
(Obviously, neither
could a root attachment, since any landing site adjacent
to V1 would be within its VP projection.)
But in
French, where the infinitival inflection -r can be at
tached to V 2 in the syntax, a local rule can inter
change V 2 and its subject NP.
The overall status of local verb movements in Ro
mance can now be summarized as follows: Two aspects of
Universal Grammar, Head Stability (7) and StructurePreservation (9), combine to strictly limit movements of
V. However, due to the fact that all realizations of
AUX are inflections in the Romance languages (3b), the
left periphery of S (the presubject position) becomes
accessible as a landing site for a local movement of the
VP-initial V. Thus, Romance exhibits V-V causatives, a
range of V-initial inverted finite constructions, and
even attractions of V to COMP in infinitives. None of
these are possible in English because it is a language
in which at most a subcategory of AUX is inflectional
(3a). Since a subcategory of AUX cannot move in the
syntax, by (6), this blocks any local rule involving



It can be observed that the local movements of V in

the Romance languages are limited to certain construc
tions (causatives, questions, etc.).
It can be asked,
should there exist languages in which local V fronting
is permitted (i.e., a language subject to (3b)), but in
which V movement is generalized to all constructions?
That is, V frontings in Romance are restricted either by
structural descriptions in the syntax, or alternatively
by the fact that certain configurations are semantically
uninterpretable (at logical form). For example, simple
finite transitive declarative clauses (embedded or not),
cannot have a locally fronted V in French:
(12) *(I1 a remarqu que) cherche ta lettre Marie.
'(He noticed that) is looking for your
letter Mary'
*(I1 a remarqu que) cherche Marie ta lettre.
'(He noticed that) is looking Mary for your
This is also true for Spanish, for the informants I have
A language in which local fronting of V is possible
in all clauses, without restrictions as in (12), simply
turns out to be a language in which the V may be clauseinitial (a "VSO language"). If a VSO language is to be
analyzed in this way, then it would fall together with
Romance with respect to the parameter (3a-b), or else the
V-fronting would not be local. I believe the Celtic lan
guages are of this type. I have also argued elsewhere
(Emonds, 1979) that certain universals of question forma
tion in the "VSO languages" in fact suggest that they
are all underlying V-second languages (like French), with
an unrestricted V-fronting rule.






the V-



fronting in Romance and the putative V-fronting in Cel

tic: the latter is possibly obligatory, since it has
been argued (Anderson and Chung, 1977) that any preverbal
subjects in, for example, Breton are in topic (= COMP)
I think the following considerations can
account for this nonoptionality of Celtic V-fronting.
It has long been a truism in many schools of lin
guistic thought that no reordering rules are truly "op
tional", in the sense that a speaker has a performance
option of choosing word order without affecting the
strings are either obligatory, or they apply before some
point at which semantic interpretation can apply to a
syntactic structure (e.g., in the most studied cases,
they apply before S-structure). So the following universals seem justified, regarding reorderings:
(13) Rules which apply in the syntax prior to
S-structure are optional (uncontroversial
in the framework of Chomsky, 1981) and
their outputs typically interact with rules
of semantic interpretation.
(14) Rules which apply after S-structure to
lexical heads X are obligatory.
There may be a wider class of obligatory rules, but (14)
subsumes at least the rules which produce inflectional
morphology and the obligatory fronting rules of Dutch,
German, and Celtic. By (13)-(14), a local rule fronting
V over a subject NP can only be of two sorts; either it
applies in the syntax, as in Romance, and interacts with
the rules that produce (and further determine the wellformedness of) logical form, or it applies after S-struc
ture, and is obligatory (as is possibly the case in
Celtic). 14



The various possible V-frontings in verb-second

languages (both in the English and the Romance type) to
position 1, 2, and 3 in (8) have now been discussed.
The three-cornered methodology I advocate here now re
quires that the possibility of local V movements in verbfinal languages be considered. A clause-final verb, as
in KJ, can move locally only to position 4, and in fact
no movement will be observable in a main clause unless
the language has some clause-final particles outside VP
(perhaps some AUX element)/ with which a final V can in
teract. I am not sufficiently acquainted with KJ to know
if such a reordering is plausible in some case or not.
There is a way, however, in which V-final languages
can give rise to local V movements which are not avail
able in any V-second language. The assymetry is due to
the fact that in all the languages under discussion, a
non-finite clausal complement to a V is positioned, at
least in the unmarked case, to the right of all other
complements to V. Thus, nonfinite complements in verbsecond languages appear as in (15) and in verb-final
languages as in (16);



In verb-second languages, it is clear that the two

Vs are not adjacent in most types of trees; in the syntax
of English/ where AUX is outside VP as S-structure, they
never are. But in a verb-final language, the two Vs are
adjacent. If the AUX in the embedded S in (16) is an in
flection on V2, and if there is a VP complement without
an AUX, a local rule can move the lower V 2 to the right
over the higher V 1 .
Moreover/ neither Head Stability
nor Structure-Preservation prevent a lowering of the
higher V to within the lower VP. If a lowering rule ap
plies in the phonology/15 by (14), it would be obliga
tory. It seems to me that the passive and causative mor
phology in Japanese and Korean may well exemplify the
output of either local raising or lowering rules of this
Clear examples of local V movements in verb-final
languages are exhibited by German and Dutch.
(1975) produces convincing evidence that in a range of
nonfinite clausal complement constructions, V2 - V1,
as in (16) are subject to a rule of verb-raising which
is local and which makes them into a single constituent.
In Dutch, they are also reordered as V 1 , - V 2 , whereas
in German, there is generally no reordering. 16
Thus, it can be seen that there clearly exist local
V movements to all of positions 1-4 in (8), exactly as
predicted by the Structure-Preserving Constraint and Head
Stability. I conclude that the constructs of Universal
Grammar that appear to properly constrain movements of V
in verb-second (and tentatively, verb-first) languages
apparently generalize with success to the less frequent
type of verb-final languages. In general/ it seems that
the maximum movement of V in all the cases considered is
around one category which is adjacent to an external to



VP. If the V is VP-initial, it can interchange with the

preceding AUX (English be raising and French finite verb
raising); if in addition the AUX is uniformly realized
as a verbal inflection, the V can front around the sub
ject NP, as is multiply attested throughout the Romance
languages. If the V is VP-final, it can interchange or
otherwise combine with the immediately following V, as
can be seen especially clearly in the case of Dutch and
German V-raising rules.
It is moreover of interest to observe that the pos
sibilities for local movements allowed by Head Stability
and Structure-Preservation are generally realized in a
language, in some way. That is, within the limits set
by these constructs of Universal Grammar, languages do
vary, one might say, "as much as they can." It has not
been necessary to search through a wide range of lan
guages to find instances of local and apparently quite
different V movements. When a language (English) has
seemed to lack full-fledged V movement, it can be attrib
uted to another factor (the uniform location of AUX out
side VP at S-structure). When the "third corner" of
comparison, the KJ language type, has appeared to offer
little to confirm the idea that V can move locally, it
has only been necessary to discuss the other much dis
cussed V-final language type, Dutch-German, to find the
predicted type of movement.

A Criticism of the Structure-Preserving Approach

Safir (1982) presents a theory of movements of V

and AUX (his INFL) called "Inflection Government Theory."
He treats inversions in German, Dutch, English, and
French, and claims that his explanations for the exis-



tence of and restrictions on these processes are superior

to those based on the structure-preserving framework.
Some of Safir's criticisms are at a quite abstract
level, and cannot be answered in detail here, though I
will indicate why I think they are unjustified.
example, Safir claims that explanations based on the
Structure-Preserving Constraint rely on "elaborate base
rules." But this constraint can be formulated in terms
of any theory of the base which restricts the possible
dominance relations among constituents. In my own work
in progress on the principles of the bar notation, there
is no use of elaborate and category specific base-rules,
and this in no way reduces the value of explanations
based on structure-preservation, as far as I can see.
Another criticism leveled by Safir is that the
structure-preserving framework distinguishes instances
of general movement as local, structure-preserving, or
root operations. But this framework mentions or stipu
lates these distinctions only once, in a general state
ment of permissible derived structures. This is no more
complex than any competing theory of adjunctions and sub
stitutions supplemented by a landing site theory.
I must admit that in general I do not understand
the appeal of an equally complex but less restrictive
theory of derived structure of the type Safir employs.
Investigators like Safir who utilize a "massively overgenerating" theory of adjunctions and substitutions
(which does not exclude a range of generally non-occur
ring operations) choose to depend on a future subtheory
of grammar, rather than on an existing one; I think this
is a very unlikely path to quick progress in science.
Nonetheless, it seems to me fruitless to point out indi
vidual instances of such operations, since plausible



principles can always be found in debate which exclude

them, and no point can be decided if overgeneration of
structures derivable by transformation is considered
superior as a heuristic to a more restrictive theory.
Safir also argues that certain specific predictions
of his analysis of English and French inversions demon
strate the superiority of his approach. In particular,
he claims that the combined effects of his universal
principles and certain language-particular characteris
tics explain the following two patterns: (i) that a
questioned constituent in a main clause must immediately
precede the inflected element;
(17) *Will which person come in?
*Quand Jean est arriv?
'When John has left?'
*In which direction Russian rivers flow?
(ii) that except for topicalized NP's, subjects in French
cannot be "doubled" by clitics.
(18) *Qui est-il parti?
'Whoi has-hei left?'
*Quand est-il arriv Jean?
'When has-hei arrived Johni?'
*Quand l(i) 'a vu Jean (i) ?
'When him.-saw John.?'
Clearly, the Structure-Preserving Constraint does
not in principle predict which root word orders correlate
with individual sentence types, nor when clitics can be
doubled. I assume that the relation of the word order
"WH-phrase-inflection" with question interpretation, as
in (17), is properly accounted for by autonomous prin
ciples of logical form, and not by a syntactic constraint
on derived structure. Similarly, I suppose that cliticdoubling in French is limited to topicalized NP's by an



autonomous principle which should be independent of a

theory of derived structure. Therefore, I do not con
sider the criticisms of Safir based on (17)-(18) to in
any way undermine my view that the structure-preserving
constraint is the best available theory of derived struc
ture, and that the accurate predictions that it makes
about the range of possible V movements, as shown in this
paper, strongly confirm it.
One might argue, however, that the principles pro
posed by Safir, taken together, constitute a more general
theory than structure-preservation, since they predict a
range of derived structures and the facts of (17)-(18)
as well. However, use of the term "more general" here
would be inappropriate, since Safir's theory is one about
when heads of phrases move (for Safir, INFL being the
head of S and V the head of VP). The Structure-Preserv
ing Constraint, on the other hand, is a theory about
movement in general--of heads, of phrases, of specifiers,
and of other morpheme categories. Thus, the excess con
tent of the Constraint is considerable, and makes it by
far a more general theory; cf. Note 10.
Moreover, there is a way in which the direction of
Safir's work, and the predictions it makes, for example,
about (17) and (18), can be integrated with the work
here. Namely, the tentative extension of Safir's central
principle at the end of his study ("Generalized Head
Uniqueness") is very similar to my reformulation (7i) of
Schwartz's constraint:
(19) Generalized Head Uniqueness Principle.
If X m a x has any X, then there is one
and only one X which is governed.
The phrase "which is governed" is what is significantly
missing in my counterpart (7i); in Safir's framework,



this insures that the inflected element of a matrix

clause will move to the governed and immediately postCOMP position in a
(For Safir, English
and French declaratives are not subject to (19)).
Thus, it may well be that Head Stability (7i), ex
tended along the lines suggested by Safir to (19), is
exactly the autonomous principle that interacts with the
Structure-Preserving Constraint to predict not only the
range of local and root movements of V and AUX discussed
in this paper, but also when they are obligatory and when
they are blocked in main clauses. In this case, a sig
nificant amount of analysis would be required, especially
to accommodate the many local V movements discussed in
this paper. But it would be an interesting result to
find that the two principles, properly refined, are com
plementary rather than competitive.
1. Korean and Japanese are amazingly similar in their syntax,
even though the traditional "comparative method" can only with dif
ficulty establish their relatedness through phonological comparison
of apparent lexical cognates (cf. the work of Roy Andrew Miller).
Given that noncontiguous languages never seem to be so syntactically
alike, one may hypothesize on the basis of their syntax alone that
they belong to the same language family (Altaic), and that the non
conforming vocabulary of Japanese to Altaic must be due to a
massive invasion of loan words in prehistory.
2. A detailed study of what I would take to be, at least in
many languages, the surface structure realization of AUX, is pro
vided in Steele et al. (1981). The surface version of the English
AUX can contain an affixed n't, but I don't take this to argue for
n't being under AUX in deep structure.
3. In as yet unpublished work, I take AUX or INFL to be the
specifier of V, as in Chomsky (1972). This implies that VP is not
maximal. However, I claim that the particularity of V in the bar
notation is that only V (not N, A, or P) has an "extra projection"
S which is equal to V 3 .
What are traditionally termed VP, NP,
AP,and PP all correspond to X 2 .
In this way, several character
istics of phrases are expressed in terms of X 2 (e.g., X 2 is a




barrier to Chomsky's relation of government), while others are

expressed in terms of x m a x
(X m a x immediately dominates SP(X))
or in terms of X 3 (every X 3 must contain a subject).
eliminates a number of category-specific statements in universal
4. I assume throughout the analysis of Emonds (1976: Ch.6), in
which +MODAL and -TENSE are totally identified (i.e., one is elimi
nated from formal grammar).
The feature +PAST occurs with both
values on +TENSE (equivalently, on +MODAL), so that words like could
and would are: AUX, +PAST, -TENSE. Nonfinite S contain an AUX which
is unspecified for +PAST and possibly also for +TENSE. Advantages
of this sytem include the fact that present tense number agreement
always occurs when +TENSE is present, modals not being exceptional,
and that past potentiality (would, could, might) vs past reality
(-ed) can be expressed in terms of +TENSE.
5. A target predicate is a category that corresponds to a term
in a structural description of a rule, as in Bresnan (1976). Even
in a formulation as general as "move alpha," I assume that the value
alpha takes on in a particular operation is the target predicate.
It might be appropriate to extend the Suffixation Principle to
affixation in general, but this requires investigation especially
of the Romance clitic categories. Such an extension would claim
that if a rule produced clitics by movement, then the category so
moved could be the target predicate in no other movement rule.
6. Chomsky (1982: Note 39) observes that if there is V movement
in the syntax, prior to surface structure, the AUX (his INFL) must
be attached to V in the syntax also.
Precisely, such rules are
typical in Romance, but are lacking in English. The only exception
is the last-cyclic verb inversion termed "simple-verb inversion" in
Emonds (1976: Ch. 2 ) , which I argue in Emonds (1980) occurs only
post-cyclically (more precisely, on the cycle of the non-embedded E
node, after affix movement).
7. The first part of this principle, recast as a condition on
the output of movements, can be thought of as analogous to principle
B of the binding theory (Chomsky, 1981: Section 3.2.3): a trace of
X must be free in X 2 . The second part is just an extension to an
entire derivation of a relation that holds at deep structure between
SP(X) and all non-maximal projections Xj.
8. COMP and/or AUX may be S-final in Japanese and Korean.
9. I originally allowed at most one of the constituents in a
local reordering to be a phrase. I now require that one of the
constituents C be neither a phrase Xj nor a specifier SP(X). In
the cases of interest in this paper, C = V, N, A, P.
10. Thus, the Projection Principle of Chomsky (1981: Ch. 2)
subsumes some of the content of structure-preservation, and the work
of Baltin (1982) replaces structure-preserving formulations with a
restricted theory of adjunctions. However, I am not aware of any
specific proposal for replacing the structure-preserving constraint
with a theoretical construct of broader empirical coverage or deeper




explanatory power. As far as I know, the excess content of this

constraint over its theoretical successors in terms of claims about
extrapositions, WH-fronting, adverbial movements, clitic place
ments, topicalizations, right dislocations, parentheticals, and
local rules has simply been set aside in favor of constructionspecific formulations.
A typical misreading of the structure-preserving constraint is
that it is a typology of transformations, and that it makes no
sense, once construction-specific transformations are eliminated as
in Chomsky (1976), to talk about the three options for movement
allowed by the constraint. I never formulated the constraint as a
typology; it has always been a theory of the derived structures
allowed for nonlocal operations in any general theory of movement
(and is used in this way directly in Chomsky, 1976).
11. There may be some marginal structure-preserving raisings
of AUX, as in John can't seem to sleep, or such movement may be
excluded in principle. In this study, I am concerned with those
movements of AUX which are root or local operations.
12. I am unaware of root postposing of V, and have no explana
tion other than a stipulation if they do not exist.
13. Causative constructions seem to be necessarily subject to
certain rules of interpretation at logical form, so any movement of
V must precede their S-structure.
Moreover, since the causative
rule in Romance does not induce morphology on V, it should not apply
in the phonology on independent grounds.
14. If it is eventually determined that the subject-initial
orders in Celtic have not undergone movement to COMP, then the Cel
tic V-fronting would be as in Romance, except that the interpretive
rules accepting the V-initial clause order in Romance and Celtic
would be different.
15. I assume that trace theory, properly formulated, prohibits
lowering rules across clause boundaries from applying in the syntax.
Another example, besides the one in the text, of a morphology-pro
ducing lowering rule in phonology is English affix movement.
16. Whether or not these verb-raisings should be considered
obligatory, and hence "in the phonology," according to (14), or
optional and in the syntax, is not clear to me. Reuland (1980)
argues for the latter position.
17. It is a simple matter for me to define the head of X3 as
SP(X), so that AUX is the head of S.

Anderson, Stephen R. and Sandra Chung. 1977. "On Grammatical Rela
tions and Clause Structure in Verb-initial Languages". Syntax
and Semantics, 8, ed. by Peter Cole and Jerrold M. Sadock,
1-25. New York: Academic Press.




Baltin, Mark R. 1982. "A Landing Site Theory of Movement Rules".

Linguistic Inquiry 13.1-38.
Bresnan, Joan. 1976. "On the Form and Interpretation of Syntactic
Transformations". Linguistic Inquiry 7.3-40.
Chomsky, Noam. 1972. Remarks on Nominalization. Studies on Semantics
in Generative Grammar. The Hague: Mouton.
. 1976. "Conditions on Rules of Grammar". Linguistic Anal
ysis 2.303-351.
. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding (Studies in
Generative Grammar, 9 ) . Dordrecht: Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding (Linguistic Inquiry Monographs, 6 ) . Cam
bridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
and Howard Lasnik. 1977. "Filters and Control". Linguis
tic Inquiry 8.425-504.
Emonds, Joseph. 1976. A Transformational Approach to English Syntax.
New York: Academic Press.
. 1978. "The Verbal Complex V'-V in French". Linguistic
Inquiry 9.151-175.
. 1979. "Word Order in Generative Grammar". Explorations
in Linguistics, ed. by George Bedell, Eichi Kobayashi, and
Masatake Muraki. 58-88. Tokyo: Kenkyusha Press.
. 1980. "Inversion Gnralise NP-". Langages 60.13-45.
Evers, Arnold. 1975. The Transformational Cycle in Dutch and German.
Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Linguistics Club.
Kayne, Richard. 1972. "Subject Inversion In French Interrogatives".
Generative Studies in Romance Languages, ed. by Jean Casagrande
and Bohdan Saciuk, 70-126. Boston: Newbury House.
Klein, Sharon. 1982. Syntactic Theory and the Developing Grammar.
Unpublished U.C.L.A. Ph.D. dissertation.
Reuland, Eric J. 1980. "On Extraposition of Complement Clauses".
Talk presented at the Eleventh Meeting of the Northeast Lin
guistics Society. Ithaca, NY.
Rizzi, Luigi. 1979. "'Aux to COMP' and the Wh-island Constraint".
Mimeographed. Pisa: Scuola Normale Superiore.
Safir, Ken. 1982. "Inflection-government and Inversion". Linguistic
Review 1.417-467.
Schwartz, Arthur. 1972. "Constraints on Transformations". Journal of
Linguistics 8.35-86.
Steele, Susan M. with A. Akmajian, R. Demers, E. Jelinek, C. Kitegawa, R. Oehrle, and T. Wasow. 1981. An Encyclopedia of AUX
(Linguistic Inquiry Monographs 5 ) . Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T.
Torrego, Esther. 1981. On Inversion in Spanish and Some of its
Effects. Mimeographed. Boston: University of Massachusetts.







One of the most striking characteristics of Gascon

syntax is the presence before finite verb forms of a sen
tence particle, usually called nonciatif in the litera
In its most common form, this particle is que
[ke]. Thus 'He sings' is Que canta, and 'John says that
Marie sings' is Jan que ditz que Maria que canta. While
the particle exists in nearly all the dialects of the
Gascon speech area, with the exception of the Bordelais
region and the valley of the Garonne once it leaves the
mountains, it is in the Pyrenean regions of Beam and
Bigorre that the most elaborate system exists. Here the
particle is a nearly obligatory constituent of tensed
clauses. It is proclitic, attaching to the finite verbal
element of the clause, along with the object pronoun
clitics and the negative marker.
Based primarily on
field work done in the Pyrenees between 1980 and 1983,
the present analysis will examine the pragmatic nature
of the particle, demonstrate that it serves to lexicalize
one dimension of illocutionary force in Gascon, and,
finally, suggest that the sentence particle should prop-



erly be treated as a constituent of the Gascon AUX.2


Traditional Overview

The nonciatif in Gascon has been discussed from a

number of points of view. The most important analyses
are those of Bec (1968:243-8), Bouzet (1951, 1963:26-7),
Hetzron (1977), Joly (1976), Lafont (1967:351-7, 405-9),
Rohlfs (1977:205-11), and Ronjat (1937, III:536-40).
Most of these, however, are more concerned with the ori
gins of the system than with its status in the synchronic
grammar of the language. Their comments on the latter
tend to make the following points:
(i) The particle que occurs in the vast majority of
affirmative declarative sentences, and is generally
described as the meaningless, grammaticalized form.


Que partim deth vilatge eth an passat.

'We left the village last year'
b. Maria qu'aubreishc la porta.
'Marie opened the door'
(ii) Sentences which affirm more strongly their propositional content may show be or ja in place of que. The
former is most common in exclamations, the latter in
categorical assertions.
(2) a. B's bestia!
'You sure are dumb!'
b. B'ei bth aqueth mainat.
'That child is really beautiful'
(3) a. Ja va plan.
'It's really going very well'
b. Ya b'ey dit de que s'aperabe Dorote.



(Camelat 1937:9)
'I've certainly told you that her
name was Dorothy'
(iii) The particle e introduces interrogatives, typical
ly, or dubitative sentences (unreal wishes, hypotheses).
Some dialects, mostly on the periphery of the area considered here, use a null marker for this function.
is deleted before a vowel.
a. E minjatz plan a voste?
'Do you eat well at home?'
b. E't brembes?
'Do you remember?'
c. E bengousse oey!
(Bouzet 1963:27)
'If only he would come today!'
d. As trias?
'Do you have money?'
(iv) Finally, most of these dialects do not permit que
as a resumptive, linking element between quoted speech
and the following 'he said', 'she asked', etc. Here one
finds either e once again, or else a separate form ce.
(5) a. N'ac voi pas, e digo l'aute.
'I don't want to, said the other one'
b. Non t'en hasques, ce'm ditz eth mien
'Don't worry, my neighbor says to me'
Lafont (1967:352) emphasizes the fact that in many
ways the Gascon sentence-particle is but an extension of
uses of que, e, be, and ja which have long existed in
all South Gallo-Romance dialects and which today appear
sporadically in dialects ranging from Limousin to Prov
However, in both its syntactic behavior and in
its pragmatic function, the Pyrenean sentence-particle



today is quite different from anything that exists in

Occitan or indeed in the Romance family as a whole.

The Particle and Illocutionary Force

While a cursory examination of the data shows that

the sentence-particle is to some degree related to sen
tence-type, this relationship is clearly indirect. While
declarative sentences most commonly occur with que and
interrogative sentences with e, the latter, for example,
are grammatical with que or be as well.


E iessirs se plovi?
'Would you go out if it were raining?1
b. Aqueths cotths, que'us me datz?
'Are you going to give me those knives?'
c. Be m'entent?
(Palay 1980:397)
'You understand me, don't you?'
Similarly, while the expression of illocutionary
force is certainly involved in the semantics of the par
ticle, the forms themselves do not serve to determine the
type of speech act being performed. The illocutionary
act of assertion, for example, can be accomplished with
que, be, or ja, and a similar choice is available for
thanking or promising. Among those who have considered
the problem, Bouzet (1951:50) is closest to the mark in
noting: "Les particules nonciatives n'influent en rien
sur le contenu objectif de la phrase, leur absence le
laisse intact, et c'est pourquoi on a pu les prendre pour
des mots expltifs. Leur intervention joue sur un autre
domaine qui est celui de la sujectivit: elles notent,
comme nous allons le voir, dans des nuances diverses,
l'attitude du sujet parlant vis--vis de ce qu'il nonce;



elles opposent en principe, non pas la ngation l'af

firmation, mais sur un terrain largi o sont fondus ces
deux aspects, l'affirm au non-affirm."
In fact, the entire series of particles can be
viewed as a continuum expressing the degree of intensity
with which the speaker is putting forward the proposition
contained in the sentence.5 Searle (1976:5) refers to
differences in 'the force or strength with which the
illocutionary point is presented' as one of the minor
dimensions of variation by which illocutionary acts dif
fer from one another. Hare (1970:19-20), however, in a
reaction to Searle's early work on speech acts, gives
illocutionary strength a much more important status in
his distinction of phrastic, tropic and neustic as the
three basic elements involved in an illocutionary act.
The phrastic is the propositional content of the sen
tence. The tropic represents the 'mood' (in Hare's ter
minology) or characteristic illocutionary point of the
utterance, and the neustic is the 'sign of subscription',
that is, the commitment the speaker attaches to the con
tent of the illocutionary act.
From this point of view, then, the Gascon particle
can be seen as the lexicalization of part of the neustic.
Que represents the normal level of subscription associ
ated with unmarked assertions. The simple frequency of
occurrence of the act of assertion in discourse is the
reason for its extensive use.
This very frequency
may today be having the effect of modifying the nature
of the pragmatic content of que. I shall return to this
problem in Section 5.
Lesser commitment to the propositional content than
that associated with que is carried by e, which is thus
the basic unassertive particle. Its function as dubi-



tative or interrogative marker follows from this.

Greater strength is carried by be, and ja expresses the
highest level of subscription.8 Some dialects appear
to have yet a fifth particle se, which is used mainly in
very polite questions and requests:
(7) a. Se-b anar de que-ns e maridssem
aqueste abor?
(Camelat 1937:1)
'Would it be all right with you if
we got married this fall?'
b. S'a escribut la daune, s'a hyt
beroy biadye?
(Camelat 1937:17)
'Has Madame written? Did she have
a nice trip?'
This may in fact be the same form as the resumptive ce
mentioned above, a form with a kind of negative, attenu
ating strength. Finally, as will be seen below, complete
absence of speaker subscription can surface as . The
continuum of strength of subscription may thus be pre
sented as follows:

We have, thus, an explanation for sentences like the

following, spoken to an unwanted intruder:
(8) E'vs en vatz o que'm gahi l'escoba?
(Ronjat 1937:625, Joly 1971:421)
'Are you leaving, or do I grab the broom?'
The first proposition is stated with the degree of sub
scription normally associated with questions, the second
with that associated with assertions, which gives it a
forcefulness appropriate to the context.




Further Exploration

The illocutionary approach to the Gascon sentenceparticle which has been developed here allows us to
explain a number of phenomena which in the past have
been ignored or classed as exceptional, sporadic, or
3.1 In the presence of the negative marker (non/ne or
non/ne...pas, depending on the dialect), the subscription
particle is generally absent. This fact led Bouzet to
suggest that non is a member of the set of particles,
though he did note the essential differences in the role
it plays (1951:49).
(9) a. Non drmes pas hra.
'You don't sleep much'
b. Non canti pas plan.
'I don't sleep well'
However, que does appear in emphatic negations:9
(10) a. Que non dromes pas hra.
'You certainly don't sleep much'
b. Que nou-t parle.
(Palay 1980:703)
'He doesn't talk to you at all'
Hence, the negative marker alone seems to suffice for
marking a negative-assertive type of speaker subscrip
tion, while an additional que simply strengthens its
force. The negative marker can also appear with e in
hypothetical negatives:


E nou digousse arr...!

(Bouzet 1951:51)
'Let's hope he doesn't say anything'

There exist a small number of cases in which the



particle is absent before main-clause verbs. These have

remained unexplained in nearly all accounts of this phe
nomenon, yet they clearly divide into 5 types:
(i) A small number of impersonal expressions such as
caler 'to be necessary' and valer mes 'to be better'
often occur without the particle.
Like the negative
cases above, the lexical content of these items seems to
diminish the necessity for a subscription particle.
(12) a. Vau mes assde's.
'It's better to sit down'
b. Quan ri petita, calva que dromissi dab
la mia sr.
'When I was little, I had to sleep with my
(ii) The particle may be absent in phatic utterances
like the following, in which speaker subscription is not
really relevant:
(13) a. Mes, ac sabetz, apres aver passat dus
ans en aceths pas...
'But, you know, after having spent two
years in those places...'
b. Que'ns anm passej'ns, sabetz on anm?
'We went for a walk, you know where we
(iii) Similarly, certain formulaic-type optatives occur
without the particle. Again, the strength of speaker
commitment is normally not relevant. Non-formulaic opta
tives most often show the particle, of course.
(14) Que lo bon Diu hassa misericrda.

'May the Good Lord have mercy'

Stage directions in certain plays written in Pyre-



nean Gascon frequently lack the particle.

Here of
course, speaker commitment to the propositional content
is, in fact, null.
(15) a. Entran lo notari e dus clercs.
(Deu Pradu 1981:12)
'Enter the notary and two clerks'
b. Arriba lo Momone en se tiener lo cap.
(Deu Pradu 1981:10)
'Momone arrives holding his head'
(v) A small percentage of third-person reflexive forms
also lack the particle. This case apparently has his
torical sources unrelated to the semantics or pragmatics
of the subscription particle.10
(16) a. S'a copat ua cama.
'He broke his leg'
b. S'an arranjat era coefura.
'They fixed their hair'
It should be emphasized that for all five of the above
structures, the majority of sentences do nonetheless show
the sentence particle: these are the only ones in which
it is possible to omit it, however.
3.3 Embedded sentences present a number of problems with
respect to the subscription particle. With very few ex
ceptions, if the particle position immediately follows
the COMP (of whatever type), no nonciatif is present in
surface structure.11
(17) Quan torni de la gurra de Corea,
qu'avi trenta ans.
'When I came back from the war in Korea,
I was thirty'



*Quan que torni de la gurra de Corea,

qu'avi trenta ans.
*Quan e torni de la gurra de Corea,
qu'avi trenta ans.
However, when the particle position is separated from
the COMP by any lexical material at all, the subscription
particle is present in most dialects, although the choice
is then limited to e (or 0 in some dialects) vs. que:

Quan Jan e torn de la gurra de

Corea, qu'av trenta ans.
'When John came back from the war in
Korea, he was thirty'
b. Quan alavetz e torni de la gurra
de Corea, qu'avi trenta ans.
'When at that time I came back from
the war in Korea, I was thirty'
The following observations are thus limited to structures
like (18) in which the COMP is not adjacent to the sub
scription particle.
3.3.1 Conditional sentences. Hare (1970:21), in discus
sing his distinction of tropic, phrastic, and neustic,
claims that an embedded sentence in a conditional struc
ture takes its tropic with it, but loses its neustic.
'The whole sentence in which it is encaged has a neustic,
but not the conditional clause by itself.' We would thus
expect there to be no meaningful choice from among the
particles in such protases of conditional sentences.
This is in fact the case for Gascon: only e (or 0 in some
dialects) is possible in this position:


Se Pierre e sab aquer, que s'en morir.

'If Pierre knew that, he'd die'
*Se Pierre que sab aquer, que s'en morir.



3.3.2 Relative clauses. In relatives, for most dialects

the particle position is not lexically filled at all
(though some use e) .
(20) a. Son tropth crestian dont Diu
l'av carcat.
'His Christian flock which God
had entrusted to him'
b. E qui desempuish sus eths calandrirs
e's partatj eth vint e nau de junh dab
Sent Paul son compair.
'And who since then on the calendar
has shared the twenty-ninth of June
with his colleague Saint Paul'
3.3.3 Predicate
For most
complements, the contrast between que and e is possible,
depending upon whether one asserts the subordinate prop
osition or hypothesizes it, a distinction which can be
made in English with intonation.
(21) a. Que'm pensavi que Pierre e la crompra.
(Aucun/H.P. )
'I thought that Pierre would buy it.'
b. Que'm pensavi que Pierre que la crompra.
'I thought that Pierre would buy it.'
The so-called 'triple que' is called 'heavy' by
Bouzet (1963:27) (repeated by Lafont 1967:407), and the
third que is to a certain extent avoided in favor of e
by many of the more self-conscious writers of the region.
Nonetheless, and despite the comments of Seguy (1973:
2506) on the subject, this construction is frequent in
spontaneous discourse.13
(22) a. Qu'aur calut que los sons amics que'u
missan mei lu.
'His friends should have brought him
back earlier'




Que vlrie plan que Jan que tengosse

eth cp.
'I'd really like John to hang on'
Que s'estonava qu'era scla qu'estsse
'He was surprised that the school was

Hetzron (1977) gives a large number of examples of the

alternation of que with e in specific complement con
structions and suggests accounting for the difference in
terms of a basic distinction of functional sentence per
spective in which a subordinate clause presenting new
information shows que/ while one giving old information
shows e (allowing also for some grammaticalization). His
examples are drawn from a very limited corpus of the se
lected literary work of three Bearnais writers, thus re
stricting the significance of his conclusions. In any
case, all of them can be more consistently explained in
terms of the pragmatic notion of subscription to propositional content. Hetzron's (1977:171) observation that
the choice (or lack of it) between que and e in subordi
nate clauses is not based on verbal tense/mood (as
asserted by, among others, Lafont 1967:407), but rather
to some degree on the lexical semantics of the matrix
verb, is an important one, however. The semantic dis
tinction represented in the choice que / e is in fact
related to the semantics of the main-clause verb. Some
seem to take only que, others only e; for many verbs the
choice is semantically distinctive. Thus, to take one
of Hetzron's (1977:182-3) examples, atender que + que
implies "vnement venir" while atnder que + e sug
gests "une ventualit," that is, a contrast between the
assertive que and the nonassertive e.






N'atendn pas mey que lous omis

qu'aboussen bint ans. (Caseboune 1926:28)
'They were no longer waiting for
the men to be twenty1
Qu'atendn que lous omis estessen

tournats de la yournade. (Palay 1974:32)

'They were waiting for the men to
come back from the day's work'
3.3.4 Clauses introduced by subordinating conjunctions.
It is also significant that nearly all subordinating con
junctions, as opposed to the complementizers used in
predicate complements, preclude the existence of a prag
matic choice in the sentence-particle. The sentence it
self has a degree of subscription marked in its matrix
clause, and the subordinate clause normally shows either
e or 0. 1 4
(24) a. Quan Jan ra joen, que legva hra.
'When John was young, he read a lot'
*Quan Jan qu'ra joen, que legva hra.
b. Mentre qu'eth poth cantava...
'While the rooster sang...'
*Mentre qu'eth poth que cantava...
3.3.5 Cleft sentences. Finally, in cleft sentences, the
sentence subscription particle precedes the presentative
(which may be qu'ei or (e)ei), and the main verb appears
with e or .
(25) a. Qu'ey -d-aqut pay e -d-aquere may
qui lous hilhs e deben tout.
(Palay cited in Clav 1980:344)
'It is to that father and that mother
that the sons owe all'



Qu'ey et qui cade mayti toucabe las

mies baques manes.
(Camelat cited in Hetzron 1977:192)
'It's he who every morning touched
my sterile cows'
The question of what subordinate clauses can have
their own neustic is an important one. Hare (1970:21)
suggests that many of them 'will have a tropic and a
phrastic but no neustic' and it is a common assumption
in pragmatic theory (e.g., Searle 1969:25) that "the
characteristic grammatical form of the illocutionary act
is the complete sentence." Here I will simply note that
in Gascon, while conditional clauses and most clauses
introduced by relative pronouns or subordinating conjunc
tions seem not to have a neustic of their own (they allow
no choice of subscription particle), predicate complement
clauses generally do allow a two-way choice between
assertive-type and nonassertive-type neustics. Although
the illocutionary force of the sentence is unitary, the
dimension of subscription can, in these cases, vary from
one clause to another. 15

The Subscription Particle in the Gascon AUX

Although I think there is evidence for positing an

AUX node in Gascon, I will not attempt to demonstrate the
point here. Assuming for the moment the well-foundedness
of this proposal, the presence of the subscription par
ticle means that Gascon shows an obligatory occurrence
of an auxiliary constituent in all tensed clauses. In a
recent work Steele et al. (1981:21) have proposed a uni
versal syntactic category AUX. They define this category
as a specified, that is, fixed and small, set of ele-



ments, crucially containing elements marking tense and/or

modality. While it is not my intention here to raise
the entire problem of the AUX, there is, I believe, rea
son to think that the subscription particle belongs in
AUX. It forms a constituent with modal-type verbs and
it occurs only in tensed clauses. If we accept its se
mantic nature as an example of the admittedly problematic
notion of modality (and it is in fact similar to some of
the material which has been claimed to be part of AUX in
various languages), then it fits the definition Steele
et al. (1981) have hypothesized for their universal
The Gascon AUX, including the subscription
particle, also has all of the other nondefinitional
properties they attribute to the category (1981:142),
(i) it contains elements marking a certain limited set
of semantic features. Among those Steele mentions are
object marking and negation, both of which would be part
of the Gascon AUX.
(ii) its elements have a fixed internal order which is
not predictable from other properties of the language.
The Gascon order is:
(iii) it is generally attached to some adjacent element.
The Gascon AUX, as was suggested above, is proclitic,
attaching to the finite verb.
As Steele et al. (1981:157) state, "the AUX is a
necessary (but not sufficient) condition for the sentence
to be a "speech act" which expresses a truth value."
Thus, it is not surprising to find the nonciatif as one
of its constituents in Gascon. If this is the case, how
ever, it leaves us with a rather odd Romance AUX, which
is realized at the surface with an obligatorily filled



preverbal node. However, the history of Gascon (and of

Romance in general) shows a strong tendency for AUX-like
material/ including modality, tense and aspect, object
clitic marking, etc. to move from postverbal to preverbal
Gascon, for reasons having to do with the
ordering of certain changes in clitic placement in the
thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, has developed a
constituent which marks the new preverbal AUX position
The diachronic development of the sub
scription particle system is difficult to follow, how
ever, and will not be attempted here.


Benveniste (1970:14) finds the origins of discourse

in the individual act of appropriation of language which
inserts the speaker into speech. The result of this
presence of the speaker in discourse is an entire series
of deictic and pragmatic shifters "dont la fonction est
de mettre le locuteur en relation constante et ncessaire
avec son nonciation." The Gascon subscription particle
is one of these. In his earlier (1966:238) distinction
of impersonal rcit as opposed to interpersonal discours,
Benveniste maintained that the former was distinct in
that in it "tout se passe comme si aucun sujet ne par
lait; les vnements semblent se raconter d'eux-mmes."
We might suspect that rcit would be characterized by an
absence of pragmatic markers like the subscription par
ticle. Examples of such linguistic behavior are diffi
cult to find in Gascon, however (in part because nearly
all linguistic performance has at least an implied inter
personal character); the stage directions (without par
ticle) mentioned above seem to point in this direction,



yet they too might be construed as being directed toward










in most of the plays written in the Pyrenees

today do indeed show the sentence particle.


sorts of


discourse are not


found for Gascon, whose position in the diglossic


tion of the region has gradually become limited to pre17

cisely the most personal sorts of language use.
bureaucratic forms and questionnaires to exist in Gascon,
they might

indeed be written

scription particles.

in a language without


However, the absence of these sorts

language use may be changing

the nature of the par

ticle to the point where any finite verb whatsoever









speaker for a particular verb form, say,

response will usually be something



is immediately






like canta...que can











of the




'he sings', the

That is, the verb form is cited without

cle, but

retains more force and the choice

it, as




language, and




the parti






is far more



in language use than it is in B e a m or Bigorre.

It would thus seem essential that the future evolu
tion of the Gascon particle system be followed in detail,

it not








Gascon-speaking villages today is almost entirely carried


in French.



been disrupted, with

each local dialect developing


in contact



The spread





attempts at restoring Gascon to a wider variety of social



successful, the particle






to decay gradually in the speech of less and less compe

tent speakers as the process of language death proceeds
to completion.

1. Gascon is spoken in southwestern France in a triangle lim
ited approximately by the Pyrenees, the Atlantic, the Garonne, and
the Arige, an area that is larger than Belgium or Switzerland.
Basic sources of information on Gascon are Rohlfs (1977), the Atlas
linguistique de la Gascogne (ALG) (Sguy 1954-73), and the Dictionnarie de l'ancien gascon (Baldinger 1975ff.). It should be noted
that the Gascon linguistic area is larger than the historical prov
ince of Gascony.
2. Data from field work will be indicated by village name fol
lowed by the abbreviated name of the dpartement: H.P. = HautesPyrnes; P.A. = Pyrnes-Atlantiques. A small number of examples
come from recordings of informal storytelling which were made by
others; for purposes of simplicity, these will be noted in the same
way. Examples from written texts will be referenced for author,
year, and page number (see references). All oral examples are given
in the orthography of the Institut d'Estudis Occitans. Written ex
amples are mostly in the older Felibren system.
3. See the ALG, maps 2400-1 for the distribution of 0 vs. e as
markers of interrogation. However, see also my reservations below.
Some mountain dialects use se in this function, while that of Camelat (Arrens/H.P. ) appears to have a se / e contrast. The latter
point cannot be made with entire certainty since Camelat modified
his dialect in some respects so as to conform more closely to Stan
dard Bearnais.
4. See also Teulat (1973:47ff.), Camproux (1958:389-90, 444-6).
These uses have their roots in developments which are pan-Romance:
see Rohlfs (1977:207-10), Lafont (1961).
5. In this they are related both synchronically and diachronically to the homophonous but syntactically different particles which
occur most often in sentence-final position, e.g., Que m'at diser,
be. 'He's going to tell me:' or Y-at bederas, ya. 'Just wait, you'll
seel' (see Bouzet, 1951:54).
6. "L'assertion...est la manifestation la plus commune de la
prsence du locuteur dans l'nonciation." Benveniste (1970:16).
7. Lyons (1977:748) expresses the opinion that "there may well
be languages ... with a mood whose basic function is that of expres
sing doubt or qualifying the speaker's commitment to truth ... it
would not be unreasonable to expect that what is basically a dubi
tative mood might be regularly used both for posing questions and
expressing doubt or uncertainty."



8. Be may, in fact, express more than just increased strength;

an element of new information seems also to be involved. See Bouzet
9. The ALG (m. 2392) insists that the use of que with negatives
is "trs localis" and in general "accidentel." Bourciez (1925:629)
terms it "exceptionnel." However, Bouzet (1963:150-5) gives a num
ber of good examples, and many of my informants used the construc
Bouzet's (1951:50) remarks to the effect that pas is not
possible when que and non occur together seems not to hold in many
of the dialects I have investigated.
10. The diachronic development of the sentence-particle system
will be discussed in a more general work now in progress on Gascon
11. Despite the counter-examples noted by Hetzron (1977;165),
I have found extreme consistency for this in the dialects I have
investigated. It should be pointed out here that in interrogative
main clauses the particle is not realized lexically when it would
immediately follow any Q-element:
Qui devara?
'Who's coming down?'
Qui que devara?
*Qui e devara?
12. The one dialect which has structures which violate the rule
that the particle is not lexically realized adjacent to COMP is
Labastide-Clairence (see ALG 2506), where 'He wants me to have some'
is Que vu que que n'aji.
13. Here again, the ALG (m. 2506) notes this structure only at
a few points. All of my informants used it spontaneously. It is
clearly very difficult to examine this sort of phenomenon with the
normal sort of questionnaire used for the linguistic atlases since,
in nearly all sentences, several particle configurations are possi
ble, with varying semantic and pragmatic effects.
14. For a few exceptions, probably for semantic reasons, see
Hetzron (1977:186-7).
15. Contrast the lexical performatives of such languages as
Japanese, where a single sentence can have only one (Ross 1981)
16. Pullum (1981:438) criticizes the notion of modality used
by Steele in Akmajian, Steele, and Wasow (1979), and rejects the
universal category AUX as well.
17. See Field (to appear) on language attitudes and the sociolinguistic situation in these regions.

Akmajian, Adrian, Susan M. Steele, and Thomas Wasow. 1979. "The
Category AUX in Universal Grammar". Linguistic Inquiry 10.1-64.


T H O M A S T.


Bec, Pierre. 1968. Les interfrences linguistiques entre gascon et

languedocien. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.
Benveniste, Emile. 1966. Problmes de linguistique genrale. Paris:
. 1970. "L'appareil formel de 1'nonciation". Langages
Bourciez, Edouard. 1925. "Notes de syntaxe gasconne". Homenaje ofre
cido a Menndez Pidal, 627-640. Madrid: Hernando.
Bouzet, Jean. 1951. "Les particules nonciatives du barnais".
Mlanges de linguistique offerts Albert Dauzat, 47-54. Paris:
. 1963. Syntaxe barnaise et gasconne. Pau: Marrimpouey.
Camelat, Miquu de. 1937. Bite-bitante. Pau: Marrimpouey.
Camproux, Charles. 1958. Etude syntaxique des parlers gvaudanais.
Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.
Caseboune, Yulien. 1926. Esprabes d'amou. Pau: Marrimpouey.
Clav, Paul. 1980. Prosateurs barnais. Pau: Per Noste and Marrim
Deu Pradu, Jan. 1981. Quate petas. Pau: Per Noste.
Field, Thomas T. To appear. "Language Attitudes and Language Death
in the French Pyrenees". The SECOL (Southeastern Conference on
Linguistics) Review.
Hare, R. M.
1970. "Meaning and Speech Acts". The Philosophical
Review 79.3-24.
Hetzron, Robert. 1977. "La particule nonciative que en gascon".
SILTA (Studi Italiani di Linguistica Teorica ed Applicata)
Joly, Andr. 1976. "Que et les autres morphmes nonciatifs du bar
nais: essai de psychosystmatique". Actes du XIIIe congrs
international de linguistique et philologie romanes, ed. by
Marcel Boudreault and Frankwalt Mhren, 1.411-31. Qubec:
Universit de Laval.
Lafont, Robert. 1961. "Remarques sur l'emploi de e introductif du
verbe principal en ancien occitan". Actes et mmoires du IIIe
congrs international de langue et littrature d'oc, 34-41.
Bordeaux: Universit de Bordeaux.
. 1967. La phrase occitane. Paris: Presses Universitaires
de France.
Lyons, John. 1977. Semantics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Palay, Simin. 1974. Tros causits de prose e de poesie. Billre:
Escole Gastou Febus.
. 1980. Dictionnaire du barnais et du gascon modernes.
Paris: CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique).
Pullum, Geoffrey K. 1981. "Evidence Against the 'AUX' Node in Luiseo and English". Linguistic Inquiry 12.435-463.
Rohlfs, Gerhard. 1977. Le gascon. Tbingen: Niemeyer.
Ronjat, Jules. 1937. Grammaire istorique des parlers provenaux
modernes. Montpellier: Socit des Langues Romanes.




Ross, Claudia. 1981. "Lexicalized Performatives". Paper presented at

Annual Winter Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America,
Dec. 28, 1981, New York.
Searle, John R. 1969. Speech Acts. London: Cambridge University
. 1976. "A Classification of Illocutionary Acts". Language
in Society 5.1-23.
Sguy, Jean. 1973. Atlas linguistique de la Gascogne, 6. Paris:
CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique).
Steele, Susan M. with A. Akmajian, R. Demers, E. Jelinek, C. Kitegawa, R. Oehrle, and T. Wasow. 1981. An Encyclopedia of AUX
(Linguistic Inquiry Monographs 5 ) . Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T.
Teulat, Roger. 1973. Elments de syntaxe occitane rfrentielle.
Villeneuve-sur-Lot: Forra-Borra.


From Classical Latin to Modern French


In his seminal work on the evolution of Romance

clitic order, Wanner (1974) demonstrates that by the
13th century, Spanish, Portuguese, and most northern and
southern Italian dialects conformed to the order II, I,
III Dative, III Accusative often referred to as the mihi
ilium order, while Catalan, Provenal, French, and some
northern and most central Italian dialects had the order
III accusative, III dative, II, I, that is the ilium mihi
order. Constructions (la) and (lb) exemplify these orderings:
(1) a. mihi ilium; Cid 259 Yo assi vos D lo A
mando (Ramsden (1963:66)
ium mihi: Balain 43:12-15 et le.
vousD amerrai (ibid:98)
Wanner proposes that in the pre-literary period both the
ilium mihi order and the mihi ilium order could have
existed, the mihi ilium order being associated with pro
clisis to the verb while the ilium mihi order with en-



clisis. He further suggests that sometime before the

13th century the Spanish group chose the mihi ilium
proto-order and generalized it to all environments, while
the French group chose the ilium mihi order, generalized
it, and only later adopted the mihi ilium order.
The aims of the present paper are (1) to demonstrate
that the ilium mihi alone should be considered the protoRomance order, (2) to describe when the change to mihi
ilium occurred in French, and (3) to explain why such a
change occurred. I will first provide evidence for the
claim that ilium mihi was the sole proto-order and will
discuss the mechanisms underlying the development of that
proto-order. Next, I will demonstrate that the change
towards mihi ilium in anteposition to the verb occurred
during the Middle French period. Finally, I will address
the following questions concerning that development:
(1) Why such a change occurred and why it occurred when
it did, (2) why the order remained ilium mihi in post
position to the verb, and (3) why the order ilium mihi
remained in anteposition to the verb when two nonreflexive 3rd person pronouns were juxtaposed.

What Evidence Is There for Ilium Mihi as the Sole

Proto-Order and How Did That Order Develop?

In both the literary and popular language of the

Classical Latin period, the most common order of object
pronouns in anteposition to the verb as well as in post
position to the verb seems to have been mihi ilium.
Thus, the patterns reflected in (2a) and (2b) were the
most common:1


Petr. CT 16 DonoV vobisD eumA

Ego vbisD idA dabV (Wheelock



However, during the 3rd century A.D. an important

evolution in these patterns is already apparent.
Itala, for example, although the mihi illum order remains
in anteposition to the verb, as in (3a), the unmarked
order in postposition to the verb has become illum
mihi2 as in (3b).
(3) a. Itala Joh. 17.182.6 et mihiD illosA
b. Itala Joh. 19.202.11 TradiditV me A
By the 6th and 7th centuries, a further change is
evidenced: the illum mihi order has become the unmarked
order in anteposition to the verb as well. Examples (4a)
through (4c), all from Gaulish texts, illustrate this
new ordering.
(4) a. Gregory of Tours Cato and Cautinus (last
quarter of 6th c.) eumA sibiD velle
inludire (Muller, 1932)
b. Fredegarius L.H.F. 163.20 (~642 A.D.)
et quis eumA mihiD dedit (ibid.)
c. Frodebertus and Importunus Parabola 174.7
(after 600 A.D.)
IllumA tibiD necesse desidero (ibid.)
What were the motivating factors behind the changes
in the order of object pronouns reviewed in (5)?
(5) Classical Latin IO DO V (mihi illum V) V IO
DO (V mihi illum)
3rd c. (Itala) IO DO V (mihi illum V) V DO
IO (V illum mihi)
6th and 7th c.
DO IO V (illum mihi V) V DO
IO (V illum mihi)
By the time of Itala, the object pronouns, just like
other object NP's, were found basically postposed to the



verb. As argued extensively in Galambos (1981), this

was a by-product of the generalization of the VSO order
which had become the unmarked order in most types of
constructions. I propose that in the unmarked postverbal
position, a reorganization in the order of object pro
nouns (and nouns) took place, motivated by the discoursepragmatic tendency to arrange elements in terms of their
topicality: The accusative object, more likely a 3rd
person, is less topical than the dative, more essential
to the process, thus semantically more closely associated
to the verb. Its pragmatic tendency would be to occur
next to the verb. In contrast, the dative, more likely
a 1st or 2nd person, is more topical than the accusative
and less essential to the process: we are apt to find
verbs that need a direct object while the same is not
true of an indirect object. Due to those properties,
tne dative would be less likely to occur next to the
Thus, the illum mihi order, being the most
natural in postposition to the verb, was generalized in
the unmarked postverbal position.
During the 6th and 7th centuries, despite the ten
dency to antepose object pronouns in some environments,
the unmarked position for object pronouns was still the
postverbal position.
I suggest that with the greater
petrification of word order and with the tendency towards
simplification, which we know characterized that period,
the unmarked illum mihi order, found in postposition to
the verb, was generalized into preverbal position. Con
sequently, illum mihi became the unmarked order both
preverbally and postverbally.
It should be noted that the texts cited above as
representative of the 6th and 7th centuries are all Gaul
ish texts. The scarcity of manuscripts in other dia-



lects, as well as the lack of juxtaposed object pronouns

in the texts I examined of other dialects,4 make it
difficult to provide direct evidence for the generaliza
tion of illum mihi throughout the pre-Romance dialects.
Thus, it could still be argued, as Wanner (1974) has,
that some Romance languages such as French had illum
mihi as their proto-order, while other languages, of
which Spanish is prototypical, derived their patterns
from a different proto-order, that is, mihi illum. For
Spanish, at least, such a theory would adequately account
for the generalized mihi illum order attested already in
the earliest Castilian documents, such as the Glosas
Silenses and Emilianenses (9th-llth centuries).
The major problem with that hypothesis is that in
Spanish, at least, the illum mihi order is still attested
preverbally and postverbally during the 11th and 12th
centuries in certain conservative dialects of the Iberian
Peninsula, such as in Leons and Aragons. Note, for
example, (6) below:
(6) Fuero de Avils (Alto Aragn, 1158) si losA
li D vedar (Menndez Pidal, 1950:343)
The archaic tendencies of those dialects and, contrastively, the innovative tendencies of Castilian imply
that the illum mihi order was originally common through
out the peninsula and was the proto-order and that the
mihi illum order is an innovation. This latter hypoth
esis is in accord with the fact, mentioned by Wanner
(1974:61) that no Romance language changed from a mihi
illum order to an illum mihi order but only from illum
mihi to mihi illum. Furthermore, it argues strongly for
the claim that illum mihi had become generalized through
out the pre-Romance dialects and was, therefore, the only
proto-order, and that the drift towards mihi illum was



common to all Romance languages, each differing in terms

of when the development occurred.


When Did the Change Towards Mihi Ilium Occur in

Anteposition to the Verb in French?

The first examples of this inversion are found in

La Chanson du Chevalier au Cygne, written during the 1st
half of the 13th century. Examples (7a) and (7b) reflect
the new mihi illum order:
(7) a. 26.636 Raisons est c'on te D 1'A die
b. 17.423 Si me D lesA ocies
However, the illum mihi order is still the most common
order in that work. Note, for example, the illum mihi
order in (8a) and (8b):
(8) a. 2.32 Je 1*A vousD dirai
b. 9.210 Jou le A te D dirai ja
It is difficult to know whether in fact the new mihi
illum order is to be attributed to later copyists or
whether it is a proper reflection of the original. How
ever, the editor of the version that I consulted, points
out that his version derives from the one attributed to
Renault and Gandor, which dates to the 13th century.
Examples of the mihi illum order seem somewhat more
frequent in texts of the 14th century, although in that
century illum mihi is still the most common order. Con
structions (9a) through (9d) are derived from Guillaume
de Machaut's works dating to the 1st half of the 14th
century. The particular versions that I consulted are
also based on manuscripts thought to belong to the time
of the author:





mihi illum: Oeuvres I: Dit dou Vergier

Je ne te D leA quier ja celer
b. mihi illum: Oeuvres: Livre du Voir Dit 49
Mais moult me D leA dist bas ton
c. illum mihi : Oeuvres I: Jugement dou Roy
de Behaigne 116.1563
faire leA me D couvient
d. illum mihi : Oeuvres I: Jugement dou Roy
de Navarre 159.658
Nom pas qu'elle leA vousD commande
The acceptability of both orders in anteposition to
the verb is still evidenced in certain texts of the 16th
For example, in Marguerite de Navarre's
L'Heptamron we find:
(10) a. mihi illum: 107 Dieu me D l' a ost
b. mihi illum: 78 me D laA feroit perdre
c. illum mihi: 18 je laA vousD vois
d. illum mihi: 93 leA m'D a donn
However, in most texts of the 16th century only the
new mihi illum is found, suggesting a fairly complete
transition to a mihi illum order in anteposition to the
verb during the 16th century. Note, for example, con
structions (11a) and (llb); only mihi illum occurs in
those works:
(11) a. mihi illum: Rabelais Pantagruel 96.193 Je
vousD leA donne de bon cueur
b. mihi illum: Montaigne Essais 1.59 l'ont
escrit et me D l'A ont jur
In summary, evidence of the change towards mihi
illum is first attested at the beginning of the 13th cen
tury and it is not until the 16th century that the tran-



sition towards mihi illum in anteposition to the verb

seems to become complete.


Why Did the Change Towards Mihi Ilium Occur and Why
Did It Occur When It Did?

During the Late Latin period, object pronouns were

mostly found postposed to the verb. By the early Romance
period these pronouns were found mostly anteposed to the
verb in all Romance languages, despite the greater ten
dency in the Spanish group than in the French group to
postpose object
I propose that once the
unmarked position of object pronouns in most environments
had become the pre-verbal position, a tendency developed
in the Romance languages to shift towards a mihi illum
The motivating force behind this shift was
the discourse-pragmatic tendency (discussed above) to
place the accusative, rather than the dative, next to
the verb, since it is less topical than the dative and
semantically more closely associated with the verb. This
same pragmatic tendency would determine that, in anteposition to the verb, the benefactive precede the dative
and that the 1st and 2nd persons precede the 3rd person.
Thus, in anteposition to the verb, the illum mihi order
violated the natural pragmatic order of elements and the
tendency to reestablish the natural order acted as a
driver for the change towards mihi illum.8
The mechanism for the change to mihi illum in the
Romance languages was the widespread use of the pronomi
nal se paradigm as the marker of the middle voice, and
thus its close semantic association with the subject.9
Due to the middle function, the reflexive pronoun tended



to be placed next to the subject. This claim that the

pronominal se paradigm acted as a vehicle for the change
is corroborated by the fact that the shift from illum
mihi to mihi illum seems to have occurred first in con
texts where a reflexive and a nonreflexive pronoun were
juxtaposed. Thus, for instance, in Italian, me lo and
mi lo (mihi illum) were already common during the 14th
century (>invariable me lo during the 15th century).
However, when two nonreflexive 3rd person pronouns were
concerned, the mihi illum order was not attested until
the 16th century and seems to have partly resulted from
the phonetic confusion between the accusative and the
dative pronouns and their consequent functional reinterpretation.
This change is illustrated in (12):
(12) li A li D (illum mihi)>lile, lele
(13th c.)>gliele (invariable, 14th c.)>
glieDloA, glieDlaA, glieDleA
(mihi illum, early 16th c.) (Wanner, 1974)
In Provenal, the older lo me (illum mihi) started giving
way to the newer me lou in the 15th century, while the
two nonreflexive 3rd person pronouns were not found in
the mihi illum order until the 17th and 18th centuries
(Wanner, 1974:164).
Why did all the Romance languages not adopt the mihi
illum order at the same time? We have seen that the
stage was set for that shift in the Romance languages
during the early period of those languages. Unless con
ditions particular to that language prevented it from
taking place, I propose that the change towards mihi
illum occurred in a language at that time. In French,
the rhythmic and accentual patterns characteristic of the
language up to the mid-12th century countered the tenden
cy towards mihi illum.11 Up to that time, the rhythm



was ascending, with the initial element in a rhythmic

group bearing a secondary stress.
Subject pronouns,
still mostly autonomous and used with a marked function,
were often placed in the initial and stressed position.
Weak object pronouns often leaned enclitically on these
subjects forming contractions such as jol (<jo l e A ) . I
believe that these common contractions served to prevent
a reorganization in the order of object pronouns. By the
end of the 12th century, beginning of the 13th, the
rhythm in the language had become oxytonic, and thus only
the final phonetic syllable within a rhythmic group bore
stress. Subject pronouns, which had become increasingly
common during the second half of the 12th century, func
tioned often as atonic and nonautonomous pronouns and in
that function tended to be placed in the initial un
stressed position. Contractions such as jol disappeared,
paving the way for the shift to mihi illum. Furthermore,
it seems that during the 12th century the intensity of
the accent in French weakened with such consequences as
caesuras becoming plain pauses and the strength of the
rhythmic association between object pronouns and the verb
becoming weaker.
Thus, for example, postposed object
pronouns, which during the 11th century were enclitic on
the verb and appeared in their atonic form as in (13a),
lost this enclitic relationship with the verb after that
time and occurred as stressed object pronouns when in
final position within the rhythmic group, as in (13b):
(13) a. Alexis 229 As me, dist il (Moignet,
b. Cligs 570 Cuide moi Amors metre en voie?
(Moignet, 1965:67)
It is interesting to note that in Old Spanish and Portu
guese, the rhythmic association between the object pro-



noun and the verb was not as strong as in Old French and
interpolations between the object pronoun and the verb,
which did not occur in Old French, were common in those
In summary, changes in the rhythmic and accentual
patterns at the end of the Old French period removed the
obstacles that had blocked the tendency to shift towards
a mihi illum order in anteposition to the verb. As I
mentioned above, the first examples of mihi illum were
attested precisely at that time.

Why Did the Ilium Mihi Order Remain in Postposition

to the Verb in French?

I believe that the shift towards mihi illum that

occurred in postposition to the verb in most Romance lan
guages was the product of analogy to the mihi illum order
in anteposition to the verb, the most common position of
object pronouns. I propose that in French this levelling
in the word order paradigm did not occur due to rhythmic
constraints in the language. As noted above, by the be
ginning of the 13th century, the rhythm in French had
become oxytonic and thus the last phonetic syllable with
in a rhythmic group bore the stress. Consequently, func
tionally nonautonomous object pronouns, when in final po
sition within a rhythmic group, appeared in strong form,
as in (14a). This made them formally indistinguishable
from autonomous object pronouns, such as in (14b) and
(14) a. Broul 672 Departent soi
b. Mort Artu 112.8 De ferir soi
c. Amades et Ydoine 724-25.6 Pour soi
I suggest that this formal identity between the stressed



variant of the nonautonomous pronoun and the inherently

tonic autonomous pronoun lead to their functional asso
As a result of this association, the strong
form of the object pronoun was prevented from being
interpreted as anything but an inherently tonic form
throughout the Middle French period and, thus, its posi
tion was confined to the end of a rhythmic group due to
the oxytonic rhythm in the language. This prevented the
shift from illum mihi to mihi illum from occurring in
postposition to the verb. Although this lack of inver
sion in postposition to the verb is still characteristic
of formal Modern French, in popular spoken French as well
as in other spoken registers a change towards mihi illum
in postposition to the verb seems to be taking place.
Thus constructions such as (15a) through (15c) are quite
common :

a. Ecrivez-nousD-leA ( le nous)
b. Donne-luiD-ziA (zi=le) ( le lui)
c. Montre-moiD-laA ( la moi)
Rhythmic conditions in the language have not changed and,
thus, such constructions would not be acceptable unless
strong object pronoun forms were not felt to be inherent
ly tonic. That is in fact the case. As argued in Galambos (1981) strong forms such as moi and toi, which func
tion as emphatic hanging topics in formal French, need
not function as tonic forms in spoken French, as topics
in the spoken registers have become inherently unstressed
and unmarked for focus. The formal identity between the
strong object pronoun forms and the unstressed pronouns
functioning as topics has resulted in the reinterpretation of strong object pronoun forms as inherently un
stressed. This development has permitted the change to
mihi illum to take place in postposition to the verb



without violating the rhythmic patterns of the language.


Why Did the Ilium Mihi Order Remain in Anteposition

to the Verb When Two 3rd Person Nonreflexive
Pronouns Were Juxtaposed?

I propose that the reversal within the nonreflexive

3rd person pronouns did not occur because during the
period of change to mihi illum in French the 3rd person
direct object pronoun (e.g., le, la) was usually omitted
when combined with the 3rd person indirect object pronoun
(i.e., lui, leur ) .
Constructions such as (16) were
the norm throughout most of the Middle French period: 14
(16) (beg. of 14th c.) Joinville, Hist. de St.
Louis 36.63
Il lour commanderont (< le lour)
During the 16th century, the absence of the 3rd per
son direct object pronoun became quite uncommon. Thus,
in Marguerite de Navarre's L'Heptamron and in Mon
taigne's Essais (I and II), for example, the presence of
the 3rd person direct object clitic seems to be the norm.
Note examples (17a) and (17b):
(17) a. (1st half-16th c.) M. de Navarre,
L'Heptameron 72
la luy rendoit
b. (2nd half-16th c.) Montaigne,
Essais II.65 de le luy apporter
Once the 3rd person direct object pronoun was rein
troduced during the 16th century, it was found anteposed
to the indirect object pronoun, thus conforming to the
illum mihi order rather than to the expected mihi illum
in anteposition to the verb. At that time, the pronoun
lui had become the marker of both feminine and masculine



indirect objects whether in anteposition or postposition

to the verb. I suggest that the formal similarity be
tween the anteposed and postposed 3rd person pronouns
encouraged the analogy to the illum mihi order in post
position to the verb.
While this exception to the mihi illum order in
anteposition to the verb has been retained in formal
Modern French, in the spoken language the levelling
towards mihi illum, which seems to be occurring in post
position to the verb, is also taking place in anteposi
tion to the verb when two 3rd person pronouns are con
cerned. Thus constructions such as (18) are becoming the
(18) Je luiD ziA donne (lui zi = luiD
le A <le A luiD)
It will be interesting to see whether the levelling
towards mihi illum in all environments remains charac
teristic only of the spoken language or whether it per
meates formal standard French as well. If the latter
occurs, the complete realization of the drift towards
mihi illum present in the early period of the Romance
languages and long realized in other Romance languages
will have taken place in French as well.

1. However, it is important to keep in mind that word order
was essentially free in both popular and literary pre-Classical and
Classical Latin. Thus, no combinations of person, number, or case
among object pronouns and nouns were ungrammatical, e.g.; P1. Cist.
744 te mihi adopto, P1. Cas. 920 mihi te expetivi (Dahln, 1964:
2. Whenever the order mihi illum is found in postposition to
the verb, the different manuscripts disagree as to the ordering of
the elements, e.g., Itala Joh. 19.203.6 (Tunc ergo tradidit) eis
illum alternates with eum illis (aff 2 ) .



3. The lower topicality of the accusative in relation to the

dative has been discussed by Givon (1977) among others.
4. Both Muller's (1932) and Diaz y Diaz's (1950) anthologies
were thoroughly analyzed.
5. In works I examined in the 15th century, I only found the
illum mihi order:
Villon Oeuvres: Posies Diverses, Epitre a Marie
D'Orlans VIII.89.114 Je ne cay qui leA meD deffant
Froissart Chroniques (1397-1400): Complots du Duc
de Gloucester 16 Si le A me D caurs dire
It is puzzling to me that a tendency that was apparently already
present, at least by the beginning of the 14th century, seems to
have been temporarily absent during the 15th century. This obser
vation might have been artificially imposed by the works examined,
which may not be representative of the period. For instance, Vil
lon's poetic language might be thought to be more conservative than
that of his contemporaries. However, I believe that it is not the
particular works I examined but rather the literary language of the
15th century in general that tended to be somewhat archaic (at least
syntactically) and less representative of the spoken language of
that century than other literary works during the Middle French
period. In any case, it seems unlikely that the tendency towards
mihi illum could appear in full force by the beginning of the 16th
century if it had not existed during the 15th century.
6. Refer to Galambos (1981) for a discussion of this change,
which resulted from the generalization of the tendency present in
the Late Latin to antepose clitics when certain rhythmic and seman
tic conditions were met.
7. Thus Wanner's (1974) hypothesis concerning the association
of mihi illum with proclisis and illum mihi with enclisis is cor
However, this fact cannot serve to explain the supposed
choice by the French group of the illum mihi order and by the Span
ish group of the mihi illum order: Since the anteposition of object
pronouns was widespread in the French group, we would expect mihi
illum; as noted above, illum mihi and not mihi illum was the norm
in those languages in the early Romance period.
In the Spanish
group, postposition was quite frequent, thus possibly suggesting
illum mihi. In fact, the opposite was true; mihi illum was the
8. I am indebted to Givn (1977) for the concepts of a 'driver'
and a 'vehicle' in word order change.
9. The possible role of se in this change has been alluded to
previously. As pointed out by Wanner (1974), Brunsewitz (1905) sug
gested that the great number of pronominal verbs in French resulted
in the development of a special relationship between the subject
pronoun and the reflexive pronoun, which were then perceived as a
unit. This resulted in the postposition (to this unit) of the nonreflexive le. He advanced as evidence the observation that the
ordering change in French coincided with the increasing use of the




subject pronouns. Other than the suggestion that the se paradigm

might have been involved in this word order change, Brunsewitz's
account is incorrect. I do not believe that it was the reflexive
se but rather the middle se that was associated with the subject
(although this might be a matter of terminology).
pronominal verbal units result from a special relationship between
the verb and the object clitic, which are perceived as a unit. A
special relationship (a union) with the subject is not necessarily
implied by a pronominal verb. In languages such as French, where
the subject pronoun was used increasingly and lost its autonomy from
the verbal group, the subject pronoun might have been felt to be
part of the verbal group. However, this loss of autonomy, which was
language specific, did not act as a mechanism for word order change.
The mechanism for change was the association of the frequently used
middle se (me, te ...) to subjects in general (whether nouns or pro
nouns, whether autonomous or not), a condition not specific to a few
languages but rather common to all the Romance languages.
10. In Spanish, phonetic confusion between the dative and the
accusative 3rd person pronouns and their consequent reinterpretation might have facilitated the change towards mihi illum. The
later merger of the reflexive se [se] and the nonreflexive le>[e]
(ge)>e], due to phonetic similarity between [se] and [se] could
not have played a role in the process: The reversal of the nonreflexive 3rd person pronouns occurred a few centuries before the
devoicing of [z] led to the confusion between the nonreflexive (IO)
and the reflexive pronouns.
11. See Galambos (1981) for a detailed account of the rhythmic
and accentual patterns during the Old and Middle French periods.
12. This functional association between the autonomous and nonautonomous pronouns I believe was responsible for the replacement of
the weak indirect object form li by the strong autonomous form lui
by the end of the 14th century.
13. Explanations given so far for this phenomenon, such as
Meyer-Lbke's (1899), Kukenheim's (1968) and Wanner's (1974) all
suggest that the specific ordering is a product of a rhythmic prin
ciple that is based on the new oxytonic accentuation and that re
quires the 'heavier' element to be placed second (or last) when two
pronouns are concerned. Thus, for example, they propose that the
heavier element lui must follow the lighter element le. A major
problem with that hypothesis is that oxytonic accentuation is in no
way suggestive of a necessary linear arrangement of forms in terms
of their increasing heaviness (i.e., stress) unless these forms
occur at the end of a rhythmic group. Thus their hypothesis could
only serve as an explanation for the ordering of pronouns when postposed and not when anteposed to the verb. A similar order in anteposition would then have to be explained as resulting from analogy
to the order in postposition. However, a major problem which ren
ders even that explanation inadequate is that at the time of the
reversal within the rest of the paradigm, li (nonautonomous) was




still mostly used instead of lui as an indirect object pronoun (even

in stressed positions), and li cannot be said to have been heavier
than le or la (DO pronouns).
14. I examined a variety of works by Guillaume de Machaut,
Charles D'Orlans, and Villon and found no examples of juxtaposed
3rd person clitics.

Chanson du Du Chevalier au cygne et de Godefroid de Bouillon (La).
1874. Vol I: Le Chevalier au cygne. Pub. by C. Hippeau. Paris:
Chez Auguste Aubry.
Dahln, Eric. 1964. Etudes syntaxiques sur les pronoms rflechis
plonastiques en latin. Studia Graeca et Latina Gothoburgensia
19. Gteborg: Elanders Boktryckeri Aktiebolag.
Diaz y Diaz, Manuel C. 1950. Antologa del latn vulgar. Madrid:
Biblioteca Romnica Hispnica, Editorial Gredos.
Galambos, Sylvia Joseph. 1981. The Position of Personal Pronouns in
French: A diachronic perspective. Unpublished University of
Chicago Ph.D. dissertation.
Givon, Talmay. 1976. "Topic, Pronoun, and Grammatical Agreement".
Subject and Topic, ed. by Charles Li, 149-188. New York: Aca
demic Press.
. 1977 "The Drift from VSO to SVO in Biblical Hebrew: The
pragmatics of tense-aspect". Mechanisms of syntactic change,
ed. by Charles Li, 181-254. Austin: University of Texas Press.
Itala. Das Neue Testament in altlateinischer berlieferung. 19381963. 3 vols., ed. by Adolf Jlicher. Berlin: W. de Gruyter.
Joinville, Jean Sire de. 1874. Histoire de Saint Louis. 2nd ed., ed.
by Natalis de Wailly. Paris: Librairie Firmin-Didot.
Kukenheim, Louis. 1968. La grammaire historique de la langue fran
aise: Les syntagmes. Leiden: Universitaire Pers Leiden.
Machaut, Guillaume de. 1849. Oeuvres de Guillaume de Machaut. Reims:
Imp. Regnier.
. 1908-1911. Oeuvres de Guillaume Machaut. Vol. 1 and 2.
Pub. by E. Hoepffner. Socit des Anciens Textes Franais. Paris:
Librairie Firmin-Didot.
Marguerite de Navarre. 1962. L'Heptamron, ed. by Michel Franois.
Paris: Editions Garnier Frres.
Menndez Pidal, Ramn. 1950. Orgenes del espaol: estado lings
tico de la pennsula ibrica hasta el siglo XI. 3rd rev. ed.
Madrid: Espasa-Calpe, S.A.
Meyer-Lbke, Wilhelm. 1899. Grammatik der romanischen Sprachen, 3.
Leipzig: Reisland.
Moignet, Grard. 1965. Le pronom personnel franais. Paris: Librai
rie C. Klincksieck.



Montaigne. 1962. Essais. Vols. 1 and 2, ed. by Maurice Rat. Paris:

Editions Garnier Frres.
Muller, Henri F. and Pauline Taylor. 1032. A Chrestomathy of Vulgar
Latin. New York: D.C. Heath and Company.
Petronius Arbiter. 1905. Petronii Cena Trimalchionis, ed. and trans.
by W.D. Lowe M.A. Cambridge: Deighton Bell and Co. and London:
G. Bell and Sons.
Rabelais, Franois. 1965. Pantragruel, ed. by P. Saulnier. Geneve:
Librairie Droz.
Ramsden, H. 1963. Weak-Pronoun Position in the Early Romance Lan
guages. Manchester: The Univerity Press.
Villon, Franois. 1958. Oeuvres. 4th ed, ed. by Auguste Longnon,
rev. by Lucien Foulet. Paris: Librairie Honor Champion.
Wanner, Dieter. 1974. "The Evolution of Romance Clitic Order". Pro
ceedings of the Third Linguistic Symposium on Romance Lan
guages, ed. by Joe Campbell et al., 158-177. Washington, D.C.:
Georgetown University Press.
Wheelock, Frederic M. 1963. Latin: An introductory course. 3rd ed.
New York: Barnes and Noble.





New York



It is well known that English has several more vowel

phonemes than Spanish. Apparently for Spanish listeners,
some English vowels are unambiguously similar to some of
the five vowels of Spanish. For instance [i] and [u],
as in see and sue are perhaps always perceived as Spanish
[i] and [u] by Hispanic monolinguals, who probably hear
see as s 'yes' and sue as su 'your, his, her, their.'
But other English vowels appear to be ambiguous to the
Spanish ear. Two of these are [ as ] as in mass, ban,
etc., and [A], as in pun, dust, etc. Evidence from loan
word phonology indicates that [as ] can be perceived as
either [a] or [e] by Hispanics, and [A] as either [a] or
[o]. For example, some speakers say [kcer] and others
[kcer] for the baseball term, catcher; and one can hear
either [bofalo] or [bfalo] from Hispanics in Buffalo,
New York.
I have proposed in Guitart (1981) that this type of
phonological ambiguity and its resolution in favor of one
or the other vowel can be accounted for within a distinc
tive feature framework in which it is assumed implicitly



that High, Back, Low, and Round--as defined in Chomsky

and Halle (1968:304-6, 309)refer also to perceptual
qualities corresponding to the articulatory gestures they
describe. The hypothesis is that the perception of an
English vowel by a Hispanic listener depends on the num
ber of binary feature values that the segment heard has
in common with a Spanish vowel with respect to highness,
lowness, backness, and roundness. Ambiguity arises when
an English segment is like two Spanish vowels in three
features but not the same ones. That is to say, it is
unlike either with respect to a fourth different feature.
For instance, English [as] is most like both Spanish [e]
and [a] in that, like them, it is nonhigh and nonround
(which eliminates the other three Spanish vowels, [o],
[i], and [u], as possibilities). However, while being
low like [a] and nonback like [e] it is unlike [a] in
backness and unlike [e] in lowness. The Hispanic lis
tener resolves the ambiguity by ignoring or disregarding,
sometimes one conflicting value sometimes the other; and
the value that is left is used distinctively in a nega
tive way. To illustrate, sometimes the listener disre
gards the fact that [as] is low, and decides that it
cannot be [a] because it is nonback; therefore it must
be [e]the only Spanish segment that is nonhigh, nonround, and nonback. Other times the listener disregards
the fact that [as] is nonback, and decides that it cannot
be [e] because it is low; therefore it must be [a]the
only Spanish segment that is low, in addition to being
nonhigh and nonround. In the [e] solution the distinc
tiveness of nonbackness has been valued over the distinc
tiveness of lowness; and in the [a] solution the opposite
is true: lowness is considered distinctive and nonback
ness is ignored. It seems that there is no purely pho-



nological reason to prefer one feature value over the

otherand that must be precisely the cause of ambiguity.
This hypothesis has a flaw that was not apparent to
me when I first proposed it. And it is that the inter
pretation of an English vowel by a Hispanic listener can
not be based exclusively on the number of feature values
that the English vowel has in common with a Spanish one.
Consider the fact that [A] has three feature values in
common not only with [a] and [o] but also with [e]. Like
all three it is nonhighwhich eliminates Spanish [i] and
[u] as possibilities. But in addition it is like [a] in
being back and nonround, like [o] in being back and nonlow, and like [e] in being nonlow and nonround, differing
with [a] only in lowness, with [o] only in roundness, and
with [e] only in backness. Yet I know of no cases in
which [A] is perceived as [e]. The theory has to be
modified to incorporate the notion that some feature
values are perceptually more salient than others. That
must be the case of the perceptual correlate of tongue
retraction, or [+ Back]. The Hispanic listener seemingly
cannot ignore the fact that [A] is back, which makes him
eliminate nonback [e] as a possibility.
But, between
nonlowness and nonroundness neither is more salient than
the other; thus the perceptual ambiguity of [A] between
Spanish [a] and [o]. And so, in the [o] solution for [A]
lowness is valued over roundnessit cannot be [a] for
it is nonlow; therefore it is [o]. And vice versa in the
[a] solutionit cannot be [o] because it is nonround;
therefore it is [a].
I would now like to
to test a) whether [as]
the Spanish ear, and b)
panics is influenced by

report on an experiment designed

and [A] are indeed ambiguous to
whether their perception by Histhe dialect spoken by the lis-



tener. The experiment simulated an English-Spanish bor

rowing situation in that monolingual Hispanic listeners
were presented with six oral items that were either mono
syllabic English words or part of monosyllabic English
words, and which contained either [se] or [A] as their
only vowel; but the listeners were told that the items
were Spanish words pronounced by a person whose native
language was not Spanish,
The subjects were twenty-nine native speakers of
Spanish of assorted dialectal areas. Countries repre
sented and number of speakers were as follows: Argentina,
1; Bolivia, 1; Colombia, 3; Costa Rica, 2; Ecuador, 1;
Mexico, 6; Panama, 1; Peru, 1; Puerto Rico, 6; El Salva
dor, 1; Spain, 1; and Venezuela, 3. Subjects had in com
mon the fact that their understanding of spoken English
was severely limited--according to themselves and to
their teachers of English as a second language. All were
enrolled as beginning students in English as a Second
Language programs either at the State University of New
York at Buffalo or at an adult program in a Buffalo pub
lic school. Subjects were given a sheet which contained
the following instructions in Spanish, followed by six
numbered blanks: "You are going to hear a recording in
which a person whose native tongue is not Spanish,
attempts to pronounce six Spanish words. Each word is
said twice. Please write the words in the spaces pro
vided, in the order in which they are pronounced."
The subjects then heard a good quality recording
consisting of the following list of English utterances
spoken by a 26 year old female native speaker of Buffalo
[m s] (English mass)
[d A s] (she was instructed to say dust



without final /t/)

[b as n] (English ban)
[p A n] (English pun )
[1 A s] (she was instructed to say lust
without final /t/)
[d as n] (English Dan)
There was a one-second interval between repetitions and
a ten-second interval between different words.
Results in general confirmed anecdotal evidence that
[as] may be perceived as either [a] or [e], and [A] as
either [a] or [o] (but never as [e]). One unexpected
finding was that a few listeners heard [ ] as the hiatus
[ea], e.g., one listener wrote vean for [b as n ] . One
listener who heard also the vowels [e] and [a] when ex
posed to [ as ] interposed a consonant (me das) , and one
other listener transposed the second vowel and the final
consonant and wrote mesa. The last two cases might have
been unconscious efforts to avoid writing meas 'you
piss'--a vulgarism, but other speakers did write that,
as we will see.
I will analyze the perception of [ as ] as [ea] later
in the paper.
The different responses to the stimuli were as follows:
Written responses
1. [m as s]
ms 'more', mes 'month', meas
'you (fam.) piss', me das 'you give
me', mesa 'table'
2. [d A s]
das 'you give', dos 'two'
3. [b as n]
van 'they go', ven 'come (2s fam.
command)', vean 'see (2p command)'
4. [p A n]
pan 'bread', pon 'put (2s fam.
5. [1 A s]
las 'the (fem.)', los 'the (masc.)'


6. [d n]

dan 'they give', den 'give ( 2p com

mand)' dean (sic) [Note: dean is
the spelling of the subjects' ESL
teacher's last name (Dean).]
It was apparently not the case that speakers of the
same dialect solved the ambiguity posed by the two sounds
studied in any uniform way.
For instance there were
three Mexico City speakers: two females, 20 and 24; and
one male, 27. The two women disagreed with each other in
four cases. For [d s ] , [b n] , [p n ] , and [d as
n] , one wrote das, ven, pan, and den; while the other
wrote dos, van, pon, and dan. The man disagreed with one
of the women in two cases (das/dos, den/dan) and. with the
other in two cases as well (ven/van, pan/pon) . The six
Puerto Ricanswho were from six different localities on
the islandagreed as a group only on one word, las for
[1 s]--none wrote los; but three for instance wrote dos
for [d A s] and three wrote das. As to [m s ] , four
Puerto Ricans wrote mas, one meas, and one mes. For [d
n], three of the Puerto Ricans wrote den, two wrote
dan, and one wrote deanprobably influenced by the fact
that that was the spelling of their teacher's last name,
as already noted.
Now, if speakers of the same dialect can disagree
this much among themselves, then their perceptual judg
ments cannot be based on any shared phonological traits
characteristic of their dialect. Many dialectologists
have remarked on the paucity of vocalic variation in the
Hispanic world (see Zamora Vicente, 1967; Zamora Munn
and Guitart, 1982). Spanish vowels seem to be remarkably
uniform in quality from dialect to dialect. The results
of the present experiment seem to bear this out. In some
of the cases the subjects reacted as a rather homogeneous



group. For instance for every dialect for which there

was more than one speaker among the subjects, mas was
overwhelmingly preferred as the solution to [m se s].
Furthermore, certain results seem to indicate that, re
gardless of regional origin, a majority of the subjects
are influenced by the relative frequency with which the
perceived word may appear in isolation in Spanish. For
example, though the group as a whole assigns [ ] to [a]
in [m se s] in 72% of the cases (meas, 22%; mes, 3%), the
solution with [e] was preferred for [b ae n], with the
subjects writing ven in 64% of the cases. Consider that
ms probably occurs more frequently as a one-word utter
ance than either mes or meas. And the command ven is
probably more frequent than the command vean and the
indicative van.
The influence of word frequency is apparent also in
the assignment of [A] to either [a] or [o]. For [d A s]
listeners write dos in 64% of the cases and das only in
34% (no response, 4%); but for [p ae n] they write pan 89%
of the times and pon only 11%. The numeral dos is per
haps more frequent than the normally transitive das as a
one-word utterance, and the same can be said of the noun
pan versus the normally transitive command pon. I have
no explanation why las is preferred to los so markedly
(82% to 18%).
I would now like to turn my attention to the per
ception of [ ] as the hiatus [ea] by some of the sub
In Buffalo Englishthe dialect of the person
supplying the stimuli--the phoneme //
is realized as a
complex nucleus or diphthong.
Its first element is a
midlow front vowel, and the second is apparently a low
front glide with a "front a" quality to it. In terms of
the features I have been using here, this sequence can



probably be described as follows:

The listeners who chose either [a] or [e] apparently

disregarded the glide perceptually because there are no
low glides in Spanish, treating the sequence as a single
segment. What about those who perceived a hiatus? They
do interpret the Buffalo diphthong as what it is, a
sequence, but since there are no low glides in Spanish,
they attribute syllabic status to the second element. As
to deciding that the first segment must be [e] and the
second [a] rather than vice versa, they probably guide
themselves by the n-ary values of the same feature (see
Chomsky and Halle, 1968:164.). The first element, the
mid-low vowel, is [n low], but the second element, which
is lower, is [n + x] lowwhere n and x are integers
greater than zero. The second element must be very sim
ilar to Spanish [a] in degree of lowness. The listener
then decides that it is [a], and since the first element
does not approximate as closely the lowness of [a] it
must be [e] since the latter is the only other nonhigh,
nonround segment.
In this paper I have proposed that the distinctive
feature analysis of phonological ambiguity in the percep
tion of foreign vowels be modified to include the notion
that certain feature values seem to be more salient than
others. Such is apparently the case of [+ Back], which
is never disregarded by Hispanic listeners in the inter-


pretation of English vowels.

Other feature values, e.g.,

[ + Low], [- Low], [- Round] and

be disregarded.


[- Back], can apparently

I reported on an experiment which veri

fied that American English

the Spanish ear.

[ ] and [] are ambiguous to

I showed that the dialect

spoken by a

Hispanic listener apparently plays no role in resolving





I suggested






listeners guide themselves by

the frequency which the perceived word may have in Span


I proposed


the perception





[ ] as a hiatus is due to the fact that the sound is a


in Buffalo




English--the dialect


the second

I assumed



of the person

of this diphthong


as a vowel

not a glide because there are no low glides in Spanish,



in deciding


the first element


[e] and

the second [a] they guided themselves by the n-ary values

of the feature Low.

*I am very grateful to Marsha Dean for her indispensable coop
eration in the experiment described here, and to David Zubin for
helpful comments.
Chomsky, Noam and Morris Halle. 1968. The Sound Pattern of English.
New York: Harper & Row.
Guitart, Jorge M. 1981. "On Loanword Phonology as Distinctive Fea
ture Phonology in Cuban Spanish". Linguistic Symposium on
Romance Languages 9, ed. by William W. Cressey and Donna Jo
Napoli, 17-23. Washington, D.C: Georgetown University Press.
Zamora Munn, Juan clemente and Jorge M. Guitart. 1982. Dialecto
loga hispanoamericana: teora, descripcin, historia. Salaman
ca: Ediciones Almar.
Zamora Vicente, Alonso. 1967. Dialectologa espaola. Madrid:






The present study is a continuation of an earlier

work called "La espirantizacin en castellano y la rep
resentacin fonolgica autosegmental" (Harris, to ap
pear). I will give a brief summary of certain points of
that paper as a way of introducing the data and the the
oretical concerns we are about to delve into.
SPIRANTIZATION in Spanish refers to the process
whereby the segments represented orthographically as b
(or v ) , d and g are realized phonetically either as the
voiced stops [b], [d], [g] or as the corresponding voiced
nonstrident continuants [], [], []. Following Mascar
(1982), I argue in Harris (to appear) that these phonetic
realizations are controlled largely by a rule of Contin
uant Spreading, which is formulated schematically in



The exact form taken by Continuant Spreading in a par

ticular grammar varies somewhat among dialects. As sug
gested in (lb), in some dialects the segment X is totally
unrestricted, i.e., any continuant segment, vowel or con
sonant, spreads its continuancy onto a following voiced
obstruent. In other dialects [+continuant] spreads only
from [+syllabic] segments, and so on. The operation of
this rule is illustrated in (2).

These examples show the most general case of Continuant

Spreading, in which the source of [+continuant] can be
any continuant segment. The reader can easily work out
the results in dialects with various restrictions on the
source of spreading, as suggested in (lb).
One of the dialects from which certain data were
examined in Harris (to appear) is the Cuban dialect that
Jorge Guitart has called el espaol culto de la Habana



"educated Havana Spanish" (Guitart, 1976, 1978; Zamora

and Guitart, 1982), and which we will refer to as HABA
Consider the following introductory sample of
habanero data.
go[]o ( = retropurga
In the highly monitored style of speech that Guitart
calls autorregulado, liquid-obstruent clusters are real
ized phonetically in habanero just as they are in the
majority of dialects, i.e., as continuants. But in the
ordinary conversational style that Guitart calls espon
tneo, habanero has geminate stops in place of liquidplus-obstruent clusters. These geminates are highly un
usual among Spanish dialects. Furthermore, as a phenom
enon of articulatory phonetics, it is striking that stops
replace continuants in the more relaxed style of diction.
I argue in Harris (to appear) that these geminates
are, in autosegmental terms, single melody units each
associated with two slots in the prosodic skeleton, es
sentially as shown in (4).

The representations in (4) are produced by a stylisti

cally controlled Linking rule, which can be stated as in



(5) as a first approximation.

(5) Linking (preliminary version)
C C equivalently: C C

Rule (5) states that in underlying liquid-plus-obstruent
clusters, all of the features of the liquid are de-linked
from the prosodic skeleton and the features of the fol
lowing obstruent are linked to the vacated slot. The
result is that the two skeleton slots are now associated
with a single melody unit, as shown in (4). (The float
ing features of the original liquid are simply not real
ized phonetically.) The Linking rule (5) obviously does
not handle the retroflection of geminate dentals illus
trated in (3) nor a number of other details that will
constitute the central descriptive problem of the present
Before expanding the data base I will flesh out the
theoretical context of both Harris (to appear) and what
follows. We will think of autosegmental representations
as consisting essentially of the association of a seg
mental melody with a prosodic skeleton. In (6) are shown
three possible configurations.




merged matrices

X, Y = single (C or V) positions in prosodic

, , , ... = + or F, G, H, ... = distinctive features
In free matrices (6a) no distinctive feature is associ
ated with more than one position in the prosodic skele
In linked matrices (6b) skeleton positions are
associated with melody units that share at least one
feature specification.
Merged matrices (6c) are the
special case of linked matrices in which all feature
specifications are shared by two skeletal slots.
There are two main universal conventions relevant
to the representations illustrated in (6). The Shared
Feature Convention is shown in (7).

According to (7) only feature specifications which are

not identical in linked segments are associated separate
ly with these segments; thus the feature G is transferred



automatically to the submatrix shared by X and Y while F

retains its separate associations with X and Y since it
has opposite values in the two segments. Convention (7)
is basically a notational housekeeping device whose oper
ation we will simply take for granted without comment in
what follows. The Rule Application Convention is shown
in (8).
(8) Rule Application Convention; Given a
representation REP of linked (including
merged) matrices (6b, c) and a rule RUL
of the form [F] [F]/SD, RUL applies
to REP iff both X and Y of REP meet the
structural description SD of RUL.
The operation of the Rule Application Convention will be
amply illustrated below.
We will now extend the concerns of Harris (to ap
pear) along both descriptive and theoretical lines. More
specifically/ I will attempt to provide a descriptively
adequate account of the full range of data subsumed under
the rubric "Liquid Assimilation in Havana Spanish"; and
I will explore the crucial role of autosegmental phonol
ogy in general and Convention (8) in particular in the
expression of the generalizations embodied in this rather
quirky material.
The data in (9), (10) and (11) illustrate most of
the complexities of liquid assimilation in habanero.
(9) L + labial
a. ser bobo, el
b. ser pobre, e1
c. ser mata, tal mata
d. ser fino, el fino
[ff ]
(10) L + coronal ( = retroflected)
a. arde, falda



b. ser t , el t
c. ser nata, t a l nata
d. farsa, falsa
e. corcho, colchn
f. ser rojo, el rojo
g. ser droga, tal droga [dd]
h. ser tres, el tres [dt]
i. Carlos, estar lejos []
(11) L + velar
a. purga, pulga
b. parco, palco
We see immediately that l and r give the same results,
and that word boundaries make no difference. We can also
spot right away the following oddities. The underlying
liquid assimilates in nasality before a labial as illus
trated by se[mm]ata, ta[mm]ata (9c) but not before a dental as illustrated by se[dn]ata, ta[dn]ata (10c).2 The
underlying (voiced) liquid does not assimilate in voic
ing in most cases, e.g., se[] (10b), fa[]a (10d),
pa[gk]o (llb), se[bp]obre (9b), but it does assimilate
in voicing in se[ff]ino, e[ff]ino (9d). Retroflection
occurs only in the coronal group (10), but not always
there, e.g., se[] (10b) versus se[dt ]res (lOh).
We will begin to sort all this out by examining
retroflection more carefully.3 Guitart (1978) proposes
to distinguish among plain alveolars, retroflected alveolars, and alveolopalatals by means of the feature spe
cifications shown in (12).
coronal anterior high distributed
plain alveolars



It is not obvious that retroflected coronals are [+high];

otherwise (12) seems reasonable, given the feature frame
work of SPE. In any event, the choice of feature systems
and the characterization of retroflection within a par
ticular system are orthogonal to our main concerns.
There are two good reasons to consider retroflection
and Linking (5) to be independent processes rather than
one and the same phenomenon, i.e., some elaboration of
(5). As illustrated in (13), liquids may be retroflected
in absolute final position.

Thus retroflection does not necessarily involve the

(partial or total) assimilation of liquids to a following
segment, as Linking obviously does. This is the first
reason for separating the two processes. Now recall from
the paragraph immediately below (11) that retroflection
does not occur in the realization of all underlying
liquid plus coronal clusters. Additional examples are
given in (14).



The generalization that emerges is that retroflection

occurs when the coronal cluster is followed by a vowel
or a glide, but not when it is followed by a liquid.
Notice now that although there is no retroflection in the
second column of (14), the underlying liquid does indeed
assimilate to the following coronal in all features ex
cept voicing. This is the second reason for not identi
fying retroflection and Linking as a single complex
process. In short, retroflection occurs without Linking
(13), and Linking occurs without retroflection (14).
In view of (13) and (14), I will postulate the two
rules shown in (15) and (16).


Rhyme Retroflection
L /
(R = syllable rhyme)

Rhyme Retrof lection changes both l and r to the retroflected voiced stop [] in postnuclear position.
RSpreading captures the generalization that coronal clus
ters are retroflected only when they are followed by a
vowel or a glide. The notation [+r] is an expedient
which stands for whatever feature complex correctly
characterizes retroflected consonants. The effects of
(15) and (16) are illustrated in the sample derivations
shown in (17).5



([+r] abbreviates the features of retroflection as be

fore, and [+cr] stands for [+coronal].) In (17a) we take
abril to be in utterance-final position. Rule (15) ap
plies as shown, and nothing else of interest happens. In
(17b) Rhyme Retroflection applies as expected to the
postnuclear 1 of the first syllable. R-Spreading applies
next, producing a retroflected geminate.
The output
shown, fa[]a, is correct. Continuant Spreading must
not apply to ita point to which we will return shortly.
In (17c) Rhyme Retroflection again applies as expected
to the postnuclear 1 of the first syllable. R-Spreading
cannot apply since [+consonantal ] r_ follows the cluster
[dd]. If Linking (5) applies, however, the correct out-



put is produced, namely sa[dd]r. Once again, Continuant

Spreading (1) must not apply.
We now direct our attention to the Linking process.
Scrutiny of (17) reveals that the Linking rule applies
to the output of Rhyme Retroflection (15), which changes
underlying liquids to obstruents. Therefore, the Linking
rule actually applies to obstruent-plus-obstruent clus
ters rather than to liquid-plus-obstruent clusters. Our
first refinement of the Linking rule is thus as shown in
(18) Linking (revised)
Consider now the examples in (19).
(19) a. ser pobre [bp] (9b)
[gk] (llb)
b. ser mata [mm] (9c)
We are reminded by (19a) that underlying liquids assume
the point-of-articulation (PA) features of a following
consonant but do not assimilate in voicing, and we are
reminded by (19b) that underlying liquids may assimilate
to the nasality of a following consonant as well.
These observations are incorporated into the (final) ver
sion of Linking given in (20).
(20) Linking (final version)

[ PA][ PA]



Rule (20) takes as input consonant clusters whose first

member is not a nasal. The effect of the rule is to de
link from the prosodic skeleton the nasality and point of
articulation (PA) of the first consonant and to link in
their place those of the second segment. In (21), sample
derivations of el pobre and tal mata are given to illus
trate the operation of Linking as formulated in (20).

I will now motivate two subsidiary rules, after which

various loose strands will be tied together.
Consider the examples in (22), which are repeated
from (9) and (10).
(22) a. two continuants
ser fino
[ff ]



two noncontinuants
ser bobo



ser t
These examples illustrate two interrelated facts:
(i) that the two members of underlying liquid-plus-con
sonant clusters always agree in continuancy in phonetic
representations, and (ii) that it is the second member
of the cluster that determines the continuancy of the
first. I will capture these two facts by means of the
rule of Continuancy Assimilation shown in (23).
(23) Continuancy Assimilation

This rule requires that the first of two consonants in

linked matrices agree in continuancy with the second.
Since both R-Spreading (16) and Linking (20) create
linked matrices, Continuancy Assimilation can apply to
the outputs of both.
The argument for postulating a
separate rule of Continuancy Assimilation instead of
attempting to incorporate its effects directly into both
R-Spreading and Linking is elementary: the latter move
would miss the generalization that there is continuancy
agreement in ALL linked matrices, no matter how they
The final detail of our empirical coverage is laid
out in (24).
(24) voicing assimilation no voicing assimilation
e1 fino [ff] (9d)
el t


voicing assimilation

no voicing assimilation
el tres
We see that underlying liquids assimilate in voicing be
fore [f] but nowhere else. Why should this be so? A
brute-force answer is provided by the following rule.

Rule (25) simply stipulates that in linked matrices con

taining labial continuants, the first segment must devoice if the second is [f]. But this is only a restate
ment of the original observation, and a redundant one at
that, since habanero has no labial continuant that isn't
voiced. Stated more cogently, habanero, like most dia
lects of Spanish, lacks voiced strident obstruents altogether, and has lacked them for centuries.9 The inven
tory of underlying obstruents in habanero and most other
Latin American dialects is that shown in (26).
(26) p

x (or h)
*v *z */*
Thus the redundancy rule stated in (27) holds for Spanish

Strident Voicelessness
[+strident] [-voice]
If we allow this rule to apply in the derivation of un
derlying liquid-plus-f clusters, we get the desired re-



sults, as is illustrated in (28).

Linking (20) assimilates the erstwhile liquid to the

labial point of articulation of the f, whereupon Continuancy Assimilation (23) makes the linked segments agree
in continuancy, and finally Strident Voicelessness (27)
guarantees that both of the labial continuants are voice
Although the issue cannot be developed at length
here, I cannot fail to point out that derivations of the
type illustrated in (28), if correct, pose a challenge
to some versions of the developing theory of Lexical
Phonology (Kiparksy, 1982; Mohanan, 1982, and references
therein; for Spanish, Harris, 1983b), in which phonolog
ical rules are segregated into lexical and postlexical
classes which apply in the order in which they were just
Strident Voicelessness (27) is a lexical rule
since it constrains the inventory of underlying segments,
while Linking (20) and Continuancy Assimilation (23) are
postlexical rules since they apply across word boundaries
as well as within single words. Yet in (28) the lexical
rule of Strident Voicelessness must apply after postlex-



ical Linking and Continuancy Assimilation. 12

Returning to the main thread of the discussion, our
grammar fragment of habanero now consists of the follow
ing rules: Rhyme Retroflection (15), R-Spreading (16),
Linking (20), Continuancy Assimilation (23), and Strident
Voicelessness (27). There is a good bit of independent
motivation for each of these rules, as we have seen, and
each is elegantly simple. In order to show how these
rules interact as a system and how this system is inte
grated by the principles of autosegmental phonology, I
will now ask a series of leading questions, answering
each in turn.
Question 1. Why is there assimilation of nasality
in ser mata, tal mata (9c) but not in ser nata, tal nata
The answer is that the labial geminate in
se[mm]ata, ta[mmlata (9c) is produced by Linking, which
spreads nasality from right to left, while the coronal
cluster in se[]ata, ta[]ata (10c) is the result of
R-Spreading, which spreads retroflection from left to
right (and affects no other feature).
Question 2. Why don't both R-Spreading and Linking
apply to cases like ser nata, tal nata (10c) giving
*se[]ata, *ta[]a with an incorrect geminate retroflected nasal, or to cases like corcho, colchn (10e)
giving *co[ ]o, *co[ ]on with an incorrect geminate
palatal strident? The question stated in full generality
is: Why are R-Spreading and Linking always mutually ex
clusive? This is our central issue, and it is a serious
question because the answer is by no means obvious. In
deed, the outputs of R-Spreading appear to be perfectly
legitimate inputs to Linking. The answer lies in Rule
Application Convention (8), which is brought into play



by the fact that the rules in question produce linked

matrices, as illustrated in (17b), (21), and (28), and
as is obvious in any event from their formulation. The
operation of this convention is illustrated in (29).

The representation of ser nata after application of

(Rhyme Retroflection and) R-Spreading is shown above the
horizontal line. We must inspect this representation to
see if it meets the structural description of the Linking
rule. The result of such inspection is indicated below
the horizontal line. As signaled by the check mark, C2
does meet the structural description of Linking, since
C 2 is immediately preceded by a nonnasal consonant,
namely C1 (=), as the rule requires.
C 1 , on the
other hand, does not meet the structural description of
Linking because the segment to its immediate left is a
vowel (=e) rather than a consonant as the rule requires.



Thus in accordance with Rule Application Convention (8),

Linking can apply NEITHER TO C 2 NOR TO C 1
This is
of course exactly the empirically correct result.
Question 3. Why does Continuant Spreading (la) not
apply in the derivation of, say, ser pobre (9b) giving
*se[p]obre with an incorrect continuant [] or of ser
droga (10g) giving *se[]roga with an incorrect geminate
voiced dental continuant?
More generally, why do the
expected outputs [], [], [] of Continuant Spreading
never appear in the phonetic realizations of liquid-plusobstruent clusters in the espontneo style of habanero?
This is of course our opening puzzle, illustrated in (3).
The Rule Application Convention (8) again provides the
solution, as illustrated in (30) with curva = cu[bb]a,
the first example in (3).

We must check both segments of the merged matrices to see

if the structural description of Continuant Spreading is
met in both cases. The rule is potentially applicable
to C1 , a voiced obstruent immediately preceded by a
continuant segment, namely the vowel u.
C 2 , on the
other hand is not a potential target of Continuant
Spreading: C 2 is a voiced obstruent as the rule re
quires but it is immediately preceded by a stop, namely



C1,=b, rather than the continuant segment demanded by

the rule. Therefore, since only one of the linked seg
ments meets the structural description of Continuant
Spreading, according to Rule Application Convention (8)
this rule cannot apply to either segment.
It should be observed that Convention (8) does not
amount to a blanket prohibition of the application of
rules to linked matrices.
We have already seen one
relevant case in (28), which is repeated for convenience
as (31).

Convention (8) correctly fails to block application of

Strident Voicelessness (27) to the linked matrices of the
since both are strident and thus meet the
only requirement (27) places on its inputs. Consider
also the previous step in the same derivation, repeated
in (32).

The fact that Continuancy Assimilation must apparently



be formulated as in (23) and that it must apply as shown

here points to the necessity of interpreting (8) so that
application of a rule, such as Continuancy Assimilation
(23), whose structural description itself contains linked
matrices is not blocked.13
I will now summarize and conclude. It has been well
established elsewhere (Halle and Vergnaud, 1982; Harris,
1983a, and references therein) that point-of-articulation
and other types of assimilation phenomena are properly
characterized as autosegmental relinking rules.
habanero liquid assimilations are thus produced by rules
that create representations to which the application of
further rules is governed by the Rule Application Conven
tion (8). This fact provides us with the basis for a
principled explanation of a number of initially quite
bizarre and puzzling phenomena.
The Rule Application
Convention (8) makes crucial reference to the notion of
linked (including merged) matrices, a notion that is
simply not available without reference to multitiered
autosegmental representations. Therefore, the data we
have examined provide interesting empirical support for
the Rule Application Convention (8) in particular and for
the theoretical constructs of autosegmental phonology in

*I could not have written this paper without the generous help
of Jorge Guitart, which I gratefully acknowledge.
1. This Convention is due to Steriade (1982) and is an auto
segmental elaboration of the strictly linear Adjacency Identity
Constraint of Guerssel (1978).
2. The palatal nasal [n] appears only intervocalically within
a word and in word-initial position in only a small number of words.
Thus liquid-plus- sequences are quite marginal and are not taken
into account here. Velar [] occurs only in syllable rhymes, where




it absolutely cannot follow a liquid. There are thus no cases of

liquid-plus- sequences.
3. Some preliminary
instrumental work by Amalia Sarabasa
(1981), herself a native Havana geminator, indicates that retroflec
tion is indeed the appropriate articulatory description.
4. Neither dl nor tl is a possible syllable onset in habanero.
5. In (17) and subsequent displays I represent as autosegmentalized only enough features to make the point in each case. The
resulting redundancy of the alphabetical symbols representing melody
units above the prosodic skeleton is thus a notational artifact to
which no theoretical significance should be attached.
6. We return directly to the case in which there is no assimi
lation in nasality.
7. [] is an intermediate representation, ultimately simpli
fied to [] by a process that has no bearing on the present discus
8. It is argued in Harris (to appear), against the prevailing
opinion, that [1] is [+continuant]. The present discussion, how
ever, would not be affected in any way if Carlos [ ] were trans
ferred from (22a) to (22b).
9. The dialectically anomalous Argentinian [] is obviously a
voiced strident obstruent, and is evidently not derived from any
other underlying segment in many words like ayer/aer/, yo/o/, and
so on.
10. The /b d g/ of (26) can be replaced by the corresponding
voiced obstruent archisegments /B D G/, unspecified for [continu
ant], on the assumption that a universal marking convention auto
matically supplies the (unmarked) specification [-continuant] in
these cases. Consequences of this assumption are explored in Harris
(to appear).
11. Many readers will immediately recognize (27) as the "16th
century sibilant devoicing" to which so many pages of diachronic
studies have been devoted. Perhaps the fascination this change has
held for language historians is due in large part to the fact that
merger of the high functional-load contrasts s/z, tsdz / of
medieval Spanish created homophones on a wholesale scale.
12. The change of [b] to precisely [v] by (23) in (28) assumes
the operation of some presumably universal principle which guaran
tees that the output in this case is not the more highly marked
segment [].
13. A special case arises in examples like (10e), where []
itself links feature specifications:

Unfortunately, this case does not allow us to test further the pre-



dictions of Convention (8) since [d] is specified [-continuant] by

rule (15), independently of Continuancy Assimilation (23).

Chomsky, Noam and Morris Halle. 1968. The Sound Pattern of English.
New York: Harper & Row.
Guerssel, Mohamed. 1978. "A Condition on Assimilation Rules". Linguis
tic Analysis 4.225-54.
Guitart, Jorge M. 1976. Markedness and a Cuban Dialect of Spanish.
Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.
1978. "Aspectos del consonantismo habanero: reexamen
descriptivo". Boletn de la academia puertorriquea de la lengua
espaola 6.95-114.
Halle, Morris and Jean-Roger Vergnaud. 1982. Metrical Structures in
Phonology. Unpublished manuscript.
Harris, James W. 1983a. "Theories of Phonological Representation and
Nasal Consonants in Spanish". Papers from the 12th Linguistic
Symposium on Romance Languages, ed. by Philip Baldi. Amsterdam:
John Benjamins.
. 1983b. Syllable Structure and Stress in Spanish: A nonlin
ear analysis. Cambridge, Mass.: The M.I.T. Press.
. To appear. "La espirantizacin en castellano y la repre
sentacin fonolgica autosegmental". Serie Lingstica, Universi
tat Autnoma de Barcelona.
Kiparksy, Paul. 1982. "Lexical Morphology and Phonology". Linguistics
in the Morning Calm, ed. by I.S. Yange. Seoul, Korea.
Mascar, Joan. 1982. "Continuant Spreading in Basque, Catalan, and
Spanish". Unpublished manuscript.
Mohanan, Karuvannut Pathanveettil. Lexical Phonology. Unpublished
M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Sarabasa, Amalia. 1981. An Experiment on the Assimilation of Havana
Cuban /r/ and /l/. Unpublished manuscript. University of Pennsyl
Steriade, Donca. 1982. Greek Prosodies and the Nature of Syllabifica
tion. Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Zamora Munn, Juan and Jorge M. Guitart. 1982. Dialectologa hispano
americana: teora, descripcin, historia. Salamanca: Ediciones







When a process takes place hidden from scrutiny

that is, when we see the ingredients that go in and the
results that come out, but not the individual steps in
the transformationthen we may say that the change seems
to take place in a black box.1
The two Spanish historical sound changes alluded to
in the title have been treated by the standard manuals
(Bourciez, 1946; Menndez Pidal, 1968; Meyer-Lbke, 1923)
as if they took place inside such a black box.
ng before a front vowel goes ultimately to the palatal
nasal, []; thus the form of the rule and examples shown
in (1).

ng > /

cingere > ceir

jungere > uir
quingentos > (OSp.) quientos
*ringere > reir (but *ringella > rencilla,
vs. OSp. reilla)




tangere > taer

tingere > teir
Counterexamples: gingva > enca,
*singellu > sencillo
And the Latin secondary cluster ng' 1 also gives [], as
shown in (2).
(2) ng'l >
cingulu > ceo
rivi angulu > Riao (top.)
singulariu > seero
singuls > (OSp.) seos
ungula > ua
The mystery, in the case of cingere, seems to be
the loss of g in the environment following a nasal, a
position that is normally protected against lenition.
And in the case of ung'la, we are faced not only with
what appears to be the abrupt reduction of a three-seg
ment cluster to one, but also with a palatalization whose
source is not immediately clear.
In reference to other words with g'1 or c'1 (as
rgula or oculu), it is traditionally held that palatal
ization begins with the vocalization of the velar to yod
(Bourciez, 1946:178; Menndez Pidal, 1968:159), as in
(3) Velar Vocalization:

il (> A > z > s > x) / V

oculu > ojo

speculu > espejo
regula > reja
tegulu > tejo
This vocalization may be seen as an assimilation to the
adjacent preceding vowel. But in /ungla/ there is no
adjacent vowel, and velar vocalization would give the

LATIN -nge- AND -ng'l-


unpronounceable result of a glide between consonants.

Otero (1971:85) points out this difficulty from a differ
ent viewpoint, referring to Corominas's (1961) treatment
of seero: "Derivar seero del latn tardo singularium
... supone vocalizar la [g] tras consonante para que
palatalice la [1], palatalizar luego la [n] regresiva
mente, y por fin asimilar la [1] progresivamente, tres
hiptesis igualmente implausibles."
Just as synchronic generative phonology has reaped
the benefit of simpler formulations from the use of
binary distinctive features, similarly the use of the
binary feature framework in historical phonology can
simplify the writing of sound-change rule systems. In
particular, both of the Spanish historical processes
under discussion can be further analyzed as results of
simpler rules that are already in the history for other
In reference to the cluster ng before a front vowel
(actually phonetically [ ] , with g having gone regularly
to the palatal affricate, and the nasal regularly homorganic), I will suggest that there is progressive assimi
lation to geminated [], and that this assimilation may
be part of a larger process that I will call Polyorganic
Progressive Cluster Nasalization (PPCN).
This process
is traditionally recognized in Castilian only in its la
bial aspect, as shown in (4) (Menndez Pidal, 1968:137).
(4) Progressive Cluster NasalizationLabial:
mb > mm > m
ambs > (OSp.) amos
*cambire > (OSp.) camiar
lambre > lamer

palumba > paloma

plumbu > plomo
Saramba > Jarama

15 2



lumbu > lomo

mod. tambin ~
dial. tamin
In using the term "polyorganic", I suggest that the
same rule also affects palatals, giving the second change
of the series shown in (5), and thus accounting for the
examples in (1).
(5) Progressive Cluster NasalizationPalatal:
The rule of PPCN is formalized in (6).






As for the cluster /ngl/ of ung' la, in looking for

the source of palatality in the resulting //, I will
claim that it is the clustered lateral /l/ that first
turns palatal, affected by a more general version of the
same rule that palatalizes other clustered laterals as
shown in (7).
(7) Clustered-Lateral Palatalization (CLP)


clamre > [kXamar] > llamar (11 = [])
clave > llave
flamma > llama
planu > llano
plnu > lleno
amplu > [ampo] > ancho
implre > enchir
*mancula > mancha
masculu > macho

LATIN -nge- AND -ng'lc.


With Voiced Obstruents:

singulariu > (OPort.) senlheiro
*subgluttire > sollozar
ungula > [unga] > ua
By a "more general" version I mean a rule that works not
only after voiceless obstruents (as in Menndez Pidal,
1968:126; Otero, 1971:309; Hartman, 1974:160), but also
after voiced ones. Such a general rule is evident in
Italian, with both planu > piano and /blanku/ > bianco;
but the absence of palatality in Sp. blanco, etc., at
first seems to pose a problem, to which I will return
later on in the article.
I would like to demonstrate these two general pro
posals in greater detail, beginning with ng before a
front vowel. Although progressive nasalization is cited
only for the labial cluster /mb/ in Castilian, the phe
nomenon is considered labial and dental
in Catalan (as
show in (8) below). From the labial-and-dental of Cata
lan, it is a short step to look for the same progressive
nasalization at the palatal and velar points of articu
lation. In the case of the palatal, the search is fruit
ful, yielding examples such as those in (1) above. For
one of the counterexamples, sencillo 'simple', MeyerLu'bke (1923:I,448) suggests a cross with the semantically
related Lat. sincru. Data from Catalan show labial,
dental, and also palatal clusters affected, as in (8).
(8) PPCN in Catalan
*camba > cama
columba > coloma
lumbu > llom
plumbu > plom



ambitre > (andar) > anar
mandre > manar
mundu > mon
quand > quan
rotunda > rodona
*undta > onada

cingere > cenyir
gingva > geniva
jungere > junyir
*ringere > renyir
tingere > tenyir
To my knowledge, no dialect shows signs of progres
sive nasalization of the velar cluster ng. To the west
of Castile, neither Leonese nor Portuguese shows evidence
of this progressive nasalization at any point of articu
lation and the clusters are preserved as in the examples
of (9).
(9) No PPCN in Portuguese:
palumbu > pombo
plumbu > chumbo
ambitre > andar
mandre > mandar
cingere > cingir
longe > longe
Williams (1962:184) qualifies Port. guinhentos and renhir
as Spanish loanwords.
The table in (10) summarizes, then, the extent of
progressive nasalization in both geography and articulatory anatomy.
(10) PPCN, West to East:

LATIN -nge- AND -ng'l-


Since the assimilation does not affect velar clus

ters, it seems plausible that the velar was avoided be
cause there was no velar nasal phoneme already in any of
the dialects, in contrast to the presence of labial-,
dental-, and palatal-nasal precedents in all of them.
It is more difficult to explain why the Castilian form
of the rule seems to have a dental gap. As the picture
of relative chronology continues to become clearer, the
solution of this gap may prove to be related to the
characteristic Castilian treatment of Lat. nn.
Before leaving the discussion of progressive nasal
ization, I would like to add a suggestion as to what may
be the reason why the palatal wing of the rule has been
overlooked. It may be that the kinship of the palatal
phenomenon with the labial and dental ones failed to
attract attention in part because the syllable-final
nasal in the palatal setting (e.g., [tenjir])unlike
the labial of palumba, etc.has no distinctive ortho
graphic representation. In addition, it seems that the
pioneers in this field were not inclined to view the
affricate as an equal member of the class of stops. The
binary feature [continuant], however, enables us to see
the affricate more clearly as a type of stop. For more
on the diachronic significance of details that are synchronically subphonemic, see Hartman (1980).
Turning now to the cluster /ngl/, I have already
stated why the palatality of the eventual outcome cannot
be attributed to Velar Vocalization, given the problem
of interconsonantal glide.
Elsewhere, the history of
Spanish has a recognized rule of Clustered Lateral Pala
talization, or CLP, as shown in (7), above. Since the
obstruent preceding the lateral in every case is labial
or velar, this palatalization may be seen as a step



toward heightened acoustic contrastlabials and velars

alike being acoustically grave, and palatals eminently
acute. No /dl/ cluster from Proto-Indo-European survives
into Latin, however, to countertest this surmise of
acoustic motivation.
In the aftermath of CLP, the clusters with palatal
lateral following a voiceless obstruent are reduced wordinitially in Castilian by deleting the obstruent (for
llano, llave, etc., as in (7)),6 and elsewhere in Cas
tilianand everywhere in Portugueseby a rule of mer
ger, as shown in (11).

ampo > ancho

clamre > (Port.) chamar

manka > mancha

plnu > (Port.) cheio

maso > macho (?)

It will be noted that the result of this merger is a
hybrid segment, combining feature values of both parent
Among the remaining clusters (that is, those with a
voiced obstruent and after the /ngl/ cluster has been
"bled away" by other changes unique to it), I am obliged
to suggest that the few remaining effects of CLP are
fully undone by a later rule of depalatalization. With
out such a depalatalization, we would find the palatal
lateral still present, for example, in Mod.Sp. hablar,
regla, or blanco.
It is not unheard of for a sound

LATIN -nge- AND -ng'l-


change first to take place, then to be partially or to

tally reversed by a "converse" rule, to use the term
proposed by Walsh (1979:15). Although Walsh (p. 16 ex
plains that "Cases of this sort are rarely found in nistorical linguistics simply because they leave no trace,"
he cites, among the examples, the nasalization of French
vowels before any nasal consonant followed later by the
denasalization of vowels before a nasal consonant. This
change and its converse are detectable only because other
changes are crucially ordered between them: (1) loss of
nasal consonants before another consonant or pause, and
(2) nasal-vowel lowering (femme = [fam]).
An unexpected source of support for the general ver
sion of CLPoriginally broadened specifically in order
to affect /ngl/has emerged in the form of an "accident"
with the computer program that I have been developing to
simulate Spanish historical sound change (Hartman, to
appear). Early experiments with the program had failed
to produce the form maslo, the Old Spanish word that may
or may not be directly on the line of development from
Lat. masculu to Mod.Sp. macho (an alternative would be
lexical replacement, perhaps of a "semilearnd" maslo by
a "popular" macho). Later in my study, when the broad
ened version of CLP was subjected to routine testing
against a list of several hundred words, the program un
expectedly produced /maso/, with a palatal lateral (cf.
documented masllo, which Garca de Diego (1950:122) cites
as "sant[anderino] ant[iguo]'). Although the Merger rule
of (11) above would make it plausible for OSp. maslo to
be a lineal ancestor of Mod.Sp. macho, it would be pre
mature at present to make such a claim without a clearer
picture of the relative chronology of the rules involved.




/ungla/ achieves




the remainder of the derivation from /ngl/ to // is

fairly straightforward. The /g/, as the middle member
of a three-segment cluster, is deleted, regularly (as in
Menndez Pidal, 1968:146, or Otero's "P9", 1971:296Lat.
sanctu > santo). The syllable-final nasal now assimi
lates to the following palatal lateral. And finally, I
will claim in the absence of counterevidence, the palatal
cluster of nasal and lateral is simplified in favor of
the nasal (as also in balneu > baLno > bao, where lat
eral and nasal are in the reverse order). This series
of changes is shown in (12).

From ungula to ua:

ungula > uNgla > uNga > uNa
(cf. Galician unlla) > ua
Given the assumption that CLP acted on the secondary
clusters c'l and g'1, it is tempting to speculate that
this palatalization may have had a causal role in Velar
Vocalization ((3) above). Such speculation must be tem
pered by great caution, however, as shown by the corre
sponding data from French: here, Velar Vocalization is
evident in oculu > oeil, auricula > oreille, apicula >
abeille, etc., but there is no sign of CLP, as (13)
(13) No CLP in French:
clave > cl
amplu > ample
flamma > flambe
masculu > (OFr.) masle > mle
planu > plain
> ongle
In summary, my suggested solutions to the specific
black boxes of the title are those analyses shown as (5)
and (12) above: The sequence ngephonetically [ e ]
undergoes the progressive nasalization of PPCN; the
resulting geminate palatal [] is degeminated. And in
the cluster /ngl/, first the lateral is palatalized by

LATIN -nge- ND -ng'lan expanded

the /g/


(i.e., voiceless and voiced) version of CLP;

is deleted


as the middle member

of a

three-part cluster; the syllable-final nasal now assimi

lates to the palatal

lateral, and the resulting

cluster of nasal and lateral is reduced

in favor

of the


1. I owe thanks to J.C. Anscombre and Thomas T. Field for
assistance with data, and to Margaret W. Epro and Geoffrey Nathan
for helpful comments.
2. In order to do justice to these authors' treatment of the
phenomena, it is necessary to quote at some length from them. On
the sequence nge, Menndez Pidal (1968:138) says "NG da nz, . . .
gingiva enzia, *singellu senzillo.
En el caso de NG cabe otra
evolucin, cual es la palatalizacin de la n y as tenemos que
jungere da uncir, junto a unir, y la conjugacin -ng- resultaba de
este modo con tres variedades de tema: frango frango, frangis fraes
o franzes, frangimus fraemos o franzemos, pero las formas con nz
se hicieron raras, y pronto el infinitivo franzer fu olvidado por
fraer, subsistiendo generalmente en la Edad Media solo dos formas:
tango taes, cingo cies, y modernamente solo las formas con ; de
igual modo ringere (clsico ringi) dio reir, mientras el sustan
tivo *ringella dio renzilla, mod. rencilla junto al anticuado
reilla. Todava cabe una tercera evolucin, en que se pierde la g,
como intervoclica, segn se ve en quingenti quinientos, pungente
barba puniente, mod. barbiponiente, y en el anticuado arienzo
In reference to Menndez Pidal's "third evolution", it
seems that the examples quinientos 'five-hundred' and barba puniente
'sprouting a beard' can be accounted for by paradigmatic influences
(the latter's association with poner 'to put' being made explicit
in the modern form with o), while argenteu, of course, is not a case
of nge.
Elsewhere, Menndez Pidal (1972:273-274) treats nge in
greater detail.
Otero (1971:197 n.16) takes the following view of the nge se
quence: "Cabe conjeturar que se trata de una progresiva depalatalizacin de y [i.e., vocalization of the affricate to a glide (?)] en
el entorno / R
(donde R - {r, n } ) y subsiguiente re-silabificacion, lo cual explica al propio tiempo las formas quinientos,
puniente, etc., estadio previo a quientos, puente, y fraer, uir
(junto a franzer, unzir), etc."
Meyer-Lbke (1923:I,446-447) discusses the nge sequence in the
same paragraph with mb, but he places them in separate classes, as
follows: "Les phnomnes dcisifs peuvent se diviser en quatre



classes. Ou bien il y a assimilation complete: nd passe nn; mb

mm; . Ou bien l'assimilation ne se produit que partiellement,
en ce sens . . qu'une sonore devient une continue: . lb et rb
lv et rv; n ny, [ = // ] . "
Meanwhile, apropos of the -ng'l- cluster, Bourciez (1946:175)
states "En Ibrie scl est palatalis (esp. ptg. macho = masc'lum)
.; de mme ngl, qui aboutit (esp. ua, ptg. unha = ung'la)".
Here, the term palatalise apparently means 'reduced to a single pal
atal segment'.
On the same -ng'l- cluster, Menndez Pidal (1968:164) says
"[The cluster of consonant-plus-]GL da un fonema sonoro: subgluttiare . . . sollozar; cuando la primera consonante es n, se produce
: ungula ua; singulos, ant. seos (mod. sendos); rivi angulu
Riao; cingulu ceo." See also Menndez Pidal, 1972:316.
3. Data from the Gascon dialects of southwestern France also
show PPCN affecting clusters at three points of articulation, as in
the following examples (from Palay, 1961; gn = / / ) :
*camba > cama, came
lumbu > loum
palumba > paloume

ambitre > an
mandre >

cingere > cgne

tangere > tgne
tingere > tgne
ungere > gne
4. The boldest claim for PPCN would be that it is a general
rule applying to labial, dental, palatal, and velar clusters alike.
In this case, one would claim also that the sequences of geminated
velar nasals produced by this rule would never have been permitted
to "reach the surface," being restored by some velar dissimilation
rule. A less preferable alternative, it seems, would be to attri
bute to PPCN a quasiteleological avoidance of the creation of a new
velar-nasal phoneme.
5. The geographical distribution of Progressive Cluster Nasali
zation is somewhat complex.
While Meyer-Lbke (1923:I,447) and
Menndez Pidal (1972:286-296, including a map on p. 294) disagree
on some details, their consensus is that the labial and dental
assimilations are found in largely overlapping, but by no means
coinciding, areas in (1) north-central and northeastern Spain and
southwestern France, (2) southern Italy and Sicily, and (3) small
regions of eastern France. Both these scholars find the labial
phenomenon more widespread than the dental. Neither discusses the
palatal cluster in this context.
In my limited knowledge, the
palatal assimilation of Castilian, Catalan, and Gascon is not
matched in southern Italy. I have no data on the palatal cluster
from eastern France.
Meanwhile, the Riojano
geographically between Castilian and Catalanseems to have the
palatal assimilation only, as shown by forms such as cinnose (cin
gere) , luenne, rennir, etc. (nn = / / ) , in contrast to the preserved
dental and labial clusters of andar, mandar, and palomba, palombar,
palombiella in the 13th-century vocabulary of Gonzalo de Berceo
(Lanchetas, 1900).
6. Also deleted word-initially before a lateral is /g/but not

LATIN - n g e - AND - n g ' l -


/ b / a s in the following examples (from Menndez Pidal, 1968:127):

glandula > landre
*glirne > lirn
glattre > latir
globellu > (el) *lovillo > el ovillo
7. See Otero (to appear) on the feature value [+delayed re
lease] for laterals. Although it may seem counterintuitive to sug
gest a natural class ([-continuant, +delayed release]) that groups
laterals with affricates, their affinity is suggested by some forms
in Asturian/Leonese. In the following examples from two regionsas
cited by Menndez Pidal, (1962:72 and 127)the gloss in Castilian
shows the lateral:
gau 'gallo'
chuna 'luna'
chugar 'lugar
cochichu 'cuchillo1
vache 'valle'
chichi 'leche'
chanu 'llano'

Bourciez, Edouard. 1946. lments de linguistique romane. Paris:
Corominas, Joan. 1961. Breve diccionario etimolgico de la lengua
castellana. Madrid: Gredos.
Garca de Diego, Vicente. 1950. "El castellano como complejo dia
lectal". Revista de filologa espaola 34.107-124.
Hartman, Steven Lee. 1974. "An Outline of Spanish Historical Phonol
ogy". Papers in Linguistics 7.123-191.
. 1980. "La etimologa de dulce: realmente una excep
cin?" Nueva revista de filologa hispnica 29.115-127.
. To appear. "A Computer Model of Spanish Historical Sound
Change". Homenaje a D. Alvaro Galmes de Fuentes. Madrid:
Lanchetas, Rufino. 1900. Gramtica y vocabulario de las obras de
Gonzalo de Berceo. Madrid: Sucesores de Rivadeneyra.
Menndez Pidal, Ramon. 1962. El dialecto leons. Oviedo: Instituto
de Estudios Asturianos.
. 1968. Manual de gramtica histrica espaola. 13th ed.
Madrid: Espasa-Calpe.
. 1972. Orgenes del espaol: estado lingstico de la
pennsula ibrica hasta el siglo XI. 7th ed. Madrid: EspasaCalpe.
Meyer-Lbke, Wilhelm. 1923. Grammaire des langues romanes. New York:



Otero, Carlos-Peregrin. 1971. Evolucin y revolucin en romance.

Barcelona: Seix Barrai.
. To appear. "Sobre la pronunciacin del romance hispano
medieval". Homenaje a D. Alvaro Galms de Fuentes. Madrid:
Palay, Simin. 1961. Dictionnaire du barnais et du gascon modernes.
Paris: Editions du Centre National
de la Recherche Scien
Walsh, Thomas J. 1979. "On the Characterization of Certain Sound
Changes in Romance". Bloomington: Indiana University Linguis
tics Club.
Williams, Edwin B. 1962. Prom Latin to Portuguese. Philadelphia:
University of Pennsylvania Press.




of North Carolina,


Two Generalizations About the Distribution of En

En is a clitic in French that corresponds either to

a postverbal quantified phrase, an indefinite plural
phrase, a partitive phrase, or a genitive phrase. The
examples in (l)-(4) illustrate en as it cliticizes from
each of these positions. In addition, the structures of
each of these types of phrases are exemplified in (1)(4).
(1) Quantified Phrase: [NP QP N 1 ]
a. Pierre a vu beaucoup de mauvais films.
'Pierre saw many of bad films'
b. Pierre en a vu beaucoup.
'Pierre of-them saw many'
(2) Indefinite Plural Phrases: [NP des N 1 ]
a. Marie a rencontr des gens intressants.
'Marie met interesting people'
b. Marie en a rencontr.
'Marie of-them met'
(3) Partitive phrases: [NP QP NP]
a. Jean a lu beaucoup de tes livres.
'Jean read many of your books'



Jean en a lu beaucoup.
'Jean of-them read many'
(4) Genitive Phrases: [NP Det [ N 1 N de NP]]
a. Marie connat l'auteur de ce roman.
'Marie knows the author of this book'
b. Marie en connat l'auteur.
'Marie of-it knows the author'
This paradigm is adapted from Haik (1982) which, in turn,
builds on the analyses of en found in the important work
of Kayne (1975) and Milner (1978).1
Although quanti
fied phrases bear a close resemblance to partitive
phrases (compare [lb] and [3b]), they are distinct: the
noun phrase in the partitive has an independent deter
miner, is an NP rather than N', and functions as a com
plement rather than as a head of phrase as in the quan
tified phrases. See Milner (1978) for extended arguments
supporting this distinction.
The distribution of en exhibits two fundamental
generalizations for which I will provide a unified ex
planation in this essay. First, when en does not origi
nate as a direct object, it may correspond to the subject
of only a small class of verbs including sembler and
tre. However, when en does correspond to a subject, it
only does so as a genitive phrase and, marginally, as a
partitive phrase. It does not correspond to either a
quantified phrase or an indefinite plural phrase. The
examples in (5)-(6) are designed to show that the set of
verbs which allows en to cliticize from subject position
is limited, while the examples in (7)-(ll) demonstrate
that en cliticizes from subject position only when it is
a partitive or genitive phrase.


La chemine de l'usine est penche.

'The chimney of the factory is leaning'




La chemine en est penche.

'The chimney of-it is leaning'
(6) a. La chemine de l'usine fume.
'The chimney of the factory is smoking'
b. *La chemine en fume.
'The chimney of-it is smoking'
(7) a. Beaucoup de pommes sont gtes.
'Many of apples are rotten'
b. *Beaucoup en sont gtes.
'Many of-them are rotten'
(8) a. Des livres semblent intressants.
'Books seem interesting'
b. *Des livres, en semblent intressants.
'Books, of-them seem interesting'
(9) a. Beaucoup de ces pommes sont gtes.
'Many of these apples are rotten'
b. Beaucoup en sont gtes.
'Many of-them are rotten'
(10) a. Le resum de ce roman semble intressant.
'The summary of this novel seems
b. Le resum en semble intressant.
'The summary of-it seems interesting'
(7) presents an example of a quantified phrase, and (8)
one of a plural indefinite phrase. The sentences in (9)
involve partitive phrases because pommes has its own
determiner, ces, and (10) is a straightforward example
of a genitive phrase.
The second major generalization about the distribu
tion of en that I am concerned with involves the inter
action of the rule that cliticizes en (En Placement) with
the rule of Raising to Subject. If en corresponds to a
subject that has undergone Raising to Subject, it must



appear cliticized to the infinitive of the clause in

which the subject originated at deep structure. This
aspect of the distribution of en, first observed in Ruwet
(1972), is represented in the sentences of (11) and
(12). 2
(11) a. La porte de la cathdrale semble tre
b. la porte semble [ en tre ferme]
c. *la porte en semble [ tre ferme]
(12) a. Les conditions du trait semblent
commencer tre susceptibles d'tre
b. les conditions semblent [k commencer
a [j tre susceptibles [i d'en
tre adoucies]]]
c. *les conditions semblent [k en
commencer [j tre susceptibles
[i d'tre adoucies]]]
d. *les conditions en semblent
[k commencer [j tre
susceptibles [i d'tre adoucies]]]
In (11) la porte originates in and consequently en must
appear cliticized to the infinitive in . Similarly, in
(12), les conditions originates as a subject in a. and
the en that modifies it must appear cliticized in a..
This essay develops a unified explanation for the two
generalizations outlined above in terms of the Government
Binding theory (GB theory) outlined in Chomsky (1981) and
related work. The success of GB theory in providing such
a unified explanation suggests strongly that its funda
mental theoretical orientation is on the right track.
The discussion that follows is organized in the follow
ing way. In Section 2, I argue that the interaction of



En Placement and Subject Raising apparent in (11)-(12)

is a consequence of the Empty Category Principle (ECP).
Then in Section 3, I show that the asymmetry with respect
to En Placement between quantified, indefinite, parti
tive, and genitive phrases when in subject position also
follows from the ECP. No previous analysis is able to
provide a unified explanation for these two phenomena, a
fact that makes the explanation in terms of the ECP high
ly attractive. Earlier analyses of the distribution of
en by Hendrick (1981) and Haik (1982) fail to capture im
portant generalizations concerning this interaction and
are unable to give a unified explanation for the distri
bution of en.

The Interaction of En Placement and Subject Raising

2.1 Couquaux (to appear), as reported by Haik (1982),

proposes to explain the restricted class of verbs that
allow en to correspond to their subjects by positing that
En Placement is uniformly a leftward movement from a post
verbal position and that the superficial violations of
this generalization in fact involve a raising operation
subsequent to En Placement. In this way (13a) has the
d-structure of (13b) in which a is a 'small clause' in
the sense of Chomsky (1981).
(13) a. La prface en est trop flatteuse.
b. [e] est [ [NP la prface en] trop

la prefacei en j est [ [NPe]i

[e]j] trop flatteuse]
While a small clause is not a barrier to government or
case assignment, raising predicates in general and tre
in (13) are not case assigners.
As a consequence,



the subject of must be raised to the subject of tre

in order to receive Case and avoid violating the No Case
Filter. The en in (13b) may also move leftward by En
Placement to produce (13c). The unacceptability of (14a)
is a consequence of the fact that fumer is not a raising
verb. As such, (14a) must have the d-structure of (14b).
(14c) is a violation of the generalization that en cliti4
cizes only to the left.
(14) a. ?La chemine en fume.
b. [NP la chemine [en] [VP fume]
c. [la chemine [e]i] [VP eni fume]
Couquaux's hypothesis provides a neat way of ex
plaining why only some verbs allow en to cliticize from
their subjects. Yet his analysis raises an interesting
question. The sentences in (15a) are parallel to those
in (13a) in Couquaux's analysis since both (13) and (15)
involve Raising to Subject. All other things being equal
this parallel would suggest that (13) and (15) should
exhibit the same syntactic behavior. This is not the
state of affairs though. In (13) en cliticizes to the
predicate that la chemine becomes the surface subject
of, while sentences like (15) show that en cannot appear
on the predicate that la porte is the surface subject
of. On the contrary, in (15), en must cliticize to the
verb of the clause that la porte appears in at d-struc

a. la porte semble [ en tre ferme]

b. *la porte en semble [ tre ferme]
Evidently En Placement can operate in (13) and in the
derivation of (16). However, something blocks the deri
vation in (17) where En Placement is performed from the
subject position of tre.
(16) a. [e] semble [S [NP e] tre ferme
[NP la porte en]]




[e] semble [S [NP la porte]i enj

tre ferme [NP [e] i [e]j]]
c. [la porte] i semble [S [NP la
porte] i erij tre ferme [NP [NP
[e] i [e]j]]
(17) a. [e] semble [S [e] tre ferme
[NP la porte en]]
b. [e] semble [S [NP la porte en]i tre
ferme [e]i]
c. *[la porte] i enj semble [S [NP
[e]i [e]j tre ferme [e]i
To explain this contrast I will appeal to two lead
ing ideas from the work of Chomsky (1981) and Kayne
(1981): the notion of exceptional government and the ECP.
The infinitival clauses in (18) fail to exhibit lexical
subjects unless they co-occur with a complementizer like
In GB theory this pattern is attributed to the
claim of Case theory that all lexical NP's must have
Sentence (18b) is ungrammatical because Jane
is ungoverned and therefore lacks Case.


for [ Jane to leave New York] would

be a mistake
b. *[ Jane to leave New York] would be
a mistake
c. *for [ PRO to leave New York] would
be a mistake
d. [ PRO to leave New York] would be
a mistake
PRO, the phonologically unexpressed pronoun, is in com
plementary distribution with lexical NP's like Jane in
this respect because, by binding theory, PRO may not be
governed at all.
The examples in (18) are straightforward and the



explanation relatively elegant.

However, English ob
scures the complementary distribution of PRO and lexical
NPfs when the infinitival clause is within the VP. For
example, we find sentences like those in (19).
(19) a. she asked/wants [ John to leave]
b. she asked/wants [ PRO to leave]
In (19) and similar constructions the lexical subject of
an infinitive appears despite the absence of the comple
mentizer for. This is accounted for in Chomsky (1981) by
claiming that S', NP, and maximal projections in general
are barriers to government (and case assignment) but that
some verbs have the ability to optionally suppress an S',
thereby governing and Case marking the subject of the
infinitives that they c-command.
Using this idea of exceptional government and Case
assignment, Kayne (1981) develops an interesting expla
nation for several otherwise obscure differences between
French and English. Kayne is able to attribute the dif
ferences in French and English summarized in (20) to the
claim (i) that prepositions are governors in English but
not French, and (ii) that at most one barrier to govern
ment can be suppressed by an element.
(20) a. English exhibits preposition stranding
but French does not.
(i) Which candidate have you voted for?
(ii) *Quel candidat as-tu vot pour?
b. English allows verbs to be followed
by infinitives with lexical subjects,
unlike French.
(i) John believes [ Bill to have lied]
(ii) *Jean croit [ Bill avoir mentir]
c. French allows lexical subjects of
infinitives if displaced by WH-movement.





Quel garon crois-tu tre le

plus intelligent de tous?
French but not English allows comple
mentizers adjacent to PRO.

(i) *Mary is easy for [ PRO to please]

(ii) Marie est facile [ PRO contenter]
The appeal of Kayne's analysis is that it is able to re
duce the apparent differences between French and English.
His claim that only one barrier to government can be
suppressed by an element has the further advantage of
explaining the asymmetry in (13) and (15).
The second leading idea central to my explanation
of the distribution of en is the ECP, reproduced as (21).
This principle of Universal Grammar requires that traces
be governed either by their antecedent or by a lexical
(21) Empty Category Principle
An empty category [ e] must be 'properly
governed,' where properly governs and:
a. = [+N,+V], or
b. is coindexed with .
TENSE is not a lexical category and, as a result, is not
a proper governor. Movement from subject position will
leave a trace that is not properly governed and therefore
the ECP will prevent such movements. Movement from a
direct object position is not similarly restricted since
the verb, as a lexical category, will properly govern
the trace. In short, the ECP has as its empirical conse
quence a fundamental subject/object asymmetry. For exam
ple, the subject/object asymmetry apparent in (22), pre
viously accounted for by the that-trace filter of Chomsky
and Lasnik (1977), follows as a natural consequence of
the ECP.



a. *the boy whoi she believes that

[e] i took the book....
b. the boy whoi she believes that
we saw [e]i....
In (22a) the trace in subject position has no proper
governor since it is only governed by TENSE. In (22b)
however the trace is properly governed by the verb, a
lexical category.
The difference between the sentences in (13) and
(15) follows from the ECP coupled with Kayne's restric
tion against suppressing two barriers to government. The
acceptable (13) and (15a) both involve En Placement from
an NP in a governed position. This can be observed in
the structures (16a) and (13b). The ungrammaticality of
(15b) correlates with the fact that En Placement operates
out of an NP position that is only exceptionally
erned across an S', as can be seen in (17b). Chomsky
(1981) argues on independent grounds that traces do not
count as proper governors for the ECP. The results of
Chomsky's and Torrego's work would entail that the trace
of en in (13) and (15) must be governed for the purposes
of the ECP exceptionally since barriers to government
separate the trace of en from its nearest proper gover
Let us assume that an NP can be suppressed as a
barrier to government, enabling the trace of en to be
governed for the purposes of the ECP. The suppression
of NP that licenses the trace of en will be possible only
in (13c) and (16c) but will not be possible in (17c).
The NP barrier cannot be suppressed in (17c) thereby
licensing the trace of en because in that structure two
barriers S' and NP would need to be suppressed, in viola
tion of Kayne's restriction. It thus turns out that the
ECP in conjunction with Kayne's proposal gives an elegant



explanation for the contrast between (16c) and (17c).7

The fact that Kayne's proposal allows an elegant
account of the contrast between (13c) and (16c) on the
one hand and (17c) on the other constitutes significant
evidence in its favor. By the same token it increases
the empirical domain of the ECP, also giving it further
2.2 The Execution of Government into an NP. The analy
sis outlined in Section 2.1 crucially relies on 'excep
tional government across an NP barrier.' This idea has
been given previous consideration in the literature.
Belletti and Rizzi (1982), in a discussion of the sub
ject/object asymmetry exhibited by the Italian examples
in (23)-(24), also appeal to the notion of exceptional
government into an NP.
(23) a. Tre settimane passano rapidamente.
'three weeks pass rapidly'
b. Tre passano rapidamente.
'three pass rapidly'
c. *Tre ne passano rapidamente.
'three of them pass rapidly'
(24) a. Gianni trascorrera tre settimane a Milano.
'G. will-spend three weeks in Milano'
b. *Gianni trascorrera tre a Milano.
'G. will-spend three in Milano'
c. Gianni ne trascorrera tre a Milano.
'G. of-them will-spend three in Milano'
Belletti and Rizzi argue that (23b,c) and (24b,c) have
the structures in (25) and (26) respectively.
(25) a. [NP tre PRO] passano rapidamente
b. *[NP tre [e]i [VP eni passano



a. *Gianni trascorrera [NP tre PRO] a Milano

b. *Gianni nei trascorrera [NP tre [e]i]
a Milano
(25b) is ungrammatical by binding theory: ne is unable
to c-command its trace, although no similar problem
arises in (26b). The contrast between (25a) and (26a)
is more relevant to our present concerns. Belletti and
Rizzi argue that the direct object position is a governed
position whereas the subject position is not. Coupled
with the claim that government can reach 'into' the NP
in (26a), Belletti and Rizzi have an explanation for the
asymmetry between (25a) and (26a). (26a) is ungrammati
cal because PRO is governed, in violation of binding
theory, while (25a) is grammatical because in that struc
ture PRO remains ungoverned.
The principle adopted by Belletti and Rizzi to per
mit government into an NP is (27). This mechanism allows
certain maximal projections to be 'looked over'. In that
sense it is somewhat different from the discussion in
Section 2.1 where I spoke of barriers to government being
'suppressed1 as though they were in fact deleted.
(27) In a configuration like:
governs in if c-commands , and there
is no , a maximal projection such that
properly contains and is not the maximal
projection of .
The effect of (27) is to allow the head of a phrase to
be governed by some outside the maximal projection of
, but it prevents from governing any of the complement
or specifier positions within the maximal projection of
. Informally, we might state (28). Thus for (29), (27)
will allow V to govern book, but not John's or on biol-




The head of a maximal projection is

accessible to an external governor but
peripheral positions are not.

The definition in (27) gives the correct results in (26a)

since PRO, as the head of the direct object NP, will be
One reason for preventing 'peripheral positions,'
i.e., non-head positions, from being exceptionally gov
erned can be seen by an examination of (30).
(30) a. Jane saw [NP the destruction [NP the city]]
b. Jane saw [NP the destruction of [NP the
(30a) is not a well formed surface structure, a fact
accounted for in Government Binding theory by claiming
that the city lacks Case in violation of Case Theory.
The preposition of is inserted in order to provide Case
to the object of destruction.8 If it were possible to
govern peripheral positions across an NP boundary, there
would be no good reason for the ungrammaticality of (30a)
since the city could be governed and receive Case from
the verb see. The explanation for the insertion of the
preposition can only be sustained if the city is ungoverned in (30a).
The explanation that we developed for the raising



structures in (16) and (17) however is inconsistent with

(27). The examples in (16c) are examples in which en
originates in a peripheral, or non-head, position and yet
the explanation for those structures seemed to crucially
involve whether the trace of en could be exceptionally
governed for the purposes of the ECP. Under the assump
tion that the analysis of (16)-(17) is appealing and
basically on the right track, the formulation in (27) is
incorrect. Instead, we require a definition that permits
the exceptional government of the trace of en in (16c)
and the PRO in (26a) but not the peripheral position in
(30a). The relevant distinction appears to be that ex
ceptional government of peripheral positions is possible
into an NP only if the head is an empty category. The
intuition underlying this distinction is straightforward:
each element has a unique governor and exceptional gov
ernment is permitted only into structural configurations
that have no governor. Such a distinction will permit
exceptional government of the trace of en in (16c), but
will block the government of the city in (30a). This
suggests that (28) should be modified slightly to (31).

The head of a maximal projection is

accessible to an external governor.
Peripheral positions of that head are
accessible if and only if the head is
an empty category.

Formally (31) can be represented as (32).

(32) In a configuration like
governs if and only if c-commands and
there is no maximal projection that properly
contains and , a governor of , where e.




En Placement and the Subject/Object Asymmetry

In this section I show that the ECP also explains

why en in subject position corresponds only to partitive
and genitive phrases in subject position and not quanti
fied or indefinite phrases. This argument, coupled with
the results of Section 2, suggest strongly that the asym
metries in the distribution of en reflect a single under
lying generalization that follows from the ECP and UG.
In object position en corresponds to a quantified,
indefinite, partitive, or genitive phrase. However in
subject position en corresponds only to a partitive or
genitive phrase. This asymmetry is briefly summarized
in (33)-(34).
(33) En from object position
a. Pierre en a vu beaucoup.
b. Marie en a rencontr.
c. Jean en a vu beaucoup.
d. Marie en connat l'auteur.
(34) En from subject position
a. *Beaucoup en sont gtes, de pommes.
b. *En semblent intressants.
c. Beaucoup en sont gtes, de ces pommes.
d. Le resum en est intressant.
As noted in Section 2, the ECP has as its empirical con
sequence various subject/object asymmetries and the con
trast in (33)-(34) gives rise to the suspicion that the
ECP underlies this phenomenon as well. The actual way
that the ECP determines the distribution of en in (33)(34) can be seen if we look more closely at the struc
tures of quantified, indefinite, partitive, and genitive
Haik (1982) observes that quantified and indefinite



phrases have their heads of phrases moved by En Placement

while en in partitive and genitive phrases leaves the
head behind cliticizing a non-head or peripheral consti
tuent. This fact can be observed in (35), adapted from
Haik (1982).
(35) a. quantified NP



indefinite plural NP
des N


partitive phrase
head noun



genitive phrase
le dbut
head noun


The recognition that cliticizing quantified and indefi

nite phrases involves the movement of a head of phrase
points to a generalization underlying the data of (33)(34). Evidently, a head of phrase can only be cliticized
from object and not from subject position. Clearly the
ECP provides the reason a head of phrase may not be
cliticized from subject position: there will be no proper
governor for a trace in subject position. To see this



conclusion, consider (36b) which Haik provides as the

structure of (36a). (36a) is parallel to (34a) above.
(36) a. *Beaucoup en semblent intressants,
de livres,
b. [NP beaucoup [e]j ]i enj
sembler [NP e]i. intressants
(36a) is ungrammatical because [e]j violates the ECP.
When en cliticizes to sembler it is unable to c-command
Thus, [e]j is not properly governed by its
antecedent. By the same token there is no lexical cate
gory capable of properly governing [e] j . Consequently,
the ECP will label (36a) as ill formed. In this respect
(36) can be contrasted to (37).
(37) a. Le rsum en semble intressant.
b. [NP le rsum [e] j ]i enj
semble [ [NP e]i. intressant]
(37) is grammatical because the trace of en is governed
by a [+N] element, rsum. The same is true in partitive
constructions where, as Haik (1982) argues, the quanti
fier bears the feature [+N] and would constitute a proper
governor too. Of course the counterpart of (36) invol
ving an object NP rather than a subject is grammatical,
as (38) illustrates.

a. Pierre en a vu beaucoup.
b. Pierre eni a vu [NP beaucoup [e]i]
In (38b) [e]i which is the head of the NP is properly
governed by the verb, vu. The structure in (38) is thus
consistent with the ECP.
I conclude from the foregoing discussion that the
ECP is capable of providing a principled account of the
asymmetry apparent in (33)-(34).
The results of this
section in conjunction with those of Section 2 strongly
suggest that the ECP provides a unified explanation for



the major generalizations concerning the distribution of

en outlined in Section 1.
The analysis just outlined is a significant advance
over previous accounts of the distribution of en since
those earlier studies are unable to provide a unified
account for the two major generalizations that we have
focused on in this essay. The previous work of Ruwet
(1973) and Kayne (1975) that predate the emphasis char
acteristic of GB theory on systems of principles in Uni
versal Grammar would encode these asymmetries into a rule
specific to French and distinct from other processes in
the grammar of French, Ruwet, for example, isolates a
special rule, En Avant, distinct from En Placement, to
account for the cliticization of en from subject posi
tion. Similarly, Kayne suggests that a distinct extra
position rule postposes en from a subject into the VP
where it is subsequently cliticized by En Placement.
Neither of these approaches connects the behavior of en
to larger generalizations about subject/object asymme
tries in French and other languages as the ECP analysis
defended here does. Similarly, the two previous studies
within a Government Binding framework, Hendrick (1981)
and Haik (1982), are each consistent with one generali
zation but neither is able to account for both generali
Hendrick (1981) is designed to explain the
interaction of Raising to Subject and En Placement exem
plified in (11)-(12) and discussed at length in Section
2. The proposed explanation was that a co-indexed cate
gory was an island for further movement. In other words,
if some constituent, a , had been moved, it would be coindexed to a trace. No further extraction from a would
be possible. This is represented in (39).
(39) [ *i j, k ] n



While this proposal may give a simple account for the

interaction of Raising and En Placement, it will not
generalize to the facts in (7)-(10), or (l)-(2). The
reason that quantified and indefinite plural phrases do
not allow En Placement when they are in subject position
whereas genitive and partitive phrases do, is unexplainable in the analysis of Hendrick (1981). To illustrate
why this is so, compare (40) and (41), involving a quan
tified and genitive phrase respectively.
(40) a. [e] sont [ [beaucoup en] intressants]
b. [e] eni sont [ [beaucoup e i ]
c. [beaucoup [e] i ]j. en i sont
[ [e]j intressants]
(41) a. [e] est [ [le rsum en] intressant]

[e] eni est [ [le rsum [e]i

c. [le rsum]j eni est [ [e]j
(40) and (41) do not violate the restriction proposed in
Hendrick (1981) since at the point that en cliticizes it
is not within a co-indexed constituent.
(40)-(41) are completely indistinguishable in terms of
the analysis of Hendrick (1981). As such they should
show the same behavior; their asymmetry remains complete
ly mysterious within that earlier analysis. Its inabil
ity to explain this asymmetry leads us to regard the
analysis of Hendrick (1981) as inferior to the one based
on the ECP advocated in this essay.
An examination of the proposals in Haik (1982)
reaches similar conclusions. That analysis too is not
as general and explanatory as the present one based on
the ECP. Haik's analysis is designed to explain the con-



trast between (33)-(34) but it fails to generalize and

provide an explanation for the interaction of Raising to
Subject and En Placement exemplified in (11)-(12). In
this respect, Haik's analysis is the inverse of Hendrick
(1981). The paragraphs that follow present the reasons
why I think that Haik's analysis misses crucial generali
Haik provides a theoretically interesting account
for why quantified and indefinite plural phrases allow
En Placement to extract their head of phrase from object
position but not from subject position. Her explanation
is based on two principles: (i) that traces (but not PRO)
must have Case in order to be converted into variables
at Logical Form (LF), and (ii) that traces cannot be
assigned Case directly. These two principles will ac
count for the contrast between (33a,b) and (34a,b) in the
following way.








Marie a recontre des gens intressants.

Marie eni a recontre [ e ]i
Paul a vu beaucoup de mauvais films.
Paul eni a vu [NP beaucoup [ e ]i
[e] semblent [ [des livres] intressants]
[e] eni semblent [ [ e ]i intressants]
[e] sont [ [beaucoup en] gates]
[e] eni sont [ a [beaucoup [e] i ] gates]
[beaucoup [ e ]i ]j eni sont
[ [e]j gates]

Since quantified phrases and plural indefinite phrases



involve quantification, they are interpreted in Govern

ment Binding theory by Quantifier Raising (QR), an opera
tion subsequent to s-structure that adjoins a quantifier
to S at Logical Form and which accounts for an interest
ing range of facts involving scope of quantification.
See May (1977) for an extended presentation and justifi
cation of QR. In order to be interpretable a quantifier
must bind a single variable at LF, a requirement some
times called the Bijection Principle. QR interacts with
the Bijection Principle in such a way that a phrase in
volving quantification, as the plural indefinite phrases
and the quantified phrases in French do, must bind a
variable at LF. In (42) and (43) the trace of en is in
a Case marking position and hence can be converted into
a variable at LF without difficulty. The raising struc
tures in (44)-(45) are different. There is no way to
assign Case in (44) as (44b) shows. Recall that raising
predicates do not assign Case. Similarly in (45) the
trace of en will lack Case because even though [beaucoup
[e]] moves to a Case Marking position, traces cannot be
assigned Case directly, by Haik's convention.
quently neither (44) nor (45) will be interpretable be
cause their quantified expressions will have no variable
to bind at LF in violation of the Bijection Principle.
Haik's attempt to explain the distribution of en in
(42)-(45) by appeal to a principle identifying case
marked traces as variables is of considerable interest
since, if successful, it would tend to corroborate the
principle, one that has been under critical scrutiny
within the GB framework (see Chomsky, 1981:175). How
ever, attractive as the analysis is, it will not account
for the ungrammaticality of (46).
(46) *La porte en semble tre ferme.



Partitive and genitive phrases need not be in Case mark

ing positions to allow En Placement, unlike quantified
and plural indefinite phrases, because they do not in
volve QR and variable binding at LF in Haik's analysis.
Thus, Haik allows En Placement and the Raising to apply
in (47a) to generate (47c). It is not necessary that the
trace of en bear Case in these structures.
(47) a. [e] semble [ [le resume en] intressant]
b. [e] eni semble [ [le resume [e]i]
c. le resume en semble intressant
(48) a. [e] semble [ [la porte en] tre ferme]
b. [e] en i semble [ [la porte [e]i]
tre ferme]
c. [la porte] en semble tre ferme
Yet nothing in Haik's analysis would prevent a parallel
derivation from being applied to (48a), yielding the
ungrammatical (48c). In Haik's analysis, (47) and (48)
should exhibit the same behavior since both involve Rais
ing and En Placement from a genitive phrase. Since the
analysis proposed in this essay has the ability to pro
vide a principled distinction between (47) and (48) that
also accounts for the contrast in (33)-(34), it would
seem to constitute an empirical advance over Haik's

*I am indebted to J.-C Anscombre, L. King, C. Piera, A,
Rochette, M. Rochemont, M.-T. Vinet and K. Zagona for discussion of
the material presented here. The research reported here was funded
in part by a grant from the University Research Council of the
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
1. Although I will be disagreeing with the analysis advanced
in Haik (1982), I should mention that the argument developed in this



essay was prompted in reaction to Haik's clear and elegant paper and
could not have been conceived without Haik's work.
2. The judgements in (11)-(12) are those of Ruwet (1973). The
sentence in (11) is judged by some speakers as grammatical, although
(12) is uniformly rejected. A. Rochette has pointed out to me that
the acceptability of (11) to some speakers may be parallel to the
'peripheral tous' phenomenon discussed in Kayne (1975). The fact
that (11) is ungrammatical when embedded even for speakers who
accept it as a root sentence points in the direction of regarding
(11) as ill formed in core grammar, and treating its acceptability
to some speakers as a peripheral phenomenon.
3. A small clause is only an S, not an S'. Only maximal pro
jections are barriers to government, and S, not being a maximal
projection of anything in a small clause, does not block government.
See Chomsky (1981:167) for discussion. Chomsky (1981:125-126) also
contains an account of the lack of Case assignment by raising struc
4. Sentence (14c) also violates the binding theory inasmuch as
en does not c-command its trace. The trace therefore is not prop
erly bound.
5. Case theory is outlined in Chomsky (1981:Chapter 2 ) . It
involves a set of Case Assignment rules and the No Case Filter in
(i) * [NP ] where is a phonological matrix.
Case is assigned by a governing preposition, verb, or TENSE. Con
sequently the positions of Case assignment are a subset of the
governed positions in a structure.
6. I am abstracting away from sentences like (i) where that is
(i) whoi do you believe [S [e]i saw Mary]
See Chomsky (1981:Chapter 4) for an extended discussion of the ECP.
That discussion not only accounts for structures like (i), but also
summarizes a wide range of work by various researchers that corrob
orates the basic thrust of the ECP.
7. It may be objected that the structure in (ib) below would
permit the generation of (ia).
(i) a. *la porte en semble tre ferme.
b. [la porte]i enj semble [S [e]i tre ferme
[[e] i [e] j ]]
The structure (ib) involves movement of en directly from the object
position of fermer to sembler. This movement violates binding the
ory since the trace of en is free in S, its governing category.
8. See Chomsky (1981:49-51) for a discussion of this claim.




Belletti, Andriana, and Luigi Rizzi. 1982. "The Syntax of 'ne': Some
theoretical implications". Linguistic Review 1.117-54
Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
, and Howard Lasnik. 1977. "Filters and Control". Linguis
tic Inquiry 8.425-504.
Couquaux, Daniel. To appear. "French Predication and the Theory of
Grammar". Levels of Syntactic Representation, ed. by J. Koster
and R. May. Dordrecht: Foris Publications.
Haik, Isabelle. 1982. "On Clitic en in French". Journal of Linguis
tic Research 1.134-75.
Hendrick, Randall. 1981. "Extensions of Subjacency."
Current Re
search in Romance Languages, ed. by James Lantoff and Richard
Stone, 86-96. Bloomington: Indiana University Linguistics Club.
Kayne, Richard. 1975. French Syntax. Cambridge, Mass: M.I.T. Press.
. 1980. "Extensions of Binding and Case Marking". Linguis
tic Inquiry 11.75-96.
. 1981a. "ECP Extensions". Linguistic Inquiry 12.93-133.
1981b. "On Certain Differences between French and En
glish". Linguistic Inquiry 12.349-72.
May, Robert. 1977. The Grammar of Quantification, Unpublished
M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Milner, Jean-Claude. 1978. De la syntaxe l'interprtation. Paris:
Editions du Seuil.
Ruwet, Nicolas. 1973. Theorie syntactique et la syntaxe franaise.
Paris: Editions du Seuil.







In this paper I propose a unified account of left

dislocated constructions and the clitic doubling phenom
enon in Spanish. The analysis of left dislocation fol
lows the proposals made by Chomsky (1976 and 1982), and
the analysis of nominal clitic doubling follows the
proposal made by Hurtado (1982). In the first part of
this paper, both constructions are explained in terms of
the Predication Rule (henceforth PR), proposed in Chomsky
In the second part, I offer two arguments in
support of this position. The first is based on the
subject-verb inversion effects in Latin American Spanish.
The second is based on the Unagreement Hypothesis, which
claims that unagreement effects, such as the one involved
in (1), occur at the level of Discourse grammar.

Las mujeres denunciamos las injusticias.

'The women denounced (1st plural) the


Left Dislocation and Doubling: Two Instances of

the Predication Rule


The Syntax of Left Dislocation.

The standard anal-



ysis of left dislocation in Spanish involves the coindexation of an element in topic position and a resumptive
pronoun in S. As shown in Rivero (1980), this coindexation is not the result of the application of Move-alpha,
but involves a relation by which the sentence is predi
cated of the constituent in topic position.
(1982), adapting an analysis proposed by Williams (1980),
has suggested that the Predication Rule (PR) has the
property of mapping an LF representation onto an LF'
representation. PR coindexes a Mara with Le in (2a)
giving (2b) as output.
(2) a. LF: A Marai, slo Pedro lej
tiene confianza.
b. LF': A Marai, slo Pedro lei
tiene confianza.
'Mary, only Peter has confidence in her'
The PR identifies i = j at the level of LF' and le
becomes a variable (a "predication variable") bound by
the topic position (the "head" of the predication con
The sentence is now regarded as an open
sentence containing a variable bound by the head of the
predication construction. Another way to express this
relation is to interpret A Mara as a referential quanti
fier binding a variable at the level of LF', following
the suggestion presented in Williams (1980).
Languages seem to differ in the kind of quantifiers
or quantifier-like expressions they may allow to function
as predication heads: English is very restrictive in this
regard, while other languages show more freedom of
choice. In Spanish, for instance, (3) is grammatical.
(3) A todos esos nios., slo Pedro les.
tiene confianza,
'All these children, only Peter has
confidence in them'



These restricted quantifiers generated in the head posi

tion of a predication construction are, in principle, not
subject to Move-alpha at LF, since their relation with
the sentence does not obtain at that level of represen
tation: if they are quantifiers at all, these heads
acquire their scope from the preceding discourse. When
properly stressed, a bare quantifier may also receive a
definite interpretation and function as a predication
head in Spanish:


A tdosi, dice Pedro que lesi

entregaron una medalla.
'All of them, Peter says that they
give them a medal'
b. A tdosi, dice Pedro que losi
van a nombrar.
'All of them, Peter says that they
are going to designate them'
Under the predication analysis of left dislocation,
then, it is expected that languages will show parametric
differences in the type of quantifier a sentence may be
predicated of. Since it is set at the level of LF', the
definition of this parameter falls in the domain of Dis
course grammar. The same may be said about the resump
tive pronouns qualifying as possible variables at this
1.1.1 Pronouns as Variables. According to the Binding
Theory, a pronoun must be free in its governing category.
However, a pronoun may be bound by a quantifier at the
level of LF as in (5). (See Higginbotham, 1980.)
(5) Everyonei here thinks hei is the best.
The pronoun he in (5) is interpreted as a variable bound
by the trace of the quantifier everyone, which has under-



gone Move-alpha at the level of LF. Similar facts obtain

in Spanish.
(6) a. Todos los generalesi piensan que
(ellos)i tienen razn.
'All the generals think that they
are right'
'Every general thinks that he is right'
b. Todos los generalesi piensan que lesi
van a dar la razn (a ellos)i
'All the generals think that they are
going to agree with them'
'Every general thinks that they are
going to agree with him'
c. Todos los generalesi piensan que
losi van a elegir (a ellos) i .
'All the generals think that they are
going to elect them'
'Every general thinks that they are
going to elect him'
A relevant difference between Spanish and English
is that Spanish has clitic chains and pronominal clitic
chains, while in English the variable bound at LF is the
pronoun he. The Spanish cases are more complex. They
may be either the chain empty category...AG, clitic...
empty category, or the chain pronoun
AG, clitic....
Let us retain the latter possibility and
notice that (7) holds for Spanish.
(7) A pronominal clitic chain may become a
variable at the level of LF.
Reviewing the examples of the preceding section, we
may easily see that (7) does not hold for pronouns as
predication variables, as shown by the ungrammaticality
of (8).



(8) *A M a r a i s o l o Pedro lei tiene

confianza a ellai
'Mary, only Peter has confidence in her'
The same ungrammaticality obtains if we add a ellos in
(3), (4a), and (4b), suggesting restriction (9), for ev
ery variety of Spanish.
(9) A pronominal clitic chain may not become
a variable at the level of LF'.
Restriction (9) is interesting for a number of rea
sons that I will only mention here: first, it excludes
resumptive open pronouns in Spanish, reducing the class
of resumptive elements to clitics and AG; second, it
reveals a clear difference between the type of clitic
chains which can become variables at the levels of LF and
LF'; in other words, not every pronoun can become a vari
able at the level where PR applies. This is a further
difference between Spanish and English.1
1.1.2 Conclusion of Section 1.1. The results of this
section can be summarized as follows: There exist para
metric restrictions on the constructions subject to PR:
Spanish allows a variety of quantifiers to be head,
while English does not. Open pronouns may become predi
cation variables in English, while in Spanish only AG
and clitics may.
The relevant structure for the syntax of left dis
location in both languages after PR is (10).




where XP is in topic position
As we will see in the next section, the restriction of
(10) is not a necessary condition for PR to apply.



1.2 Intrasentential XP's. The sentences in (11) contain

a nominal clitic chain (le...a Mara in (11a) and la...a
Mara in (llb)).


Pedro no lei tiene confianza a Marai

'Peter has no confidence in Mary'
b. Lai van a llamar a Mara.
'They are going to call Mary'
In this section I argue that a Mara in (11) is to
be interpreted as the head of a predication construction/
and that the sentence is predicated of it by virtue of
the coindexation with the clitic. I will first argue
that a Mara is a constituent with no -role assigned in
S, and then show that some complicated problems related
to "extraction" from these constructions are to be dealt
with as particular cases of predication.
1.2.1 Canonic Objects and Predication Heads.
In the
previous analysis of "clitic doubling" (Jaeggli, 1982;
Borer, 1981; Aoun, 1982), the main argument for consid
ering that the clitic "doubles" the object rests on the
assumption that the double (a Mara in ( 1 1 ) is the
canonic object, i.e., the object in the position pre
dicted by the Projection Principle of Chomsky (1981).
Thus, the basic assumption is that canonic direct objects
are allowed to have a doubling clitic. This is compat
ible with the observation known as Kayne's Generaliza
tion, stating that "an object NP may be doubled by a
clitic only if the NP is preceded by a preposition"
(Jaeggli, 1982:20). Since the preposition assigned to
animate objects in Spanish is a, and the doubling con
structions are restricted to animate direct objects in
the dialects studied by Jaeggli (1982), the coincidence
between doubled direct objects and doubled animate direct



objects suggested that the clitic is doubling a canonic

It follows from that theory that inanimate
direct objects are excluded from doubling constructions:
since inanimate objects do not appear with the preposi
tion in non-doubled cases, the strict interpretation of
Kayne's generalization excludes doubling in those cases.
The presence of a is independently required by the canon
ic animate objects, supporting the claim that clitics
"double" canonic objects.
There is, however, evidence that "doubling" with in
animate objects exists in some dialects, indicating that
Kayne's Generalization covers a larger domain of data,
which do not overlap with prepositional canonic objects.
These facts obtain in the Spanish spoken in Argentina and
Uruguay, where the following sentences are grammatical if
they contain a coindexed clitic:


Cundo te loi vas a poner a ese

'When are you going to wear this necklace?'
b. Juan lai tir a la cajitai por
la ventana.
'John threw the little box through
the window'
c. *Cundo te vas a poner a ese collar?
d. *Juan tir a la cajita por la ventana.
As a matter of fact a ese collar 'this necklace' and
a la cajita 'the little box' show the same behavior as
the corresponding left dislocated constructions; they are
preceded by the preposition a, and are coindexed with a
clitic in these dialects.
(13) a. A ese collari cundo te loi vas
a poner?
'That necklace, when are you going to
wear it?'



A la cajitai, Juan lai tiro por la

'The little box, John threw it through
the window'
Sentences like (13), with the preposition, are ungrammatical in dialects where (12a-b) are ungrammatical. This
constitutes a relevant generalization which is not cap
tured by an analysis claiming that while the coindexation
of (12a-b) takes place at S-structure, the coindexation
of (13) occurs at the Discourse level (at LP'). The
generalization will however be captured if both coindexations take place at the same level of representation.
Since, as we have seen in the first section, the left
dislocation constructions get their coindexation through
PR, the common level cannot be S-structure. The alter
native, then, is that the common level of representation
is the level of PR, interpreting the "double" as a topic
like constituent in (10), which can be modified as in
(10') eliminating the restriction required for the "left"
dislocated cases.

There is no restriction now on the place where the

. . 2
XP may appear: it may appear in the Topic position, at
the rightmost post-sentential position with comma ef
fects, or it may appear within S without occupying a sen
tential argument position. In all cases, the XP is nei
ther a canonic object nor indirect object, but a con
stituent bearing no -role, and which is the head of a
predication construction. In all cases (i.e., (11), (12)
and (13)), the indicated coindexation is due to PR. This
analysis predicts that dialects will show different re
strictions with regard to the elements a sentence may be



predicated of, and will not exclude inanimate a-NPs from

appearing as intrasentential heads.
In the next section, it will be shown that the pred
ication analysis also makes the right predictions with
regard to the intricate extraction problems, without
placing any burden on the syntactic components of the
1.2.2 The Extraction Problem.
The following contrast
obtains in many dialects of Spanish:
(14) a. A quini Pedro no lei tiene confianza?
'Who does Peter have no confidence in?'
b.? A quini lai van a llamar?
'Who are they going to call (who = a
An analysis assuming coindexation at S-structure
(i.e., "doubling"), raises the problem formulated in
(15) Why is extraction possible from indirect
object position while it remains ques
tionable from direct object position?
For an analysis assuming coindexation by PR, the
question of why Move-alpha would apply in one case, but
not in the other, does not have any meaning, since the
"doubling" cases do not contain a canonic object. Since
Spanish has the possibility of predicating sentences of
a variety of quantifiers among them, the WH-quantifier a
quin 'who' then, the question dealing with the differ
ence between (14a) and (14b) should be formulated as
(16) Why may a WH-quantifier appear as a pred
ication head when coindexed with a dative
clitic while it remains questionable when
coindexed with an accusative clitic?



(15) assumes that WH-movement






(16) does


of (15) the answer




not make




For the

is to exclude movement

The position

is to exclude nothing

to present a solution


applies over a


in this



in the grammar; but rather

in terms of predication

heads and

predication variables.
Since the argument hinges on the movement issue, it
will be relevant to present evidence against movement in
the dative


dence against

a movement



The standard evi

analysis is provided by island

constraints; sentences like

(17) indicate that the coin-

dexation of (14a) does not obey island constraints.



A quin i , se corri la voz de que

Pedro no lei tiene confianza?
'Who it was spread the word that Peter
does not have confidence in?'


[ a quin ] i [ S ....[ NP la voz




If this is the normal

questions containing

not a trace


.ei. ] ] ]


l e in S, it follows that e in (17b)



S and NP are bounding

still maintain that

of indirect

a quin


(14a) is subject



in Spanish.

We can

to movement, while

(17a) is not, but this amounts to saying that both sen

tences have a very



in spite of the

fact that they do not seem to differ except in the degree

of embedding.


is not necessary,


if (17)

is taken as evidence that no movement applies to doubled

constructions in general.

This is predicted by the pred

ication analysis and does not come as a surprise.

On the

contrary, the extraction puzzle arises neither for indi-



rect nor for direct objects, since no movement seems to

take place. This means that the problem formulated in
(15) vanishes, while the question posed in (16) remains.
What (16) means is that some clitics cannot become
predication variables with certain quantifiers. Although
I am not going to offer an answer to this question here,
I would like to mention that (16) is still missing the
correct generalization. First, (14b) is perfectly gram
matical in the Spanish spoken in Argentina and Uruguay,
hence, the contrast of (14) does not occur in every dia
lect, and, second, there is no evidence that the differ
ence is due to case, and not for instance, to the pro
nominal properties of l e (dative) and lo/la (accusative),
which have merged in many dialects giving different
results. This was suggested in Hurtado (1982).
1.2.3 Conclusion. In this section we have extended the
predication analysis of left dislocations to the socalled doubling cases. The PR analysis was shown to
make the right predictions for animate and inanimate
"doubling" cases. The notion of "nominal clitic chain"
(i.e., clitic. . . .a NP) can be eliminated from the syn
tactic parts of the grammar. Furthermore, WH-questions
with resumptive clitics also follow from the predication
analysis without complicating the grammar, since there
is no need to apply Move-alpha in any case. 4
2. Predication Heads and Subjects
The formal configuration obtained as a result of the
application of PR, (10'), predicts that an LF' relation
is possible through the object clitics as well as through
The second part of this paper is concerned with



cases where a topic-like element is coindexed with AG by

PR. In more traditional terms, we will study some cases
of subject "doubling," where the head of the predication
construction may look like the subject, and AG is the
predication variable, alongside the null subject empty
category. If we assume the standard analysis of clitics
as constituting chains with an associated empty category
(in object or indirect object position), (10') should be
interpreted as (10").
Since the position of the XP is relevant, (it may
be inside or outside the sentence as long as it does not
occupy an argument position) we do not need the senten
tial boundary of (10').
Furthermore, (10") explicitly
says that the predication variable is the clitic chain
or the AG chain. As a chain, e...clitic/AG is subject
to (9), and no open pronoun is allowed to show up.
2.1 Verb Preposing. The first argument for an instance
of (10") coindexing a topic-like element with AG is
illustrated by the failure of inversion effects in em
bedded clauses in Latin American Spanish. Torrego (1981)
has claimed that a rule preposing the verb over the sub
ject is responsible for the subject-verb inversion ef
fects in both embedded and non-embedded clauses in Span
ish. She offers evidence that the rule of Verb-preposing
occurs in cases of successive cyclic movement with cer
tain WH-words. This means that not only the presence of
certain WH-words in comp triggers inversion, but also
that their traces in the intermediate comps do. (18a)
exemplifies V-preposing; (18b) is ungrammatical because
no inversion effects are shown in the embedded clauses.
(18) a. Qu pensaba Juan que le haba dicho
Pedro que haba publicado la revista?



b. *Qu pensaba Juan que Pedro le habia dicho

que la revista haba publicado?
'What did John think that Peter has told
him that the journal has published?'
These are examples drawn from Torrego (1981) and belong
to Peninsular Spanish. It is worth noting, however, that
these judgments are not universal in Spanish; for in
stance (18b) is acceptable in all the Latin American
varieties I have been able to check. How can we explain
such a difference?
We have already seen that Latin American dialects
show fewer restrictions than Peninsular dialects with
regard to intrasentential predication constructions; in
other words, there is more "object-doubling" in Latin
America than in the Peninsular dialects. We then expect
that the same will be true of "subject-doubling," and
that some apparent subjects will not behave as canonic
subjects but as heads of a predication construction sub
ject to PR. These will be constituents that superfi
cially share some characteristics of subjects but, due
to the fact that they get connected to the sentence at
the level of LF', do not behave as S-structure or LF
subjects, but as predication heads.
With these observations in mind, how can we explain
the difference in grammaticality judgments with regard
to (18b)?
Suppose that Pedro and la revista 'the journal' in
(18b) are not interpreted as the canonic subjects of the
embedded clauses, but rather as the intrasentential pred
ication heads of the construction subject to PR in Latin
American Spanish. Then the correct result follows, since
the rule of V-preposing (presumably applying at S-struc
ture) will move the verb over its true subject, the empty



category standing for the canonic subject (presumably

In Peninsular Spanish Pedro and la revista are
interpreted as canonic subjects, and V-preposing treats
them as such/ giving (18a). We have now a natural answer
to the differences of judgments about (18b), based on the
interpretation of the apparent subject as head of a pred
ication construction coindexed with AG at the level of
LF' in Latin American Spanish. After the application of
V-preposing/ the representation of (18a) will be (19a) in
Peninsular Spanish and the representation of (18b) will
be (19b) in Latin American Spanish (t = the trace of WH
and v = the trace of Verb).
(19) a. [WH] [pensabai Juan vi] [t]
[le haba dichoi Pedro v i ]
[t] [habia publicadoi la revista
b. [WH] [pensabai Juan vi] [ t ]
[Pedro le haba dichoi pro v i ]
[t] [la revista haba publicadoi
Though rather clumsy by Latin American standards/
(18a) is not ungrammatical, which suggests that V-pre
posing may well apply in every dialect. On the other
hand, (18b) is only possible with the representation of
(19b) in these varieties of Spanish where apparent sub
jects can be interpreted as predication heads.
The conclusion is then that, as predicted by (10")/
AG may be coindexed with a predication head/ besides its
being coindexed with its subject at S-structure. The
failure of "inversion" in Latin American Spanish finds
now an explanation in terms of the predication analysis:
there is no failure of inversion, since V-preposing does
apply over the empty subject. Finally, let us recall



t h a t given ( 9 ) , the empty category cannot show up as an

open pronoun, thus excluding the undesirable correspond
ing sentences.
These cases, t h e n , provide an argument
f o r the extension of the n o t i o n of p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c
t i o n t o cases where a c o n s t i t u e n t w i t h no - r o l e i s c o i n dexed w i t h AG by PR. I n the next s e c t i o n I w i l l provide
more evidence f o r the p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n w i t h both
c l i t i c s and AG.
2.2 The Unagreement Hypothesis.
In the f i r s t p a r t of
t h i s paper I have proposed a c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of the
p r e d i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s i n Spanish:
A p r e d i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e i s a chain c o n s t i t u t e d by
e i t h e r AG or a c l i t i c , associated w i t h an empty
A r e s t r i c t i o n d i s t i n g u i s h i n g them from LF pronominal
v a r i a b l e s r e q u i r e s t h a t an o v e r t pronoun never appears
i n place of the empty category of a p r e d i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e .
We can now proceed one step f u r t h e r and i n v e s t i g a t e
the existence of some d i r e c t evidence i d e n t i f y i n g p r e d
ication variables.
2 . 2 . 1 Let us s t a r t w i t h i n t r a s e n t e n t i a l ( " d o u b l i n g " ) and
("left dislocation")
p r e d i c a t i o n con
I n Hurtado (1982) i t was observed t h a t both
p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n s a l l o w f o r some l a t i t u d e
grammatical person agreement.
S p e c i f i c a l l y , a p l u r a l XP
may be coindexed w i t h a f i r s t (or second) person p l u r a l
c l i t i c , as shown i n ( 2 0 a - d ) .
(The c o i n d e x a t i o n r e f l e c t s
the s i t u a t i o n before the a p p l i c a t i o n of PR).


Nos j- denunciaron e j a l a s mujeresi.

Us-acc denounced-3rd p l . e t o the women
'They denounced us women'



N o S j entregaron un premio ej a las

mujeres i
Us-dative give-3rd pl. an award e to
the women
'They gave us women an award'


A las mujeresi, dice Pedro que nos j

denunciaron ej
To the women says Pedro that us-acc
denounced-3rd pl.e
'Us women, Peter says that they
denounced us'


A las mujeres i , dice Pedro que


van a dar un premio ej

To the women says Pedro that us-dative
go to give an award e_
'Us women, Peter says they are going
to give us an award'
Under the predication analysis the parallel behavior

intrasentential and extrasentential XPs is expected;

I will express it as (21).


The unagreement hypothesis

Unagreement is only possible in
predication constructions.
If (21) is correct, unagreement must provide evi
dence for every instantiation of (10") in every dialect
of Spanish, and not only for the cases involving clitics.
Following the line of argumentation of Section 2.1., we
also expect to find cases of unagreement in constructions
where the predication variable is AG. The cases in point
are (22a) ( = ( D ) and (22b).


Las mujeresi ej denunciamosj

las injusticias.
The women e denounced-lst pl. the



'We women denounced the i n j u s t i c e s '

Las mujeres i dice Pedro que ej
ganamos j
The women says Pedro t h a t e won-1st p l .
'We women, Peter says t h a t we won'
The Unagreement Hypothesis p r e d i c t s t h a t l a s mujeres
' t h e women' i n (22a) i s not the canonic subject of the
sentence but an i n t r a s e n t e n t i a l head associated t o AG by
PR, as i n l a s mujeres ' t h e women' i n ( 2 2 b ) .
Thus, the
u n d e r l y i n g r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of (22a) does not show a v i o
l a t i o n of S - s t r u c t u r e " s u b j e c t - v e r b agreement," but an
i n s t a n t i a t i o n of the p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n s u s c e p t i b l e
t o coindexing by PR at the ( f i r s t ) l e v e l of Discourse
(Unagreement i s t y p i c a l l y a discourse
phenomenon i n t r o d u c i n g the speaker or the addressee r e f e r
ence i n t o the p l u r a l d e s c r i p t i o n occupying the head

2.2.2 T y p o l o g i c a l and D i a l e c t a l P r e d i c t i o n s .
I n a more
general framework, the Unagreement Hypothesis p r e d i c t s
t h a t languages w i t h o u t i n t r a s e n t e n t i a l p r e d i c a t i o n heads
( w i t h o u t "NP d o u b l i n g " ) w i l l not show unagreement e f
f e c t s : the p r e d i c t i o n i s c o r r e c t since n e i t h e r I t a l i a n
nor French allows s t r u c t u r e s such as ( 2 2 a ) .
(23) a. *Le donne denunziamo l e i n g i u s t i z i e .
b. *Les femmes avons denonc l e s i n j u s t i c e s .
Moreover, (21) cannot be construed as a b i c o n d i t i o n
I f a language shows unagreement e f f e c t s , i t shows
them i n i t s p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n s , but i t i s p o s s i b l e
f o r a language t o have a f u l l range of p r e d i c a t i o n con
s t r u c t i o n s w i t h o u t showing unagreement e f f e c t s .
Rumanian, a language w i t h both e x t r a s e n t e n t i a l and
i n t r a s e n t e n t i a l heads, i l l u s t r a t e s t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y .



a. *Femeile am denuntat injustitiile.

'The women have (1st pl.) denounced
the injustices1
b. *Ne-a denuntat pe femei.
'Somebody has denounced (us) the women1
Unagreement effects are excluded from intrasentential predication with the accusative clitic and likewise
with AG. This is the reason why Rumanian has no equiva
lent to (22a).
These typological predictions covering several Ro
mance languages follow the Unagreement Hypothesis and do
not require further parametrization in the syntactic
components of the grammar.
Let us now return to the different varieties of
Spanish. In preceding accounts of "clitic doubling" the
goal was to exclude "direct object clitic doubling" from
most dialects (the exception being Paraguayan, Peruvian,
Uruguayan and Argentinian). We have shown that such an
exclusion is too strong, since every variety of Spanish
shows at least one type of intrasentential predication
construction with an object clitic, namely, the lack of
agreement case exemplified by (20a). The exclusion seems
to be linked to the specific combination lo/la.......a
NP and not to all intrasentential accusative instances
of (10"); while combinations with lo/la are taken to be
excluded in most dialects, the following contrast holds:
(25) a. *Los eligieron a los americanos.
them-acc elected-3rd pl. to the Americans
'They elected the Americans'
b. Nos eligieron a los espaoles.
Us-acc elected-3rd pl. to the Spaniards
'They elected us Spaniards'
Both sentences are grammatical in the dialects accepting



the combination l o / l a . . . . . a NP ( i . e . , Paraguayan, Peru

v i a n , Uruguayan and A r g e n t i n i a n ) .
For an a n a l y s i s pos
t u l a t i n g the existence of "NP d o u b l i n g " a t S - s t r u c t u r e ,
t h i s c o n t r a s t w i l l r e q u i r e an e x c e p t i o n a l treatment. 6
Under the Unagreement Hypothesis nothing i s t o be s a i d
about i t i n the s y n t a x ; as a matter of f a c t , the very
n o t i o n of "NP d o u b l i n g " i s dispensable given the p r e d i
c a t i o n a n a l y s i s of the " d o u b l i n g " c o n s t r u c t i o n s .
2.2.3 Further E m p i r i c a l Consequences. A f u r t h e r e m p i r i
c a l consequence of the Unagreement Hypothesis i s provided
by C o n t r o l Theory. The C o n t r o l Theory r e q u i r e s the a n t e
cedent of PRO t o be present at S - s t r u c t u r e w i t h a d i s
t i n c t - r o l e . This means t h a t a theory c l a i m i n g t h a t an
unagreeing " s u b j e c t " i s present i n a e - p o s i t i o n a t Ss t r u c t u r e , would make d i f f e r e n t p r e d i c t i o n s about c o n t r o l
than a theory c l a i m i n g t h a t the unagreeing NP i s a con
s t i t u e n t w i t h no 6 - r o l e , coindexed w i t h AG a t the l e v e l
of LF' .
C r u c i a l evidence i s hard t o f i n d .
Given the empty
nature of PRO, i t i s not easy t o f i n d d i r e c t evidence of
antecedenthood i n the r e l e v a n t cases.
Yet t h e r e e x i s t
anaphoric e f f e c t s i n the i n f i n i t i v a l clause t h a t provide
such evidence.
The case i n p o i n t i s found i n represen
t a t i o n s showing an anaphoric c l i t i c a f t e r the i n f i n i t i v e ,
such as ( 2 6 ) .
(26) Nosotras i intentamos PROi encontrarnos i
We-feminine t r i e d - 1 s t p l PRO t o meet-each
'We (feminine) t r i e d t o meet w i t h each o t h e r '
The anaphoric c l i t i c (or i t s chain) i s bound by PRO
i n the embedded sentence, as r e q u i r e d by P r i n c i p l e A of
the Binding Theory, w h i l e the content of PRO i s f i x e d by
an NP i n argument p o s i t i o n , namely the s u b j e c t nosotras



'we ( f e m i n i n e ) ' , by the C o n t r o l Theory.

Let us now t u r n t o s i m i l a r cases showing unagreement
I f the r e a l S - s t r u c t u r e s u b j e c t of (27) were
l a s mujeres, the p r e d i c t i o n would be t h a t the c l i t i c i n
the embedded clause would agree w i t h i t , i n the t h i r d
person. However, as p r e d i c t e d by the Unagreement Hypoth
e s i s , i t does n o t .

Las mujeres pro i intentamos PROi

encontrarnos i ( / * - s e i )
'The women we t r i e d (1st p l . ) t o meet
w i t h each o t h e r '
The r i g h t e m p i r i c a l consequences, t h e n , are achieved
by our a n a l y s i s : i t f o l l o w s from the Unagreement Hypoth
e s i s t h a t the canonic s u b j e c t of (27) i s p r o , i d e n t i f i e d
by AG. I n t u r n , l a s mujeres ' t h e women' i s the head of
an i n t r a s e n t e n t i a l p r e d i c a t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n which does
not e x i s t a t the l e v e l where the C o n t r o l Theory i s met.
Hence, the anaphora i n the embedded clause shows the
f e a t u r e s of the a v a i l a b l e antecedent, which i s the chain
AG i n f i r s t person p l u r a l . At the l e v e l of L F ' ,
l a s mujeres i s coindexed w i t h the chain pro
( p r o . . . m o s ) by PR, g i v i n g (27) as f i n a l o u t p u t .
r e s t r i c t i o n (9) a p p l i e s , pro cannot become p h o n e t i c a l l y
" v i s i b l e " and (28) i s c o r r e c t l y excluded.
(28) *Las mujeres nosotras intentamos encontrarnos.


This paper o f f e r s a new c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n of the

phenomena of " l e f t d i s l o c a t i o n " and " c l i t i c d o u b l i n g . "
I t argues t h a t the parametric d i f f e r e n c e s between English
and Spanish and F r e n c h - I t a l i a n and Spanish w i t h respect
t o these c o n s t r u c t i o n s should be d e a l t w i t h at the l e v e l



of LF' where PR, a Discourse grammar rule, applies. It

follows from this demonstration that the syntactic com
ponents of the grammar are liberated from the burden of
excluding "NP doubling" from specific argument positions
in some dialects, and from any position in some lan
guages. As a matter of fact the notion of "NP doubling"
has no specific status in the grammar, and is interpreted
as one of the instantiations of (10").
The fact that every instantiation of (10") is possi
ble (with an extrasentential or an intrasentential head)
in every dialect of Spanish, indicates that (10") is the
framework where the parameter is set. In turn, every
dialect imposes specific discourse conditions restricting
the application of PR:
(29) 1) Restrictions on the set of elements
occupying the predication head (Only
animate intrasentential XP in certain
dialects; different types of quanti
fiers across languages and dialects)

Restrictions on the predication

variable (No overt pronominal
chains; unagreement effects)
3) Restrictions on both the predication
head and the predication variable
( *WH-guantifier......lo/la in most
Spanish dialects)
The traditional accusative/dative distinction has
been shown irrelevant for the setting of the parameter,
since every dialect must allow for some intrasentential
heads coindexed with accusative and with dative clitics;
minimally, in the unagreement cases. On the other hand,
animacy factors, pronominal properties of clitics as well
as the interpretation of quantifiers, are relevant for



the restricted application of PR. It is at this level

that dialects are expected to show significant differ
ences, which they do.

* I wish to thank N. Chomsky, H. Contreras, J. Emonds, M.
Laughren, G. Longobardi, M. Montalbetti, C Picallo, and K. Zagona
for helpful comments on early versions of this paper. Research on
this paper was carried out under Research Grant 410-82-0228 of the
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
1. It has been suggested by Mario Montalbetti (personal com
munication) that overt pronouns cannot be bound by a quantifier in
Spanish. This seems to be too strong given that the sentences in
(6) are ambiguous with and without the overt pronoun. The following
contrast shows no ambiguity:
(i) Muchos estudiantes piensan que ellos son inteligentes.
'Many students think that they are intelligent'
(ii) Muchos estudiantes piensan que son inteligentes.
'Many students think that they are intelligent'
In (ii), they is interpreted as a bound variable: each student has
an opinion on his/her own intelligence. In (i), they is interpreted
coreferentially: each student has an opinion on the intelligence of
the group. In my own judgement, I can force a coreferential inter
pretation for (i) but not for (ii), though this may be due to prag
matic factors. The following sentences may receive both quantificational and coreferential interpretation in my dialect:
(iii) Muchos generales piensan que ellos tienen razn.
'Many generals think that they are right'
(iv) Muchos generales piensan que tienen razn.
'Many generals think that they are right'
I thank Mario Montalbetti for bringing his explanation of (i)
and (ii) to my attention.
2. Since predication heads no longer require a specific "posi
tion", it might be suggested that the notion of "Topic position"
loses its justification in Spanish. However, as pointed out by G.
Longobardi (personal communication), the notion is still needed in
Spanish to account for the classical cases of Topicalization cum
WH-movement. The construction only occurs when the head is a "par
titive" indefinite, as in (i).
(i) Dinero, dice Juan que tenemos que conseguir.
'Money, John says that we have to find'
Although there is some evidence that "partitive" indefinites
may be coindexed with a variable within a complex NP, as in (ii), I
will continue to assume that Spanish has a "Topic position" required
by Topicalization cum WH-movement, since the issue does not alter



the essence of my argument.

(ii) Dinero, me lleg la noticia de que ya no va a faltar.
'Money, I got the news that it is not going to lack
3. Though sentences such as (14b) are acceptable in some dia
lects, the fact that a dative clitic lends itself more easily than
an accusative clitic to becoming a predication variable of guin
"who", requires a principled explanation.
In the context of the
Predication analysis, "principled explanation" means a solution in
terms of the principles of the Discourse grammar. Let us define
quin 'who' as "for which x , x a person," where "x a person," or any
other specification, is the restriction of the quantifier. We can
then state the following observation:
(i) A predication variable may introduce quantifier restric
We can now interpret the clitic in a predication construction
as a variable subject to (i) and the whole construction subject to
a principle like (ii).
(ii) Avoid quantifier restricting variables.
If the LF' configuration of (14a) and (14b) are (iii) and (iv)
respectively, (ii) applies to the latter but not to the former.
(iii) [XP for which x, x a person]
[S Pedro does not have confidence in x]


for which x, x a person, x a woman]

[s They are going to call x]

The restriction "x a person" is an intrinsic property of quin
'who', but the restriction "x a woman" is introduced by la, 'her'
in (14b), and it is marked at the level of discourse as a violation
of (ii); hence (ii) provides a principled answer to the question
formulated in (16). (See Note 5 ) .
4. In Argentinian and Uruguayan Spanish, sentences such as (i)
are fully acceptable.
(i) Las llamaron a todas las chicas.
'They called (them) every girl'
(ii) Los podaron a todos los rboles.
'They prune (them) every tree'
Examining similar cases, Jaeggli suggests that "we might
hypothesize that there is a quantifier-interpretation rule which
does not involve extraction; which does not leave a trace. Needless
to say, this proposal is extremely tentative, and constitutes little
else than a method to describe the subtle differences found in the
(Jaeggli, 1982:60).
Jaeggli's suggestion invites us to
consider the "doubled" quantifiers in (i-ii) as topic-like consti
tuents, on a par with those in (3) and (4) in Section 1.1. It is
clear that an analysis assuming predication both for quantifiers and
NPs, does not involve Move-alpha in the Syntax or at LF, and the
problem of the proper governing of the trace does not arise. If




this analysis is available, it will be available for all varieties

of Spanish, and the "extraction" peculiarities will find an expla
nation in terms of the restrictions of PR (the "quantifier interpre
tation rule") both for quantifiers such as todas las chicas 'every
girl' and for quantifiers such as a quien 'who' in (14) in the text.
5. The unagreement cases violate the principle "Avoid quanti
fier restricting variables" suggested in Note 3, since sentences
like (i-ii) introduce quantifier restrictions.
Quines tenemos que ir?
Who (plural) has (1st plural) to go?
'Which of us has to go?'
Quienes llego la orden que tenemos que ir?
Who (plural) the order arrived that (we) have
(1st pl.) to go?
'The order arrived for which of us to g o ? '
In both cases the WH-quantifier requires a restriction indicating
that the speaker is included in the potential set. This fact sug
gests that the "Avoid quantifier restricting variables" principle
must be weakened to operate only for the third person, or only for
information involving gender. I do not have anything to say about
the specific formulation of this Discourse principle, beyond the
observation that it seems to hinge on limitations on the type of
restrictions a predication variable is allowed to introduce in the
quantifier interpretation.
6. Some relevant cases of (animate) accusative le and lo are
found in other dialects. T h e following examples show that an accu
sative clitic may appear as a predication variable in Peninsular
(i) Cuando le pareca bien se paraba y lei
llamaba al
asistente i
'When he felt like it, he stopped and called
his assistant'
(ii) Mira, llmale i al a m o i , q u e m e conoce.
'Look, call upon the boss, w h o knows m e '
(iii) Cuando loi nombraron a F e l i p e i , yo estaba
en Zaragoza.
'When they elected Felipe, I w a s in Zaragoza'
Sentences (i) and (ii) are from Po Baroja's El Escuadrn del B r i gante, and El aprendiz de Conspirador respectively (quoted in Fer
nndez Ramrez, 1 9 5 1 : 2 1 2 ) .
I have checked sentence (iii) with
fourteen Spaniards, of whom twelve judge it grammatical.

Aoun, Youssef. 1 9 8 1 . The Formal Nature of Anaphoric Relations. U n
published M . I . T . P h . D . dissertation.
Borer, Hagit. 1 9 8 1 . Parametric Variation in Clitic Constructions.




Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.

Chomsky, Noam. 1976. "On Wh-Movement". Formal Syntax, ed. by Peter
Culicover, Thomas Wasow, and Adrian Akmajian, 71-132. New
York: Academic Press.
. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Government
and Binding Theory. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Fernndez Ramrez, Salvador. 1951. Gramtica espaola: los sonidos,
el nombre y el pronombre. Madrid: Revista de Occidente.
Higginbotham, James. 1980. "Pronouns and Bound Variables". Linguis
tic Inquiry. 11.679-708.
Hurtado, Alfredo. To appear. "Clitic Chains". Linguistic Theory and
Spanish Syntax, ed. by Alfredo Hurtado. Dordrecht: Reidel Pub
Jaeggli, Osvaldo. 1981. Issues in Romance Syntax. Dordrecht: Foris
Rivero, Maria-Luisa. 1980. "On Left Dislocation and Topicalization
in Spanish". Linguistic Inquiry 11.363-395.
Torrego, Esther. 1981. On Inversion in Spanish and Some of its Ef
fects, Unpublished manuscript, University of Massachusetts.
Williams, Edwin. 1980. "Predication". Linguistic Inquiry 11.203-238.






This paper deals with linguistic constraints on

code-switching. Renewed interest in code-switching (c-s)
has recently given rise to a number of papers proposing
different analyses for S's like these in Spanish-English:
(1) I keep thinking that Jason probably will
be walking/cuando cumpla el ao ('by the
end of the year') (Pfaff, 1979:305)
(2) I could understand/que ('that')/you don't
know how to Speak Spanish/verdad? ('right')
(Sankoff and Poplack, 1980)
(3) He was sitting down/en la cama, mirndonos
peleando, y ('on the bed, watching us
fighting, and')/really, I don't remember/
si l nos separ ('if he us separated')/or
whatever, you know. (Poplack, 1979:17)
In this paper, I defend the claim that code-switch
ing is not non-directional but is asymmetrical. That is,
different constraints hold when switching occurs from
B and from B
A. I show that the notion "matrix
language" explains certain of these constraints on codeswitching, and that the matrix L (henceforth L ) is de
termined by the INFLection bearing element of the verb.



The evidence to support this claim comes from three

sources. One is that switching subjects between L's with
different features of INFL is constrained in predictable
I demonstrate this with the pro-drop parameter
which determines subject switching between Spanish and
English. Next, I show that the notion matrix L as deter
mined by INFL explains how switching subjects in lan
guages with different case-marking is predictably con
strained. Finally/ I present evidence from judgments on
matrix language by native bilinguals. In these cases,
the native speaker intuitions support the notion of
matrix language that I am proposing.
This paper supports a theory of code-switching which
requires abstract structural notions such as INFLection
and Case. I assume that code-switching is constrained
by grammatical principles, but that there is no G c - s ,
i.e., no "third" grammar of code-switching. This assump
tion is also found in work such as Poplack (1979), Pfaff
(1979), Sankoff and Poplack (1980), Joshi (1983), Muysken, diScuillo & Singh (1982), and Woolford (1983).
However, it is controversial. (See, for example, Labov,
1971.) I also assume that there is a phenomenon of codeswitching which is distinct from borrowing.
speaking, code-switching can be defined as the use of two
(or more) languages in the same utterance or conversa
tion. In code-switching, there is a total shift from one
language to the other. Borrowing is found in monolingual
speakers, but code-switching is unique to the bilingual
and multilingual speaker.

Government and Code-Switching Grammars

Muysken, diSciullo and Singh (1982), henceforth MSS,



make crucial use of the concept "Government" (Chomsky,

in their analysis of possible c-s S's.
propose the following: when a government relation holds
between elements, there can be no mixing; when that rela
tion is absent, mixing is possible. The force behind
their argument is that no extra grammatical mechanisms
are needed to account for code-switches because Govern
ment is simply a part of Universal Grammar, and thus all
Consider how a proposal like this would work for
code-switched sentences. The claim is that two elements
related by government must have the same language index
q. That is, if a constituent or terminal phrase node has
a language index q and if X governs Y, then Y must also
have the same language index q. In a monolingual S, this
principle also holds, but since there is only one lexicon
available, its effect is not visible. But where two (or
more) possible lexicons are accessible, then this prin
ciple has a detectible effect. Without going into the
full details of their analysis,3 I raise here two ob
jections to this proposal. One is on formal grounds, and
the other is on descriptive grounds.
Although I agree that the theoretical framework of
Chomsky (1981) might provide principles to explain con
straints on c-s, the theoretical status of government
within Government and Binding (GB) theory causes a com
plex set of problems for the MSS proposal.
(1981) proposes that government is one of the abstract
conditions on grammatical systems, one of the fundamental
principles that restricts the class of attainable gram
mars. Surely, government as applied to code-switching
entails that the grammar of code-switching, G c _ s , is
an attainable grammar. Put differently, since government



is a principle of universal grammar (UG), then it must

hold over grammars.
UG, as Chomsky (1981) envisions
it, is a system of explanatory principles, which are put
to test with grammatical descriptions.
If Government
holds over code-switched S's, then these sentences must
have been generated by a Grammar G
. And, further
more, this Grammar Gc-s must then be a full-fledged
member of the set of Grammars, Sigma G. If it were not
a member of Sigma G, then the principles of UG could not
hold over the system.
by MSS in

the position that must implicitly be assumed

order for their claim to apply to code-switched
There is a particular Grammar G
which, like any other particular Grammar
Gx,is subject to the principles of
Universal Grammar:
G 2 Gc-s
where G1 is the grammar for one language, G 2 is the
grammar for the other language, and G c _ s is the third
code-switching grammar. The c-s grammar, like any gram
mar, generates an infinite number of S's, which are sub
ject to principles and constraints of UG on logical form,
constraints on derivations, lexical insertion5 and so
on. However, the observation still holds: if a string
is subject to the principles of UG, and if principles of
UG hold over Grammars, then that string must be generated
by a Grammar over which such principles obtain. This is
in direct contradiction to their explicit claim against
the "third grammar" position.
Furthermore, there are many cases where the notion
Government makes incorrect predictions. One such case
involves switching between subjects and verbs. Their
theory, as I understand it, makes the following predic-



tions about allowable switches:

(5) *V q det p N p
(6) *V q N p
(7) NP q V p
The first pattern predicts that no switch is allowed
between a verb and the object NP, when that NP consists
of a det-N. However, switches like these:
(8) Los hombres comieron ('the men ate')/
the sandwiches.
are permitted and are quite common (Sankoff and Poplack,
1980:39). They also disallow a switch between a V and a
single N, because the governed category, in this case N,
does not share the Lq index of the governor. They cite
the following problematic counterexample:
(9) Non volgio ('I don't want')/smokemeat.
According to my investigations (see also Sankoff and Poplack, 1980), this type of switch is extremely natural.
Finally, they allow (correctly), switches between the
subject NP and the VP, as in:

La plupart des canadiens/scrivono "c"/.

'Most Canadians write "c" (MSS 1982:17)
However, these switches are much less common than the
object NP switches. In fact, there is only one example
given in MSS in contrast to a list of examples for cer
tain other switches. In the next section of this paper,
I discuss certain asymmetries between switching a subject
NP and an object NP. This forms part of the basis for
postulating the notion matrix L.

Code-switching and the Notion Matrix Language

I assume that the above problem about G c _ s

is re-



solved in some fashion. The issue to be explored in this

section concerns the notion L m . The hypothesis that I
am defending is that: (a) each sentence has a matrix lan
guage (L m ), and (b) the Lm in each S is determined by
the INFL bearing element of the verb. Notice that these
principles will apply to a monolingual S as well as a
switched sentence. In later sections I present evidence
in support of this hypothesis. For now, I look at alter
native definitions of Lm .
Researchers have made the following observations
concerning differences in switching subject NP's and ob
ject NP's:
(11) "The boundary between verb and following
object NP shows a somewhat higher switch
rate than that between preceding subject NP
and following VP ..." (Sankoff and Poplack,
(12) For Hindi-English: "While the object is
appropriately constrained, the subject is
not as free as we would expect it to be ...
the subject is generally from the same lan
guage as the verb despite the fact that the
subject NP is not governed ..." (MSS:21)
(13) ... English verbs typically occur as
participles ... or as infinitive (stem)
complements ... (Pfaff, 1979:299)
These observations suggested to me that perhaps the verb
exerts some sort of special control over switching, and
that the verb actually determines what the matrix L of a
code-switched sentence will be.
Before defending my
hypothesis, I discuss an alternative definition for the
notion L m from Joshi (1983).




a model




pothesizes a constrained







and A e






spondence" between

i.e., N P m




is a c a t e g o r y

is a c a t e g o r y
A A where

in w h i c h


A e where A m
























NPe, Vm










c a t e g o r i e s of


is a











('the')/interest/es muy


('is very low'). (P 79:305)

('the')/boy saw the







For e x a m p l e , consider

(16) *E1


ing to r u l e .




and Ge .


and so


of the matrix

of the embedded





The tree diagrams above show how in each of the examples,

according to Joshi, the matrix L is Spanish, as estab
lished by the article el. Both of these sentences are
predicted to be grammatical, which is incorrect. In
(15), there is a switch from Spanish to English of a sin
gle N interest, which is allowed. This sentence is pre
dicted to be grammatical, and it is. But in (16), the
single N boy, and the VP saw the boat are switched.
This should be grammatical, and it is not. I argue that
this is due to the incorrect definition of the L m as
the language of the lexical item in the leftmost branch
of a surface structure.
2.2 Matrix Language and Verb Inflection. Although my
definition of matrix language differs from Joshi's, I
agree with the idea that a notion such as Lm plays a
critical role in determining switchability. I show in
the next section that L m is also implicit in both MSS
(1982) and Woolford (1983), and that my definition of
L m in fact is in accord with both of these studies.
Sankoff and Poplack (1980) do not have a notion of matrix
L, neither explicit nor implicit. They propose a superscripting algorithm to label each node for its source
grammar, e.g., VP s p , N e n g , and so on. What I argue
is that the label on the V has a special status, namely
that it determines the Lm of the sentence.
This has
consequences in determining certain switching possibili
In the next section, I show how Lm is defined
in terms of the inflection bearing element in a sentence,
i.e., in Spanish, the verb or the part of the verb which
absorbs the features of agreement.




Evidence for L m as INFLection

3.1 Code-switching and Pro-drop. Suppose that the no

tion of L m as the language of INFL, as proposed here,
acts to affect code-switching. What kinds of predictions
will follow concerning the switching of subjects? One
prediction is that the switching of subjects is con
strained by weak and strong identification (Taraldson,
1978; Chomsky, 1982).
Informally, under this view, a
subject can delete if its reference is recoverable, usu
ally from the richness of inflection in the verb. The
role of the notion Lm predicts the following pattern
for mixing between languages with differing pro-drop



Status of Subject Switching

disallowed (English-Spanish)
If two languages are strong, then subject c-s's should
be allowed, as for example between Spanish and Catalan.
If two languages have weak identification, the switching
should also be allowed, as for example between English
and French. However, if two languages differ in this
feature, then mixing should be constrained.
First consider data from two languages which allow
pro-drop. Since neither L requires a subject, then these
cases are untestable, because there is no way of knowing
from what language the non-present subject came before
deletion. Next consider data from Spanish:
(18) Yesterday/estaba cantando con sus amigos
('(3rd sing.) was singing with
his/her friends').



(19) *ayer was s i n g i n g w i t h her f r i e n d s .

These examples i l l u s t r a t e how t h e v e r b d e t e r m i n e s t h e
m a t r i x L of a s e n t e n c e , n o t t h e l e f t m o s t b r a n c h of t h e
surface t r e e .
Thus t h e Lm i n (18) i s S p a n i s h , a s d e
t e r m i n e d by e s t a b a (and n o t E n g l i s h a s d e t e r m i n e d by
y e s t e r d a y which i s what J o s h i (1982) would m a i n t a i n .
(19) t h e Lm i s E n g l i s h a s d e t e r m i n e d by ' w a s ' (and n o t
by a y e r ) .
An e x p l a n a t i o n i s now p r o v i d e d f o r t h e asym
m e t r i c a l g r a m m a t i c a l i t y of t h e s e s e n t e n c e s .
The e x p l a
nation is simple:
s i n c e a Spanish verb allows p r o - d r o p ,
no s u b j e c t i s n e c e s s a r y in (18) w i t h t h e S p a n i s h v e r b
estaba 'was'.
But i n ( 1 9 ) , s i n c e t h e m a t r i x L i s En
g l i s h , an o v e r t s u b j e c t i s n e c e s s a r y .
Under o t h e r t h e o r i e s , t h e r e i s no e x p l a n a t i o n of t h i s
f a c t , a l t h o u g h both MSS and Woolford c o n j e c t u r e a l o n g
t h e same l i n e s :
In Spanish, the verbal inflection governs the subject,
but not in English, which accounts for the fact that
in Spanish the subject can be left empty. English
verbs cannot be introduced, however, into tensed Span
ish clauses: the subject would remain ungoverned, in
the relevant sense. This analysis predicts that when
the switching occurs between two languages with simi
lar pro-drop c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , verb mixing will be
possible. (MSS, 1982:14)
In code-switching sentences, then empty PRO subjects
would not be allowed in association with English verb
al inflection, since that inflection would govern the
subject position. (Woolford, 1983:25)
What i s new a b o u t my c l a i m i s t h a t t h e n o t i o n Lm i s a
f u n c t i o n of t h e v e r b , and t h a t o t h e r f a c t s ( n o t j u s t t h e
p r o - d r o p f a c t s ) f o l l o w d i r e c t l y from t h i s .
i n v e s t i g a t i o n s between French and E n g l i s h s u p p o r t t h e
h y p o t h e s i s t h a t s w i t c h i n g of s u b j e c t s i s a s f r e e a s o b -



ject NP's, holding other factors constant.

3.2 Case-Marking.
This section gives some thoughts
about the role of the verb as key and central to the de
termination of L and its role as case assigner. Since
the verb assigns case to its arguments, then switches
between L's with different case marking are predicted to
be constrained in certain ways. Just like strong and
weak identification rolls on the properties of the verb,
so does case assignment. If it turns out that case con
flicts cannot be explained in terms of a variant of the
bound morpheme constraint, this will provide further evi
dence for the notion Lm as necessary in an explanatory
theory of c-s, and for the definition of Lm in terms
of the INFL bearing element of the verb, rather than in
terms of the P-S-tree of the sentence as in Sankoff and
Poplack (1980) who use the structural notion surface
tree, or Joshi (1983) who uses the procedural notion
parse tree.
I begin with some examples from Malayalam-English.
(20) a. kutti kantu aanaye.
child-N saw elephant-A
'The child saw the elephant'
b. kuttikk kaananam aanaye.
child-D saw elephant-A
'The child saw the elephant'
Malayalam is "non-configurational" in the sense of Hale
(1981), so the words can occur in any surface order. In
(20a) the sentence is a simple S-V-0 sentence. The word
kutti 'child-N' is marked with the Nominative case (which
is nil), and aanaye 'elephant-A' is marked with the Accu
sative. In (20b) the verb has a suffix which requires a
dative marked subject, so the subject kuttikk 'child-D'



has the Dative case marker -k, and the object aanaye
'elephant-A' is again Accusative.
What happens if a
switch occurs inserting a non-case-marked subject NP from
English into these two sentences? According to the Lm
hypothesis, switching should be allowed in (20a) because
a case conflict will not ensue. In contrast, no switch
ing would be allowed in (20b) because the case require
ment of the verb would not be honored. The following two
examples bear this prediction out:
(21) a. That silly boy/kantu aanaye ('saw
b. *That silly boy/kaananam aanaye ('saw
What happens if the English NP is dativized as in:
(22) *to the silly boy kaananam aanaye.
This sentence is still ungrammatical.
However, this
could be due to the fact that "dative" in Hindi and
"dative" in English are not comparable. I am currently
testing out switching between other case-marking lan
guages, such as Malayalam-Hindi and Hindi-Tamil. The
prediction is that switching will be allowed, since the
case requirements of the verb would be fulfilled.
could also be that the case-marker must be in the same
language as the L m , but I do not expect this result.
In any event, the switching pattern in (20) and (21)
gives evidence in support of the notion Lm as defined
in terms of the verb.
Consider a similar case of switching between En
glish and Warlpiri, another non-configurational type lan
In the following examples, the English noun
phrase blue-one occurs with the CONCOMitative suffix
-kirli. Without this suffix, the sentence is ungrammat





nula-rlu ya-nu kaya wita-kurlu

We(dual) went car small-CONCOM
'We went in a small blue car'
b. *nula-rlu ya-nu kaya wita-kurlu blue-one.
Example (23a) has the case marker -kirli attached to the
NP blue-one. But in (23b), there is no case-marker, so
the V case requirements are not met. Again, this is due
to the fact that the matrix verb, ya-nu 'went' requires
the CONCOM suffix of its arguments. I am told that, if
the English concomitive preposition with is attached to
blue-one, then the sentence is still ungrammatical.
(24) *nula-rlu ya-nu kaya wita-kurlu with blue-one.
This parallels exactly the Malalayam example above.
In this section I presented two examples in which
the selectional properties of the matrix verb determines
constraints on code-switching. This is evidence in sup
port of the claim that an account of code-switching re
quires the notion L , defined in terms of the matrix
verb. The final section of this paper presents evidence
from native speaker intuitions on matrix L.
Intuitions about Lm . This section reports on
some preliminary studies done with native Spanish-English
bilinguals. These subjects were asked to decide whether
a sentence seemed to them to be Spanish or English. In
addition, they were asked for grammaticality judgments
on a written set of switched sentences. No pre-theoretical definition was given to the subjects as to how to
determine matrix language. They were left to their own
intuitions, both about grammaticality decisions and about
matrix language decisions.



Notice that the true purpose of the task was to get

intuitions about matrix L, and not to get grammaticality
judgments. Grammaticality judgments on invented codeswitched sentences are a controversial issue. Gingras
(1974) found that members of the bilingual community are
in strong agreement on judgments of acceptability for
spoken code-switched sentences. Most sentences that were
judged acceptable ranged from 90-100% agreement, and for
the rejected sentences, 95-100%.
What this means is
that, despite the problem of out-of-context judgments,
and of a maligned dialect, Gingras' subjects were able
to agree on acceptability judgments. Joshi (1983) makes
the same observations.
However, Pfaff (1979) reports
that informants often reject the very sentences they have
been recorded using. Poplack (1979) also questions the
validity of collecting grammaticality judgments on a
stigmatized dialect. My task does not depend on this
Certain of the test sentences were like the ones
discussed previously in (15)-(16), and repeated here:
(25) *El/boy saw the boat.
In cases like this, the subjects all agreed that the Lm
of the sentence was English. (And the converse for the
analogous Spanish sentence with the first input to the
parser in English.) This was not surprising. When we
asked the subjects how they determined L , they said
that it was the language of the verb. In other words,
they naively developed an algorithm based on the verb.
But then consider sentences like the following: 13
(26) The airplane/recogi a los heridos
('picked up the wounded').
(27) Los periodistas esperaron ('the journalists
awaited')/the most recent news report from
the hospital.



In the first type of example, the subject NP is switched

but the entire V p [V NP] is in the same L. In the sec
ond type of example, both the subject NP and the V of the
VP are in one L, with the (heavy) object NP in a differ
ent L. In both types of example, the subjects judged
the matrix L to be Spanish, as predicted by the hypothe
sis that the Lm is determined by the verb.
that the heavy NP was included in order to rule out the
possibility that subjects might be using a word counting
algorithm to determine Lm . That is, we did not want
subjects to necessarily conclude that if more words were
in a particular L, then this L was the matrix. We also
constructed (ungrammatical) sentences like the following:
(28) The boys have/recogido los juguetes
('picked up the toys').
(29) /El huracn ha ('the hurricane has')/
destroyed the houses.
In these sentences, half of the periphrastic verb is in
one L and the other half is in the other language, again
controlled as the above set for subject NP and object NP
switch. Our results were less clear for these sentences.
Although most subjects decided on the matrix L as the L
of the inflected verb, i.e., the AUX, many were simply
unable to decide on a matrix L. We believe this is due
to the gross ungrammaticality of these sentences, and
that the inability to decide supports our hypothesis.
Finally, to push the matter to the limit, we con
structed S's like the following:
(30) The dog/corri ('ran')/quickly down the street.
where only the verb is in one L, but all the rest of the
sentence is in the other L.14 According to our view,
if Lm is determined by the INFL bearing element of the
verb, then in a sentence like (30) the L m is Spanish,



and the English is inserted. 15 What happened in these

examples was that most subjects could not make a decision
as to matrix L. We believe this is support for our hy
pothesis. The reason is that these examples contain an
odd conflict between matrix L and all the rest of the
sentence. Thus, making a decision in cases like this is
confounded by pragmatic problems. The result is that
speakers' intuitions fall apart, and they are unable to
judge L m .


Bilingual code-switching provides a rich source of

evidence for linguistic theory because it reflects con
strained interactions between two formal linguistic sys
tems. In this paper, I defend the claim that the notion
matrix language Lm as defined by the inflection bearing
element of the verb is necessary to explain certain con
straints on code-switching. I present evidence to sup
port this hypothesis from three domains. First, I dis
cussed asymmetrical constraints on switching subject NP's
in languages where the verb has different identification
properties with the subject between those languages. I
them examined constraints on switching NP's where the
verb in the matrix L imposes a case-requirement on its
arguments. I showed how the notion Lm accounts for the
ability to insert certain NP's into a case-marked posi
tion only if the case-marking system of the non-matrix
language allows the verbal requirements to be fulfilled.
Finally, I presented judgments on Lm by native bilin
gual speakers which give further support to the defini
tion of Lm as the inflection bearing element of the

Unlike earlier papers dealing with syntactic con-


straints on code-switching,


than within




the focus of this article








such as PP, NP, and


into the abstract underlying











structure of













of languages.

*This work was supported by a National Research Service Post
doctoral Award from NIMH #1F32MH08217-0l. I thank Aravind Joshi for
comments on an earlier draft.
1. Most researchers agree that there is a difference between
switching and borrowing. But there are questions concerning exactly
how the distinction should be made, which are beyond the scope of
this paper.
2. They actually modify the definition of government to be: X
governs Y if the first node dominating X also dominates Y, where X
is a major category N, V, A, P. But notice that this is really ccommand, and not Government.
3. The reader is referred to Muysken, diSciullo and Singh
4. If government applies, so should other theories of UG, such
as Binding Theory, Case Theory, and so on. This issue is not ad
dressed by MSS.
5. In the model proposed by Woolford (1983), the PS rules and
lexicon of L1 are linked exclusively, and the same for L 2 . Thus
there is no chance that an item from L1 could be inserted into an
L 2 generated string.
Sankoff and Poplack (1980) propose superscripting on pre-terminal nodes, e.g., N e n 9 , N S P , which speci
fies from which lexicon an item must be drawn.
6. My own proposals about INFL could well be subject to the
very same criticism. One possible alternative, and perhaps this is
the implicit intent of the paper by MSS, is that principles hold
over the output of the mixing of two languages, but that the mixing
itself is not generated by a third grammar.
7. This rule is constrained in various ways, most importantly
by a constraint on switching closed class items (e.g., det, quant,
prep, poss) in isolation. Other constraints prevent switching S,
switching all daughters of a given node (suggested to Joshi by K.
Church), and so on.



8. Doron (1981) modifies Joshi's position, and suggests that

the roles of guest L and host (i.e., matrix) L be redefined at every
new S.
9. Within Joshi's model the verb also plays an important role
because it carries the Tense marker and, being a closed class item,
it cannot be switched. Thus the matrix language could be deduced
from the Tense marker for the matrix clause (as well as from any
closed class item directly dominated by S ) .
10. All examples form Malayalam are from Mohanan, personal
11. Some very preliminary testing suggests that switching is
in fact allowed in exactly the cases that this theory predicts, but
it is too early to be definitive about these results.
12. Data from Warlpiri is from Ken Hale, transcribed texts
1965, as explained to me by Mary Laughgren, (p.c.).
13. We only give one example of each type of switch, but the
generalizations for Sp Eng also hold for Eng Sp in this task.
14. A sentence with a single verb switch is permitted but
marked, as documented in Poplack (1979:45).
15. Note that we predict the following to be grammatical:
Corra quickly down the street. This is the correct result, as
shown in the section on pro-drop above.

Aguirre, Adalberto, Jr. 1976. "Acceptibility Judgments of CodeSwitching Phrases by Chicanos: Some preliminary findings",
Unpublished manuscript. Stanford University. (ERIC document
ED129:122; FL:008:114).
Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding. Linguistic Inquiry Monographs 6. Cam
bridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Doron, Edit. 1981. "On Formal Models of Code-Switching", Unpublished
manuscript, University of Texas at Austin.
Gingras, Rosario. 1974. "Problems in the Description of SpanishEnglish Intra-Sentential Code-Switching". Southwest Areal Lin
guistics, ed. by Garland A. Bills, 167-174. San Diego: Insti
tute for Cultural Pluralism.
Hale, Kenneth. 1981. On the Position of Warlpiri in a Typology of
the Base. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Linguistics
Joshi, Aravind. 1983. "Processing of Sentences with Intra-Sentential
Code-Switching", Unpublished manuscript, University of Pennsyl



MacNamara, John. 1967. "The Bilingual's Linguistic Performance: A

psychological overview". Journal of Social Issues 23.59-77.
Muysken, Pieter, Anne-Marie di Sciullo and Rajendra Singh. 1982.
"Code-Mixing and Government". Unpublished manuscript. Univer
sity of Montreal.
Pfaff, Carol. 1979. "Constraints on Language Mixing: Intrasentential
code-switching and borrowing in Spanish/English". Language
Poplack, Shana. 1979. "Sometimes I'll Start a Sentence in Spanish Y
TERMIN EN ESPAOL: Toward a typology of code-switching". Cen
tro de Estudios Puertorriquenos Working Papers 4.1-79.
Sankoff, David and Shana Poplack. 1980. "A Formal Grammar for CodeSwitching". Centro de Estudios Puertorriquenos Working Papers
Sridhar, S.N., and Kamal K. Sridhar. 1980. "The Syntax and Psycholinguistics of Bilingual Code-Mixing". Canadian Journal of
Psychology 34.407-416.
Taradlson, Tarald. 1978. On the NIC, Vacuous Application and the
That-trace Filter. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University
Linguistics Club.
Timm, Lenora A. 1975. "Spanish-English Code-Switching: el porqu and
how-not-to". Romance Philology 28.473-482.
Woolford, Ellen. 1983. "Bilingual Code-switching and Syntactic The
ory". Linguistic Inquiry 14:3.520-536.







This paper attempts to demonstrate that it is abso

lutely necessary to make specific reference to intrasyllabic structure and nodes in order to account for some
processes of epenthesis. As the discussion concentrates
on epenthetic material that resolves unacceptable onset
configurations, it will be argued that previous segmental
analyses simply were not equipped to explain adequately
the function and behavior of epenthesis.
Furthermore, I would like to reverse the argument
at some point, and illustrate through examples taken from
Standard, regional and dialectal French, the power of the
device called epenthesis, which allows us unique insights
into the phonological structure of a language, and which,
in some cases, may change the nature of our assumptions
concerning the mapping between linear segmental strings
and syllabic configurations.

Schwa-Epenthesis (Schwa-Ep)

Schwa-epenthesis (Schwa-Ep) is a rule

French, as the following examples illustrate:





ours blanc
film noir
match nul
contact direct
In most traditional studies, it has been implicitly or
explicitly claimed that Schwa-Ep is a surface phonotactic
rule, conditioned solely by the surface sequence of C's.
Its motivation is to break awkward consonantal clusters
and thus ease pronunciation. However, all attempts to
formalize its environment with any kind of precision
have, to my knowledge, failed. The most important reason
for these failures may well be the following: near-mini
mal pairs like
(2) bordereau
that there is no systematic correlation between
non-deletion of underlying schwa and Schwa-Ep in identi
cal consonantal environments, especially within words.
However, there is enough of a correlation, especially
across words, to invite attempts at a uniform treatment
of schwa-deletion and schwa-epenthesis. One would like
to claim, for instance, that the schwa-epenthesis in:
(3) le fisc franais
un ours rouge
is motivated by the same generalization which forces
preservation of the lexical or feminine schwa in:
(4) un disque franais
une ourse rouge
Furthermore, it has long been noted that the reali
zation of schwa is conditioned not so much by the number
of following consonants, but rather by the proximity of
stress (or alternatively, the length of the following
word). Thus, for deletion:




and for epenthesis:
(6) ours blanc
ours bless
Thus, any attempt to capture this parallelism must
necessarily follow the tackling of a much larger problem,
that of determining which schwas are lexical. Tranel
(1981) and others have defended an approach which severe
ly limits the number of lexical schwas, with several
convincing arguments, especially in the case of final
schwas. This, of course, would add dramatically to the
burden assigned to the process of epenthesis.
For these reasons, the problem of the correlation
with schwa-deletion will not be addressed here. To keep
the issues clear, I will concentrate on examples where
not even a graphic e is involved and I will start with a
comparison of two variants of Modern French.
I will
refer to them as Standard French (SF) and Northwestern
French (NWF).3
1.1 Parallel to the familiar contrast involving a lexi
cal schwa, as in (7),
(7) cirque d'hiver [sirkdivr] vs. [sirkdivr]
consider the following examples:
a. Marc Travers
[marktraver] [marktravr]
un turc mort
un turc bless
b. un flic mort
un sac de sable



arc de Triomphe
parc de Vincennes
un turc de mort
d. Marc Rainier
Marc Leblanc
e. Parc Liais
Marc Riochet
It can be seen that SF leaves unchanged clusters
such as /rktr/, /rkm/, /rkbl/, etc.,4 while NWF pre
fers epenthesis.
A purely segmental analysis would
stress the fact that, in the environment XI X2
X3 X4,
epenthesis will occur in NWF provided that 1) both XI and
X2 are C's (compare (8a) and (8b)), 2) X3 is an obstruent
(see (8d)), 3) X3 is a sonorant but then X4 is a glide
(see (8e)). Rule (9) will formalize these observations:
0 / CC

Rule (9) will have to be ordered before and will

feed schwa-deletion, as seen in (8c).
Now consider a different analysis involving sylla
ble-structure (I will for the moment disregard (8e) and
come back to it in section 1.2). Note that everything
happens as if the final /k/ in (8a), (8c) and (8d) dis
sociates itself from the coda and attempts association
with the following segments. When this association re
sults in acceptable onsets as in (8d), no epenthesis
takes place. When it does not, as in (8a) and (8c), then
epenthesis occurs. Again compare:

Marc Renard [markrnar]

Marc Travers [marktravr] */ktra/
The derivation of arc de Triomphe goes as follows:




.k.d .
Surface output
Thus we note that the match-up between onset-reso
lution (largely predicted by universal principles) and
epenthesis is perfect.
This, of course, proves that
epenthesis has to be sensitive to syllable-structure and
disproves rule (9). But while the process of epenthesis
itself is uncontroversial here, the principle of syllab
ification which justifies it has to be considered highly
Indeed, the initial dissociation, from which
everything else follows logically, is the feature which
SF does not share. For instance, in a /rkm/ cluster,
current theories of syllabification predict a cut between
the /k/ and the /m/5:
(12) rkm

This is why there is no epenthesis in Standard French.
NWF, on the other hand, attempts resyllabification and
achieves epenthesis. According to normal procedures in
Romance, such forward resyllabification is not expected,
even before sonorants (for a recent reminder, see Harris,
1983:43). Rather, it occurs only before a vowel, and
even there some restrictions may be in order.
1.2 Let us now come back to (8e). (8e) demonstrates the
peculiar behavior of schwa in response to initial #CG
segments. Thus Marc Riochet behaves like Marc Travers
and not like Marc Renard. Why should this be so?
Lowenstamm (1981) has defended an analysis of glides



(and more generally syllabicity) in French which assigns

a different syllable-structure to
(13) loua [lwa] [luwa]

[lwa] *[luwa]

Thus loua has a complex onset, but loi a complex

rime. In this fashion, one can explain why troua must
be /truwa/ and never /trwa/ like trois. While trois has
the structure shown in (14)
(14) trois
resyllabification in trou+a would result in a structure
of the type shown in (15)
(15) troua
Lowenstamm argues that (15) contains an unacceptable
onset of French. This explanation does away with the
well-known OLGV constraint of segmental phonology.
It thus becomes apparent that obligatory epenthesis
in NWF in (8e) comes to reinforce this idea, illustrated
again in (16):
(16) mar .*krjo.e
This is especially interesting when the parallel is drawn
with other epenthesis phenomena in both standard and di
alectal French (Morin, 1978), as in:
(17) rencontrions (SF) rktr +
vendrions (SF)
vdr + jo
vdr +
Compare also the different resolutions that obtain in SF
and in dialectal Norman:7




To "resolve" an unacceptable onset of the
epenthesis may occur within the higher branching:
(the SF solution), or within the lower branching:
(the NWF solution). For structural reasons, the latter
seems like a more marked procedure. Obviously, a third
resolution resides in simplification, i.e., loss of the
middle branch, or (more rarely) the right branch. Both
processes are widely attested in dialects and Frenchrelated creoles (where indeed even single-branching on
sets are frequently reduced). Montreuil (1983) discusses
the uses of epenthesis and simplification in the light of
a segmental vs. syllabic dichotomy.

Epenthesis in NWF and CsC Clusters

Let us now return to epenthesis in NWF and examine

the behavior of CsC clusters, as illustrated below:
(19) a. ours mort
ours bless
b. l'ours de ma mre
un ours de mort
c. ours rouge
ours ratatin
It appears that here epenthesis is even more sys
tematic since it occurs even before a sonorant (compare
(19c) with (8d)). This should not be surprising since



we have already seen that in a XI X2

X3 X4 string, the
failure of X2 X3 (X4) to constitute an acceptable onset
will result in epenthesis; /kr/ is, but /sr/ is not an
onset of French. This immediately raises the question:
what about s plus obstruent? Since s plus obstruent is
apparently a well-formed onset in French, the theory
fails to predict that epenthesis does occur in the forms
given in (20):
(20) ours bless
ours badin
ours furieux
ours con
ours clepto
. .rskl...
This idiosyncratic behavior of /s/ is less surpris
ing, however, if it is considered with other well-known
facts about /s/: 1) in a CI C2 C3 cluster, CI has to be
/s/; 2) while there is wide agreement among scholars
about the principles of syllabification in French, the
main area of disagreement concerns the position of /s/.
Delattre's Aperture Principle, for example, predicts syl
labification like:
(21) cas spcial
which, it has been noted, seems counter-intuitive to many
(see Delattre, 1951); 3) Spanish, many Italic dialects,
and some variants of Southern French exhibit an e-, i- or
schwa-like epenthetic vowel before s plus C(C). Harris
(1983) has demonstrated for Spanish the necessity to an
alyze /s/ as an extrasyllabic segment.
It is well-known that in Old French epenthesis did
take place, but that new words borrowed after the seven
teenth century already showed initial sC. NWF is a fair
ly conservative brand of French, and it is not outlandish



to claim that, in spite of the lack of surface epenthesis

as in Spanish/ /s/ is not, at some level of analysis, the
first member of an onset. Rather, it stands as the right
member of a null rime, and only reattaches when epenthe
sis fails to fill the empty rime. This would explain the
behavior of the words in (20), but it also would have a
consequence of much greater magnitude. Indeed, we know
that the only admissible [cons] [cons] [cons] surface
clusters in word-initial position are OLG and sCC, which
represent two types of onsets, respectively:
Type 1
Type 2

Just like Type 1 onsets were ruled out in section 1.2,

we now see that we have a good case for claiming that
Type 2 onsets are also ruled out at the relevant level
of analysis. This would result in making the fairly
strong claim that, in some variants of French, there are
no double-branching onsets of any kind.
The objection will be raised that if /s/ has an
empty rime, then one would expect interference on the
rule of elision. But note two points: 1) elision may
well be reformulated as in (23):
V - - /
i.e., vowel elision occurs before an empty onset provided
the nucleus is not empty as well, and 2) there are dia
lects of French which display precisely this kind of in
terference. The French spoken in Lunel, for example, has
a perfectly normal elision rule, except that it does not

apply before epenthetic e before s. Thus :



l'amie, l'orange
la estatue
dfense d'afficher
dfense de estationner
If this argument is true, then Lowenstamm's main ob
jections to an MCA approach would not hold, for the kind
of French under consideration here is a variant which is
very close to SF! Recall that Lowenstamm (1981) dis
carded an MCA-based syllabification on the grounds that
the requirement "maximize initial clusters (in accordance
with the set of acceptable word-initial onsets)" pre
dicted inadequate syllabification in words like:
(25) aspir and not
With the suggested analysis, the discrepancy between
word-initial and word-internal s plus obstruent sequences
vanishes. We can thus maintain the general claim that at
least regional French, like Spanish and Romance in gener
al, is a true apositional language which uses a genuine
and extremely simple rightward strategy of parsing.
The implications of this analysis in terms of syllable-markedness are interesting both at the level of
the onset and at the level of the syllable. For onsetmarkedness, this claims that many variants of French
still function with a non-expanded onset of what Cairns
and Feinstein (1982) have called the MA-type, i.e., one
that displays single-branching into margin and adjunct.
Standard French may have expanded into the PM-type, that
is, the one which incorporates a pre-margin element.
This is an area of uncertainty where further research is
Does SF deserve the same kind of analysis which I



believe is justified in the case of NWF? Such a claim

would result in grammar simplification, but the sporadic
character of epenthesis in SF, no doubt influenced by
spelling, makes cogent evidence hard to come by. The
rarity of surface epenthesis argues against reanalysis
in SF. The markedness of syllabification norms, as ex
plained above, argues in favor of it.
Finally, if syllable markedness is defined in terms
of the maximal expansion of the syllable, we are led to
a reclassification of NWF from a (3,3) language to a
(2,3) language.
This move realigns it somewhat with
protypical Romance.

1. This is Dell's example (Dell, 1973). Against a reanalysis
of schwa into stable /oe/ in bordereau, it should be pointed out
that [b rdro] is conceivable in very rapid speech, while *[p rd ri]
is not conceivable, even in very slow speech.
2. An additional problem arises from the fact that some of
these epenthetic schwas have apparently lexicalized.
Thus, many
speakers of French differentiate in spontaneous speech between:
ours blanc [ursbla] "Polar bear"
ours blanc [ursbla]
"white bear, not necessarily Polar."
3. This latter variant corresponds to what obtains in large
parts of Normandy and the Loire valley (popular speech).
It is
representative of my own (unmonitored) speech.
4. To simplify comparisons of forms, I have zeroed in on /rk/
clusters, but similar results obtain with any liquid-obstruent se
quence. These data do not mean to suggest that epenthesis will
never occur in SF, or will always occur in NWF when the environment
is right. Especially in front of a stressed syllable, as pointed
out in 1.1., schwa will often be epenthesized both in SF and NWF,
even before a sonorant: un billet New-York - Londres [nujrkldr].
5. Throughout this discussion, I am using syllable-boundaries
merely as a notational shortcut. I take it as uncontroversial that
in a configurational theory of syllable-structure, these boundaries
can only be redundant.
6. As we have noted earlier, this syllabification does not take
place in NWF unless the coda is branching; and of course, liaison
operates as in SF.
7. Data come from Guerlin de Guer (1901), Beaucoudrey (1911)




and personal observations.

8. I am grateful to Marcel Pollak for this observation.

Beaucoudrey, R. G. de. 1911. Le langage normand. Paris: Librairie
Alphonse Picard et fils.
Cairns, Charles E. and Mark Feinstein. 1982. "Markedness and the
Theory of Syllable-structure". Linguistic Inquiry 13.193-225.
Delattre, Pierre. 1951. Principes de phontique l'usage des tu
diants anglo-saxons. 2nd ed. Middlebury College.
Dell, Franois. 1973. Les rgles et les sons. Paris: Hermann.
Guerlin de Guer, Charles. 1901. Le parler populaire dans la commune
de Thaon (Calvados). Paris: Librairie Emile Bouillon.
Harris, James. 1983. "Syllable-structure and Stress in Spanish: A
non-linear analysis". Linguistic Inquiry Monographs, 8. Cam
bridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Lowenstamm, Jean. 1981a. "De la syllabicit". To appear, ed. by
Franois Dell and J. R. Vergnaud. Paris: Hermann.
. 1981b. "On the Maximal Cluster Approach to Syllable
Structure". Linguistic Inquiry 12.575-604.
Montreuil, Jean-Pierre. 1983. Epenthesis vs. Cluster-reduction in
French and Creoles. Ms.
Morin, Yves-Charles. 1978. "The Status of the Mute e". Studies in
French Linguistics 1.79-140.
Tranel, Bernard. 1981. Concreteness in Generative Phonology: Evi
dence from French. Berkeley/Los Angeles: University of Califor
nia Press.


La Trobe University,

French clitic pronouns and their permissible or

non-permissible sequences have received considerable
attention (Langacker (1966), Perlmutter (1971), Wanner
(1974), Emonds (1974), Blanche-Benveniste (1975) , Kayne
(1975)), but the idea that cooccurrence restrictions may
be motivated and not simply morphological accidents is
not one that has frequently come to the mind of tradi
tional grammarians or modern linguists. Recently, how
ever, Barnes (1980), Herschensohn (1980), Burston (1983),
have suggested that elements such as topicality, gender,
individuation are factors which may restrict certain
combinations of clitics. In this paper, I want to pursue
certain of the conclusions reached in Burston (1983) and
to discuss clitic object sequence and cooccurrence re
strictions in French in order to show that their range of
application extends beyond that considered in the origi
nal article. For clarity, the points in Burston (1983)
which are relevant to the present discussion will be
briefly summarized.


Burston (1983)

The clitic objects are divided into two major cate

gories: (1) the intrinsically P' clitics, which are in
herently pro-prepositional phrases, and (2) the N' clit
ics, which are pro-noun phrases and not inherently proprepositional phrases.
Each major category is further divided into two sub
classes, which stand in opposition to each other with
respect to the feature [I], individuation:
P' clitics
me subclass le subclass

lui subclass y subclass

Individuation is a feature resulting from the pres
ence in the referent of the clitic of properties such as
humanness, animacy, definiteness, capacity to act or
(2) Il me voit. (humanness)
'He sees me'
(3) Cette maison lui rsistera (au feu).
(agentive properties)
'This house will resist it (fire)'
(4) Elle leur parle ( ses plantes).
(capacity to react assumed)
'She speaks to them (to her plants).
Note that in (1), contrary to the traditional mark
ing system: +(positive) vs. -(negative), oppositions are
organized in terms of +(positive) vs. 0(neutral) polar-



The + symbol signals a positively marked form,
i.e., a form which invariantly, in all its uses in the
language, manifests the property designated by the fea
ture. On the other hand, 0 signals an unmarked form,
i.e., a form in which the feature is either present, ab2
sent, or indeterminate, depending on the context.
this paper, capital letter "I" will be used to refer to
the individuation feature at the level of the code in the
lexicon, and small letter "i" to refer to individuation
in specific contextual realizations, as illustrated in
(5) for clitics me_ and le:
(5) me: [+I], i.e., [+i] in all contexts.
le: [I], i.e., depending on the context:
[+i] Il ne veut pas le cder sa mre
'He doesn't want to give him up to
his mother (the child)'
[-i] Il ne le cde jamais (son droit
partir en cong).
'He never gives it up (his right
to take leave)'
[I] Pour la btise, il ne le cde
'In stupidity, he comes second
to none'
Finally, Burston (1983) establishes a basic con
straint resulting in the prohibition of double intrinsi
cally [+I] clitics, i.e., of sequences of clitics invariantly marked
This constraint blocks sequences
of [+I] clitics
(a) taken from the same subclass:
(6) *Un problme se nous pose.
'A problem faces us'



(b) taken from two different subclasses:

(7) *Un problme Se lui pose.
'A problem faces him'

[+i] [+i] Sequences

I will now examine critically the restriction on

sequences of individuated clitics, and demonstrate that
(a) the restriction applies not only to intrinsic [+I]
[+I] sequences of the type illustrated in (6) and (7),
but also to some contextually determined [+i] [+i] se
quences and that (b) the ill-formedness, unnaturalness,
semi-acceptability or acceptability of [+i] [+i] se
quences is, to a great extent, due to the relative degree
of individuation attributable to the referents of the two
successive clitics. To be more specific, acceptability
judgments will tend to be more favorable if a reduced
degree of individuation is found in one of the two pro
nouns. The discussion will be mainly based on clitic
constructions with NP NP verbs (dative or non-dative)
and NP de NP verbs, and on partitive en constructions.
At the end, another restriction involving individuation
will be briefly considered.
2.1 Acceptable [+i] [+i] Sequences with Dative Verbs.
A reduced degree of individuation in a clitic may be the
consequence of the semantic content of the verb governing
that clitic. Such lexically determined reduction occurs
for instance with the dative verbs, which readily accept
two [+i] clitics. The paradigm dative situation can be
depicted as a three-way relationship between a source
(animate), a recipient (animate), and an object (inani
mate), which is transferred or communicated, actually or



(8) Paul a dit deux mots Marie.
'Paul said a couple of words to Mary'
(9) Paul a achet un livre Marie.
'Paul bought a book from Mary'
Although from a syntactic point of view the dative com
plement is an indirect object, a nonnuclear complement,
nonetheless, from a syntactic point of view, it is the
theme of the predicate and therefore one of the actants
upon which attention is focused in the sentence. On the
other hand, the direct object, despite its syntactic
prominence, is seen semantically as being under the con
trol of both the subject and the indirect object, thus
in a position of dependence (see Barnes, 1980). Conse
quently, even in non paradigm dative situations where the
direct object is human or animate, it is the inertia or
subordination of the object's referent that is retained:
(10) Il la lui a donne en mariage
(sa fille un banquier).
'He gave her to him in marriage
(his daughter to a banker)'
The daughter being presented as an object passed from
hand to hand, her human characteristics (ability to act
and react) are downgraded and, consequently, the con
textual individuation of the direct object referent de
creases and the [+i] [+i] clitic combination is accept
2.2 Acceptable [+i] [+i] Sequences with Partitive en.
The manner in which a referent is envisaged is a second
factor that can result in diminished individuation. This
occurs, for example, in clitic constructions involving
en. [+i] [ + i] sequences where partitive en is included



are judged grammatical without hesitation by native

(11) Je lui en trouverai (des amis).
[+I] [I] code
[+i] [+i] context
'I'll find him some (friends)'
(12) Je lui en trouverai un (ami).
'I'll find him one (friend)'
(13) Je lui en connais trois (amis).
'I know of three of his (friends)'
But note that the human referents of en in (11), (12),
and (13) are not fully individualized: in (11), en points
to an amorphous plurality; in (12), it represents an in
definite member of a class; and in (13), it signals quan
tification, i.e., dissolution of a unified whole. There
foreas per the saliency conditions of Fillmore (1977)
and the discussion on the nature of animacy in Comrie
(1981)the nonspecific/partitive reference made by en to
otherwise human, i.e., naturally individuated entities,
places this pronoun below the referent of lui on the in
dividuation scale, resulting thereby in grammatical [+i]
[+i] sequences in sentences (11), (12), and (13).
2.3 Unacceptable [+i] [+i] Sequences with NP NP Con
structions. If, on the other hand, no factor in the
utterance forces one of the two [+i] objects to be re
garded as less prominent with respect to individuation,
the combination clashes, yielding ill-formed or at best
uneasy sentences. This happens, for instance, with nondative verbs subcategorized [-NP NP] which may be
termed "associative" verbs. They describe either a link
between two objects, based upon an association on equal
terms ("symmetric" verbs: (14)), or an association where



one object serves as a reference point for the other,

without dominating or appropriating it ("polar" verbs:
(14) symmetric verbs: allier, associer,
joindre, lier, marier, unir, etc.
(15) polar verbs: attirer, attacher, prfrer,
comparer, etc.
Syntactically the symmetric verbs manifest the equality
status of their complements by taking coordinate con
structions (16) and reciprocal constructions (17), as
noted in Morin (1975) and Barnes (1980), but also by
excluding totally or admitting with great difficulty,
sequences of [+i] [+i] clitics, as shown in (18), (19),
and (20):
(16) On mariera Pierre et Marie.
'They'll marry Peter and Mary'
(17) Pierre et Marie Se marieront.
'Peter and Mary will get married'
(18) *On le lui mariera (Pierre Marie).
[I] [+I] code
[+i] [+i] context
'They'll marry him to her (Peter to Mary)'
(19) ??* Il faudrait la lui allier (la France
'One should ally it to it (France to Spain)'
(20) ??* On va la lui jumeler (Orlans Pise).
'They are going to make them sister cities
(Orlans and Pisa)'4
It is to be noted that, when a doubly marked [+i]
clitic sequence is less unacceptable as in (21), it is
because the symmetric verb has received a dative inter
(21) Devant l'ampleur de la tche, le directeur le



lui a associ (le nouvel employ Jeanne).

'Because of the enormous workload, the
director assigned him to her (the new
employee to Jane)'
The above example could be paraphrased as 'the director
gave (dative verb) the new employee to Jane as a helper',
the two complements of associer losing thereby their
equality status.
With "polar" verbs denoting an association for eval
uation purposes (comparer, prfrer), combinations of
[+i] clitics also lead to sentences of questionable gram
maticality, as (22a) shows:
(22) a. ??Vous avez tort de la lui comparer
(Marie Jean).
'You're wrong to compare her to him
(Mary to John)'
b. Vous avez tort de la comparer lui.
A disjunctive indirect object is preferred (22b) for, it
solves the problem of the incompatible [+i] [+i] sequence
and has as well the advantage of taking one of the com
plements out of the verb complex to set it up as an ex
ternal standard of comparison.
Similarly for attirer, in order to avoid the encoun
ter of two [+i] clitics, the pole towards which the move
ment takes place has to be represented by a disjunctive
pronoun. Compare (23a) and (23b):
(23) a. *I1 se l'attire par les cheveux (Marie).
[+I] [I] code
[+i] [+i] context
b. Il l'attire soi par les cheveux (Marie).
'He pulls her to him by the hair (Mary)'
Note that while (23a) with two [+i] clitics is ungrammatical, sentence (24), which contains the same pronominal



sequence se le, is perfectly correct; there are no co

occurrence restrictions on [+i] [-i] combinations.
(24) Il se l'attirera (le mpris de ses voisins).
[+I] [I] code
[+i] [-i] context
'He'll attract it upon himself (the scorn of
his neighbors)'
2.4 NP de NP Constructions. Up to this point, we have
examined mainly NP NP verbs, but with verbs subcategorized [-NP de NP] or "essentially pronominal" verbs
taking a de NP complement, similar incompatibility
phenomena can be observed. Likewise, acceptability of
[+i] sequences in this construction depends upon the
degree of individuation carried contextually by the two
clitic referents. The lexical properties of the verb
are once again the determining factor which excludes or
permits [+i] [+i] clitic combinations. The latter occur
freely with verbs
(a) whose de complement is locative/ablative:
approcher, loigner.
(25) Il s'en approcha (de Jean).
[+I] [I] code
[+i] [+i] context
'He approached him (John)'
(b) which express seizure or possession:
se saisir, s'emparer.
(26) Ils s'en emparrent (des enfants).
'They made off with them (the children)'
(c) which express dismissal, rejection, etc.: librer,
dlivrer, affranchir, se dfaire.
(27) Il les en dlivra (du monstre).
'He delivered them from it (the monster)'



(d) which contain 'quantified' connotations:

se souvenir.
(28) Je m'en souviens (de Jean).
'I remember him (John)'
The crucial point, of course, is that all the above de
complements involve passive, dominated, less essential,
or not fully engaged participants.
But consider sentence (29):
(29) ??* Il les en obtint (du general, les
hommes qu'il avait demands en renfort).
'He obtained them from him (the
reinforcements, from the general)'
The same doubly marked [+i] clitic sequence which was
acceptable in (27), is anomalous in (29). With such
verbs as obtenir or recevoir, the de NP is an active
source, a dynamic participant, the one in fact which ini
tiates the verbal process. It is therefore placed high
on the individuation scale, high enough to be as semantically prominentdespite its PP statusas the direct
object, and to exclude a [+i] [+i] clitic sequence.

[I] [I] Sequences Contextually Realized

as [-i] [+i]

Finally, I would like to show that the relevance of

the individuation feature is not confined to doubly
marked [+I] or [+i] combinations. Consider the following
sentences, which both contain the sequence le + en:

Je l'en remercierai (Jean de sa lettre).

I'll thank him for it (John for his letter)'
(31) *Je l'en attends (la rponse ma question,
de Jean).



'I expect it from him (the answer to my

question, from John)'
Inherently, the sequence le + en is doubly unmarked for
individuation as shown in (32), but it undergoes two dif
ferent contextual realizations, [+i] [-i] in (30) and
[-i] [+i] in (31), the second being ungrammatical:

This leads to the postulation of another constraint: a

sequence of clitics intrinsically unmarked for individu
ation is to be rejected if it is realized contextually
as a non-individuated clitic preceding an individuated
one. The reasons behind this [-i] [+i] incompatibility
are unclear. The constraint could be totally arbitrary,
but more likely derives from pragmatic considerations.
The speaker/hearer, faced with the problems of interpre
tation that an unmarked sequence inevitably generates,
tends to readily make a choice and grant semantic promi
nence to the first clitic (by giving it a positive [i]
marking) to match the syntactic prominence it has already
in its function of direct object. In any event, this
phenomenon needs further investigation.
The other member of the P' [I] subclass, y, can al
so enter into [I] [I] sequences. It is, however, dif
ficult to verify that the constraint applies to sequences
containing y; for, unlike en, y ([I]) has inherently
marked [+I] counterparts (lui and leur). Consequently,
y is much more rarely used to designate individuated en
tities, except in popular speech. To test the applica
bility of the constraint, one would need sentences like:



(33) *I1 faut l'y prparer (sa soupe Jean).

'We have to prepare it for him (his soup
for John)'
Unfortunately, such sentences would not occur anyway,
because it is another feature of popular speech and con
versational style to simplify sequences of le-subclass
clitics followed by clitics with dative value,
dropping the first pronoun. Thus, in popular speech,
(33) would take the reduced form Il faut y prparer leav
ing no opportunity for the above constraint to apply.


It has been the purpose of this paper to show that

the constraint against sequences of two intrinsically
marked [+I] cliticsas defined in Burston, 1983--is too
restricted and should, in fact, be regarded as a more
general constraint on sequences of individuated clitics
whether the marking be intrinsic or contextual. While
the constraint is absolute in the case of intrinsically
[+I] clitics, the various verbal constructions discussed
above show that elsewhere, its application depends essen
tially upon the presence of an equally high degree of
individuation in the two clitic referents. Factors such
as the lexical meaning of the verb and the manner in
which the referent is envisaged play a crucial role in
determining the degree of individuation carried by a
clitic and, hence, the relative acceptability or unacceptability of [+i] [+i] sequences.
This study is by no means exhaustive. In particu
lar, clitic sequences in embedded sentences (causative
and verbs of perception constructions) have yet to be
closely examined; but our conclusions appear to bear out



the related findings of Hyman and Zimmer, 1976.

In addition to the double positive restrictions/ we
have also proposed the existence of a pragmatic con
straint affecting the acceptability of [I] [I] contextually manifested as [-i] [+i].
Finally, this study, though essentially descriptive
in nature, is not without relevance for a general theory
of grammar; for, while Burston (1983) sees the constraint
against two [+I] clitics as projected from the lexicon
and operating in the base, it is not clear how and where
the incompatible sequences of contextually [+i] clitics
are to be accounted for in a formal grammar.

1. For insightful remarks on this question, see Blanche-Benveniste (1978).
2. About the theoretical basis of this marking system, see
Burston (1983:241) .
3. This restriction is not arbitrary, it is not a surface fil
ter. It stems from the fundamental impossibility for any French
verb to obligatorily select 2 [+I] objects; assuming that clitics
are base-generated, the prohibition would, then, originate in the
base (Burston, 1983:257).
4. The use of a disjunctive pronoun instead of a clitic for the
indirect object, would render sentences (18), (19), and (20) only
slightly more acceptable:
?*On le mariera elle ( elle not having a
contrastive function).
The role of the disjunctive pronoun being to stress the objectiveness of its referent, it isolates it from the verbal complex, it
distinguishes it from the other actants (see Monville-Burston,
1981). This is in contradiction with the semantics of symmetric
verbs which, on the contrary, emphasize the similar status of their
complements; which explains why the use of a disjunctive pronoun
barely improves (18).
5. These combinations occur all the more freely when certain
discourse conditions are met, in particular when the referent of en
can be considered to be old information, ideally in progressions




Elle n'aimait plus Jean (new information), elle voulait

se dbarrasser de lui (fairly new information), et elle
s'en (old information) est dbarrasse.
'She didn't love John any more, she wanted to get rid
of him, and she did'
The sequence: elle n'aimait plus Jean, elle voulait s'en dbar
rasser, et elle s'est dbarrasse de lui, would sound odd.
6. In the sense of Jakobson (1936).
7. For example, in popular speech, Je le/la/les lui ai
donn(e)(s), 'I gave it/them to him', tends to be replaced by Je
lui ai donn(e)(s).


Barnes, Betsy, 1980. "The Notion of 'dative' in Linguistic Theory

and the Grammar
of French". Linguisticae
Blanche-Benveniste, Claire. 1975. Recherches en vue d'une thorie de
la grammaire franaise: essai d'application la syntaxe des
pronoms. Paris: Champion.
. 1978. "A propos des traits smantiques utiliss en
syntaxe: critique du trait +/- humain". Cahiers de linguistique
Burston, Jack. 1983. "Clitic Object Sequence and Cooccurrence Re
strictions in French". Linguistic Analysis 11.237-265.
Comrie, Bernard. 1981. Language Universals and Linguistic Typology:
Syntax and morphology. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
Emonds, Joseph. 1975. "A Transformational Analysis of French Clitics
without Positive Output Constraints". Linguistic Analysis
Fillmore, Charles. 1977. "The Case for Case Reopened". Syntax and
Semantics, 8, ed. by Peter Cole and Jerrold Sadock, 60-80. New
York: Academic Press.
Herschensohn, Julia. 1980. "On Clitic Placement in French". Linguis
tic Analysis 6.187-219.
Hyman, Larry and Karl Zimmer. 1976. "Embedded Topic in French". Sub
ject and Topic, ed. by Charles Li, 191-211. New York: Academic
Jakobson, Roman. 1936. "Beitrag zur allgemeinen Kasuslehre". Se
lected Writings II, 23-71. The Hague: Mouton.
Kayne, Richard. 1975. French Syntax: The transformational cycle.
Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Langacker, Ronald. 1966. A Transformational Syntax of French, Un
published University of Illinois Ph.D. dissertation.
Monville-Burston, Monique. 1981. "Approaching Descriptive Adequacy:
A semantic analysis of the French disjunctive indirect object



pronoun construction". Proceedings of the 10th Anniversary

Symposium on Romance Linguistics, ed. by Heles Contreras and
Jrgen Klausenburger, 147-154. Seattle: University of Wash
Morin, Yves-Charles. 1975. "Remarques sur le placement des clitiques". Montreal Working Papers in Linguistics 4. 175-181.
Perlmutter, David. 1971. Deep and Surface Constraints in Syntax. New
York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.
Wanner, Dieter. 1974. "The Evolution of Romance Clitic Order". Lin
guistic Studies in Romance Languages, ed. by R. Joe Campbell
et al., 158-177. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.






The syllable has had an unprecedented history. Its

existence has been denied (and sometimes accepted) on
questionable physical and psychological grounds. Today,
chere is a renewed interest in this entity, especially
in its structure at the phonological level which is often
related to its physical realization by means of universal
principles of grammar as well as language-specific rules.
The purpose of this study is to analyze the struc
ture of the syllable in Spanish by referring to the
three-tiered syllabic theory discussed in Clements and
Keyser (1981). In this theory it is assumed that a syl
lable is composed of three tiers. One of these tiers is
considered a primary universal syllabic core that is
normally accompanied by language-specific positive and
negative conditions that allow or disallow regular or
irregular constituents.
Once these levels are fully
analyzed, we are then in the position to know automati
cally how syllabic boundaries obtain in Spanish.
This essay consists of three sections.

In Section



2 we review the history of various studies of the sylla

ble in Spanish. Section 3 introduces the structure of
the syllable. Finally, in Section 4 we show how this
theory explains some of the phonological processes and
problems in Caribbean Spanish.

Historical Perspectives

The nature of the syllable as a structural unit

raised an early interest in students of Spanish phonetics
and phonology. Reference was often made to various pho
nological contrasts occurring in syllable-fonal position
(Alonso, 1945), but it was not until 1948 when Malmberg
initiated a first approach to the internal organization
of the syllable with his pioneering article "La structure
syllabique de l'espagnol." In this study, of a strictly
phonetic nature, Malmberg ignores the well-known assign
ment of intrasyllabic boundaries in order to propose that
by observing the evolution of sounds and synchronic
studies in Spanish, one simple generalization can be
drawn, namely, that this language has a marked preference
for the CV syllabic prototype. Although illuminating and
detailed, this study is theoretically inadequate because
it proposes a prototype without dissecting its internal
structure and consequently fails to show its organic
relationship with the remaining syllabic types in the
An analysis that also recognizes the notion of a
syllabic prototype is given in Granda (1966). In this
study the author discusses the nature of the syllable by
considering its formal structure in Spanish (and in other
languages) to be a nucleus flanked by explosive and implosive branches, a proposal that reminds us of the clas-



sical syllabic constituents of onset, nucleus, and coda.

Granda examines the evolution of sounds in Spanish and
relates it to the simplifying tendencies they exhibit:
always in the direction of the CV prototype. The work
remains at the level of factual observation, Granda
often emphasizing the phonetic processes that occur to
sounds at syllable boundaries. The possibility of ex
ploring the interrelationship of syllabic constituents
within the word, and more broadly, in phonosyntax, is
left wide open.
Shortly after Granda's publication (originally writ
ten as a doctoral dissertation in 1958), Saporta and
Contreras (1962) introduced the first generative study of
the organization of the syllable in Spanish. They argue
that a phrase structure grammar generates the syllable
whose structure consists of an obligatory nucleus,
flanked by optional onsets and codas as illustrated in

In this grammar the nucleus is understood to be any

non-consonantal element, that is, pure vowels and glides.
The onset is a consonant or a cluster of consonants that
may occur in word-initial position. Finally, the coda
is any possible consonant that may occur in syllablefinal or in word-final position. The verbal he 'I have',
and the non-verbal hoy 'today' would be structured in the
following tree-like configuration:

Each branch corresponds to an empty onset and coda.




par 'pair' the syllable shows fully specified branches;

in pie 'foot' it has an onset without a coda, and in hiel
'bile' there is no branch for the onset, though there is
a fully occupied coda.

Graphically we have:

Saporta and Contreras1 grammar explicitly generates

all types of segments that may occur as onsets in wordinitial position, and as coda, in word-final position.
The medial consonantal clusters of the type mbr in hombre
'man', rsp in perspectiva 'perspective', br in libre
'free', nstr in construir 'to build', and others need
additional rules that would identify them as being an
interlude which consists of medial onsets and codas.
Later, the segments that would fit under each node will
be spelled out. Thus given perspectiva, its syllabificacation cannot be generated by the same grammar that gen
erates initial onsets or codas because there is no wordfinal coda of the type rs, nor word-initial sp onsets.
If the rp is identified as a possible medial coda, then
it would be syllabified correctly with the preceding
nucleus, and the one next to it would be assigned to the
following nucleus.
Since the criterion of simplicity is the ultimate
goal of Saporta and Contreras' description, the fact that
they have to invoke a reformulation of rules already gen
erated for onsets and codas in order to account for medi
al consonantal clusters, constitutes a rather severe com
plication for the grammar.
Firstly, because an onset
that has been generated word-initially is segmentally in
distinguishable from those generated in medial position.



Secondly, it seems that medial codas need to be stated

twice in the grammar since some consonants occur in this
position that are normally excluded from the final coda.
Such is the case for medials /p,t,b,f,g/
which are
uniquely excluded from the final coda, and this forces
them to reiterate an already extant rule. The duplica
tive effects of these rules thus entails a loss of a
significant generalization.
A description that avoids
reiterations of rules, and that refers further to major
consonantal classes would necessarily be very attractive
for its descriptive power and for its capacity for gen
eralization. This is our goal in Section 3.
We have seen that Saporta and Contreras analyze the
syllable as an entity consisting of an obligatory vocal
ic nucleus. A similar proposal is advanced by Hooper
(1976). She proposes that the syllable consists of an
obligatory nucleus that in Spanish must be [+vocalic].
It is surrounded by optional segments which relate to it
by means of a phonological template that is previously
defined in terms of a consonantal strength hierarchy.
The evidence for this hierarchy comes from the different
processes that consonants and glides undergo at the be
ginning and end of a syllable. For ease of discussion
we give her hierarchy in (4).

Thus given (4), the template in (5) would determine how

consonants group with their nucleus:




P(c): $Cm C n C p V C q C r $
If n > 1, then m > 6
n < 3
m > n

P,q = 1
r < 5
n > p
r > q
By applying (5) to padre ' father', the first C will be
filled with /p/ because in this position any consonant
may fit, and dr will cluster with the vocalic nucleus e
because the conditions of the template stipulate that if
there are two consonants preceding the nucleus, the one
immediately preceding it must be a glide or a liquid.
Since liquids are of greater strength than glides, the
consonants immediately before r must be of greater
strength; all obstruents to the right of numeral 6 in (4)
satisfy this condition.
This analysis confronts some shortcomings that
Hooper herself recognizes. That is, her template would
allow the non-existent clusters */r/, */r/, and
Her description also fails observationally.
If we examine the template in (5) we can see, in fact,
that the value of the subscript r in Cr is such that
only glides, liquids, nasals, and the fricatives /s,x/
are allowed in final position.
Since Cq cannot be
greater than 1, that is, it must be either /y/ or /w/,
then the final clusters ls in solsticio 'solstice1, rs
in perspectiva, and ks in extremo 'extreme1 would be
automatically excluded. We should further observe that
Hooper's theoretical model does not permit final /n/
which would violate the "true generalization condition";
however, the template would accept a hypothetical *pa
since nasals are not prevented from occurring in this



position. In summary, Hooper's model allows for anoma

lous forms as well as disallowing documented clusters in

Analysis of the Syllable as a CV Tier

We mentioned earlier that Granda had proposed the

CV syllabic prototype as the primary syllabic core for
Spanish, a proposal based on observations of the evolu
tion of sounds in the language and the universal presence
of CV in languages of the world. The 58% frequency of
the CV syllabic type in Spanish, as reported in Navarro
Tomas (1968), corroborates Granda's assertions. With
this in mind, we hypothesize that the syllable is a tree
like configuration consisting of three tiers: (1) an ini
tial syllabic node, represented by the symbol 6, (2) a
primary CV core, and (3) a phonetic representation of
consonants and vowels (for a more detailed discussion see
Clements and Keyser, 1981).3 With this structure, the
word muchacho 'boy', and pala 'shovel' would be repre
sented as follows:

This structure is not Spanish-specific; it obeys the

well-formedness condition of the universal syllabic the
ory. The theory is explicit and direct when accounting
for the automatic syllabification of a large number of
words with open syllables with one initial consonantal
segment. There is no need to specify the nature of C,
for all consonants in the phonological inventory of Span
ish may occur in that position. Notice, however, the



following syllabic


These are all possible syllabic types in Spanish and
so far we have only accounted for the basic syllabic type
We obviously have to account for the remaining
3.1 Onsets. The CV prototype specifies the number of
segments that defines it, that is, one consonantal ele
ment followed by a vocalic element. At this point it is
necessary to digress and elaborate on the nature of CV.
C will be understood to be any segment characterized by
the features [+cons, -voc]. This is an unequivocal char
acterization since it refers precisely to all consonantal
segments in Spanish.
On the contrary, V has a broader meaning and this
is evidenced in (8):
'(s) he cares'
'name of town'
'shoe polish'
todava 'still'
'to bring'



The vowels in (8a) are traditionally considered "pure

vowels"; in other words, they are defined by the features
[+vocalic, -consonantal]. These features cannot be en
tirely ascribed to the words in (8b) because, though they
have pure vowels, they also have glides. These nuclei
are known as diphthongs and tripthongs and normally are
considered single syllables, except when stylistic fac
tors intervene. To put it differently, the correct syl
labification for prieto in ordinary speech is /prje$to/,
never */prj$e$to/, nor */prj$eto/. The fundamental con
sideration that one must bear in mind is that each word
in (8) has a nucleus flanked by segments which are de
fined by the features [-vocalic, -consonantal]. There
fore, V is understood to be a vocalic segment that may
be grouped with glides.
Returning to our main discussion, we can now examine
the constituents of the Spanish onset. Were we to con
sider the syllabic types in (7), we would notice that
there is no onset with more than two consonants. So, in
order to incorporate this basic fact into our proposed
canonical syllabic type, C would be expanded in accord
ance with the universal principle of onset maximization.
Onset maximization: maximize
syllable-initial clusters.
The onset will be expanded up to two consonants,
thus being constrained by the theory that explicitly
states that no syllabic onset should include more than
two consonants. Given a segmental sequence VCCV or VCCCV
an automatic syllabification obtains by associating con
sonants with the C of the syllabic prototype. The word
otro 'other' syllabifies o$tro not *ot$ro, and explico
'I explain' would be /eks$pliko/, never */e$kspliko/, nor
*/ek$spliko/ because these forms violate principle (9).



Naturally, principle (9) would be counterproductive for

words such as antes 'before1, and afgano 'afgan' because
it presupposes the unheard of initial groups nt and fg.
It is a well-known fact that of all single consonants
that may initiate an onset, only the obstruents /p,t,k,
b,d,g/ may be followed by another consonantal element,
namely, the liquids /l,r/. This may be seen in table
(10) where all possible and impossible initial clusters
are shown. The vertical segments may head a cluster and
the horizontal ones may follow or not. This is indicated
by the symbols ' + ' and '-' respectively:

+ ++
+ +
+ +

p b f k g t d e s


m n l r l c y

+ +

- +
- +




? ?
- -- -- -


_ - - _ - - - - - _ - _ _ _ - - - - -

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - _ - _ - _ _ - _ _ - - - _ - - - _ _ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-- shows that it is possible to group a br,


-as in bravo 'brave' but it is impossible to have *bf

*bfavo, *bp *bpavo, *bk *bkavo, etc. This fact is incor
porated into the phonology of the language by stipulating
a positive condition on the syllable structure, thereby
specifying that only obstruents admit a following liquid.




Positive condition (for the onset)

Undoubtedly, condition (11) is general enough to

allow for all possible consonantal clusters, and even
more. More because its generalizing power is such that
even though it generates the legitimate groups
i t also allows for the unacceptable dl cluster and the
marginal tl. The latter may be grouped, as in a$tlantico, or it may be separated as in at$lantico. However,
there is no known word that has an initial dl cluster.
This type of spurious generalization is avoided by ex
cluding dl with a negative condition for the onset:
(12) Negative condition

Positive condition (11) further allows for the anomalous

clusters in (13):

Of the above groups only those with a question mark have

been partially documented in the pronunciation of the
Russian last name Kruschev [xruf] (Otero, 1971), and
in Dominican Spanish with atlantico [a$hlntiko] (Jimnez
Sabater, 1975), and more recently in the pronunciation
of a Dominican vice-president's last name Majluta



[ma$hlta]. It is possible, for instance, to find the

segmental sequences sr and sl in, respectively, Israel
and islands 'Icelandic1, which means that (11) would
group them as possible initial clusters. But notice in
(13) that all segments preceding the liquids are defined
for their stridency, thus allowing us to exclude them
with negative condition (14):
(14) Negative condition

By specifying the feature [+coronal] in (14) the groups

f1 and fr are not prevented from occurring. Also, (14)
does not contravene the possible clusters /xr/ and /xl/
because the velar fricative is non-coronal.
When analyzing the onset we should emphasize that
syllable structure takes place at a deep level, possibly
at the lexical level. Consider, for instance, the word
sublime 'sublime', represented lexically as /sublime/
which, after undergoing syllable structure results in
/su$bli$me/. Nonetheless, a more extensive investigation
is needed on the possible interactions between syllable
structure rules and the canonical shape of the word at
the lexical level. Observe that in subliminar 'to subliminate', which occurs lexically as /sub=liminar/, bl
may be grouped as in /su$bliminar/, thus undergoing the
effects of (11); or it may be separated as in /sub$liminar/. It seems that this variability and other similar
phenomena4 suggest that the boundary affix '=' is los
ing its morphological import in some words. It would
not be surprising to find speakers who might pronounce



the word sublunar as [su$blunr] instead of the regular

The lexicon also forces us to deal with some appar
ently thorny issues when considering the onset. Observe
the following examples:
(15) (a) pro=scribir
'to proscribe'
'to transcribe'
'to recruit'
'to write'
'to obstruct'
'to destroy'
'to build'
(b) in=stituto
All forms in (15a), and a host of similar forms,
suggest that underlyingly the onset may have more than
two consonants which, in fact, would seriously jeopar
dize the predictive power of principle (9). But not so.
Principle (9) would still maximize the onset to two con
sonants, in accordance with the restrictions discussed
so far. For instance, in /kon=skribir/ the /kr/ cluster
would be the onset, thus leaving the s unassigned to be
attached later to the preceding syllable as coda. This
will be discussed in Section 3.2.
/s/ assignment is automatic once we know the mor
pheme (a prefix, in this case) to which it may attach.
If, on the contrary, we consider the unprefixed morpheme
/skribir/, we would be totally at odds with a floating
/s/. We know, though, that such forms surface with an
epenthetic e, a fact that has been aptly discussed in
Harris (1969, 1980).
For our purposes we will follow
Harris (1980) where it is presumed that s has a preceding



empty vocalic template to which the vowel e is assigned.

We repeat Harris' rule in (16):

The basic form for escribir would be /Vskribir/ and

application of the template (16) V would be filled with
e. Once syllabification applies, the final output would
be /es$kri$bir/.5
Before concluding this section, let us reconsider
the canonical type CV and the syllabic types in (7),
Navarro Tomas states that approximately 3% of Spanish
words have neither onset nor coda. They are words such
as the auxiliary he 'I have', and the conjunctions y
'and' and O 'or' which can be accounted for by analyzing
them in the following manner:

There is an empty branch without a corresponding

phonetic element. In this case the C-deletion rule (18)
would generate the syllabic V:
(18) Delete an unassigned C from the onset.
This deletion is not triggered automatically because when
C is found in word-initial boundary, it may surface as a
reassociated element as we will show in Section 4.
3.2 Final Consonants. We have seen that CV is the syl
labic core par excellence in Spanish, followed by the
syllabic types CVC and VC which, together, add up to 30%.
In fact, it is obvious that the syllabic prototype is
closed by a single consonant. This is the result of a
rule operating on the CV prototype, in accordance with


the theory.

In the same manner

in which


the onset


be expanded, CV may be expanded finally by means of the

following rule:

Final-C addition:

Add a final C

to the syllabic prototype.

(19) thus accounts for all the final consonants in (20):














'(you) take'








'tail coat'










'jury foreman'






'they are'

There are two observations to be made here.


(19) does not distinguish the phonetic properties of the

added consonant.

This means that all consonants









in the


is also meant


final position, although there may be some


as to the type of segment occurring there.

Thus a Span











rarely occurs word-finally despite the fact that


to be

no apparent











This may be demonstrated


of nafta with a fully articulated




golf, and









a systematic


in the



is an oddity

been adopted

is also





in exclamations




as paf! and uf!

Secondly, (19) has the undesirable effect of gener
ating syllables closed by /c/ and /y/ which are nonexis
tent. Negative condition (21) would prevent them from
surfacing phonetically:
(21) Negative condition for final consonants

The inclusion of the feature [+sonorant] allows for the

occurrence of palatals // and / / which are found in the
alternating pairs desdn-desdenoso 'disdain-disdainful',
and aquel-aquello 'that-that over there'. These forms
have been appropriately analyzed in Contreras (1977) and
Harris (1980).
3.2.2 Syllabic Type CVCC. In addition to a syllable
closed by a single consonant, there is a reduced number
of syllables closed by not more than two consonants, as
seen in (7). This fact can be captured by expanding the
syllabic prototype with the following principle:
(22) Final cluster maximization: maximize
syllable-final clusters.
Principle (22) implicitly states that final syllables may
have only two consonants, at most. These are restricted
in their combinatory potentials. Observe, for instance,
in Table (23) that consonants in the column may only com
bine with those identified with the " + " symbol at the








P b





s t r u e n t s / p , b , k , t , d / and






this type that




The word



g t


X ,h

m n




the g r o u p


is one












in ( 2 4 ) :




'to a t t a c h '















1 r



tive c o n d i t i o n

the s o n o r a n t s / m , n , r , l / are














The specification of the feature [-palatal] prevents

the occurrence of the ill-formed *ns, *ls, *cs, and *ys.
Yet, the generalizing power of (25) is so immense that
it even includes the anomalous groups *fs, *f, *xs, and
One obvious phonetic fact noticeable in these
groups is that they belong to the same consonantal class,
that is, that of the fricative. By referring to major
consonantal classes they can be properly excluded by

The stipulation of the feature [-sonorant] in (26) does

not affect the well-formed groups rs and ls, nor does it
exclude ns because of the obvious lack of continuancy for
the nasal.
Recall that during the structuring of the onset,
the s in words like adscribir, lexically represented as
/ad=skribir/, was left unassigned. This segment is pre
cisely the one that closes the cluster under discussion
and, therefore, the syllabification of s is neatly cap
tured by positive condition (25).
In summary, we have shown that the structure of the
coda is accomplished by one positive condition and two
negative conditions which formalize the potential occur
rences of single consonants and their combinations at the
underlying level. We have also seen that positive condi
tions have a dual function. On the one hand, they gener
ate possible consonantal groupings; on the other hand,
they restrict the occurrence of anomalous groups. This
duality conforms to the theoretical premises of syllable



structure advanced here in which any deviant consonantal

combination is discarded. For the onset, *ns, *bp, *td,
would constitute such clusters. The negative conditions,
on the contrary, exclude those combinations generated by
positive conditions that are potentially pronounceable.
There is no *dl, nor *fs coda; however, speakers would
find little difficulty in articulating them (Clements and
Keyser discuss this more thoroughly).
3.2.3 Resyllabification. The study of the structure of
the syllable would be incomplete if a well-known fact in
Spanish is ignored, namely, resyllabification. In other
words, when a word ends in a consonant and the following
begins with a vowel they tend to be linked in ordinary
speech. Linking is realized regardless of the presence
of word boundaries, as exemplified in (27):
(27) toraks#anco - torak$sno 'wide torax '
'leave now'
The first example shows in fact that only one consonant
is added to the following vowel. In this case, and in
any final cluster, /s/ is linked with the vowel because
otherwise an unacceptable onset would be created as in
The proposed theory accounts for resyllabification
with extraordinary simplicity. We already know that in
words without onsets, the C in the CV prototype is unassigned and later deleted by rule (18). We also assume
that syllabification takes place at the lexical level,
perhaps at the word level. What we have then is that the
unspecified consonant of the middle tier is associated
with the lower phonological tier of the preceding word.
A similar process occurs in Finnish and in Turkish as
reported by Clements and Keyser. We propose for Spanish



the following rule of resyllabification:

(28) Associate an unspecified onset with
a preceding consonantal segment.
The example in (29) illustrates the application
(28): 6


Once the C of the CV template has been assigned, resyllabification is blocked because C is already fully speci
fied. That is the reason why there is no consonant link
age across a word boundary. For instance, (30a), for the
phrase frac linon 'buckram tail coat', is possible but
(30b) is completely erroneous:

It can be seen in (30b) that the l of linon has an occu

pied C and therefore the k in frac does not fit in the
CV template.
Finally, the C-deletion rule (18) cannot apply at
the level of word formation because otherwise it would
prohibit the application of (28). It is, apparently, a
postlexical rule in the sense of Mohanan (1981).
The analysis we have been considering so far gives
us a broad perspective of the structure and form of the



syllable in so-called standard Spanish. In the next sec

tion we will demonstrate some theoretical implications
that the syllable may have in Caribbean Spanish.

A Case Study of the Syllable in Caribbean Spanish

Among the topics more thoroughly researched in His

panic dialectology are the aspiration of /s/, the velarization of /n/, lambdacism of /r/, and rhotacism of /l/.
These processes normally occur in syllable-final posi
tion. In some countries /s/ and /n/ are also deleted.
Perhaps it is important to point out that before Hooper's
proposal (1972) for the inclusion of the syllable in gen
erative phonology, it was presumed that these consonants
were simplified because they occurred before a following
consonant or because they were in word-final position. A
copious literature on the topic later attempted to show
that this consonantal simplification did occur in sylla
ble-final position.
Guitart (1980), however, asserts that this is rather
an inaccurate analysis of the processes. He observed the
behavior of final consonantal clusters and concluded the
actual context for consonantal simplification was a pre
ceding non-obstruent segment followed by a consonant or
a word boundary. He then proposed rule (31):
With (31), the n in instituto is velarized in Cuban Span
ish and s is aspirated, resulting in [inhtituto]. Words
such as onix 'onyx' may be pronounced [niks], [nis],
/nih/, or [ni] but *[onikh] and *[nik] never obtain.
The anomalous *[onikh] is not allowed because it does not



meet the structural description of (31). If /k/ were to

be deleted, then /s/ would be in the appropriate context
for undergoing aspiration or deletion.
It was precisely the behavior of these and similar
clusters that convinced Guitart that simplification does
not occur at the syllable boundary because the h in
instituto is not in a syllable-final context.
Guitart's analysis is persuasive when considering
Cuban Spanish, but it is not general enough to account
for all Hispanic dialects in the Caribbean.
For the
present author, a native speaker of Dominican Spanish,
it is perfectly legitimate to pronounce obstculo 'obsta
cle' as [ptakulo] and extra as [ktra] which does not
meet Guitart's description.
A similar pronunciation
is also found in standard Spanish as evidenced in obtener
'to obtain' [o
tenr], and acto 'act' [kto].
The study of syllable structuring sheds light on
the behavior of final clusters. Given [inhtituto], and
[pelhpektba] for perspectiva, we propose that both /n/
and /r/ are not in syllable boundary but that they are,
literally speaking, in syllable-final position, a pro
posal that has a natural interpretation in the formalism
of the theory that follows.
(32) A segment P is in syllable-initial (syllablefinal) position if there is a node 6 such that
P is the leftmost (rightmost) segment dominated
by 6. Furthermore, P is in absolute syllableinitial (syllable-final) position if P is not
(Clements and Keyser, p. 36)
Schematizing with the word perspectiva, formalism (32)
applies to the morpheme pers as follows:




The segments /r,s/ are directly dominated to the right

by the node <5, ergo, they are in final position. For the
Cuban dialect the structural description of the process
would be greatly simplified. Thus, in instituto and sim
ilar forms, the velarization of /n/ and the aspiration or
deletion of /s/ would be realized as in (34):


According to (34), any nasal in syllable-final posi

tion would be transformed into a velar nasal, /s/ would
be aspirated or deleted, depending on styles, for the
same reasons.
By comparing (31) to (32) we see that the latter
captures a significant generalization for dialects in
Caribbean Spanish, not only in terms of the economy that
it entails but also because of the accuracy that obtains
when describing how consonantal elements are dominated

by its syllabic constituents.

1. Gracias to Carol Neidle for her valuable comments and help
in the preparation of the English version of this paper. Of course,
any errors are my responsibility alone.
2. Cap is the only Latin word known by the author with a final
voiceless bilabial stop.
3. The historical precedents to Clements & Keyser's theory are
found in Goldsmith (1976) and Kahn (1976).
4. The author finds unacceptable the syllabification of sub-




rayar 'to underline' as /sub$rayar/ but instead accepts /su$brayar/.

The same goes for subrogar 'to subrogate'. However, subreino 'subkingdom' is always syllabified as /sub$reino/.
5. Harris' proposal is also attractive if we consider loans
from some African languages which show the initial groups nk, mb,
nd, and others. These clusters when adopted by Spanish show an
epenthetic e A word like mboco 'sugar cane' would be analyzed as
/Vnboko/ to which rule (16) would apply thus generating emboco (see
Nuez-Cedeo, Alum, and Nodal, 1983).
6. Heles Contreras has pointed out to me that (28), and also
that traditional rules of resyllabification, would generate the
questionable pronunciation [fr$kanco] for frac ancho 'wide tail
coat'. This caveat is in need of substantiation because in a recent
survey I have been able to determine that some Latin Americans find
acceptable this kind of resyllabification.
7. We have only been able to find the pronunciation of these
forms with final voiceless stops among Argentinian speakers from
8. In his most recent work, Harris (1983) comes to similar con
clusions with a new model of syllable structure. This solid study
offers a serious challenge to Clements & Keyser's theory, and conse
quently, to the analysis we have proposed here. Undoubtedly the
future promises us interesting discussions concerning the choice of
one model over the other in the attempt to account for the fuzzy
facts of different Hispanic dialects.

Alonso, Amado. 1945. "Una ley fonolgica del espaol". Hispanic
Review 13. 91-101.
Clements, George N. and Samuel Jay Keyser. 1981. "A Three-tiered
Theory of the Syllable". M.I.T. Center for Cognitive Science,
Occasional Paper No. 19.
Contreras, Heles. 1977. "Epenthesis and Stress Assignment in Span
ish", University of Washington Working Papers in Linguistics
3. 9-33.
Goldsmith, John. 1976. Autosegmental Phonology, Unpublished M.I.T.
Ph.D. dissertation.
Granda, German G. de. 1966. La estructura silabica. Madrid: Revista
de Filologa Espaola. Anejo LXXXI.
Guitart, Jorge M. 1980. "En torno a la slaba como entidad fonematica en los dialectos del caribe hispnico". Thesaurus
Harris, James W. 1980. "Non-concatenative Morphology and Spanish
Plurals". Journal of Linguistic Research 1.15-31.
. 1983. Syllable Structure and Stress Assignment in Span
ish: A nonlinear analysis. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.



Hooper, Joan B. 1976. An Introduction to Natural Generative Phonol

ogy. New York: Academic Press.
Jimenez Sabater, Max. 1975. Mas datos sobre el espaol de la Repb
lica. Dominicana. Santo Domingo: Ediciones Intec.
Kahn, Daniel. 1976. Syllable-Based Generalizations in English Pho
nology. Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Malmberg, Bertil. 1948. "La structure syllabique de l'espagnol".
Boletim de Filologia 9:99-120.
Mohanan, Karuvannut Puthanveettil. 1982. Lexical Phonology. Unpub
lished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Navarro Tomas, Tomas. 1968. Studies in Spanish Phonology. Coral
Gables: University of Miami Press.
Nunez-Cedeno, Rafael A., Rolando Alum, and Roberto Nodal. To appear.
"The Afro-Hispanic Abaku: A study of linguistic pidginization". Orbis.
Otero, Carlos-Peregrin. 1971. Evolucin y revolucin en romance.
Madrid: Seix Barrai.
Saporta, Sol and Heles Contreras. 1962. A Phonological Grammar of
Spanish. Seattle: University of Washington Press.




Portmanteau Words and Allomorphy

This paper is primarily concerned with the theoret

ical implications of what have been called portmanteau
words (Hockett, 1947). These are words, such as French
au 'to the' and du 'of the,' which are unanalyzable into
a linear sequence of independent word-level components,
but replace, and correspond to, one such sequence (French
* le, *de le). Assuming that portmanteau words are
formed as a unit in the lexicon appears to pose a problem
for standard theories of constituent structure, both in
side the lexicon and in phrase-markers. This is due to
the fact that some of these words, like the examples
cited, are not phrases or phrasal constituents. I con
tend that the problem does not arise within the theory
of phrase structure of Lasnik and Kupin (1977), hence
forth RTTG, and Kupin (1978). Since forming these items
in the lexicon is a preferable alternative, this consti
tutes an argument in favor of the RTTG system and, by the
same token, against tree-based theories of phrase struc-



Furthermore, the system devised here, although
compatible with RTTG and indeed implicit there, is not
generable by a phrase structure grammar, whereas all of
Lasnik and Kupin's examples are. If correct, then, this
system reveals a basic limitation of all such grammars:
they cannot directly assign constituent structure to a
level wherein portmanteau words are included, whether
these words are formed lexically or not. If such a level
must be part of linguistic theory, this limitation is in
principle a defect; the system of RTTG, which is de
fined in terms of well-formedness conditions and need not
correspond to a rewriting grammar of the familiar type,
would then be superior to these alternatives in this
respect as well.
A second topic of this paper is the viability of
certain very strong constraints imposed on allomorphy by
the theory of lexical phonology (Kiparsky, 1981; Mohanan,
1982; Harris, 1983), as well as by other restrictive the
ories of phonology (e.g., Lapointe, 1980). These con
straints require, in my view, that forms like du and au,
but also others apparently less idiosyncratic, be formed
in the lexicon. A solution to the difficulties alluded
to in the preceding paragraph implies that, over the
range of data considered here, those constraints can be
imposed. The entire discussion will be framed here in
terms of lexical phonology, but the two topics are con
ceptually and empirically distinct. On the one hand, as
pointed out above, irregular complex words will occur as
such at some level regardless of where they are formed.
On the other, it need not be the case that all apparent
exceptions to the constraints of lexical phonology re
quire the same kind of treatment, and indeed I claim in
section 3 that they do not. These and other reasons in-



dicate that it might have been wiser to treat the two

topics separately, but the second topic cannot be treated
apart from the first, while it is the first that provides
the empirical material for the second. I trust that no
confusion will arise from my presenting both of them

Allomorphy and Its Conditioning

The theory of lexical phonology divides phonological

rules into two classes. "Lexical" rules apply only with
in the boundaries of lexical items; within this theory,
this is an automatic consequence of the fact that they
apply in the lexicon. These rules are cyclical, apply
always in derived environments, and admit of exceptions.
"Postlexical" rules, on the other hand, follow lexical
insertion, are exceptionless, and apply regardless of
word boundaries. In current formulations of the theory,
the following constraints follow without further stipu
lation from this distinction:


There can be no allomorphy rules con

tingent on the shape of adjacent words.
b. There can be no postlexical rules
sensitive to the internal structure
of words, or affecting it.
Any theory of morphology where allomorphic diversity is
handled by the lexicon will accept the constraints in
It may be thought that context-sensitive lexical
insertion could circumvent their effects, but, as I point
out below, this is not the case. There are, however,
numerous instances in Romance where a word A appears as B
in the context of word C; some will be reviewed shortly.
These examples appear to require that we abandon a lit-



eral interpretation of (1) and postulate a special class

of late "morphological" rules. These rules would operate
on sequences of full lexical items after insertion, and
would have essentially the power of creating a new word:
thus, French de le would become du. I will not attempt
to argue here against this alternative, which seriously
weakens the explanatory value of lexical phonology, but
let me point out some of the problems it raises. Forms
like du are irregular and idiosyncratic; the lexicon, not
sentence grammar, is the repository of linguistic idiosyncracies.
Moreover, a post-insertion phonology for
syntagmatic irregularity would constitute a new linguis
tic subsystem, to be added to the standard ones. Its
existence would mean that forms like du are not lexical
items: their components -de, le- would need to be marked
in the lexicon with special diacritics, which would trig
ger the application of the corresponding context-sensi
tive rule. This rule would be obligatory. In sum, this
alternative makes use of far more apparatus than, if
viable, one obeying (1), would require. In the latter
case the lexicon would not be enriched with arbitrary
diacritics, nor sentence phonology with irregular allomorphy processes and diacritic triggering of them. By
adopting postlexical allomorphy rules we essentially add
one more linguistic level to the grammar, and make the
division of labor between the lexicon and the remaining
components much less clear-cut than it seems to be at
present. Still, these objections do not constitute an
argument. Here I will simply assume that a theory incor
porating (1), or otherwise making postlexical allomorphy
impossible, is preferable, and proceed to show that con
textual allomorphy can be handled in such a theory.
Apparent violations of (1) are conspicuous in prob-



ably every language. Their idiosyncratic character, how

ever, has deterred contemporary linguists from attempting
a systematic study of their implications (a major excep
tion is C.P. Otero, from whose work some of the examples
below will be taken). Some of these putative violations
turn out upon closer examination to be the surface mani
festation of a regular phonological fact. For instance,
French h aspire words such as hros 'hero,' which are
vowel-initial in the surface, will select the masculine
definite article le, as consonant-initial words do, not
the elided form l'; thus, we have le hros 'the hero,'
but l'rotisme 'eroticism.' Now Clements and Keyser (to
appear) treat all instances of h aspir as unassociated
consonantal slots in the CV skeleton of the words exhib
iting them. For this or any equivalent analysis, then,
there is no irregularity here, and the le/1' alternation
is simply a consequence of the (presumably postlexical)
rule of French which excludes prevocalic schwa.
Such underlying regularities do not always exist,
however. Consider an Italian example similar to the one
just given. The masculine plural article is i before
single consonants and obstruent-liquid clusters; it is
gli [ Xi ] elsewhere: i libri 'the books,' i problemi 'the
problems,' but gli studenti 'the students,' gli psicanalisti 'the psychoanalysts,' gli [ts]ii 'the uncles,' gli
[w]omini 'the men,' gli alberi 'the trees' [E 1 ] .
Note that nothing prevents the sequence [Xi] from occur
ring elsewhere in the language before a single consonant
(taglino 'they cutpres. subjunctive'); as for single i
in the contexts forbidden to the article i, not only does
it occur, it is even used to break up multiple clusters:
in scuola 'in school' can appear as in iscuola.
Spanish provides a still clearer example of a simi-



lar alternation in articles. The feminine singular def

inite article la is replaced by el before most nouns be
ginning with a stressed a: la aguja 'the needle,' but el
agua 'the water.' The form el is not allowed before any
other feminine category, regardless of its phonological
shape: thus, before an adjective, we have la alta nube
'the high cloud,' not *el alta nube. A postlexical ac
count of this alternation is clearly impossible; the rule
selecting the article would need to have access, not only
to the phonological makeup of the adjacent word, but also
to its grammatical category. Notice that the sequence
la + a is not excluded anywhere else in the language:
ala alta 'high wing' [E 2 ] .
Predictably, verb-clitic combinations provide nu
merous examples of lexical-type processes operating with
in units larger than the syntactic word. In some of the
so-called bable dialects of Asturias, in Northwestern
Spain, a rule of Umlaut affecting words ending in [u]
applies to the stem of verbs to which the clitic lu '3rd
sing, mase.' is attached: bend-la 'to sell her,' but
bendi-lu 'to sell him' [E 3 ] . In these dialects also,
the final [r] of an infinitive is deleted before an ob
ject clitic: the form of the infinitive meaning 'to sell'
is bendr in isolation. One might be tempted to attrib
ute this to an assimilation cum degemination rule which
affects liquids elsewhere in these dialects: bend' les
ubeyes 'to sell the sheep.' But infinitive [r] disap
pears also before obstruents, marcha-se for *marchar-se
'to go away' (Neira, 1976), and before vowels, bende-is
for *bendr-is 'to sell to them' (Alarcos, 1980), when
these segments belong to a clitic [E 4 ] . In Eastern Cat
alan the final [r] of an infinitive follows the opposite
pattern: it is systematically deleted whenever a clitic



follows. Thus, anar 'to go' is [ n], but we have ana[r]-se'n 'to go away1 and anar-hi [ nri] 'to go there'
[E 5 ] . In Judeo-Spanish, the final [d] of the second
person plural imperative metathesizes regularly with the
initial [1] of a following object clitic: arubad 'steal'
+ le '3rd sing. ind. obj.' gives arubalde 'steal from
him/her' (example from Alvar, 1979:140) [E 6] . This is
a telling casewith parallels in Old Spanishsince me
tathesis is used for morphological purposes in a variety
of languages (Thompson and Thompson, 1969) but may well
not function anywhere as a context-free phonological
process applying across arbitrary boundaries.
The number of such construction-specific rules in
volving clitics is extremely high in Romance. Peninsular
Portuguese clitic infixation in the future and the con
ditional provides another example: to falarei 'I will
speak' and lhe [Xe] '3rd sing. ind. obj.' corresponds
falar-lhe-ei 'I will speak to him/her' [E 7] . Also in
Portuguese, the third person direct object clitics o(s),
a(s ) cause the "deletion" of a preceding verb-final r,s
or z and, in this context, surface as lo(s), la(s ) : f iz
'I did' + o yields fi-lo 'I did it' [E 8] . In Galego,
verb forms ending elsewhere in -u or in a stressed diph
thong appear to have a final [n] added when the third
person clitics follow them: matu 's/he killed' + o is
matuno 's/he killed him/it' [E 9] .
Multiple clitic sequences provide other well-known
examples. The Spanish third person indirect object clit
ic le occurs as se before a third person direct object
clitic: le + lo + di = se lo di 'I gave it to her/him'
[E 10 ]. Italian si occurs as ci before another instance
of si: si 'unspecified subject' + si in the pronominal
verb form divertirsi 'to have fun' yields examples like



ci si divertiti '(unspecified) have had fun' [E 11].

I have given a relatively large sample of data be
cause within any single language apparent exceptions to
(1) may look like marginal phenomena which can be dealt
with on an ad hoc basis, since there is no generalization
to be missed by doing so. But even as limited a crosslinguistic survey as the one above makes it clear that
we are dealing with a sizable class of phenomena, and the
emergence of lexical phonology makes it imperative that
we confront it.

Some Consequences of S-Structure Lexical Insertion

Once we assume s-structure lexical insertion (as in

Otero, 1976, to appear; Fiengo, 1981; Lapointe, 1980;
Jensen, 1983) many of our apparent counterexamples to (1)
turn out to be fairly easy to handle. Consider E 1 and
E 2, respectively, the Italian and Spanish examples of
article allomorphy conditioned by the following word.
What (1) forbids is an operation affecting the shape of
the article once it has been inserted, but not a contex
tual condition in its lexical entry. We may want to
exclude context-sensitive lexical insertion, due to restrictiveness and other general theoretical reasons that
cannot be entered into here. But, just as agreement
rules can be formulated as s-structure well-formedness
conditions (e.g., as in Lapointe, 1980), we may obtain
the effect of context-sensitive lexical insertion by
checking the environment for the inserted form of the
article. We would thus have a double entry for the
Italian masculine plural article, as in (2):
(2) i
[+ Art, + mase, + pl, ...,
gli [+ Art, + mase, + pl, ...]

C (L) ]



These forms are ordered under the Elsewhere Condition,

with i, as the more specific one, having precedence over
gli. I assume that the contextual indication in the en
try for i is to be interpreted as a well-formedness con
dition on the string resulting from its insertion. An
analogous treatment can be given to the Spanish example.
S-structure insertion and contextual specifications
in the lexicon are not sufficient to account for other
cases, however, and neither would context-sensitive in
sertion be, which has exactly the same limitations. Note
first that the format in (2) implies that the article is
a separate word.
We have seen that word-level rules
apply sometimes to such complex units as a verb taken
together with a clitic: an example is the Umlaut rule of
Asturias bable [E 3 ].
If we treated the clitic as a
separate word we would not be able to account for this.
Hence these properties of these clitics cannot follow
from anything in their lexical entry, since we would not
want them to have one. Second, consider clitic metathe
sis in Judeo-Spanish [E 6 ] . Recall that in this language
arubad and le appear together as arubalde 'steal from
him.' In the format of (2), both the verb form and the
clitic would need to have double entries; for the verb
the form aruba would be listed as the contextual variant
to be chosen before a clitic beginning with [1], the form
arubad for the remaining contexts; for the clitic we
would have something like (3):

lde [+ clitic, + 3rd, - pl, + ind.] /

[v + imperative, + 2nd, + pl]
le [ + clitic, + 3rd, - pl, + ind.]
In (3) the generalization that [d] is part of the imper
ative marker is lost, and the incorrect claim is made
that [lde]an ill-formed syllable in this languageis



an allomorph of the indirect object clitic. Moreover,

the fact that the initial [1] of any third person clitic
metathesizes with the preceding [d] is never stated as a
unitary phenomenon. The multiple entry system, there
fore, although appropriate for (2) and similar cases, is
useless elsewhere. When two adjacent items interact with
each other, as in arubalde, that interaction must be
handled in the lexicon, and its output is therefore a
Consider now another example. The Spanish preposi
tion con 'with' can precede any of the oblique forms of
the personal pronoun system except the first and second
singular and theindistinctly singular and pluralre
flexive. In the former case we have such examples as con
nosotros 'with us'; in the latter, instead of *con m,
*con ti, *con s, the forms conmigo, contigo and consigo
are used. The element go, as is well-known, is not an
independently occurring morpheme. These forms correspond
to Latin mecum, tecum, secum 'with me, etc.,' although
they do not derive directly from them. The Romance re
flexes became semantically opaque and are now adjoined
to an etymologically redundant instance of con, the re
flex of cum. The question we have to address is whether
we want to treat conmigo as one lexical item.
There is independent evidence that it is one. Chom
sky's "lexical integrity hypothesis," which as Mohanan
shows follows from the assumptions of lexical phonology,
indicates that syntactic rules cannot refer to internal
constituents of words. Thus, although new books and
journals is well-formed, *New York and Orleans (for New
York and New Orleans) is not (cf. now Huang, 1983). In
Spanish, con Julia y Marta is a well-formed reduction of
con Julia y con Marta 'with J. and M.' But conmigo y con


Marta cannot be reduced




y Marta.


then, behaves syntactically as a single word.

It cannot, however, be an item of category X o in the
X' system, since it is not a potential head of a phrase
like the noun




all purposes, conmigo

behaves just like con nosotros or con Julia, i.e., as a

prepositional phrase.

But there would be nothing unprec

edented about having a lexical


item which is neither an

nor a member of the limited

set of so-called

matical" categories, such as Determiners.







Many linguists




category NP; for others, certain adverbs such as here are









clitics like the French en and y must, at some level, be


as PP's.

We could

then claim

that, in the

lexicon, the structure of conmigo is something like (4a)

or perhaps (4b):

(4 )





serted as a unit.




sequenceE 10, E 1 1 c a n
















Strozer, 1976; Lapointe, 1980; Klavans, 1982) avoids the

difficulties associated with this kind of treatment.
Corresponding to the Italian example ci si divertiti
[E 11] we might have:

If all clitic clusters are lexical units in, e.g., Ital

ian and Spanish, the non-occurrence of *si si [E 11] or
*le lo [E 10 ], as well as that of the much-discussed
clitic order violations like Spanish *lo le, are ex
plained simply because no such forms exist in the lexi
con, just like no form *beed exists in English for the
participle to be. Some mechanism is still needed to pre
vent the lexicon itself from generating *si si, etc. I
suggest below that this is the same mechanism that ex
cludes *beed.
In some of the examples in Section 2 verb-clitic
combinations were seen to be affected by lexical-type
rules. Once we allow for the existence of words beyond
the X o level we can treat those combinations as in (4)
and (5). Catalan anar-hi [ E 5] , e.g., would appear at
the output of the lexicon perhaps as:

The purpose of this paper is not to elucidate the

specific problems of branching and labeling associated
with a precise formulation of (4), (5), (6), and similar
structures. We can only consider here the general de
vices which must be available to particular grammars for
the representation of lexicalized units of this type.



Even with this limited goal in mind, however, it is easy

to see that simple branching as in the above examples
does not always give satisfactory results. First, as has
been pointed out by Carlos Otero, it is not always clear
how to divide some of these units into discrete compo
nents. Shall we analyze Galego matuno ' s/he killed him'
[E 9] as [[matu][no]] or as [[matun[to]]? Is Portuguese
fi-lo 'I did it' [E 8] [[fi][lo]], [[fil][o]], or nei
Second, and more importantly, no such division
into discrete units is sometimes possible after lexical
phonology rules. Judeo-Spanish arubalde, as we noted,
has half the clitic preceding the last consonant of the
verb, the other half following it. A neatly branching
[[arubad][le]] no doubt precedes this form in its intralexical derivation.
The situation is reminiscent of
earlier stages in transformational syntax: deep struc
tures assumed to be branching would be altered through
the application of rules. The issue of what properties
the resultant structures had was the object of much
speculation until, among other things, the structure-pre
serving constraint made it more manageable (cf. Chomsky,
1982:14-15). The metathesis in arubalde, however, is not
structure-preserving in anything like this sense. Its
output, as a consequence, cannot be represented in tree
form. Let us reserve the expression higher order complex
words for output units of the lexicon which, like the
ones above, are not Xo or "grammatical" categories. For
ease of reference, we can state as (7) the observation we
just made:

Certain higher order complex words

do not have tree properties.
Grammatical theory must provide a way of represent
ing the units covered by (7). This is one of the issues



to be addressed here. There is a second issue which none

of the examples in Section 2 raises. All of them, how
ever problematic their internal structure may be, belong
to some category in the X' system: conmigo, as we saw,
is a PP; arubalde, like other verb-clitic combinations,
is presumably labeled V' . But such a straightforward
ascription of higher order words to syntactically moti
vated categories is not always possible. Consider French
du. De is a preposition and le is an article, but du is
something different from either one of its 'components";
both representations in (8) are absolutely inadequate:

A more interesting fact is that the grammar of French
will never provide a syntactic node exhaustively domina
ting du. The PP du jardin 'of the garden' will make this
clear. Having rejected the structures in (9a) and (9b)
below, we must propose one with the properties of (9c).
But there, as elsewhere, the lexical unit du spans ele
ments which no single node is labeling:



We can conclude that:

(10) Certain higher order complex words do
not belong to any single category of the
standard theory of phrase structure.
Complex lexical units may thus be incompatible with
the limitations of tree geometry in two different re
spects: internally--(7)--in that they may not be amenable
to a tree representation, and externally--(10)--in that
a tree representation cannot accommodate some of them,
I now turn to consider what alternative kind of structure
they must be assigned.


Reduced Phrase Markers

We are concerned with structures which, in something

like tree form, would be as in (11) and (12):

(11) corresponds to examples like Judeo-Spanish arubalde,

and (12) to a phrase containing French du or a similar



item. Note that a theory of "trees" could conceivably

be devised which could accommodate (11) and (12). These
diagrams, however, have no correlates in the standard
theories of phrase structure. This appears to be a con
sequence of the fact that these theories require phrasemarkers, or their equivalent, to provide a consistent
analysis of their product: "put informally, if K gives a
consistent analysis of Z then no two constituents of Z
[with respect to] K will overlap unless one is included
in the other" (Chomsky, 1955:53.6, henceforth LSLT; ref
erences given are to sections). To see how this is the
case, recall the nature of LSLT's phrase-markers. Given
a set of equivalent derivations D 1 , D2,... of a
string Z consisting entirely of terminal elements, "we
define a [phrase]-marker of Z as a set of strings each
of which appears as a term in one of the derivations
D2..." (LSLT:93.1).
Such phrase-markers corre
spond to sequences of statements of the form . The
closest analog to a phrase-marker for (11a) would be
(13): 5
BC, a}
The corresponding sequence of conversion statements--its
(sub)grammar--would then be (14):
A BC, B a, C a
But what this grammar generates is not (11a) but rather
{A, BC, Ba, aC, aa}
which can only be represented in tree form as (16):

As for RTTG's reduced phrase-markers (RPM's), they

can be considered as proper subsets of a phrase-marker,



consisting entirely of the phrase-marker's initial sym

bol, its terminal string, and all of its monostrings, a
monostring being a string consisting of one or more ter
minal symbols and only one non-terminal. Thus, for the
well-formed (16) above, corresponding to the phrase-mark
er (15), we have the RPM in (17):
A, Ba, aC, aa
Besides having an initial symbol and a terminal string,
an RMP P must meet the requirement that, given any pair
of elements in it, either one of them precedes the other
or one of them dominates the other, according to the fol
lowing definitions, where = (the monostring) xAz:
(18) a. y is a* in P if xyz P
b. (= xAz) dominates in P
if = x z, X 0, X A
c. precedes in P if y is a*
in P and = xyX , X 0
(Graphically, then, (17c) obtains in an RPM of the form
.. . xAz, xyz, xyX ,.. . )
Now for (11a) the only available RPM would be as in
{A, Ba, aC, a").
But, by the above definitions, no "dominates" relation
holds between the two monostrings in (19); neither does
one of them "precede" the other. Therefore (19) is not
an RPM. It is equally easy to show that (12) does not
correspond to a well-formed phrase-marker or RPM, an
otherwise familiar fact.
The situation thus created by complex words is not
unfamiliar to linguists. The complexity of the mapping
between phrase-markers and the level of words motivated
Chomsky's proposal in LSLT that such a mapping is trans
formational in nature (LSLT:56.4, 62, 88). Later, in

30 4




the alternatives

chapter 2, 2.3.3-4,
base component


4 . 3 ) , the





are also transformational.

of the



the one most extensively adopted afterwards, a dummy ter



A in the phrase-marker

is transformation

ally replaced with a lexical item (cf. Selkirk, 1982, for

a similar suggestion in the domain of morphology).


is an




problems posed by du and similar forms.




4.3) framework.



to the

Let us begin by




We have seen in connection with ( 4 ) , (5)

and (6) that this framework must be extended to allow for


under nodes higher

than X o .

come out of the lexicon

structure, as


[p A ] node.



( 4 ) , and would


Thus [ pp conmigo]

an internal




[P NP]

under" a

du, however,


lexical insertion transformation must be allowed to take

a string of more than one element as a single term in its








this possibility

has been

as a

ted, insertion under higher nodes, as with [pp ] above

for conmigo, may be superfluous.

Let us exclude it here:

in our example, conmigo would then be inserted just like
















[pp[p ][Np ]].


[ pp conmigo] would





entire prepositional phrase, and could not therefore ap

pear as part of one.

Now Spanish tonic pronouns are made

overtly reflexive--simplifying





them somewhat

(cf. Piera,

forms mismo(s)/misma(s),

where o/a_ mark the gender and s the plural: to con noso







con nosotros








possibilities for lexical insertion under a PP node, we

would expect conmigo mismo/a 'with myself' to be illformed. But it is not. Hence insertion under a string
seems to be a preferable alternative also in these cases.
Recall in this connection that insertion operates under
"non-distinctness" in the model we are using. Conmigo
"is a" P and "is an" NP, in an intuitive sense to be made
precise below, and du "is a" P and "is an" Art, although
they are not reducible to any of these categories. Nondistinctness would not, then, prevent their insertion
under the relevant nodes.
I would like to claim, granted some fairly natural
provisos, that after lexical insertion has applied in the
manner just described we still have configurations describable in terms of RPM's, portmanteau words notwith
standing. Let u stand for the identity element at this
level. Suppose lexical insertion obeys (20):
(20) a. Replace A with a lexical item (a
lexical set of feature matrices)
b. Replace A with u
The (sub)RPM for du jardin--(9)--would then be as in (21)
before insertion, with dummy symbols indexed for conve
PP, NP, 1 2 N, P 2 3,
1 Art 3, 1 2 3
After insertion, we would have (22):
PP, u1 NP, u1 u 2 N, P u 2 jardin,
u1 Art jardin, du jardin
We may let both subparts of (20) apply without restric
tions, subject to familiar well-formedness conditions at
s-structure and elsewhere, supplemented perhaps by (23):
(23) Every syntactic category in an RPM must
be associated by the converse of the is a*



relation either with a lexical set of

feature matrices or with the null symbol .
In (22) the term "syntactic category" designates either
an Xo symbol of the X' system or a category label outside
that system (Determiner, etc.) (cf. LSLT, 46 and chapter
If traces, along with other standard empty catego
ries, contain features, the provision concerning (3 may
be superfluous (but cf. Fiengo, 1977; Torrego, 1983, for
[Det.]. In any case, 0 is of course different from u
(cf. LSLT, 16).
Observe now how, given the definitions in (18), (22)
not only contains all the necessary information, but is
a well-formed RPM.
In the first place, du bears the
relation is a* to
since z =
= P;
this is shown in (24), where the strings xAz and xyz are
meant to represent those in (18):
(24) x
In parallel fashion, du also bears the relation is a* to


In informal terms, then, du "is a" P and "is an"
Art. Thus, (22) implies a descriptively adequate ac
count of the category status of du. Second, every pair
of elements in (21) satisfies either precedes or domi
nates. The only non-standard pairs are those involving
du and the immediate "upper" nodes.

dominates du jardin,





in (26), and
also dominates
(26) x
(27) x
Therefore, (22) is a well-formed RPM.
As RTTG and Kupin (1978) show, RPM's convey less
information than could be obtained from a PS grammar, in
linguistically significant respects. We have seen that,
through use of the identity element, they can also convey
information unavailable to a PS grammar, and that this
again is relevant to linguistic theory. Two claims are
made here: (a) that a linguistic level having the proper
ties of (22) is not adequately described by a standard
context-free phrase-structure grammar; (b) that such a
linguistic level is adequately described in terms of Lasnik and Kupin's RPM's. Both claims have some theoretical
interest, the former in the light, for instance, of sev
eral recent proposals to expand the role of phrase-struc
ture grammars, the latter because RPM's were proposed in
an entirely different context and argued for mostly on
formal grounds. The analysis advanced here, if correct,
provides very strong evidence in their favor.
Since Chomsky's phrase-markers contain all the
strings in the corresponding RPM's, plus several strings
made of terminal symbols and more than one non-terminal,
it is clear that phrase-markers corresponding to (22) can
be constructed. Thus, for (22) we would simply add to



the set in the RPM the following strings:

{P NP, P Art N, u1 Art N, P u2 N,
P Art jardin}
However, these phrase-markers are not defined in terms
of well-formedness conditions equivalent to the ones in
(18). Given that RPM's appear to be superior to phrasemarkers also in other respects, I will not consider here
whether the union of (28) and (22) is or is not a wellformed phrase-marker. Note that, in any case, this set
shares with (22) the property that it cannot be generated
by a phrase-structure grammar.
To conclude this section it may be worthwhile to
point out that the information contained in (21) is
largely redundant, and perhaps, given X' theory, the Pro
jection Principle and the e Criterion, entirely so. The
relevant grammatical functions, including notions like
"head" and "adjunct" (LSLT:59.1, 71.2; Chomsky, 1981:42,
47-48), seem to be recoverable from (22). We could
therefore, in the absence of evidence to the contrary,
take (21) to be a derivative projection of (22), thereby
eliminating whatever problems arise from having to state
a non-local lexical insertion transformation. No such
transformation would be needed, and the notion "lexical
insertion" would cease to serve any purpose. There are
of course a good many problems associated with this al
ternative. I do not think that they are insurmountable,
but here we must go back to the main topic.


Of the many issues left unresolved so far, only two

will be discussed here. We must ask ourselves what the
internal structure of words like du is, and also consider


30 9

how ill-formed strings like *de le are avoided.

It is tempting to claim that the internal


of,'e.g., du is a subset of (22), in other words that the

lexical entry for du contains a subRPM.
be the case.

But this cannot

First of all, no subRPM (or PS tree) can be

associated uniquely with du: such a subRPM would lack an

initial symbol, and would therefore be ill-formed.








characterized in terms of a context-free grammar.


We now

see that languages having portmanteau words like du can








reason for not representing du by means of a subRPM


that we need the information that du is not just a prepo

sition followed by an article, but a particular preposi
tion--du--followed by a particular a r t i c l e l e .

The lex

ical entry for du must state that du is de le.

But no

subRPM can include two different strings of terminal ele

We have, then, a lexical entry for du which includes
the entries for de and


Early in lexical phonology,

presumably at the earliest level, these forms are blended



All non-phonological

information must be


intact: du will be associated with two sets of syntactic

and semantic features:

I assume that these sets of features are kept dis

tinct: this



diverging specifications for one or more features.






situation is also common in compounds.


not particularly

My assumption is




as I



can see, these two matrices do not have to be concate

nated in the present model, which thus differs from
Hockett (1947). We may treat them as an unordered set,
the linear order of the "constituents" P and Art being
univocally determined by the associated RPM.
How do we prevent *de le from surfacing? The wellknown phenomenon of blocking is discussed at length in
Kiparsky (1981).
Given an irregular inflectional or
derivational form (e.g., children) the regular one
(*childs) which can be formed without difficulty by using
the productive rules of the language, does not occur in
the unmarked case. Kiparsky makes this follow from lev
el-ordered phonology. Since irregular and non-productive
morphological processes correspond to the earlier levels,
he argues, their application bleeds that of any process
with the same domain at later stages (the reader is re
ferred to Kiparksy's text for details, which crucially
involve the Elsewhere Condition). But, as Kiparsky him
self has observed (class lectures in the Fall of 1982),
not all instances of blocking can be explained in this
way. Specifically, the blocking of a possible non-in
flectional derived form by an existing word based on a
different root cannot, obviously, follow from the order
ing of levels through which they each go separately.
Thus, once the word scissors exists, cutter cannot ac
quire its meaning, although in principle nothing else
prevents it from doing so. But scissors does not appear
at any stage in the derivation of cutter. Kiparsky has
suggested that this (and, by Occam's razor, other
instances of blocking) may follow simply from a general
condition on the lexicon which he states as "Avoid
Now if this condition is admitted in
grammatical theory there is presumably no need for any



other filter or device blocking, say, *de le or *con

The existence of their lexical synonyms (du and
conmigo would be sufficient to exclude them.
The foregoing discussion is extremely sketchy and,
in general, this paper
is more problematic
substantive. Still, I expect to have shown that we can
treat as words many forms that lexical phonology--and, I
think, intuition--suggests should be so treated, and
that a clear distinction between pre-insertion and
post-insertion rules can be maintained in spite of many
apparent Romance counterexamples. That this may force
us to revise some assumptions about phrase structure
that are still widespread I regard as an advantage. But
the extent of such a revision, and its details, cannot
even be indicated within the space limits that we have

1. This paper was presented at the LSRL under the title "Lexicalization and Lexical Insertion in Lexical Phonology," which I now
find inadequate.
Two important recent works deal with the same
material and come to comparable conclusions: Klavans (1982) and
Pranka (1983), neither of which was available to me in time to in
corporate discussion of their content in this written version. I
find myself in agreement with the spirit and the essential aspects
of both dissertations.
Discrepanciesnotably between Pranka's
treatment of portmanteau words and minewill be apparent to the
I am variously indebted to Paul Kiparsky, Judith Klavans, Carol
Rosen, and especially, as will be obvious, to Carlos Otero. All
errors are mine.
2. The term "lexicon" is clearly inappropriate for the complex
component envisaged by these theories (Otero, 1976), but here I will
respect the standard terminology.
3. I number the examples (E 1, E 2, etc.) for ease of refer
4. Note also the dialectical Spanish 3rd plural imperatives
sintesen 'sit down' for sienten + se, where the [n] for the person
marker appears after the clitic.



5. I use the standard notation introduced by Chomsky (capitals

for single non-terminals, lower-case for single terminals, etc.).
Cf. RTTG:175.
6. A proposal which does away with this kind of non-local in
sertion is considered below.

M a r c o s Llorach, Emilio. 1980. "Sobre la metafona asturiana". Cajn
de sastre asturiano 2.59-74. Ayalga: Salinas. [French original,
Alvar, Manuel. 1966. Poesa tradicional de los judos espanoles,
Mexico: Porrua.
Chomsky, Noam. 1955. The Logical Structure of Linguistic Theory.
New York: Plenum.
1965. Aspects of the Theory of Syntax. Cambridge, Mass.:
M.I.T. Press.
1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding. Cambridge, Mass: M.I.T. Press.
Clements, Nicholas G. and S. Jay Keyser. To appear. A Three-tiered
Theory of the Syllable. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Emonds, Joseph. 1976. A Transformational Approach to English Syntax,
New York: Academic Press.
Fiengo, Robert. 1977. "On Trace Theory". Linguistic Inquiry 8.35-61.
1980. Surface Structure. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Uni
versity Press.
Harris, James. 1983. Syllable Structure and Stress in Spanish. Cam
bridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Hockett, Charles. 1947. "Problems of Morphemic Analysis". Language
23.321-43. Reprinted in Readings in Linguistics, ed. by Martin
Joos, 229-242. Chicago, university of Chicago Press.
Jensen, John. 1983. "Latin Passive Without NP Movement". Cornell
Working Papers in Linguistics 4.
Kiparsky, Paul. 1981. "Lexical Morphology and Phonology". Unpub
lished manuscript. M.I.T.
Klavans, Judith. 1982. Some Problems in a Theory of Clitics. Bloomington: Indiana University Linguistics Club.
. 1983. "The Morphology of Cliticization". Paper delivered
at the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistics Society.
Kupin, Joseph J. 1978. "A Motivated Alternative to Phrase Markers".
Linguistic Inquiry 9.303-308.
Lapointe, Steven. 1980. A Theory of Grammatical Agreement. Unpub
lished University of Massachusetts Ph.D. dissertation.
Lasnik, Howard and Joseph Kupin. 1977. "A Restrictive Theory of
Transformational Grammar". Theoretical Linguistics 4.173-196.



Mohanan, Karuvannut Puthanveettii. 1982. Lexical Phonology. Unpub

lished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Neira, J. 1976. El bable: Estructura e historia. Salinas: Ayalga.
Otero, Carlos-Peregrn. 1976. "The Dictionary in a Generative Gram
mar". Paper delivered at the Annual Meeting of the Modern Lan
guage Association.
. To appear. "Towards a Model of Paradigmatic Grammar".
Questioni di semantica.
Perlmutter, David. 1971. Deep and Surface Structure Constraints in
Syntax. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Piera, Carlos. 1983. "A Unified Treatment of Some Spanish Anaphoric
Processes". Paper delivered at the International Congress on
Formal Linguistics and the Romance Languages. Sitges.
Pranka, P. 1983. Syntax and Word Formation. Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D.
Selkirk, Elisabeth. 1982. The Syntax of Words. Cambridge, Mass.:
Strozer, Jan. 1976. Clitics in Spanish. Unpublished U.C.L.A. Ph.D.
Thompson, L. and M. T. Thompson. 1969. "Metathesis as a Grammat
ical Device". International Journal of American Linguistics
Torrego, Esther. 1983. "Determinerless NP's". Unpublished manu
script. University of Massachusetts-Boston and M.I.T.



Suer (1982)
presents a detailed analysis of
Spanish presentational sentences within the Revised Ex
tended Standard Theory framework.
She identifies and
studies two subtypes of presentational sentences: the
base-generated haber presentationals and the semantically
intransitive derived presentationals. Although these two
subtypes are different in several respects, such as the
basic vs. derived nature as well as the lexical proper
ties of haber as opposed to those of the semantically
intransitive verbs, the two presentational subtypes are
alike in two fundamental respects: both have the same
function in the discourse, that is, they assert the exis
tence of the NP referent in the universe of discourse,
and both have subjectless logical forms. The purpose of
this study is to extend Suer's analysis of sentences
containing Active predicates to Spanish sentences con
taining Passive predicates. As existential haber does
not participate in the Passive construction, the seman
tically intransitive derived presentational sentence sub
type is the one that will be most closely analyzed.
Suer modifies the REST model of grammar by incor-



porating into it the Praguean notions of theme and rheme.

The adoption of these Praguean concepts necessitates the
identification and definition of three basic dichotomies.
Each dichotomy operates or is relevant at a different
level of linguistic analysis, as shown in (1).
(1) Dichotomy
Level of relevance
subject vs. predicate syntactic level:
grammatical structure
theme vs. rheme
post-LF, sentence
semantics: rhematic
old vs. new
Although these three dichotomies do operate independently
to partition a sentence into three different structures,
the ultimate sentential analysis reveals a certain struc
tural overlaying. These three dichotomies interact to
yield the unmarked case for neutral, noncontrastive sen
tences: thematic subjects containing old information
accompany rhematic predicates consisting of new informa
tion. However, these associations of the terms of the
three dichotomies are not fixed; other combinations of
the terms are possible and result in grammatical utter
ances. For example, Spanish presentational sentences are
totally rhematic; they have no thematic elements.
Another notion to be incorporated into the grammar
of Spanish is that of semantic focus of the sentence.
The semantic focus, "the most important or 'loaded1 ele
ment of the sentence" (S:ll), is generally one of the
elements of the rheme in neutral, noncontrastive sen
tences. In the unmarked case, phonological and semantic



focus coincide and fall on the same sentential element.

Our discussion of the Spanish Passive is based on
the following assumptions.
(2) a. Spanish Passive predicates are lexically
related to their corresponding Active
predicates by a rule similar in many
respects to lexical redundancy rules.
b. Spanish Passives are base-generated.
c. Spanish Passives and Actives are equiva
lent in status: both are basic (i.e.,
nonderived) predicate types.
The Spanish Passive corpus consists of data col
lected from two volumes of tapescripts and from three
The superficial constituent orderings in
(3) are those evidenced by the data.
a. S - V - por NP
V - por NP
c. S - V p

vp - s
V - por NP - S
The constituent orderings in (3a)-(3d) are considered as
constituting variations of the basic (i.e., underlying)
Subject - Passive Verb - (Agent) word order. The con
stituent orderings in (3e) and (3f) are the data that
warrant examination under Suer's analysis of presenta
tional sentences. At least superficially, the data in
(3e) and (3f) appear to conform to several of Suer's
assumptions regarding semantically intransitive derived
The data in (4) exhibit the superficial constituent
ordering of (3a), that of S - V - por NP.



Las licencias sern otorgadas por el

Poder Ejecutivo ... (LN1)
'The licenses will be granted by the
Executive Power ...'
b. Hay tradiciones en el Tepozteco muy
interesantes. Se dice que el rey fue
asesinado por el hermano, y que el
Tepozteco fue escondido de su ... to
por sus abuelos maternos. (M195)
'There are very interesting traditions
in the Tepozteco. It is said that the
king was assassinated by his brother,
and that Tepozteco was hidden from his
uncle by his maternal grandparents'
The S - Vp por NP ordering conveys the maximum of
information for this predicate type: the Agent phrase
(i.e., por NP) is completely optional in deep structure
(as well as in surface structure); the Subject NP is
optional in outer form (under certain conditions). The
example in (4b) is interesting especially in light of the
three dichotomies presented in (1).



el rey/fue asesinado por el hermano

b. el Tepozteco/fue escondido de por
sus abuelos maternos
It is interesting to note that although both clauses
(i.e., (5a) and (5b)) partition into subject/predicate
and theme/rheme, the informational structure of both ex-



amples is composed entirely of new information. The in

terplay of the terms of the dichotomies together with the
assumptions that the Spanish Passive is base-generated
and that the Agent phrase is optionally present in deep
structure, render the occurrence of the Agent phrase vir
tually predictable. As a rhematic element and as that
element most likely to be designated Focus of the sen
tence, the Agent phrase will appear in the base structure
when it contains the information deemed by the speaker as
that needed to push the communication forward.
(6) a. Pero el Partenn fue saqueado por
los persas, fue saqueado por los
venecianos y, entonces no se sabe
hasta dnde quedaron todos los
fragmentos de aquella estatua. (M202)
'But the Parthenon was sacked by the
Persians, (it) was sacked by the Venetians
and, so, (it) is not known even where all
the fragments of that statue are'
b. Un da fui cuestionado verdaderamente por
uno de los ... de los indios, ... (C24)
'One day I was indeed questioned by
one of the ... of the Indians, ...'
Example (6a) further illustrates the interaction of
the dichotomies: the first clause exhibits the S - V por NP ordering, thereby providing a maximum of informa
tion. The second clause of (6a) consists of Vp - por
NP. Here, the absence of the Subject in surface form can
be explained in terms of the informational structure and
discourse-level analysis. There is a tendency for old
information not to be reiterated in full form unless am
biguity or misinterpretation would result.
The second
clause of (6a) is an example of the unmarked case of the



convergence of the terms of the three dichotomies: the

Subject (el Partenn) is thematic and consists of old
information and, in the course of the derivation, is
deleted and thus does not occur in the outer form. It
is interesting to note that the information structure of
the rhematic predicate partitions the predicate into old
(V ) and new (por NP) information.
That the Agent
phrase should be the Focus is compatible with the infor
mation structure of the sentence.
The example in (6b) is similar to the second clause
in (6a) by virtue of the absence of a surface Subject.
However, the strategy at work in (6b) is the Avoid Pro
noun Principle; given the first person singular verb mor
phology, there can be no confusion as to the underlying
Subject. Once again, the occurrence of the Agent phrase
can be attributed to the communicative importance rele
gated to it by the speaker.
The data in (7), corresponding to the superficial
constituent ordering in (3c) S - V , are virtual corol
laries to the data in (6). As evidenced by the examples
in (7), the (optional) Agent phrase is not included pre
cisely because the lexical information it might contrib
ute is not deemed crucial to the communicative act by the



Penas que oscilan entre los 4 y los

10 aos de prisin fueron aplicadas
a siete terroristas ... (LN8)
'Punishments that range between 4
and 10 years of imprisonment were
applied to seven terrorists ...'
... el ministro de Defensa Jos Guillermo
Garca, quien, parece estar ms dispuesto
a ver que los asesinos sean condenados.



'... the minister of Defense Jos Guillermo
Garca, who seems to be more disposed to
see that the assassins are convicted'
The examples of (8) result from a confluence of the
strategies discussed with respect to the examples in (6)
and (7). The optional Agent phrase is not generated in
the base and consequently there is no surface realization
of the Agent phrase. The lexical information provided by
the Subject NP's is rendered totally redundant by the
context; therefore, the Subject NP's do not appear in the
surface representations.
(8) a. Entonces el Tepozteco va a la residencia
... entonces s es recibido. (M195)
'Then Tepozteco goes to the residence ...
then indeed (he) is received'
b. Washington prefiere a Garca porque es
considerado ms razonable y ms capaz
de conseguir la lealtad de los diferentes
sectores ... (E34)
'Washington prefers Garca because (he)
is considered more reasonable and more
capable of securing the loyalty of the
different sectors ... '
Communication proceeds quite readily without the
optional lexical information that the Subject NP and the
Agent phrase could contribute. The examples in (8) il
lustrate the use of the Passive that may be pointing to
its very essence. The use of the Passive complex VP
without the Agent phrase may be considered a type of de
personalization of the verb: the Subject NP that governs
VP agreement is strictly a grammatical Subject (not the
logical Subject of the sentence) and the nonoccurrence



of the Agent phrase supports the notion of depersonaliza

tion of the verb.
Another notion, that of the valency of the verb,
adds another dimension to the data in (8): the lexical
process of passivization results in a change in the
valency of the verbal element involved; the lexically
related participial element and transitive verb do not
Thus, passivity
The intransitivity of Spanish Passives receives new
interpretation in light of Suer's notion of semantic
intransitivity. She employs this concept to explain the
occurrence of verbal expressions such as dar seales de
vida 'to show signs of life' in derived presentationals.
The pragmatic function of these sentences (i.e., that of
introducing the NP referent into the universe of dis
course) implies a concomitant weakening of the semantic
content of the verbs involved. Hatcher (S:134) observes
that these verbs "tend to depict the 'natural function
ing' of the subject nouns," thereby rendering the proc
esses almost inevitable or predictable. Babby (S:134)
posits that these verbs "denote the subject noun's most
typical action from the point of view of the human par
ticipants in the speech event."
The data in (9) illustrate the surface constituent
ordering of (3e), that of Vp - S.
(9) a. Fue establecido el Regimen de
Prevencin ... (LN2)
'The Regime of Prevention ... was
established ...'
b. Tres das ms tarde fue apresado Maeda ...,
en cuya casa fue descubierto un
escondite ... (LN8)




'Three days later Maeda was captured ...,

in whose house a hiding place was
discovered ...'
Ser sancionada hoy la ley ... (LN8)
'The law ... will be sanctioned today ...'
Sern sancionados con apercibimento o
multa los abogados que infrinjan las
normas ...

'(The) Lawyers who break the norms ... will

be sanctioned with (a) summons or (a) fine'
e. ... de un rincn de la muralla fue
transportado Nuestro Seor Jesucristo
y llevado all. (M199)
'... from a corner of the wall Our Lord
Jesus Christ was taken and carried there'
f. ... y eso era el porqu, y estn siendo
engaados ellos mismos, ... (C17)
'... and that was the reason why, and they
themselves are being deceived, ...'
The verbs in (9), virtually by definition, are in
transitive. However, there are three interrelated ques
tions in (10) that must be answered.
(10) a. Are the verbs in (10) semantically
b. Are the verbs in (10) semantically
weakened and/or do they typify their
Subject NP's most typical action,
thereby rendering virtually pre
dictable the processes described?

Do the examples in (10) meet the

conditions of presentationalism
at the level of SI-2?
The derivation of (9) is sketched in (12).




derivation is representative of those for all the sen

tences in (9).11

a. [s[NPel Rgimen ...] [VPfue establecido]]

b. Subject Postposing



[S[NP ...ei ...] [VP[VPfue establecido]

[Npel Rgimeni ...]]]
Focus Assignment
(This rule operates independent of
sentence type and thus accounts for
both intransitive presentationals
as well as declaratives)
[ S [ NP ... ei ...] [ vp [ vp fue establecido]

[ S [ NP ... ei ...] [ vp [ vp fue establecido]

e. Presentational Sentence Interpretation

It is at this point that the questions in (10)
become relevant in order for (11) to obtain; all the
answers to (10) must be affirmative. Since presentationalism functions at a level beyond the sentence, total
context, both linguistic and extralinguistic, comes to
bear. Taking into account the contexts for (9b) and (9d)
and knowing that (9a) and (9c) are the first sentences
of the discourse, it might be possible to characterize
the sentences in (9a)-(9d) as presentationals. From the
point of view of the total context, the verbs in these
sentences could be considered as describing processes
that are more or less predictable and/or characteristic
of their Subject NP's. However, the examples in (9e)



and (9f) show no signs of semantic weakening. Indeed,

intuitively it seems correct to question whether there
has been any semantic weakening of the verbs in (9a)(9d). Although the verbs in (9a)-(9d) can be held to
describe predictable processes, there is more lexical
(and therefore, semantic) information conveyed than sim
ply the notion of mere appearance or existence charac
teristic of the verbs in Suer's presentationals.
The data in (12), which correspond to (3f), must be
considered before any conclusions can be made regard
ing the status of Passive presentationals.
(12) a. Radio Farabundo Mart asegur que un
soldado muri al ser atacada por los
insurgentes una patrulla militar en el
desvo San Nicols, de la Carretera
Panamericana. (E34)
'Radio "Farabundo Mart" confirmed that a
soldier died when a military/government
patrol was attacked by rebels on the San
Nicols bypass of the Panamerican Highway'
b. ... es sabido por todos que muchas veces
hay una determinada transformacion ...
... it is known by everybody that
many times there is a certain
transformation ...'
I maintain that the overt expressions of the Agent
phrases in (12) are incompatible with Suer's notion of
semantic intransitivity.
In fact, I contend that al
though Spanish Passives are by nature syntactically in
transitive, they retain semantic transitivity. The Agent
NP is, at least semantically, in some sense, an argument
of the participial element: structurally (i.e., syntac-



tically) the Agent NP is the object of the preposition

por, but its semantic role (or, 8-role) obtains from the
relation of the Agent NP to the participial element.
Therefore, because of semantic transitivity, the examples
in (12) are not accessible to the rule of Presentational
Sentence Interpretation.
One more question must be answered before (or in
conjunction with) answering the questions in (10): does
this notion of the semantic transitivity of Passive pred
icates obtain even when there is no overt expression of
the Agent phrase?
In considering the data in (9), my
intuitions lead me to an affirmative answer: an Agent
phrase can readily be constructed and added to any of the
examples in (9) that results in personalizing the verb.
Further research into the notions of semantic transitiv
ity and personalization of the verb (which seems to be
linked with Agent phrase expression) is needed. For now,
my tentative conclusions are that the questions in (10)
all have negative answers: Spanish Passives do not pat
tern in parallel fashion to Spanish Actives; that is,
Spanish Passives do not partition into declaratives and
The postverbal position of the Passive Subject in
(9) and (12) has the effect of creating entirely rhematic
sentences: the Subject NP becomes part of the assertion
(i.e., it is within the scope of assertion). In fact,
the Subject NP receives Focus marking and all the follow
ing constituents become Focus complements. Thus, Passive
Subjects are postposed because of the role they play in
the communicative act: the information provided by the
(postposed) Passive Subject is precisely that information
which will, in Praguean terms, push the communication
forward. In other words, the Subject NP conveys what the



rest of the immediate discourse will treat.

I must point out that there are many peculiarities
exhibited by the Spanish Passive. Indeed, it is precise
ly the idiosyncratic nature of the Passive that has led
me to postulate its inherent lexical character. This
study on word order has provided more evidence of the
highly restricted and idiosyncratic nature of the Spanish
To conclude, Spanish Passives, as base-generated
structures, are considered as equivalent in status to
Actives. However, in accordance with the highly idiosyn
cratic nature of Passives, noncontrastive sentences with
Passive predicates, unlike those with Active predicates,
do not partition into declarative and presentational sen
tences. Passives, due to their inherent semantic transi
tivity, do not receive presentational sentence interpre
tation at the level of SI-2: the participial element is
not sufficiently weakened in semantic content so as to
allow the interpretation of mere assertion of existence
and/or appearance of the postposed NP referent in the
universe of discourse. Instead, the participial element
contributes semantically to the assertion. The Passive
Subject NP is postposed and receives Focus of the sen
tence interpretation when the speaker determines that
information to be crucial to the communicative act.

1. I will abbreviate all citations from Suner's works as
2. Subject and predicate can be defined configurationally as
[NP,S] and [VP,S], respectively, thereby supporting the claim that
such partitioning is relevant at the syntactic level of linguistic
analysis and represents the grammatical structure of a sentence.



3. Rheme is "that portion of the sentence which coincides with

the scope of assertion" (S:4); theme is "the unasserted part, that
segment which falls outside the scope of assertion" (S:4).
rhematic structure of sentences does not necessarily reflect truth
conditions, but rather corresponds to the Praguean concept of com
municative dynamism thus representing the speaker's assumptions
about what information is pertinent to communication.
structure analysis immediately follows LF representation, but is
still within the domain of sentence grammar.
4. Old and new information are discourse concepts and are thus
dependent on the rules of SI-2. The information structure of a sen
tence cannot be determined when a sentence is considered in isola
5. For a more detailed account, see Schulz (1982a, b ) .
6. I will abbreviate the data source and include the page num
ber in parentheses. The sources of data are listed after the refer
7. By "full form" I mean a repetition of the entire consti
Cliticization seems to be one strategy employed whereby
full-form reiteration is avoided.
8. I mentioned that the data in (8) may be the crucial evidence
in determining the true essence of the Passive. The true essence
refers to the grammatical meaning which, as the invariant meaning
of the form, can best be explained via comparison with other (some
how) related forms in the language. The forms I consider to be
relevant are given below:
(i) Dirigieron la fbrica ...
(ii) La fbrica fue dirigida ...
(iii) Se dirigi la fbrica ...
(iv) La fbrica estaba dirigida ...
All the examples can be glossed as 'The factory was managed ...' I
am in the process of investigating grammatical meaning in data
similar to that in (i)-(iv).
9. These rules are adopted from Suer (1982:180-89).

Chomsky, Noam. 1976. Conditions on Rules of Grammar. Linguistic
Analysis 2.303-54.
Schulz, Anchen. 1982a. On the Spanish Passive. Cornell Working Pa
pers in Linguistics 3.76-93.
. 1982b. Theoretical Approaches to the Passive in Spanish.
Unpublished Cornell Ph.D. dissertation.
Suer, Margarita. 1982. Syntax and Semantics of Spanish Presenta
tional Sentence-Types. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University




Exclsior. November 8, 1982. Mxico, D.F.

El habla culta de Caracas: Materiales para su estudio. 1979.
Caracas: Universidad Central de Venezuela.
El habla de la ciudad de Mxico: Materiales para su estudio.
1971. Mxico, D.F.: Universidad Nacional Autnoma de Mexico.
La Nacin. March 24, 1980. Buenos Aires.
El Nacional. June 19, 1980. Caracas.



That Spanish tensed free relatives (FRs) obey what
goes by the name of the matching condition in subcategorized position is already becoming common knowledge
(Hirschbhler and Rivero, 1981; Suner, 1983a, 1983b).
The matching condition is fulfilled whenever the initial
constituent of the FR (i.e., the WH-phrase in COMP) is
of the same category as the constituent which dominates
the whole relative clause (RC) structure. To illustrate:
the examples in (la) and (2a) adhere to the matching ef
fect because their WH-phrases in COMP (underlined) are
NPs, thus they "match" the node-type which dominates the
entire RC. On the other hand, in (lb) and (2b) the WHphrase (a PP) does not match the category of the RC and
the sentences are ungrammatical. Keep in mind that en
contrar 'to find' as well as tener obligatorily subcategorize for an NP.


No encuentro quien me resuelva el problema.

not I-find who
to-me solves the problem



'I can't find who could solve the problem

for me'
b. *No encuentro con quien t puedas venir.
not I-find
with whom you could come
(2) a. No tiene
quien la ayude.
not she-have
her helps
'She has no one who could help her'
b. *No
de_ quien t puedas fiarte.
not s/he has of whom you could trust
In Suer (1983a) I proposed that the above distribution
of data could be directly explained by assuming that the
empty category pro which has the features [+pronominal
-anaphor] (Chomsky, 1982) occupies the head position of
This pro-head hypothesis suggests that the only
difference between headed and headless relative clauses
in outer structure lies in the [+lexical content] on its
head. The matching condition observed by tensed FRs in
subcategorized position is considered a stratagem used
to determine the content of pro (cf. Chomsky, 1982). The
determining factor is provided by Case Theory, which by
means of the PF filter (3), ensures that the pro-head and
the phrase in COMP are morphologically non-distinct in

If the structure:
... V (prep) [Np [Npro] [ [C0MP WH-phrase]

[S ... +tn ...]

then: pro and WH-phrase must be nondistinct in Case.
The Case-matching filter (3) can be thought of as an in
stance of an agreement rule (see Suer, 1983b for de
Under this hypothesis the structure for (la)
after WH-movement is the one found in (4). Note that pro
and guien comply with filter (3), since objective and



nominative case are morphologically non-distinct.


No encuentro [NPpro [ [



[S ti me resuelva el problema]]
Having briefly summarized and illustrated the matching
effects in Spanish, in Section 1 I turn my attention to
sets of sentences which, because they do not seem to ad
here to the well-formedness condition in (3), appear to
be counterexamples to the pro-head hypothesis. Section
2 addresses the issue of the semantic interpretation of
these sentences; specifically, it argues against the ex
clusive indirect question reading. Section 3 summarizes
the results.

Knowledge and Perception

Verbs of knowledge and perception (saber 'to know,'

comprender 'to understand,' figurar 'to figure, imagine,'
imaginar 'to imagine,' ver 'to see,' observar 'to ob
serve,' etc.) present themselves as problematic. These
verbs subcategorize for a NP (5) or a S, which could be
a complement (6a) and (6b), or an indirect question (6c)
and (6d). The ungrammaticality of the sentences in (7)
shows that these verbs do not subcategorize for a PP.
(5) a. Ya s [NP ese cuento].
'I already know that story'
b. Vimos [NP la pelcula de Fonda].
'We-saw Fonda's movie'
(6) a. Saban [g que no terminaran a tiempo].
'They-knew that they-would not finish
on time'
b. Imaginaba [g que estbamos en el mar].
'I-was-imagining that we-were at sea'




Sabe [ dnde est el tesoro].

'S/he-knows where the treasure is1
d. Vi [ a quin le diste el mejor pedazo].
'I-saw to whom you-gave the best piece1
a. *Supimos [pp en el instante].
'We-knew at the instant'
b. *Comprendi [pp para su futuro].
'S/he-understood for his/her future'

c. *Viste [pp con mi compaero]?

'Did-you-see with my companion?
With respect to RCs, since they are expansions of a
NP (8), one should anticipate no problems. Nevertheless,
there do exist complications, because in this type of
structure the above-mentioned verbs may appear immediate
ly followed by prepositions (9). And exactly the same
phenomenon takes place in FRs, which, according to my
analysis, have a pro-head (10) (compare with (9)).


Sabe [NP el dao que se hace].

'S/he-knows the pain that s/he is
inflicting on him/herself'
b. Vi [NP el marino con quien ella sali].
'I-saw the sailor with whom she-went-out'
(9) a. S con [NP el dinero que cuento].
'I-know on the money that I-count1
b. Vimos en [NP el lo que se metieron].
'We-saw in the mess that they-got
(10) a. S con [NP pro lo que cuento].
'I-know on what I-count'
b. Vimos en [Np pro lo que se metieron].
'We-saw in what they-got themselves'
In essence, the problem is two-fold. First, one has
to explain why verbs of knowledge and perception do not



co-occur with prepositional phrases (7) unless the prep

osition serves to introduce a RC (9). The second fact
in need of an explanation is that posed by examples such
as the ones in (10). Recall that the pro-head hypothesis
claims that the only relevant difference between headed
and headless RCs in outer structure is the [+lexical
content] of its head with the addendum that due to its
very nature, pro needs to be determined (this is the
reason for filter (3)). However, if the sentences in
(10) had the S-structure given in (11), they would be in
violation of the well-formedness condition (3) since the
pro-head is oblique in Case (because of the preposition)
but the phrase in COMP is non-oblique, thus, these two
elements would not be non-distinct in Case.
(11) Verb prep ...

[NP[N pro] t[COMP lo quei][S ...ti ...]]]

An added complication is that the preposition which ap
pears immediately following the verb of knowledge/percep
tion is not just any preposition but the preposition
selected by the verb inside the RC structure. In our
examples these verbs are contar con 'to count on,' and
meterse en 'to get involved in.' So it is as if the
preposition which should appear with the relative pronoun
in COMP had moved over and placed itself before the en
tire RC structure or alternatively before the head of the
RC; schematically, the movements would be as shown in


Traditional Grammars.

The idiosyncratic

nature of



the type of sentences in (9) and (10) had not escaped

traditional grammarians. For example, the grammar of the
Real Academia Espaola (RAE, 1973:528) remarks that in
this kind of RCs it is frequent that the preposition ap
pears before the article instead of before the relative
pronoun; this process is optional when the head of the
RC is lexical--i.e., in (9)--but obligatory when the head
is not lexical--i.e., in (10). It is as if "the head
attracts the preposition" [my translation, M.S.].
RAE provides the alternate sentences in (13) and (14) for
RCs with lexical heads, and Gili y Gaya (1969:305) the
one in (15).



Some of
head are


S el blanco a que tiras.

'I-know the target to which you-shoot'
b. S al (=a+el) blanco que tiras.
'I-know to-the target that you-shoot'
a. Era cosa de ver la presteza con que
los acometa.
'It-was (a) thing to-see the speed with
which he-attacked them'
b. ... ver con la presteza que los acometa.
'... to-see with the speed that he-attacked
a. ... viendo el ahinco con que la mujer
'... seeing the eagerness with which
the woman sighed'
b. ... viendo con el ahinco que la mujer
'... seeing with the eagerness that
the woman sighed'
the examples provided for RCs without lexical
found in (16).





No sabes de lo que soy capaz. (RAE)

'You don't know of what I am capable'
b. Pocos entienden de lo que tratan. (RAE)
'Few understand in what they deal'
c. Ignoro de lo que eres capaz. (Gili y Gaya)
'I-don't-know of what you are capable'
Thus, not only has the phenomenon under scrutiny been
dealt with in the traditional literature but it has alsobeen in the language for quite some time: examples (13)
and (14) come from the writings of Cervantes (16th cen
tury) .
Furthermore, there is a third alternative to the
sentences in (13)-(15)i.e., RCs with lexical head-namely, the appropriate preposition may appear both be
fore the head and before the relative pronoun (17). This
possibility is also viable for the examples in (9), cf.
(17) a. S al bianco a que tiras.
'I-know to-the target to which you-shoot'
b. Era cosa de ver con la presteza con que
los acometa.
'It-was (a) thing to see with the
speed with which he-attacked them'
c. ... viendo con el ahinco con que
la mujer suspiraba.
'...seeing with the eagerness with
which the woman sighed'
(18) a. S con el dinero con que cuento.
'I-know with the money on which I-count'
b. Vimos en el lo en que se metieron.
'We-saw in the mess in which they-got



1.1.1 Greek and Latin. The phenomenon just described

is not unknown to other languages. It was particularly
common in Classical Greek, and it is also found in Latin.
The process has been given the name of "inverse attrac
tion" (Hofman, 1965, among others), a label which cap
tures the fact that the relative pronoun (i.e., the WHphrase) optionally imposes its own Case on its antece
dent. This is schematically represented in (19). The
outcome is that both the head of the relative clause and
the relative pronoun end up with the same Case; in other
words, they agree in Case.

The sentences in (20) illustrate the phenomenon in Greek

(Smyth, 1956:569).
Those in (21) are from different
Latin periods ((21a) is from early Latin, (21b) from
Golden Age Latin, (21c) from late Latin, and (21d) from
Christian Latin; Hofman, 1965).




t s de (for ha de) d'h sper eisors ...

'but the women whom thou seest are coming'
(Soph., Trach. 283)
pol te n (for pol ter) ho in e nai khr
par mnois hmn estin.
'we alone have an ideal constitution'
(Isoc. 6.48)
(Lit.: such as ought to be)
legon hoti Lakedaimnioi hrn dontoi
panton (for panta) pepragotes eien






'they said that the Lacedaemonians had

gained all they asked for' (Xen. Hell.
quem vir habet, tollitur.
Acc (for Nom) Acc.
(Cato Or. Frg. 32.2)
'the field which the man has is removed'
quam statu, vestra est
Acc (for Nom) Acc.

(Virgil Aen. 1.573)

'the city that I-am-building yours is'
c. Ad Ravennam ... castra composuit ...,
at Ravena camp he-established,
locus [=loco],
qui appellatus Pineta
Norn, (for Abl.)
(Iordanes Get. 293)
a place
(= in a place)
which is called
d. sermomem,
audistis, non est meus.
Acc. (for Nom) Acc.
(John 14.24)
'the speech which you-heard is not mine'
In brief, Greek and Latin relative clauses with in
verse attraction appear to be totally parallel to the
Spanish examples under (17) and (18) in that in the three
languages the Case of the relative pronoun is (optional
ly) given to the head of the relative.
1.2 The Projection Principle. Having presented the
problem and described the data, it is now necessary to
search for an explanation. But before doing so let us
point out that the matter we are dealing with has some
far-reaching theoretical implications; it is intertwined



with the Projection Principle. The Projection Principle

has been postulated as a guiding principle of the theory
of Government and Binding (GB; cf. Chomsky, 1981). In
formally speaking, this principle stipulates that rep
resentations at each of the three syntactic levels CDstructure, S-structure, and LF) must observe the subcategorization properties (and thematic structure) of lexical
entries. In other words, the Projection Principle is a
condition which
derivations by insuring that lexical properties remain
constant at each of the relevant levels. Now recall that
verbs of knowledge/perception subcategorize for a NP or
a S but not for a PP; however, they may appear with a
preposition if this preposition introduces a RC. Hence,
there seems to be a violation of the Projection Principle
since the lexical properties of these verbs do not remain
constant throughout the derivation. Allow me to elabo
rate. Since these verbs do not co-occur with a preposi
tion (cf. (7)), their lexical entry cannot be specified
for a PP. This implies that in D-structure there could
not be a PP either. Further evidence for this conclusion
is provided by the fact that the prepositions which in
troduce the RCs are the ones selected by the lower verb,
thus they can only be part of the lower clause in Dstructure. In brief, the D-structure of the sentences
under discussion must conform to (22).


V [ p p P WH-] ...]]]

However, if after WH-movement has operated to place the

prepositional WH-phrase in COMP, the same preposition
also appears before the antecedent of the RC (cf. exam-



ples in (17) and (18)), then there would be a clear vio

lation of the Projection Principle because their S-structure would be the one in (23) (the troubling element is
[Np [N] [ [C0MP
[ppi. P WH-]][S... V t i ...]]]
And if their S-structure were that in (23), then it is
quite plausible that in LF the preposition would remain
after the main verb. If so, the structure at the D-level
would be different from the S-level and the LF level, and
as a consequence, the Projection Principle would either
need to be relaxed or be shown to be wrong.
Despite surface evidence, in what follows I shall
provide a solution for the problem that is compatible
with both the Projection Principle and the pro-head hy
pothesis. If correct, this explanation will serve to
show once more that raw data cannot be used to prove or
disprove a given hypothesis but only the analysis of such
data can be employed for such a purpose.
1.3 The Solution. First, I assume that the' D-structure
of perception/knowledge verbs is the one in (22) for all
the reasons adduced earlier. Next, I propose that the
S-structure for all of the discussed alternants is not
that found in (23) but that in (24); that is, my claim
is that there is no preposition following the higher verb
at this level.
[Np [N] [ [C0Mp
[ppi. P WH-]][S ... V ti ...]]]



Structure (24) is the regular RC structure and directly

accounts for the sentences in (8), (13a), (14a) and
(15a). What is the evidence for the representation in
In the first place, the just-mentioned examples
give it support. Second, the fact that the appearance
of the preposition is totally optional and moreover, not
the preferred alternative (i.e., examples are hard to
come by), suggests that one is in the presence of a very
marked and most likely surfacy phenomenon, more appropri
ate to PF--the phonological component of the grammar-than to the syntax proper. And third, since the prepo
sition belongs with the verb of the RC, if it were to be
there in S-structure, it would be necessary to postulate
a copying rule (cf. examples in (17) and (18) for justi
fication) in the syntactic component proper. This would
be suspect on two accounts:
(a) it would be of very
limited application, i.e., marked and not part of core
grammar; and (b) it would defeat the purpose of reducing
most, if not all, transformation to Move- (maybe with
certain specifications as to possible landing sites, cf.
Baltin, 1982). Thus, again the reasoning points to a
more surfacy account of the data.
Taking into account all of the above, my proposal
is the following. The lexical properties of these verbs
are maintained throughout the three syntactic levels
(i.e., no preposition follows the verb in the syntax),
and hence, there is no violation whatsoever of the Pro
jection Principle. Next, in the left-side of the gram
mar, specifically in PF, there is a low-level optional
rule which copies the preposition which is in COMP and
places it after the verb of knowledge/perception. This
is not a productive rule but one that must be lexically
specified as to the kind of predicate that triggers or



allows it. As repeatedly discussed, it is limited to

verbs of knowledge/perception and perhaps to a few
others. In this way the examples in (17) and (18) are
obtained. The only sentences that remain to be explained
are those in (9) and (13b), (14b) and (15b), that is, the
examples in which the preposition follows the matrix verb
with no preposition in COMP. These are arrived at in the
following manner.
After the preposition copying rule
takes effect, free deletion in COMP applies (cf. Rivero,
1980) and deletes the prepositional relative pronoun.
What remains is the complementizer que 'that.' Note that
this free deletion in COMP can apply without any problems
because no information is lost. The information that the
prepositional relative pronoun carried has now been en
coded--through the preposition copying rule--after the
main verb. Starting from the S-structure of a sentence
like (9b) (irrelevant details omitted), this process is
schematically illustrated in (25).


Vimos en el lo que se metieron.

'We-saw in the mess that they-got



Deletion in COMP

[Spro se metieron ti]]]

1.3.1 [+lexical head]. There is one last point that
needs to be explained. What I have mnemonically called
the "preposition copying rule" is optional when the head
of the RC is lexical but obligatory when the head is nonlexical (i.e., when it is pro). Why should the data dis
tribute itself in this way? I would like to speculate



that this distribution is intimately related to the fact

that the content of pro needs to be determined (Chomsky,
1981, 1982). Obviously, the content of a lexical head
is given by the lexical item itself. On the other hand,
the empty category pro--which has the features [+pronominal -anaphor]--since it has no surface realization, re
quires some extra device to help pinpoint its content.
For example, the pro subject of the null subject lan
guages is governed by AGR(eement). Because AGR encom
passes the features for person, gender, number and per
haps Case, and furthermore, since subject-verb agreement
checks on the identity of these grammatical features, AGR
is the extra device which determines the content of the
pro subject. Along similar lines, I hypothesize that the
fact that preposition copying is obligatory for free rel
atives stems from the need to locally determine pro in
order that the pro-head and the WH-phrase in COMP agree
in Case (both will be oblique). To avoid any misunder
standings, an illustration of how the derivation of an
example like (10b) would proceed (cf. (26)) will help.
I begin with the S-structure.


Vimos en pro lo que se metieron.

'We-saw in what they-got themselves'




Copying rule

2. Case marking
pro se metieron ti]]]

One difference between (25) and (26) is that in (26)

deletion in COMP does not operate. What does apply is
the deletion of the second of two identical prepositions.
Note that since pro has no lexical realization, the two



instances of the preposition en come together.2 Fur

thermore, there are speakers for whom deletion in COMP
is an alternative, since they find (27)--in its non-in
terrogative reading--grammatical.
(27) Vimos en que se metieron.
'We-saw in what they-got themselves'
I find it difficult to interpret (27) as a RC. However,
this has a very straightforward explanation. Deletion
in COMP may operate up to recoverability; if part of the
information is lost or if the resulting structure leads
to difficulties in interpretation, deletion in COMP
should not apply. This is the reason why deletion in
COMP is not the preferred path taken from (26), but
rather deletion of the second of two identical preposi
tions is the optimal outcome.
Now notice that the obligatoriness of preposition
copying in structures like (10b), that is in FRs, has the
effect of making FRs of this type comply with the wellformedness condition in (3).3 Filter (3) is actually
nothing more than another instance of an agreement rule.
This rule conforms completely with the fact that in rela
tive clauses the head and the relative pronoun agree in
person, gender, and number. The difference lies in that
lexical heads do not need to agree in Case with the rela
tive pronoun, but [-lexical] heads must be non-distinct
in Case from the relative pronoun, hence (3). And this
Case agreement is what justifies the content of pro in
this particular circumstance. Thus, we have achieved the
explanation for the [+optional] character of preposition
copying. 4
In addition, note that earlier I claimed that sen
tences of the type found in (9) were not valid counter
examples to the Projection Principle. Now I can add that



the examples in (10) also fail to be counterexamples.

Furthermore, as evidenced by the reasoning above, the
examples in (10) do not contradict the pro-head hypothe
sis, nor are they in violation of (3)thus, their Sstructure is not the one outlined in (11). Quite to the
contrary, the obligatoriness of preposition copying pro
vides striking confirmation both of the pro-head hypothe
sis and of the well-formedness condition (3). Provided
this analysis is the correct one, its corollary can be
stated. Non-inherent Case marking applies in PF (this
is the position maintained by Freidin and Babby, 1983),
or minimally if Case assignment/checking applies in
another level, it has to be able to re-apply in PF be
cause of sentences like the ones discussed in this paper.

Indirect Questions or Relative Clauses?

For the most part, relative and interrogative pro

nouns in Spanish coincide morphologically.







El hombre con quien hablabas ...

'The man with whom you-were-speaking ...'
Con quin hablabas?
'With whom were-you-speaking?'
Los libros de los cuales citamos ...
'The books from which we-quoted ...'
De cules libros citamos?
'From which books did-we-quote?'
El diario en el que aparece ese
artculo ...
'The newspaper in which that
article appears ...'
En qu diario aparece ese artculo?



'In which newspaper does that article

The orthography attempts to differentiate their function
by requiring a written stress for the interrogative pro
nouns. Nevertheless, there exists a grey area where it
becomes difficult to decide whether one is dealing with
a relative clause or with an indirect question. This
state of affairs was inherited from late Latin, where
confusion arose between the interrogative quid and the
relative quod (RAE, 1973). The problem becomes particu
larly acute in indirect questions where merely a stress
can signal a difference (31).
(31) a. Free relative:
No tengo que hacer.
'I don't have (anything) to do'
b. Indirect question:
No tengo qu hacer.
'I don't have what to-do'
This erosion of the distinction between relative and in
terrogative pronouns is particularly relevant to the con
structions in Section 1 of this paper. Are the examples
in (8)-(10) and (13)-(18) interpreted as relatives or as
indirect interrogatives?
Although the latter group-i.e., (13)-(18)--is discussed by the RAE in the chapter
devoted to adjectival subordination and no mention is
made of the possibility of their having an indirect ques
tion reading, one could suggest this interpretation.
In what follows I provide evidence against the exclusive
indirect question reading by showing that many examples
cannot be interpreted as such.
2.1 In the first place, although verbs of knowledge and
perception co-occur either with a NP or an --and within



this latter alternative, an indirect question is one of

the options--there is another verb of importance. I am
referring to the impersonal existential verb haber
'there-be,' for which the indirect question possibility
is not available. This is so because haber exclusively
subcategorizes for a NP at the level of sentence grammar
(cf. Suer, 1982, especially Chapter 1 for details) and
never for a S. Therefore, the sentences in (32) could
only be interpreted as FRs and never as indirect ques
tions (the underlined phrases must be in COMP, since the
prepositions are selected by the lower verbs). Compare
(32) to the parallel lexically headed RCs in (33).






There is one
we have been
the optional

con lo que
yo no especulara.
there-is that with which what I not wouldspeculate
'There is that on which I would not
por los
que (yo) no
there-is for the (m. pl.) that (I) not
la mano en el fuego.
would-put the hand in the fire
'There are those I would not trust'
Hay de los que (yo) no me fiara.
'There are those I would not confide in'
Hay cosas con las que (yo) no especulara.
'There-are things with which I would not
Hay hombres por los que (yo) no pondra la
mano en el fuego.
'There-are men I would not trust'
difference between haber and the other verbs
examining. Haber does not seem to allow for
copying of the pertinent preposition before



the antecedent of the RC (recall (17) and (18) ), thus

(34) appears to be ungrammatical.6
*Hay con cosas con las que (yo) no
Hence, the question is whether the examples in (32) and
(33) should be analyzed in the same way as verbs of
knowledge/perception, or differently. The real problem
atic sentences are those in (32), because they look like
tensed non-matching FRs in a subcategorized position.
Thus, either one claims that Spanish observes matching
effects in tensed FRs in subcategorized positions with
the one notable exception of haber, or one maintains that
despite all surface evidence to the contrary, the exam
ples in (32) have the S-structure (35) which in PF be
comes matching through preposition copying as a conse
quence of the pro-determination requirement.
In this
latter instance, haber would be parallel to saber/ver/

haber [ NP [ N


pp i ] [s ... ti ...]]]

In brief, if haber sentences in (32) can be analyzed

along the lines discussed above for verbs of knowledge/
perception (Section 1.3), then since haber cannot receive
an indirect question reading, it would imply that at
least some instances of the pertinent examples of those
other verbs are not interpretable as indirect questions
2.2 A second piece of evidence against interpreting ap
parent non-matching FRs as indirect questions is that
these relatives can receive the normal interpretation for
RCs, that is, as possible referential expressions or as
generalized NPs. To wit, consider the following gram
matical examples in which the FR is referential.






S, s exactamente con lo que cuenta.

'Yes, I know exactly on what s/he counts'
Tiene 100 dlares, ni uno ms ni uno menos.
'S/he has 100 dollars, not one more not
one less'
S, ya vi con lo que te protegiste. Me
sorprende que an ests viva.
'Yes, I already saw (the thing) with which
you protected yourself. I'm surprised
you're still alive'
Hay con lo que yo no especulara ni en
broma; la devaluacin del dlar por
'There is (that) on which I would not
speculate not even as a joke; the
devaluation of the dollar for one'

2.3 Furthermore, despite the fact that interrogative and

relative pronouns in Spanish tend to have the same mor
phological shape (cf. (28)-(31)), the lo/s que, la/s que
forms which appear in the COMP position in FRs do not
form part of the interrogative class of pronouns, be
cause they never occur in direct questions (Plann, 1980;
Hirschbhler and Rivero, 1981, 1983).
Thus they only
belong with relative pronouns.
2.4 To summarize this second section, it was shown that
apparent non-matching FRs with verbs of perception/knowl
edge do not necessarily need to receive an indirect ques
tion interpretation, but that they may be read as regular
RCs. Three pieces of evidence were presented: (a) if ex
istential haber is analyzed as saber/ver, it cannot be
interrogative, because it does not subcategorize for S;



(b) given the appropriate context FRs can only be in

terpreted as referential, just like any other RC (cf.
(36)); and (c) lo que and related forms are relative pro
nouns and never truly interrogative ones.


The main contribution of this essay lies in having

explained a lexically defined and marked Spanish con
struction (that of apparent non-matching relative clauses
with verbs of knowledge and perception) in terms of an
already existent hypothesis--the pro-head hypothesis with
its well-formedness agreement filter (3). It turns out
that what could be assumed to be counterexamples instead
provide striking confirmation of such an hypothesis be
cause the obligatoriness of the preposition copying rule
in FRs is only a strategy to comply with the fact that
the content of pro must be determined. On the other
hand, the optional character of preposition copying in
relatives with a lexical head follows from the redundancy
obtained when the head and the WH-phrase agree in Case.
This "inverse attraction" phenomenon is not exclusive to
Spanish but was shown to exist in Greek and Latin, where
the process was also optional and was considered stylis
tic in nature.
The moral of the story is that unanalyzed data can
not disprove a given hypothesis, but rather only a prin
cipled analysis of such data can perform this task.

My gratitude to G. Messing for discussing the Greek and Latin
examples with me. My thanks also to C Piera and E.J. Beukenkamp
for their help and comments.



1. Hirschbhler and Rivero (1981) explain matching conditions

in Catalan--a language which parallels Spanish exactly in this area
--by means of COMP Accessibility (Groos and van Riemsdijk, 1979).
The problem with their treatment is that with the same means they
cannot directly account for non-matching infinitival FRs in subcategorized position, such as:
No tengo con guien salir.
'I don't have with whom to-go-out'
Note that infinitival FRs must have a COMP position just as tensed
ones do.
2. This rule is independently needed to account for the case
in which two identical prepositions from two prepositional verbs
come together in FRs:
So con quien t te casaste.
I-dreamt with whom you married
'I dreamt of the person whom you married'
Both soar 'to dream' and casar 'to marry' select the preposition
con, so at one level there must be two of these prepositions, one
with the matrix verb and one with the lower one. See Suer (1983a)
for details and discussion.
3. I refer the reader to Suer (1983b) for the reasons for
positing (3) on the left side of the grammar.
4. Working within a completely different hypothesis, Hirsch
bhler and Rivero note that the insertion of a different preposition
and not copying would be required for example (i):
de la manera en que vivan los indios.

of the way in which the Indians lived'
However, (i) does not represent a problem for my hypothesis. First,
these examples are perfectly grammatical without the preposition de
'of,' which means that it is optional. Second, en may be used in
place of de, which means the optional copying rule may apply.
Third, even verbs which do not subcategorize for a PP may be found
with the preposition de, which imparts a partitive-like reading to
the structure (ii):
(ii) a. Supe de eso ayer.
'I learned of that yesterday'
b. Paco quera de eso.
'Paco wanted (some) of that'
Hence, insertion of de, which may interact with the phenomenon under
study, is an independent process in the grammar of Spanish.
5. For example, see Hirschbhler and Rivero (1981:22, 1983).
They claim that verbs of knowledge/perception may appear with nonmatching FRs which are grammatical only if interpreted as indirect



questions. See the discussion above for objections to their pro

6. Perhaps this fact is related to the restrictions imposed on
the direct object of this existential-presentational verb (Suer,
7. Recall that the sentences in (32) could not be considered
to have the structure ... V S ... because haber does not subcategorize an S.
8. A more precise account of this restriction should specify
that they never occur in direct non-echo questions. For instance,
Kany (1969:167) states that in Hispanoamerica one could hear
gu? 'the what' as equivalent to
qu? 'what' even in educated
speech, and that lo qu? is heard in Argentina. He provides the
following example in which the echo question is self-evident.
C o n cunto hace el mercado por da?
'How much money does s/he spend in groceries a day?'
L o qu? El mercado?
'The what? The groceries?'

Baltin, Mark R. 1982. "A Landing Site Theory of Movement Rules".
Linguistic Inquiry 13.1-38.
Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
. 1982. Some Concepts and Consequences of the Theory of
Government and Binding. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Freidin, Robert and Leonard Babby. 1983. On the Interaction of Lexi
cal and Syntactic Properties: Case structure in Russian. Unpub
lished manuscript. McGill and Cornell.
Gili y Gaya, Samuel. 1961. Curso Superior de Sintaxis Espaola.
Barcelona: Spes.
Groos, Anneke and Henk van Riemsdijk. 1979. "Matching Effects in
Free Relatives: A parameter of core grammar". Paper Read at the
Pisa Colloquium on Markedness.
Hirschbhler, Paul and Mara-Luisa Rivero. 1981. "A Unified Analysis
of Matching and Non-matching Free Relatives in Catalan". Pro
ceedings of the Eleventh Annual Meeting of the North Eastern
Linguistic Society. Amherst, Mass.: University of Massachu
setts, 113-124.
Hofman, Johann B. 1965. Lateinische Syntax und Stilistik. Handbuch
Der Altertums-Wissenschaft II. 2.2. Munich.
Kany, Charles E. 1969. Sintaxis hispanoamericana. Madrid: Gredos.
Plann, Susan. 1980. Relative Clauses in Spanish without Overt Ante
cedents and Related Constructions. Berkeley, California: Uni
versity of California Press.



Real Academia Espaola (RAE). 1973. Esbozo de una nueva gramtica de

la lengua espaola. Madrid: Espasa-Calpe.
Rivero, Mara-Luisa. 1980. "That-Relatives and Deletion in COMP in
Spanish". Cahiers Linguistiques d'Ottawa 9.383-400.
Smyth, Herbert W. 1956. Greek Grammar. Rev. by Gordon Messing. Cam
bridge: Harvard University Press.
Sternberger, Joseph P. 1981. "Morphological Haplology". Language
Suer, Margarita M. 1982. Syntax and Semantics of Spanish Presenta
tional Sentence-Types. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University
. 1983a. "Free Relatives and the pro-head Hypothesis".
First Cornell Conference on Government and Binding. Cornell
Working Papers 4, 223-248. Ithaca, NY.
. 1983b. Free Relatives, the Matching Parameter and INFL
Accessibility. Unpublished manuscript. Cornell University.




Initial Remarks

Ever since linguistics established itself as a selfcontained science with a proper method and a well-defined
object of study, and even before then, when the tradi
tional textual analyses undertaken by philologists seemed
to be the only available methodology for the study of
language, certain topics have been continuously investi
gated and consequently, have been tested against differ
ent approaches and theoretical frameworks. Now, when
linguistics can be considered a full-fledged science with
its subareas of interest and specialization, it is even
more striking that particular structures still remain a
matter of controversy, and therefore keep on being stud
ied, analyzed, and looked into, but yet remain unre
solved. Relativization is a good example of a structure
which has been widely investigated but about which no
final word has been said.
This paper does not exhaust the topic either. I
will, however, try to say something decisive about rela-



tivization in spoken Brazilian Portuguese.

The cur
rent paper is only a small part of a much larger study
on relativization strategies in spoken Brazilian Portu
guese, i.e., a study in which I describe and analyze the
various factors that favor or inhibit the retention of
the WH-phrase in the gap of the relative clause. Non-WH
phrases in Brazilian Portuguese, however, can also be
either retained (pronominal anaphora) or deleted (zero
anaphora) in main and in other subordinate-type clauses,
i.e., the behavior of non-WH phrases in speech is also a
variable process whose nature is, at least on the sur
face, similar to the variable gap in relatives. Also,
considering that relative clauses have the basic function
of relating a coreferential NP in the adjectival clause
to an NP head in the matrix, and that as such, they per
form the same functions as pre- or postnominal adjectives
and postnominal modifiers, it became clear that the de
scription and explanation of the relativization strate
gies in Brazilian Portuguese would gain in power and
elegance if a parallel analysis of pronominalization
strategies were simultaneously carried out.

Defining the Variables

Let us first define the variation for both relativ

ization and pronominalization strategies in spoken Bra
zilian Portuguese. The analysis based on 45 hours of
tape-recorded interviews with informants from three dif
ferent social classes, all natives of urban Sao Paulo,
showed the existence of three different ongoing relativ
ization strategies.
Sentence (1) is an example of the so-called movement
with a trace, as postulated by Chomsky (1977), according



to which a coreferential NP in the relative clause is

moved into COMP position leaving behind a trace which is
bound to the NP head in the matrix clause marking coreferentiality. This process will be referred to as the
movement process.
(1) Eu conheo um hoteliperto da rodoviria
que (i chama Penso Ita.
'I know a hotel near the bus station that
(0) is called Penso Ita'
The second strategy found in the data involves no move
ment of the relativized NP into COMP position. COMP is
filled by the subordinator que and the gap is filled by
a pronominal form coref erential to the NP in the matrix
clause. Sentence (2) is an example of this strategy,
also in subject position.

Mas eu tenho uma comadreiminha, que elai

mora de esquina da minha casa.
'But I have a 'friend' of mine, that she
lives around the corner from my house'
Throughout this paper the strategy exemplified in (2)
will be referred to as the resumptive pronoun strategy.
These two strategies exemplified in (1) and (2), namely
the movement rule in (1) and the resumptive pronoun
strategy in (2), can occur throughout the syntactic
scale. They apply to subjects, direct objects, indirect
objects, obliques, and genitives.
There is, however, a third strategy that occurs in
spoken Brazilian Portuguese. This third strategy occurs
only with NPs preceded by a preposition: indirect ob
jects, obliques, and genitives. This strategy, hereafter
referred to as P(repositional) P(hrase)-chopping, is very



common and consists of erasure of the entire preposition

al phrase in the relative clause. Sentence (3) exempli
fies this strategy in an oblique relative.
(3) Nova Iorque urna cidadei que voce
respira Gershwin (em i).
'New York is a city that you breathe Gershwin'
For purposes of clarification I list one more exam
ple of each strategy in the lowest relativization site:
genitive. Sentence (4) is an example of resumptive pro
noun in genitive position; sentence (5) shows a genitive
relative which underwent PP-chopping. Sentences (6) and
(7) are standard versions of (4) and (5) respectively,
using piedpiping.
(4) Tern uns l que eu no saio da casa delesi.
'There are some there that I don't ever
leave their house'
Uma mulher. que ns batemos na porta
(de i ) .
'A woman that we knocked at the door
(her = of )'
(6) Tern uns l de cuja casa eu no saio.
'There are some there whose house I don't
ever leave'
(7) Uma mulher em cuja porta nos batemos.
'A woman at whose door we knocked'
Sentences (6) and (7) are standard versions using
piedpiping, which is the norm prescribed by the standard
Portuguese grammar. The occurrence of piedpiping in the
data is very low. Since Portuguese does not allow prep
osition stranding, for indirect objects, obliques, and



genitives, the two competing relativization strategies

available in the spoken grammar are the two non-standard
variants: the resumptive pronoun strategy and/or the PPchopping rule.
Table 1 displays the distribution of each relativi
zation strategy across syntactic categories.
Table 1:

Percentage of relatives according to

strategy across syntactic categories




S (+gap)



RP (-gap)








(2.6%) (21.1%)






PP (+gap)






N = 1700

S = standard, RP = resumptive pronoun,

PP = prepositional phrase-chopping

Thus far I have shown the presence of a variable gap

in the relative clause. As suggested in this paper be
fore, also in main clauses and in other subordinates a
variable gap may be found across syntactic categories.
The passage in (8) illustrates how the data was analyzed
and classified for the investigation of pronominalization
strategies in speech. Only third persons were considered
in this part of the analysis in order to maintain the
parallel relationship with relatives and their basic ref
erential function.



Eu nao sei como as pessoas conseguem ouvir

o Joao no telefone. As vezes eu estou do
lado dele e no estou escutando (0). Parece
que ele no est falando.
'I don't know how people can hear John on the
phone. Sometimes I am standing at his side
and I don't hear (). It seems that he is not
The first referent is Joo which is retained in the fol
lowing main clause in genitive position and deleted in
direct object position. Then, it is retained again in
subject position in the subordinate clause.
Table 2 shows the results for pronominal retention
vs. deletion across syntactic categories. The difference
between retention vs. deletion rates in main clauses
against subordinates is not made since it is not perti
nent to the argument being made in this paper.
Table 2:

Pronominal retention vs. deletion

across syntactic categories













R (-gap)


(18.2%) (40.8%)

D (+gap)







N = 1482

R = retention, D = deletion



The data shows, therefore, that the spoken relativization strategies range from pronominal retention (i.e.,
resumptive pronoun) to pronominal deletion (i.e., the
movement strategy and the PP-chopping rule). Similarly,
the results obtained from analyzing the pronominalization
strategies in speech demonstrate that the "gap" in the
main clause (which is related to an NP referent prior in
discourse) may either be filled by a pronoun (pronominal
anaphora) or remain empty (zero anaphora). The question
this paper aims to answer then is as follows: given the
structural similarities between these two variable proc
esses, how are relativization and pronominalization
strategies related?

The Relationship between Relativization and

Pronominalization Strategies in Brazilian Portuguese

The relationship between relativization and pronom

inalization has already been mentioned in the linguistic
literature (cf. Jackendoff, 1977; Downing, 1978; Kato,
1981), but no study to my knowledge has shown their cor
relation, nor used this correlation as a way of explain
ing the nature and origin of various relative clause
strategies in a particular language.
The main purpose of this paper is then twofold: (1)
to demonstrate that this correlation indeed exists in
Brazilian Portuguese, and (2) on basis of this relation
ship, to make predictions about what particular relativ
ization strategy is more likely to occur given the rela
tivization site, as well as to differentiate between the
"origin" of the two non-standard variants.
It is my underlying assumption that resumptive pro
nouns must be accounted for by two major explanatory



forces: (1) they may result from a low-level rule based

on short-term memory (cf. Chomsky, 1977: 111); and (2)
they may constitute an alternative relativization strat
egy associated with a particular pronominal rule. The
PP-chopping rule, however, has only one source: it is the
result of a drastic change in the pronominal system that
started dropping pronouns in main clauses from the top
of the syntactic scale down to the bottom, moving further
down to relatives and other subordinates.
Clarifying the relationship between relativization
and pronominalization strategies shows resumptive pro
nouns to be an essential property of the grammar, and as
such, non-historical.5 The PP-chopping rule, however,
as the analysis in this paper demonstrates, is shown to
have a historical status, i.e., a change in the relativ
ization system which can be explained by an unrelated
change in the referential system, as activated by pro
nouns. The diachronic investigation of both the rela
tivization system and the pronominalization strategies
since the early 1700's in Brazilian Portuguese confirms
the non-historical status of resumptive pronouns against
the historical status of the PP-chopping rule.
3.1 Analysis: Presentation of the Results. I will be
presenting results which confirm the following two hy
potheses: (1) the double role of resumptive pronouns in
the syntax of spoken Brazilian Portuguese and (2) the
outcome of the PP-chopping rule which resulted from a
change in the pronominal system in the second half of the
19th century. The results that confirm the first hypoth
esis are drawn from the synchronic data; the second hy
pothesis is substantiated by the results obtained from
the diachronic data analysis.









36 3




a candidate



level rule based on the constraints on short-term memory,

or they are an alternative relativization strategy which









processes in the spoken grammar.

In a previous






tors, i.e., their











(Tarallo, 1983)



is accounted







for as a

the head


I have












head NP, the higher the probability of the filling of the

gap with a resumptive pronoun.








shown to have a conditioning effect on the use of resump7

tive pronouns, I shall exemplify and show results from
the "distancing" factor.
Table 3 shows that resumptive
pronouns are more common in structures

in which the ex

traction site is separated from the head NP by some in

tervening material


(included here are cases of conjoined





theticals, pause, and prepositional phrases).

In Table 3 we have thus one argument in favor of one



roles played






syntax of spoken Brazilian Portuguese, i.e., one side of

the coin.

But what about

the second half of the first



Table 3:


Percentage of resumptive pronouns according

to distance between the head and the gap
















= 44.94
p < .001

RP = resumptive pronoun, PP = prepositional phrasechopping

Graph 1 puts together the results presented in

Tables 1 and 2, namely the relativization data and the
pronominal retention rate in main clauses. As mentioned
before in this paper, for subjects and direct objects,
the relativization strategies available in speech are
either the so-called movement with a trace, or resumptive
pronouns. Following the pronominalization patterns pre
sented on the leftmost corner of Graph 1 below, it can
be then predicted that subjects will favor resumptive
pronouns over direct objects, since both in main clauses
and in subordinates subjects show more pronominal reten
tion than direct objects, which in turn show more pronom
inal deletion. For the other three categories, taking
only the two non-standard variants into consideration,
we can predict that both indirect objects and obliques
must favor the PP-chopping rule over the resumptive pro
noun strategy since they are usually deleted in main
clauses. Genitives, on the other hand, should favor the
resumptive pronoun strategy since they show more pronom-



inal retention than deletion in main clauses and in sub

ordinates. Graph 1 thus displays the reverse pattern for
the lower relativization sites with relation to the relativization strategy.

Graph 1:


Pronominal retention in main clauses and in

relatives (resumptive pronouns) vs. pronominal
deletion in relatives (PP-chopping)
S=subject; G=genitive; IO=indirect object;
Obl=Oblique; DO=direct object

In order to test the second hypothesis, i.e., the

outcome of the PP-chopping rule and its historical status
in the grammar of Brazilian Portuguese, an analysis of
both diachronic relativization and pronominalization



strategies was done covering


a time span of

3.2 presents the results obtained

200 years.

from the dia-

chronic data analysis.


The Outcome of the PP-chopping Rule.

of two different
in modern






The existence



Portuguese and their consequent







and movement rules in general called for diachronic work.









of quantitative work, since the transition from one state

to another

is not so clear-cut and conditioning

to the actuation of one syntactic

rule may be effective

in the past as well as in the present.

I tried


In other words,

in this paper to use the present to explain the









(cf. Romaine, 1980, 1982; Houston




In doing the diachronic data gathering and prelimi








change in the pronominal system had been located

past, the collection of data could stop.


in the

Brazilian Por

tuguese exists as a literary language only as of the ear

ly 1700's.

Any material before that would reveal Conti

nental Portuguese features and, as such, bias the data.







to be present



in the Portuguese



(cf. Moreira, 1922); on the other hand, the PP-chopping

rule arose


in the Brazilian Portuguese system








shows, this change was located in the second half of the


Thus, "in order to feel at home in the past," I

decided to move back another 100 years and start the data



collecting in 1725, dividing the time by 50-year periods.

The writers used in the analysis are Brazilian; the data
consists of letters, diaries, and plays. For every 50
years, 200 relative clauses and 150 cases of pronominal
reference were collected and analyzed following the same
criteria used in the synchronic analysis.
The reason for having used only prose texts is,
according to Ellegard (1953:156), obvious: "My purpose
is to shed light on the development of the everyday lan
guage, and the factors that have contributed to forming
it into what it is today. (...)
I do not of course mean
to imply that prose texts give an exact reflection of
'natural speech1, or to use statistical jargon, form a
fair sample of the universe of speech events in a com
munity. But they are the best sample that we can get."
Thus, the 18th and the 19th centuries were divided
into four 50-year periods.
Let's first see what the
pronominal rules were like along the four time periods
across syntactic categories. Table 4 presents the per
centage of pronominal retention for each syntactic cate
gory according to time period. It shows, for instance,
that while the pronominal retention rule is close to
categorical in prepositional phrase positions in times I
and II, it starts decreasing after time III. Most inter
esting is the fact that when the percentages for direct
objects and prepositional phrases decrease, the rate of
retention for subjects increases, thus suggesting that
the loss of clitics/pronominal reference causes the sys
tem to rearrange itself by marking other sentence argu
ments more often. Remember that subjects show high re
tention in the synchronic data.



Table 4:

Pronominal retention according to syntactic

function and time periods




























S = subject, DO = direct object,

IDO = indirect object,
OB = oblique, G = genitive

The results presented in Table 4 clearly suggest

that the PP-chopping rule probably started being more
frequently activated by time III, and most definitely,
at time IV. The diachronic relativization shows that
some cases of chopping, especially in oblique position,
can be found in times I and II, but as a rule, the PPchopping strategy coincides with the percentual decrease
of pronominal retention in prepositional phrase positions
after time III. Graph 2 displays the data presented in
Table 4, and shows the pattern of pronominal retention
reversing after time III.



Since the main point at stake here is the origin of

the PP-chopping rule, I decided to group all cases of a
prepositional phrase into one single factor and compare
it to subjects and direct objects. The results are pre
sented in Table 5 and plotted in Graph 3.
The major and final point I want to raise and demon
strate in this paper is whether or not the correlation
between pronominalization and relativization explains the
outcome of the PP-chopping rule. In order to do that, I
separated from the data all and only the prepositional
object relatives, the derivation of which could have been
done by either one of the three rules attested in the
synchronic data, i.e., the standard piedpiping, resump
tive pronouns, or the PP-chopping rule. Table 6 presents
these results.


Table 5:

Pronominal retention in subjects, direct

objects, and prepositional phrases
across time periods



















S = subject, DO = direct object,

PP = prepositional phrase


Table 6:


Frequency of use of 3 relativization

strategies across times periods




















PDP = piedpiping, RP = resumptive pronoun,

PP = prepositional phrase-chopping

Again, it is clear that by time IV the PP-chopping rule

had already started its syntactic duty, that of competing
against the resumptive pronoun strategy in the replace
ment of the standard piedpiped relative. Graph 4 plots
the evolution of each relativization strategy along the
four time periods.



To conclude, Graph 3 shows that at time III the rule

of pronominal deletion, until then only applicable to
subjects, and variably, yet less frequently, to direct
objects, starts affecting the lower syntactic slots
(e.g., the prepositional phrases). My major hypothesis
said that the PP-chopping rule arose from this particular
syntactic change in the pronominal system.
In other
words, the replacement of pronominal anaphora by zero
anaphora gave birth--so to speak--to a new type of rela
tive, one that looks exactly like a main clause except
for the invariable complementizer que by which it is in
troduced. To that extent, the analysis presented here
suggests that the old competition between two types of
relatives--one clearly involving a movement analysis
(standard piedpiping) and the other, a deletion process
(resumptive pronouns)--only produced another paradigm,
but the two competing processes remained the same: move
ment (piedpiping) vs. deletion (PP-chopping).
To close this essay Graph 5 displays the evolution
of the three relativization strategies as compared to
pronominal retention for prepositional phrases in main



1. The Det-S or Art-S analysis is probably the earliest genera
tive analysis of relativization (Lees, 1960; Chomsky, 1965). Then,
we can still name the NP-S analysis as postulated by Ross (1967) and
Bach (1974); the NOM-S analysis (Schachter, 1973; Stockwell et al.,
1973) and the Deep Structure Conjunction analysis (Thompson, 1971).
A good discussion of their strengths and weaknesses can be found in
Romaine (1972:37-44).
2. The sample which I studied in order to examine the different
types of relativization and pronominalization strategies in spoken
So Paulo Portuguese is drawn from the speech of 40 informants from
three socio-economic levels based on education, income, and occupa
3. All examples are marked following this convention: SP = So
Paulo; 81 = year of recording; 1/2 = side of tape; 1/A = speaker
number or letter; 000/001 = counter number on tape.
4. Cf. Givn (1976).
5. Cf. Tarallo and Myhill (1983).
6. Cf. Chao (1981) and Chao and Sells (1982).
7. Other syntactic processing factors effective in conditioning
the use of resumptive pronouns were right-embedded relatives, sen-



tential-complement relatives,
(Cf. Tarallo, 1983).






Bach, Emmon. 1974. Syntactic Theory. New York: Holt, Rinehart and
Chao, Wynn. 1981. "Pro Drop Languages and Non-Obligatory Control".
University of Massachusetts Occasional Papers in Linguistics 7.
and Peter Sells. 1982. "On the Interpretation of Resump
tive Pronouns". Proceedings of NELS 13, ed. by P. Sells and C.
Jones. Amherst, Mass.
Chomsky, Noam. 1965. Aspects of the Theory of Syntax. Cambridge,
Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
. 1977. "On Wh-Movement". Formal Syntax, ed. by Peter
Culicover, Thomsa Wasow, and Adrian Akmajian. New York:
Academic Press.
Downing, Bruce. 1978. "Some Universals of Relative Clause Struc
ture". Universals of Human Language 4, ed. by Joseph Greenberg.
Stanford: Stanford University Press.
Ellegard, Alvar. 1953. The Auxiliary 'do': The establishment and
regulation of its use in English. Stockholm: Almquist &
Givon, Talmy. 1976. "Topic, Pronoun, and Grammatical Agreement".
Subject and Topic, ed. by Charles Li, 149-188. New York: Aca
demic Press.
Houston, Ann and Fernando Tarallo. 1982. "Using the Present to Ex
plain the Past to Explain the Present". Paper presented at the
43rd Summer Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America. Col
lege Park, Maryland.
Jackendoff, Ray. 1977. X Syntax: A study of phrase structure. Cam
bridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Kato, Mary. 1981. "Oraes relativas: variao universal e variao
individual no portugus". Estudos Lingsticos, Anais de Semi
narios. So Paulo: Pontificia niversidade Catlica.
Lees, Robert B. 1960. The Grammar of English Nominalizations. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
Moreira, Julio. 1922. Estudos da lingua portuguesa. Subsidios para
a syntaxe histrica e popular. Lisboa: Livraria Clssica Edi
Romaine, Suzanne. 1980. "The Relative Clause Marker in Scots Eng
lish: Diffusion, complexity and style as dimensions of syntac
tic change". Language in Society 9. 221-49.
. 1982. Socio-Historical Linguistics. Its Status and Meth
odology. Cambridge, Mass.: Cambridge University Press.
Ross, John Robert. 1967. Constraints on Variables in Syntax. Unpub
lished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.



37 5

Schachter, Paul. 1973. "Focus and Relativization". Language 49.

Stockwell, Robert P., Paul Schachter, and Barbara Partee. 1973. The
Major Syntactic Structures of English. New York: Holt, Rinehart
and Winston.
Tarallo, Fernando. 1983. "Inside and Outside Relative Clauses: Pro
nominal redundancy in Portuguese". New Ways of Analyzing Vari
ation in English, ed. by Ralph Fasold and Deborah Schiffrin.
Washington: Georgetown University Press.
, and John Myhill. 1983. "Interference and Natural Lan
guage Processing in Second Language Acquisition". Language
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Thompson, Sandra A. 1971. "The Deep Structure of Relative Clauses".
Studies in Linguistic Semantics, ed. by Charles Fillmore and
D. Terence Langendoen. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.









Closed syllable adjustment (CSA) broadly refers to a

phonological process commonly assumed to account for the
/ and e/ alternations of Modern French illustrated in
a. htelier/htel, cacheter/cachet
b. htelier/htels, cacheter/cachets
c. achever/achve, achvera, achvement
s e y r e r / s y r e , svrera, svrerions


Cder/cde, cdera, cderions
clbrer/clbre, clbrera
In his seminal study of CSA, Dell (1973b/1980: Chapter 5)
spelled out in detail the various conditions under which
// and /e/ are changed to /e/,
but without trying to
reduce and unify them. Dell's analysis was couched with-



in the framework of linear phonology; since then, the

theoretical status granted to metrical structures such
as the syllable and the foot has given rise to several
proposals for unifying the phonological treatment of CSA
(Anderson, 1982; Basb11, 1978; Selkirk, 1978).
parallel, however, other analyses have suggested that
the alternations commonly subsumed under CSA are not of
a unified nature, and that at least some of them ought
to be characterized lexically or morphophonologically
rather than phonologically (Bouchard, 1980; Cornulier,
1977; Morin, 1978; Tranel, 1982b).
The questions raised by CSA echo familiar issues in
generative phonology, most fundamentally the abstractness/concreteness debate, the role of metrical structure
in phonology, and the interaction of phonology and mor
phology. In this paper, I critically examine linear and
metrical phonological treatments of CSA and identify
some of their questionable internal characteristics and
defective predictive powers. I propose and justify a
split (phonological/morphological) analysis of CSA which
gains from the integration of the syllable into phonolog
ical theory and from the results of a principled concrete
approach to French phonology and morphology.

From Linear to Metrical

I begin by considering Dell's linear treatment of

CSA. Dell proposed rule schema (2) to account for the
alternations illustrated in (1).



Condition on (2b): C1C obstruent-liquid

(The ligature
prescribes tautomorphemicness)
(2) neutralizes // and /e/ to / / when they are
followed by one or several consonants in the same mor
pheme (a) before a word boundary, (b) before another con
sonant/ and (c) before a morpheme-final schwa. The con
dition on (2b) disallows the change when the sequence
C1C is an obstruent-liquid cluster.
Let us examine first parts (a) and (b) of (2). As
shown in (3),
(2a) derives for example the singular form
of htel, and (2b) its homophonous plural form.
(3) htel
(cf. htelier [otlje])
([z] may be pronounced in liaison)
The condition on (2b) is imposed because of cases like
(4)/ where the neutralization is blocked.
(4) sevrer
As to the ligature prescribing tautomorphemicness/ it is
posited because the grammatical morphemes /z/ and /t/ do
not trigger the neutralization, as illustrated in (5).
(5) /z/: pl. marker on nouns and adjectives,
lst/2nd person marker on verbs
/t/: 3rd person marker on verbs
quelques amis
/klk+z#ami+z/ [k lkzami] * [kIkzami]
chantes-en une
/t++z###yn/ [tzyn]
This account/ which involves two rules and two spe
cial conditions on the rules can be formally simplified



into a single straightforward rule. First, by giving

theoretical status to the syllable, we can collapse (2a)
and (2b), and eliminate the condition on (2b), since the
bracketed environments for (2a) and (2b) and the condi
tion on (2b) reflect exactly that the neutralization
occurs in a closed syllable within the word (see Dell,
1980:186; Harris, 1983:5). We thus have rule (6) instead
of the combination of (2a), (2b), and the condition on
Further simplification results from the elimination
of the ligature. The device of the ligature embodies the
claim that at a cost, rules may refer to tautomorphemic
segments, to the exclusion of cases where a morpheme
boundary intervenes. The highly marked status of this
situation (Chomsky and Halle, 1968:364; Dell, 1980:176
n. 20; Kenstowicz and Kisseberth, 1977:87-8) warrants
close scrutiny of the French instance where the special
device is posited. We observe that the ligature is un
necessary if the grammatical morphemes / z / and /t/ are
assumed to be outside rather than inside the word, that
is, if they are attached with a word boundary rather than
a morpheme boundary. As argued elsewhere (Tranel, 1977,
1981a, 1981b, 1982a), the word boundary attachment of
these morphemes (which are phonetically realized in
liaison only) is supported by independent evidence (con
tra Dell, 1980:221-2; Selkirk, 1972:307-9) and it follows
directly from the concrete treatment of linking conso
nants as segments inserted between words.
This view of liaison concurrently eliminates a re
lated problem in Dell's analysis of CSA. Under Dell's
assumptions, a number of morphemes must be considered as
exceptions to (2a), since, as shown in column A of (7),



they exhibit both underlying and phonetic word-final se

quences of the form /C/ and /eC/ (see Cornulier, 1977:
156; Dell, 1980:184 n. 33).

Under the insertion analysis of liaison mentioned

above,1 there is no reason for CSA to apply, since as
shown in column B of (7), the linking consonants are not
part of the supposedly exceptional morphemes. The fact
that there is absolutely no tendency for [] to occur in
such cases confirms the absence of any true exception
The word boundary attachment of linking consonants
furthermore permits certain simplifications of the gram
mar with respect to word stress assignment. The rule
assigning word stress in French is usually written as
(8a), where the second C0 represents latent linking
consonants (cf. Dell, 1980:192; Walker, 1975).



a. V [+stress] / - Co (Co) #
b. V [+stress] / - C o () #
With these consonants placed outside the word, (8a) can
be reduced to (8b). In addition, whereas formulation
(8a) requires the application of CSA before stress
assignment, as illustrated in (9i) (see Dell, 1980:193),
formulation (8b) eliminates the ordering requirement, as
illustrated in (9ii).
(9) i. htel /otl/
ii. htel /otl/
(8b) [otel]
In sum, the well-motivated assumption that the gram
matical morphemes /z/ and /t/ (more generally, linking
consonants) are attached by means of a word boundary al
lows the highly marked device of the ligature to be dis
pensed with. Parts (a) and (b) of (2) thus ultimately
reduce to the simple rule given in (10), a true expres
sion of closed syllable adjustment.
(10) Closed Syllable Adjustment (CSA)
, e / - C1 $
Let us turn now to part (c) of (2), which is re
peated in (11) .
This rule accounts for the types of alternations illus
trated in (12) .





crve, crvera, crverions
achve, achvera, achverions,
svre, svrera, svrerions
cde, cdera, cderions
clbre, clbrera, clbrerions
Here, the neutralization occurs when the vowels are fol
lowed underlyingly by at least one tautomorphemic conso
nant and a morpheme-final schwa. The ligature, which en
sures tautomorphemicness, blocks the neutralization in
words like (13), since the underlined schwas in these ex
amples do not belong to the same morphemes as the following consonants. 2





The [-seg] feature blocks the neutralization in words
like (14), since the underlined schwas in these examples
are not followed in the next syllable by a morpheme-final

As Dell remarked, (2c) "treats and e as if they
were in a closed syllable when they are in an open sylla
ble and the following syllable contains a schwa followed
by a boundary" (1980:188). Naturally, the question now
is whether all cases handled by (2c) can or should be
made to fall under (10) or a similar rule. The vowels
that must not undergo CSA (e.g., the underlined vowels
in (13) and (14)) automatically and correctly fail to



meet the structural description of (10), since they are

in open syllables. Given (10), then, there is no need
for the ligature or the [-seg ] feature as blocking de
vices. The question therefore becomes whether these two
devices are actually needed as triggering devices. In
other words, in the cases taken by Dell to be subject to
(2c), such as the examples in (12), can the vowels which
must undergo CSA be made to satisfy the structural de
scription of (10) instead of that of (2c)? These vowels
fall into two distinct categories of words, depending on
whether the morpheme-final schwa in the next syllable is
(i) word-final or (ii) word-internal. The first category
(type (i)) includes words like (15), which have no final
schwa realized at the surface phonetic level, and thus
exhibit a transparent occurrence of [] in a closed syl

Type (i): Morpheme-final schwa is word-final

Genve [nv], achte [at], achve [av],
crve [krv], svre [svr], cde [sd],
clbre [selbr]
Let us assume again the framework viewing liaison as con
sonant insertion. In this framework, there is no major
rule of final consonant deletion, and word-final schwas
are consequently not structurally required as underlying
protective devices (Tranel, 1981a,b). As a result, type
(i)-words naturally fall under (10), since their underly
ing representations can be assumed to contain // or /e/
in a closed syllable.3' 4
Turning now to type (ii)-words, i.e., instances
where the morpheme-final schwas are word-internal as in
(16), we observe that the assumed underlying absence of
these schwas does not entirely resolve the question this
time, since as illustrated by the verb forms in (16b),



there are cases where phonetic [e] from underlying /a/

or /e/ arises in an open syllable, whether or not a mor
pheme-final schwa is ultimately realized phonetically in
the next syllable.5
(16) Type (ii): Morpheme-final schwa is wordinternal

htellerie [otlri], achvement [avm]

([], [a.v.m])


achterons [atro], achterions

[atrj] ([], [a..t.rj]),

cderons [sdr], cderions [sdrj]
([s.dr], [s.d.rj])
Two main options are in principle available to resolve
this problem: one is to use some abstract phonological
construct allowing type (ii)-cases to fall in with the
rest of the alternations. The other is to consider that
type (ii)-cases are of a different nature than the rest.
Two sorts of abstract approaches have been proposed to
date to unify the treatment of the alternations under
consideration: (a) recourse to an abstract notion of the
syllable (Anderson, 1982; Basbll, 1978) and (b) recourse
to a prosodic unit of higher order than the syllable, the
foot (Selkirk, 1978).
In slightly different ways, but in the same spirit,
Anderson and Basbll assume that at the level where CSA
operates, special rules of syllabification have assigned
the consonants preceding a morpheme-final schwa to the
coda of the previous syllable, thus closing the syllables
where // and /e/ need to be turned into //. 6 While
allowing a maximally unified analysis of the alterna
tions, this approach also includes serious drawbacks.
One drawback is that highly marked and artificial
resyllabification rules are introduced into the grammar



of French. The actual rules proposed by Anderson (1982:

553, 555 n. 5) are given in (17). 7
(17) a. [CoVCo] [C0] #
1 23
4 5 6

[ 1 2 3 4] [5] 6
b. /...V] [C++.../ /...VC] [++.../
(syllables are marked by the square brackets)
By depriving a syllable of its onset (backward resyllabification), these rules clearly violate universal syllabi
fication procedures. In addition, their operation cru
cially depends on vowel properties, that is, whether the
nucleus of the syllable is a schwa or not; this is the
only case in French where syllabification is sensitive
to such a parameter.8 A third odd feature, carried
over from Dell's linear analysis, is the sensitivity of
(17) to non-local boundary information. Although it is
clear that word boundaries may have an effect on resyllabification when they occur at the point of potential
readjustment, it is equally clear that boundary informa
tion located away from the readjustment point is not or
dinarily relevant; yet, (17a-b) operate only on the onset
of a syllable whose nucleus immediately precedes a boun
dary. Thus, there is no question that these rules are
highly marked.
My second point is that they are also totally arti
The resulting unusual syllable sequences are
phonetically unattested in the language and must neces
sarily undergo repair work in the rest of the deriva
tions. Thus, there is deletion of the final schwas in
type (i)-words, as illustrated in (18a), and forward
resyllabification of the relevant consonants in type
(ii)-words, as illustrated in (18b).







b. achterons
achterions /a..t.rj/
(17b) a.t..rj
The systematic need for this kind of repair work shows
the artificiality of the special resyllabification rules
In her own proposal for a unified phonological
treatment of CSA, Selkirk 1978 does not resort to unnat
ural resyllabificationf but to a higher-order prosodic
unit, the foot. Foot formation in French is governed by
three principles (144):
Principle I establishes that
the French foot ordinarily corresponds to the syllable.
Principles IIA and IIB treat syllables containing schwas
in a special way: a right-to-left procedure groups into
a single foot a syllable with a schwa and the preceding
syllable, obligatorily within words (IIA), and optionally
across words (IIB); the syllable with a schwa thus be
comes "a dependent syllable" in a foot. Selkirk's notion
of the French foot permits a unified treatment of CSA by



allowing the two relevant structural descriptions of (19)

to be merged, that is, the case where a foot is not dis
tinct from a closed syllable (19a), and the case where a
foot is a sequence of two syllables (19b).

The generalization proposed by Selkirk is that "a

and e change to if followed by something else inside
the foot" (149).
Her actual rule schema is given in
(20). 1 0
(20) Long Foot Adjustment (LFA)
a,e / F [C o - W ] F
W 0
In the same paper, Selkirk argues that foot forma
tion also allows an insightful account of schwa-deletion
(145-7). First, the number of rules needed are reduced,
the three rules of (21) being replaced by a single rule
(22). 1 1
(21) a. / VC
b. / VC
c. / V#C
(22) / F [ . . . VC
. ..]F
Second, two well-known properties of schwa-deletion fol
low automatically, namely its prohibition in adjacent
syllables and its optionality across words.12
insights into schwa-deletion allowed by foot formation
do not, however, carry over to LFA, on the contrary.
Selkirk's proposal assumes very generally that in a met
rical structure like (23), the vowels in the first sylla
ble will change to [e].



But this is incorrect. Consider (24), which contains ex

amples of adjacent schwa-syllables within a single mor
chev lure
*ch velure
les chj veux
chev l
*ch vel
les ch veux
ensev lir
*ens velir
gen vois
*g nevois
G nve
ressem 1er
*ress meler
la s melle
In such cases, schwa-deletion patterns as shown in column
A rather than column B: the second schwa deletes, not the
first. This follows nicely from foot formation, which
obligatorily yields the metrical structures in (25),
where only the schwas to be deleted are appropriately
found in a dependent syllable in a foot.

The problem is that the underlined schwas in (25) meet

the structural description of LFA, but must not undergo
it. One might eliminate the difficulty by arguing that
these schwas have been restructured as stable vowels.
Although restructuring seems plausible for a word like
ensevelir, the other words listed do not readily lend
themselves to this suggestion, since as shown in column C
of (24), there exist related words where the schwas in
question delete, thus indicating clearly that they have
not become stable. In sum, Selkirk's LFA derives incor-



rect outputs for examples like (25). In order to block

such misgenerations, one is forced to return to Dell's
observation and specify somehow that the dependent sylla
ble in the foot must contain a morpheme-final schwa.
In similar fashion, other types of incorrect deriva
tions are generated by Selkirk's analysis. Thus, her
principles of foot formation may give rise to metrical
structures such as (26).

These structures yield possible grammatical results with

respect to schwa-deletion, but not with respect to LFA,
since in none of such cases should the underlined vowels
change to [e]. What (26a) shows is that the specified
domain of LFA, unlike that of schwa-deletion, cannot just
refer to the foot; it must also refer to the word. The
fact that LFA does not apply across words is a feature
which must characterize any analysis of CSA. Within the
framework of Lexical Phonology (cf. Harris, '1983; Kiparsky, 1982; Mohanan, 1982), the difference between LFA and
schwa-deletion could be captured by saying that LFA is a
lexical rule, whereas schwa-deletion is a postlexical
rule. This view would prevent LFA from applying after
foot formation across words, and would thus avoid the
generation of incorrect outputs in cases like (26a). The
data illustrated in (26b) would however remain a problem;
they contain a prefix failing to undergo LFA, but it does
not seem legitimate to claim that the prefixes and stems
are separated by word boundaries and do not together con-



stitute words. (26b) is thus not amenable to the same

explanation as (26a). What (26b) appears to show, then,
is that LFA applies to /a/ and /e/ only if the following
consonant belongs to the same morpheme, as Dell had al
ready pointed out in his linear analysis.
In short, Selkirk's proposal does not do away with
the two odd restrictions on CSA that Dell had isolated,
namely the tautomorphemicness constraint and the mor
pheme-final schwa constraint. These constraints cannot
be made part of Selkirk's principles of foot formation,
because they do not have a parallel effect on schwa-dele
tion. They must therefore be included in LFA itself, as
unexplained restrictions on the variable W. But then LFA
no longer represents a genuine generalization, since the
contents of W essentially have to be spelled out. The
generalized foot treatment of CSA thus breaks down coml4

From Phonological to Morphological

In Dell's linear treatment of CSA, as well as in

Anderson's and Selkirk's metrical analyses, the presence
of an underlying thematic schwa in the future and condi
tional of first group verbs is crucial to trigger vowel
adjustment in the preceding syllable. For example, the
forms of (27a) can only be derived from the underlying
representations (27b), not from those of (27c), which do
not contain a thematic schwa.
(27) a. achterons





d. demanderions [dmadrj]
e. [dmdrij]
f. atelier [atlje], chandelier [dlje],
Richelieu [riljj]
g. crier [krije], plier [plije], sucrier
[sykrije], sablier [sablije], ouvrier
[uvrije], peuplier [pplije]
h. achterions [aterj], [atrij]
The thematic schwa, however, is not always present
Thus, although pronunciations such as
(27d) are probably derived from underlying representa
tions containing a thematic schwa, pronunciations such
as (27e) are best explained if derived from underlying
representations without a thematic schwa. The reasons
are basically that word-internal schwa-deletion is nor
mally blocked (as shown in (27f)) when it would yield
sequences of the form obstruent-liquid-yod-vowel, and
that an underlying sequence /iV/ or /jV/ (as shown in
(27g)) normally yields a phonetic sequence [ijV] after
obstruent-liquid clusters
(see Morin, 1983; Tranel,
1981a:64-6). Interestingly, for verbs like acheter, the
absence of the thematic schwa does not preclude the pho
netic appearance of [] in the stem, as shown in (27h)
(Morin, 1978:126-7). These data strongly suggest that
the [ ] found in the future and conditional is not phonologically conditioned, as Anderson, Dell, and Selkirk
claim, but that it has a lexical source. I now explore
this particular line of investigation in some detail in
an attempt to sift through several conceivable treatments
of this sort.
Instead of forcing type (ii)-cases into an obviously



recalcitrant phonological mold, I propose to view them

from a morphological perspective, and thus to distinguish
them from the phonologically governed type (i)-cases
which fall under the rule of CSA (10). Under this ap
proach, verbs like acheter require two lexical stems with
rules of distribution assigning the stems in the proper
morphological contexts. As shown in (28), I posit the
//-stem for the future and conditional, and the //-stem
(28) //-stem: future and conditional
//-stem: elsewhere
[at-] fut. and cond.
[at] pres. sg./3rd pl.
/ a / a t - / ( v i a CSA)
[at-] elsewhere (via
The //-stem is subject to CSA when used bare (i.e., in
the present singular and third plural), and to schwa-de
letion when used with endings. Stems with phonetic [e]
thus come either from a lexical /e/ directly, or from a
lexical /a/ via CSA.
One might legitimately wonder why the restricted
/e/-stem is not allowed to yield the present singular and
third plural directly, that is, why the analysis given in
(29) is excluded.15
(29) //-stem: pres. sg./3rd pl., fut./ cond.
//-stem: elsewhere
acheter /at-/ [a/t-] pres. sg./3rd pl.,



elsewhere (via



Both (28) and (29) assume the existence in the lexicon of

a restricted stem (the //-stem) and of a general stem
(the //-stem). Therefore, both predict a regularizing
tendency toward the uniform use of the //-stem. The
difference is that (29) predicts that the stems found in
the present singular/third plural and in the future/con
ditional should systematically behave in parallel fash
ion, whereas (28) predicts the loss of phonetic [] in
the future/conditional, and its concurrent preservation
in the present singular/third plural, since phonetic []
here is phonologically guaranteed by CSA.
The latter
prediction is borne out by the facts: in addition to the
"standard paradigm" of (30a), speakers also use the
"regularized paradigm" of (30b).
pres. sg.



pres. sg.
These data clearly show that native speakers make a dis
tinction between the [e] found in the present singular/
third plural and the [e] found in the future/conditional.
The abstract phonological treatments discussed earlier
crucially fail to provide for such a dichotomy, since
their very essence is to yield a unified account of the
presence of [e] throughout the paradigm. Between the two
conceivable morphological solutions (28) and (29), lan
guage-specific evidence clearly favors (28) over (29).



In addition, it is possible to suggest a reasonable gen

eral principle of grammar construction which would yield
this result in the course of language acquisition. The
future/conditional on the one hand and the present sin
gular/third plural on the other hand do not constitute a
natural morphological class. On universal grounds, a
principle based on this observation could systematically
rule out (or at least make extremely costly) the type of
analysis sketched in (29).
The analysis of (28) thus accounts for paradigm
(30a) and it also explains the existence of paradigm
(30b), that is, how phonetic [] can be lost in the fu
ture and conditional, and not in the present singular/
third plural. However, not explained in full is the in
teresting fact that the mirror image of paradigm (30b),
namely paradigm (30c), is unattested; this gap remains
to be justified, because paradigm (30c) could conceivably
arise from a morphological analysis such as (31).
(31) //-stem: future and conditional
//-stem: elsewhere

[a/et-] fut. and cond.


[a/t-] elsewhere
(31) implies a restructuring of the elsewhere //-stem
of (28) to a /0/-stem. Why should this be disallowed?
I would venture to propose that the existence of the / / stem guarantees the assumption of the existence of a
stem-vowel in the same position in the general stem. In
other words, I would claim that the //-stem cannot be
restructured to a //-stem until the restricted //-stem
has merged with the general //-stem. What I have in
mind, then, is a closer lexical connection than is for-

39 6





(28) between



//-stem and the elsewhere //-stem; a lexical represen

tation such as (32a) might be a more appropriate approxi
mation (cf. Hooper, 1976; Hudson, 1975).

This view receives a natural interpretation under Ander

son's proposed








representation of schwa as an

(1982:550-2; see also Cornulier,



structure is present in the lexicon.

we see that


the empty
in order









Given the lexical







to get a stem with no nucleus





//-stem; only then can the nucleus node be removed


yield a /0/-stem.
There are verbs similar to acheter, e.g., cacheter,
which did lose phonetic [] in the present singular/third
plural; but as expected, these verbs also lost phonetic
[] in the future/conditional, as illustrated in paradigm

In these cases, no trace of a stem vowel in fact

subsists in that position, and it can be assumed that the

verb stems have been restructured as shown in (33).

other examples: becqueter, dchiqueter,
pousseter, empaqueter, fureter
For verbs like cacheter, the historical stages of (34)



can thus by hypothesized.


I. /kaa t-/ (fut/cond)
II. Aaet-/

III. Aat-/



rules of distribution
+ CSA & schwa-deletion
CSA & schwa-deletion


Stage I is equivalent to (28) and yields a paradigm like

(30a). Stage II represents the outcome of stem regularization, i.e./ the uniform use of the general //-stem,
hence a paradigm like (30b). Stage III is where restruc
turing has applied: the stem has lost its schwa, and we
therefore obtain paradigm (30d).
The evolution from
Stage I to Stage II is naturally explained as grammar
simplification: the lexical representations themselves
are simplified through the elimination of the restricted
//-stem, which renders the rules of distribution inac
tive. The evolution from Stage II to Stage III, however,
is not so easily explained: How could restructuring occur
despite the requirement of a //-stem for the application
of CSA? In trying to discover the crucial link between
Stages II and III, it is important to observe that data
at Stage II, i.e., paradigm (30b), could conceivably be
analyzed in two ways, as shown in (35).


(35) [ka/et] via CSA
(i) /ka/t-/

(ii) /ka/t-/

(e.g., il
[ka/t-] via
(e.g., cach ter)
[ka/et] via []-insertion
(rule 36)

[ka/t-] directly

/ C - C #
Under one option, (35i), the underlying verb stem
contains a schwa (/ka/t-/); it yields [ka/et] via CSA
in the present singular/third plural, and [ka/t-] via
schwa-deletion elsewhere.
the other
(35ii), the underlying verb stem is without a schwa
(/ka/t-/); [ka/t-] obtains directly and [ka/et] obtains
via the morphophonological rule of []-insertion (36),
which certain verbs like cacheter are lexically marked
to undergo. The postulation of (36) is made plausible
by two sets of data. First, there exist dialects where
a non-etymological vowel splits up stem-final obstruentliquid clusters in the present singular/third plural of
verbs (Morin, 1978:134). Second, for speakers who nor
mally conjugate a verb like cacheter without [e], the
occurrence of [e] in the present singular/third plural
is not judged as totally outlandish as in the future/con
ditional; such judgements may indicate, together with the
definite existence of a lexical /0/-stem (/ka/t-/), the
somewhat dormant presence of a lexically governed rule
of []-insertion like (36).
Instead of (34), (37) may therefore constitute a
more precise picture of the relevant diachronic develop
ments. 17







t-/ (fut/cond)


rules of distribution
+ CSA & schwa-deletion

II. (i) /kaat-/

CSA & schwa-deletion

II. (ii) /kat-/



III. Aa/t-/



restructuring +
rule inversion

loss of lexical

At Stage II, we get from option (i)to option (ii)

through restructuring and a form of rule inversion (cf.
Vennemann, 1972). Option (ii) easily accounts for the
evolution to Stage III: at Stage III, cacheter is no
longer marked for []-insertion, again a simplification
of the grammar. For a given speaker, different verbs may
of course be at different stages, and a given verb may
oscillate between stages. 18
In order to account for the three attested paradigms
of (30), Morin (1978:131-5) posits a morphological anal
ysis different than the one suggested here. He assumes
a single restructured underlying stem (i.e., a //-stem,
e.g., /a/t-/), and two morphophonological rules of [elinsertion, given here in (38).
(38) a. / C- C1 #
b. / C- C1 V # future/conditional
The two rules are lexically conditioned, independently

40 0


of each other.

Thus, when both apply

to a given



(30a) obtains; when only the first one applies,


(30b) obtains; and when none applies, paradigm

(30d) obtains.

Like (37), this analysis accounts for the








ever, it fails to predict the systematic gap


is no principled



cally possible case where only

rule, (38b), would apply.
is postulated

at any


(30c), for

out the

the second



here, since no rule of

conditional; rather, when




This difficulty does not arise

in the analysis proposed






[] occurs






in the








In this paper, I have indicated how a well-motivated

concrete approach to French phonology and morphology al
lows for a straightforward formulation of CSA as a wordlevel syllable-based process unencumbered by odd constraints and
I have also justified a


of future and



alternants in verbs like acheter, as opposed to abstract

phonological analyses unnaturally extending the scope of





I have


restricted the range of synchronic analyses available for

an account


the conjugation

of such verbs at

stages of their diachronic evolution.




* A preliminary version of the paper read at LSRL XIII was pre
sented at the Winter meeting of the Linguistic Society of America
(New York, December, 1981).
I thank Ellen Broselow, Jim Harris,
Yves-Charles Morin, John Reighard, and Doug Walker for their com
ments on one or the other version.
1. As opposed, in particular, to the abstract treatment of
linking consonants as word-final segments escaping consonant dele
tion (e.g., Dell, 1973a; Schane, 1968; Selkirk, 1972).
2. As Cornulier (1977:155-6) points out, the ligature would in
correctly prevent the derivation of phrases such as jet-je [t]
from /t#/, were it not for the assumption that the word bounda
ry between the verb and the inverted subject clitic has been deleted
(Dell, 1980:233). If no boundary, not even a morpheme boundary,
subsists at all, then these forms are indeed accounted for by (2c);
however, it seems rather difficult to deny the existence of any
boundary in that position. For additional relevant discussion, see
Morin (1978:123) and Tranel (1981a:232-3 n. 3 and 4, 294 n. 4 ) .
3. This approach prohibits the derivation, for example, of the
noun cachet [ka] from a stem /kat-/ shared by the corresponding
verb cacheter /kat+e/ [kate] (Dell, 1980:173), since no major
phonological rule of final consonant deletion is postulated which
could delete the final /t/. One thus requires two distinct phono
logical representations in the lexicon: /ka/ for the noun and
/kat-/ for the verb stem (see also Cornulier, 1977:158-9). This
consequence is neither bad, nor implausible. First, the semantic
drift between members of such pairs (cf. cachet 'a (post)mark'/
cacheter 'to seal (a letter)') certainly seems to warrant the exis
tence of separate lexical entries in the first place (see Tranel
(1981a:92-4, 275) for further discussion of this type of issue).
Second, the absence of a systematic phonological relation between
the two vowels in these words is reinforced by cases such as acheter/achat (*achet) and savetier/savate (*savete), where the second
words must be assumed to contain a lexical vowel (/a/) unrelatable
to the corresponding lexical schwas of the first words. Third, for
a number of verbs like cacheter, many speakers have restructured
the stem without a schwa from which to derive the [] in the noun
(/ka/t-/; see paradigm (30d) below). Finally, if, as argued below,
one is justified in postulating different lexical stems to account
for the verbal paradigms, one can a fortiori expect the possibility
of having different lexical stems across syntactic categories such
as nouns and verbs.
4. Note that type (i)-words could not also be handled by (10)
within Dell's framework, even if one decided not to take into ac
count alternations like cachet/cacheter.
It would apparently be
sufficient to order final schwa deletion before CSA (an ordering
previously ruled out because of the necessity to have final conso
nant deletion both precede final schwa deletion (cf. the derivation

40 2



Petite [patit] from /ptit+/) and follow CSA (cf. the derivation
of cachet [ka] from /kat/); see Dell, 1980:173). Ordering final
schwa deletion before CSA is possible only if word stress assign
ment, which precedes final schwa deletion (Dell, 1980:222), may also
precede CSA; but Dell must order CSA before word stress assignment
(193). The reverse order may obtain only if the stress rule is
written as (8b) rather than (8a) (see (9)), in other words, only if
linking consonants are attached with a word boundary, that is, only
if they are inserted. The ordering of final schwa deletion before
CSA thus runs completely counter to Dell's treatment of liaison (see
n. 1 ) .
5. It cannot be argued that CSA operates first on the verb
stems (/a/at-/; /sed-/), because it would be incorrectly predicted
that [e] should occur throughout the conjugation of such verbs
(achetons [at], *[a/eto]; cedons [sedo], *[sedo]). More general
ly, there is evidence that rules do not cycle on nonlexical cate
gories (Harris, 1983; Kiparsky, 1982).
6. Cornulier (1977:166) treats type (i)-cases in apparently
related fashion (by referring to the notion of potentially closable
syllable), but he does not address directly the issue of type (ii)cases (although one might infer from his remark on the -ment, -rie,
and future suffixes (159) that they could fall under the same anal
ysis as type (i)-cases).
7. (17b) should actually contain C 0 instead of C.
8. Anderson's proposed underlying representation of schwa as
an empty syllabic nucleus may reduce the markedness of these two
9. Although Basbll's (1978:171-3) syllabification rules are
based on partially different assumptions (namely, (i) word stress
assignment precedes syllabification, (ii) syllabification is sensi
tive to both vowel quality and stress, and (iii) syllabification is
locally sensitive to morpheme boundaries), his analysis is very akin
to Anderson's and questionable for similar reasons.
10. Selkirk's generalization and LFA are not actually equiva
lent: the generalization simply states that the adjustment occurs
if the vowel is not foot-final, whereas LFA in effect adds the con
dition that the vowel must be in the first syllable of the foot.
Thus, assuming / F [$[ka] $ $ [/t] $ ] F / to be the underlying representa
tion of the noun cachet [ka/e] (cf. n. 3 ) , the generalization will
yield the correct phonetic output, since the /a/ is not foot-final,
but LFA will not, since the /a/ is not in the first syllable of the
foot. Inversely, however, LFA, but not the generalization, correct
ly predicts that two contiguous cases of adjustment may not occur
within a foot (still LFA will make the adjustment in the wrong syl
Thus, brevet is pronounced (brave], not *[breve] (cf.
breveter [bravte]).
11. However, in trying to collapse word-final and word-internal
schwa-deletion, Selkirk fails to account for the deletion of wordfinal schwas preceded by more than one consonant, as in il est



clbre [ilselbr].
12. For other explanatory accounts, see for example the sylla
ble-based treatments proposed by Anderson (1982), Cornulier (1975),
and Morin (1974).
13. The data of (24) do seem to create difficulties for other
proposed analyses of schwa-deletion.
14. Bouchard (1980:34-7) maintains a foot treatment of CSA, but
only by limiting its operation to type (i)-cases, and by recognizing
that type (ii)-cases are lexical.
15. Morin (1978:134) mentions such an analysis in passing. In
stead of a //-stem, he actually suggests a restructured //-stem
16. There can be much variation across speakers. For example,
in Dell's dialect, cacheter behaves like acheter in (30a) (Dell,
1980:173). See Morin (1978) for an extensive examination of dialect
17. For phonotactic reasons, some verb stems (e.g., crever,
peser) never undergo schwa-deletion.
They cannot therefore go
through Stage IIii.
Instead, as Morin (1978:131-2) suggests, the
possibility is open for their underlying schwa to be reinterpreted
as a stable, non-alternating / / (as in bluffer, gueuler).
18. In my own dialect, acheter oscillates between Stages I and
II (presumably IIi), while cacheter is essentially at Stage III
(with shades of Stage IIii). In general, it seems implausible that
for a given speaker, a given verb could oscillate between non-adjacent stages.
19. A more complete account would require ruling out on a prin
cipled basis the existence of a rule like (38b).
20. Much remains to be said about rule (10), in particular
concerning its partial opacity, its scope of application, and the
formalization of its focus. Space limitations do not allow me to
go into these matters here.

Anderson, Stephen. 1982. "The Analysis of French Schwa". Language
58. 534-73.
Basbll, Hans. 1978. "Schwa, jonctures et syllabification dans les
reprsentations phonologiques du frangais". Acta Linguistica
Hafniensa 16.147-82.
Bouchard, Denis. 1980. "A Voice for 'e muet'". Journal of Linguistic
Research 1.17-47.
Chomsky, Noam and Morris Halle. 1968. The Sound Pattern of English.
New York: Harper and Row.
Cornulier, Benot de. 1975. "Le droit d'e: e et la syllabicit".
Cahiers de Linguistique, d'Orientalisme et de Slavistique

40 4



. 1977. "Le remplacement d'e muet par '' et la morphologie des enclitiques". Actes du colloque franco-allemand de linguistique thorique, ed. by Christian Rohrer, 155-80. Tubingen:
Dell, Franois. 1973a. "'e muet', fiction graphique ou ralit linguistique?" A Festschrift for Morris Halle, ed. by Stephen
Anderson and Paul Kiparksy, 26-50. New York: Holt, Rinehart,
and Winston.
. 1973b. Les rgies et les sons: Introduction la phonologie gnrative. Paris: Hermann.
. 1980. Generative Phonology and French Phonology. Cam
bridge: Cambridge University Press.
Harris, James. 1983. Syllable Structure and Stress in Spanish: A
nonlinear analysis. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press.
Hooper, Joan. 1976. An Introduction to Natural Generative Phonology.
New York: Academic Press.
Hudson, Grover. 1975. Suppletion in the Representation of Alterna
tions. Unpublished U.C.L.A. Ph.D. dissertation.
Kenstowicz, Michael and Charles Kisseberth. 1977. Topics in Phono
logical Theory. New York: Academic Press.
Kiparsky, Paul. 1982. "From Cyclic Phonology to Lexical Phonology".
The Structure of Phonological Representations (Part I ) , ed. by
Harry van der Hulst and Norval Smith, 131-75. Dordrecht: Foris
Mohanan, Karuvannut Puthanveettil. 1982. Lexical Phonology. Bloomington: Indiana University Linguistics Club.
Morin, Yves. 1974. "Rgies phonologiques a domaine indtermin:
Chute du cheva en franais". Les Cahiers de Linguistique
4.69-88. Montral: Les Presses de l'Universite du Qubec.
. 1978. "The Status of Mute 'e 1 ". Studies in French Lin
guistics 1.79-140.
. 1983. Some Recent Developments in the French Verb Mor
phology. Unpublished manuscript. Universit de Montral.
Schane, Sanford. 1968. "On the Abstract Character of French 'e
muet'". Glossa 2.150-63.
Selkirk, Elisabeth. 1972. The Phrase Phonology of English and
French. Unpublished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
. 1978. "The French Foot: On the status of 'mute1 e" .
Studies in French Linguistics 1.141-50.
Tranel, Bernard. 1977. The al/o Alternation in Modern French. Un
published manuscript. University of California, Irvine.
. 1981a. Concreteness in Generative Phonology: Evidence
from French. Berkeley/Los Angeles: University of California
. 1981b. "The Treatment of French Liaison: Descriptive,
methodological, and theoretical implications". Proceedings of
the Tenth Anniversary Symposium on Romance Languages (Papers
in Romance, Supplement II, vol. 3 ) , ed. by Heles Contreras and



Jurgen Klausenburger, 261-81, Seattle: University of Washing

. 1982a. Morphologization and Lexicalization of Phonolog
ical Alternations: A case study (the al/o alternation in Modern
French). Current Research in Romance languages, ed. by James
Lantolf and Gregory Stone, 176-93. Bloomington: Indiana Univer
sity Linguistics Club.
, 1982b. Review of Franois Dell, Generative Phonology and
French Phonology. Language 58.907-15.
Venneman, Theo. 1972. "Rule Inversion". Lingua 29.209-42.
Walker, Douglas. 1975. "Word Stress in French". Language 51.887-900.







The special status of the subject position of in

finitival clauses has been one of the central topics of
discussion in syntactic research during the last few
years. The Government-Binding theory has clearly demon
strated that, in general, this position can never be
filled by a lexical noun phrase. It is well known that
when there is no matrix verb to assign Case to the sub
ject NP of an infinitival clause, this subject position
is neither governed nor assigned Case within S. It is
assumed, therefore, that the only availabe filler for
this position is the empty category Pro.
This paper will focus on the fact that the general
property of infinitival clauses has an exception in
French. We will therefore introduce a marked option to
permit phonetically realized subjects in a certain type
of French dislocated infinitival clauses. It will be
argued that an abstract Nominative marking can be found
in the subject position of an infinitive in some hypo
thetical sentences of the rollowing type, as illustrated



in (1) and (2):

(1) a. La France battre le Brsil, ce serait
'France to beat Brazil, that would
not be conceivable'
(France beating Brazil, that would
not be conceivable)
b. Pierre y aller seul, ce serait
vraiment courageux.
'Pierre to go alone, that would
really be courageous'
(Pierre going alone, that would
really be courageous)
(2) a. Le frigidaire tomber en panne, on aurait
vraiment de l'air fin. (Q. Fr.)
'The fridge to break down, we would
really look silly'
(If the fridge were to break down, we
would really look silly)
b. Jean sortir sa vieille Plymouth, la, on
aurait du fun. (Q. Fr.)
'Jean to take out his old Plymouth, now,
we would have some fun'
(Jean taking out his old Plymouth, now,
we would have some fun)
The examples in (1) are from Standard French, where
as the sentences in (2) are found in a variety of French,
namely, Quebec French. Hypothetical sentences of this
type in Quebec French, without lexical subjects, as in
(3), have already been studied in Villiard and Vinet


Avoir su, j'aurais tlphon avant.

(Q. Fr.)



'If I had known, I would have phoned

b. Ah! Avoir plus d'instruction, ... je
pourrais parler mieux que a. (corpus
Beauchemin-Martel-Theoret, Universit de
Sherbrooke, 16019924 - 16019925)
'Ah! If I had more education, ... I would
be able to speak better than that'
As previously pointed out, these constructions in (2) and
(3) probably exist in other dialects of French, but no
linguistic study nor document has been found to certify
them. We will therefore refer to Quebec French whenever
we discuss this form of hypothetical sentence that may
or may not have an overt subject.
Maria Rita Manzini (personal communication) demon
strates that type (3) sentences can be found in Italian
(cf.(4)). Dislocated infinitival clauses with overt sub
jects seem to be possible in certain dialects of Italian.
(4) Averci pensato prima, non l'avrei certo detto.
'Having thought about it before, I wouldn't
have said that'
Nominative subjects may also appear in dislocated infini
tival clauses in Spanish (cf. Reuland, 1983:127, fn. 18).
French, then, would not be the only language in
which lexical subjects can be found in a non-finite sen
Rouveret (1980), Zubizarreta (to appear) have
also discussed this question for Portuguese and Rizzi
(1982) for Italian. However, the inflected infinitivals
that they have studied were of a different type since
they were all embedded clauses. Hence, we are confronted
with dislocated clauses which cannot appear as subject
clauses or as complements to verbs and prepositions.
This type of sentence has never been analyzed in the



The discussion will proceed as follows. Section 1.1
is devoted to the identification of the constructions at
issue and of their basic structures; section 1.2 presents
and then refutes an alternative proposal which would an
alyze the overt subjects in (1) and (2) as dislocated
NPs. We will attempt to demonstrate that there really
is Nominative marking in the subject position of these
clauses. Section 2 develops the theoretical core of the
analysis. We will show how the use of the expansion of
INFL [+ Tense + AG], as separate parameters, can explain
how the lexical NP in this position is governed and as
signed its Case.
The theoretical framework is the Government-Binding
theory as developed by Chomsky (1981) and others. We
will therefore assume the notion of government as defined
in (5) and the Case filter given in (6):
(5) a governs in [ . . .y . . .a . . .y . . . ], where
a. a = x or is coindexed with y
b. where is a maximal projection, if
dominates y, then dominates a
c. a c-commands y
(6) *NP if NP has phonetic content and has no Case
The Case filter requires NPs to have Case if they are
phonetically realized. As is well known, AG is not a
proper governor in French but it is a governing category
as defined in (5a) and it can assign Nominative marking
under the conditions to be discussed below. This study
adopts in part the mechanism developed by Reuland in his
analysis of governing-ing constructions since we have
found a certain similarity between these French tenseless
finite sentences with nominative subjects and absolute
Nominatives in English as in (7):




Roddy tried to avoid Elaine, he being

a confirmed bachelor. (Reuland, 1983)

1.1 The Structure of Infinitival Constructions with Lex

ical Subjects. The main difference between sentences (1)
and (2) is that in (1) a resumptive pronoun, ce, in the
matrix clause, refers to the whole clause, 'La France
battre le Brsil' whereas in (2) there is no resumptive
pronoun linking the two propositions even though there
is a semantic and a pragmatic tie between the focus and
the comment. In the equivalent sentences without overt
subjects an arbitrary Pro appears in the Standard French
sentences as in (8):

(Pro arb ) Pouvoir partir en vacances,

ce serait merveilleux.
'To be able to go away on holiday,
that would be fantastic'
In the Quebec French sentences a controlled Pro is found
instead as in (9a). An arbitrary interpretation of the
Pro subject would be ruled out in such constructions as
shown in (9b). However, the Pro subject of atmospheric
verbs is possible for some speakers (cf.(9c)), as men
tioned by Dulong (1952):2
(9) a. (Proi) Avoir plus d'instruction, jei
pourrais parler mieux.
'If I had more education, I would
be able to speak better'
b. * ( p r o a r b ) Avoir plus d'instruction, il
serait evident que tout se dirait mieux.
'To have more education, it would be
obvious that everything would be easier
to say'



(Pro) Faire beau, nous finirions.

(Dulong, 1952)
'To be a nice day, we would finish'
Nevertheless, these sentences with overt subjects, in
(1) and (2), do have certain characteristics in common.
First of all, the hypothetical construction comes from
the Unrealized tense in the infinitive which is linked
to a Conditional in the matrix clause. The peculiarity
of the sentence in (10) follows from the fact that the
Unrealized tense of the infinitival proposition clashes
with the Past tense of the matrix clause:
(10) a. *La France battre le Brsil, cela a t
'France beating Brazil, that has been
b. *Le frigidaire tomber en panne, on a eu
de l'air fin.
'If the fridge were to break down, we
have looked silly'
Secondly, they have a limited distribution: they all
appear in the topic slot of a dislocated position as an
independent clause but never in complement or in subject
(11) a. *Je veux la France battre le Brsil.
'I want France to beat Brazil'
b. *Je me demande quand Paul partir en
'I wonder when Paul to leave on holiday'
c. *Le frigidaire tomber encore en panne
serait ridicule.
'The fridge to break down again would be



d. *Jean n'est pas content de Pierre y aller

'Jean is not happy with Pierre to go alone'
Following Chomsky (1976), we posit that the underlying
structure for the sentences in (1) and (2) is as follows
in (12b):
(12) a. S" TOP S'
TOP S, NP, PP, etc.
b. S''(a( NP INFL VP(...)) s,(s(...)))
From this, the question is the following: how should we
identify a in topic position? We will assume that a is
an S in topic position and that it is an expansion of S'
even though these infinitival clauses have a COMP slot
which is never filled. If COMP is empty, the theory of
phrase structure proposed by Lasnik and Kupin (1978)
makes this structure equivalent to a structure with a
single S node. It can be observed indeed that lexical
complementizers such as de, are always ruled out in such
(13) a. *De la France battre le Bresil, ce serait
b. *De le frigidaire tomber en panne, on
aurait de l'air fin.
c. *D'avoir plus d'instruction, je pourrais
parler mieux.
Furthermore, all prepositions are ruled out as introduc
ers to this type of clause with overt subjects:
(14) a. *A Jean vouloir tout regler, je
n'avancerais jamais.
'With Jean who wants to settle
everything, I would never go ahead'
b. *Avec Jean tre notre guide, on se
perdrait srement.



'With Jean as a guide, we would surely

get lost'
However, the absence of prepositions in this position
does not seem to be an isolated phenomenon in the syntax
of French, Hirschbuhler (1975), Vinet (1978) and Ronat
(1979) have already shown that left-dislocated NP con
structions, contrary to right-dislocated NP constructions
usually appear without a preposition:
(15) a. *A Sophie, Jules lui a mis a sur le dos.
'Sophie, Jules has put this on her back'
b. Jules lui a mis a sur le dos, Sophie.
Moreover, the fact that these clauses never allow fronted
WH-phrases clearly indicates that they can be identified
as Ss, not S's.
(16) *Quoi Jean faire, Marie viendrait quand mme.
'What Jean to do, Marie would come anyway'
We will therefore assume that in (1) and (2), we have
dislocated clauses lacking a nonnull complementizer and
that the COMP position is empty at D-structure.
1.2 Overt Subjects vs. Dislocated Subjects. Before we
start developing the leading proposal of this paper, we
would like to consider a different analysis. Instead of
having full lexical NPs in subject position we have dis
located NPs, outside of S, controlling the Pro of the
infinitival clause as in (17):
(17) s ( NP i s ( Proi VP...) s .( s (... )))
We will now demonstrate that this position is unten
able. The main reason which led us to the conclusion
that we really have overt subjects in these clauses is
the special intonational pattern, without a pause. In
other words, the intonational pattern differs from the
one in (18) where the pronoun is clearly dislocated and



is therefore coreferent with the subject Pro of the in

(18) Moi, fermer la fentre?
'Me, close the door?'
In her proposal, Ronat (1979) demonstrates that topical
pronouns as in (19a) are quite different from distinctive
pronouns as in (19b):
(19) a. Je l'ai invite, lui.
'I invited him, him'
b. Je l'ai invite lui.
She demonstrates that these sentences not only differ in
intonational pattern but that they also carry different
semantic characteristics. It is mentioned that the (b)
example, contrary to the (a) example, is ungrammatical if
a full NP is substituted to the pronoun as in (20). Dis
tinctive pronouns and full NPs are in virtually comple
mentary distribution.
(20) *Elle l'a invit Paul pour son anniversaire.
'She invited him Paul for his birthday'
As was previously argued, infinitival clauses with overt
subjects in the case under study are ruled out in subject
position. This fact explains well the ungrammatical sen
tence in (21):
(21) *Pierre y aller serait plus courageux.
'Pierre going would be more courageous'
However, distinctive pronouns are impossible as overt
subjects of infinitives; they can only appear in object
(22) a. *Moi y aller serait plus courageux.
b. Y aller moi serait plus courageux.
Topical pronouns are ruled out both before or after the
verb and full NPs as well cannot be dislocated in such
constructions because the dislocated NP cannot be inter-



preted as coreferent with the subject Pro of the infini

tive. The sentence is therefore uninterpretable as shown
in (23):

a. *Moi, (proarb) y aller serait plus


b. * ( p r o a r b ) y aller, moi, serait plus

c. *Pierre, (proarb) y aller serait plus
Sentences in (1) and (2) could not have their subjects
generated outside of S just as well; they would be unin
terpretable as in (23). In (24), the subject Pro would
not be coreferent with the dislocated NP but would be
read as Pro arb in (24a) and in (24b) Pro would be bound
to the pronoun on in the matrix clause as predicted from
the examples (8) and (9a) above:
(24) a. *La France, ( p ro arb ) battre le Bresil,
ce strait inconcevable.
b. *Le frigidaire, (Pro.) tomber en panne,
on1 aurait vraiment de l'air fin.
This clearly shows that these constructions in (1) and
(2) really have overt subjects. These NPs could not be
interpreted as introduced topics to the infinitival sen
Finally, the way in which the Case is realized on
the subject of the infinitive deserves some comment. It
may be observed that where the subject is a pronoun, a
non-Nominative Case is morphologically realized as in
'Moi partir pour la France1 (me leaving for France).
This fact could be explained, however, by stipulating
that subject clitics cannot be attached to infinitival
forms in French (*Je partir). Furthermore, this observa
tion may be taken as a manifestation of the difference



between abstract Case and morphological Case.


The Syntax of French Tenseless Finite Sentences

with Nominative Subjects

Clauses generated in this topic position occur in

two forms: either tensed or infinitival with the relevant
marking realized on the inflection. This could be con
sidered as the unmarked case and their distribution
should be free as can be observed in (25):
(25) a. Que la France batte le Bresil, cela
serait inconcevable.
'That France beats Brazil, that
wouldn't be conceivable1
b. Si le frigidaire tombait en panne, on
aurait vraiment de l'air fin.
'If the fridge were to break down, we
would really look silly'
The only difference is related to the fact that infiniti
val clauses unlike tensed clauses do not require a COMP
position to be generated. Since these clauses are base
generated in a dislocated position it is more than rea
sonable to assume that their domain is inaccessible to
government by a governor outside it.
2.1 The Parameter [+ Tense + AG]. This proposal adopts
several assumptions of the government-binding theory.
We are concerned, more precisely, with the fact that the
expansion of INFL contains [+ Tense + AG] as separate
parameters. Therefore, we assume that INFL governs its
subject when it contains AG and that AG is basically nom
inal in character. It then follows that AG is the gov
erning element which assigns Case in INFL. The sentence



is tensed in the unmarked case and Case-marking in the

subject of infinitives is marginal: it can only happen
in a special environment. At D-structure, AG is coindexed with the NP it governs, namely the subject. Case
is assigned via the familiar rule (26) as in Chomsky
(26) NP [+nom] when coindexed with
and governed by AG.
We also assume that AG is a SUBJECT as required by the
Binding theory (cf. Chomsky, 1981:209-221). AG must also
be an accessible SUBJECT. However, the following sen
tence in (27) is ruled out even though the anaphor les
uns les autres is bound in its governing category by AG:
(27) a. *Les uns les autres se serrer la ce.inture,
ce serait pas dr61e pour eux.
b. (les uns les autresi((AGi)) ...)
'each other to tighten his belt, that
would not be funny for them'
Chomsky's explanation for this would be to say that AG is
not a binder. If function chains are restricted to NP,
then AG does not enter into such chains. A different
explanation implying another algorythm has been proposed
by Bouchard (1982:142). If it is assumed that les uns
les autres is bound by AG, it will therefore be assumed
that AG only has a syntactic-index but no REF-index.
Since a REF-index is necessary to get a 6-role, the sen
tence is ungrammatical because an argument is lacking a
At first sight, an identical explanation would seem
to hold for the absence of the expletive French
impersonal il in this subject position as shown in (28a):
(28) a. *I1 tre evident qu'il neigerait,
je viendrais.



'It being obvious that it would snow,

I would come over'
b. *(Pro) Etre evident qu'il neigerait, il
semblerait que Jean viendrait aussi.
'To be obvious that it would snow, it
would seem that Jean would also come along'
It is usually assumed that the French impersonal il is
limited to contexts where Nominative Case is assigned.
Of course, the French impersonal il is synonymous with
subject clitic il and subject clitics are always ruled
out with infinitives. However, the fact that expletive
elements in general, whether they are empty (cf. (28b))
or lexically filled by il, are dismissed in such cases,
leads us to believe that the explanation for the absence
of expletive elements in this position lies elsewhere
(cf. Vinet, 1983).
The question which naturally evolves is as follows:
how can the lexical NP alternate with Pro in these con
structions? A plausible explanation is to suppose that
the various expansions of INFL in French are realized in
the following way. When the expansion of INFL is real
ized as [+ Tense + AG], the unmarked situation, AG as
signs Nominative Case to the subject.
When INFL is
[- Tense - AG] we have infinitives as in (3) above. The
internal structure of such sentences is then as in (29):


S ( P r o INFL ( ( - Tense))vp(...))s,(s( ...) ))

Our sentences in (1) and (2) are then realized as

[- Tense + AG] and their internal structure is as in (30)
where G', an abstract marker representing "infinitive",
governs the subject NP' and assigns Nominative Case:

s ( s (NP' I N F L ((-

Tense)AG(G'))VP(...))s.(s(...)) )

French being a non Pro-drop language, the presence of AG

will always force the subject to be lexically realized.



If we suppose in (30) that G' is not a governor, then

the NP could not be lexical because it would lack Case
and the structure would be ill-formed.
We do not get in French the form [+ Tense - AG]
which, as argued by Reuland (1983), can be exemplified
by sentences like (31a):
(31) a. John was singing while (Pro) dancing,
b. *Jean chantait pendant que dansait.
However, if Kayne (1979) is correct with his claim that
in structures like (32) we have a Pro in subject position
of the embedded clause, then this would exemplify the
form [+ Tense - AG] of the paradigm in French:
(32) a. Je l'ai vu qui (Pro) traversait la rue.
b. *'I saw him who was crossing the street'
Moreover, in order to avoid generating ungrammatical sen
tences as in (11), we could propose a principle stipulat
ing that the sentence has to be ungoverned. However, ungoverned matrix clauses also reject lexically realized
subjects in infinitives as in 'Jean battre Pierre'. A
more precise principle should be formulated demanding
that overt subjects of infinitives are only possible in
certain syntactic environments. A fair approximation of
this environment is given by the principle in (33):

In a clause where INFL is marked

[- Tense + AG], G' is a governor
and assigns Nominative Case only
if S is dominated by TOP.
This principle in (33) has the advantage of being able
to extend to other constructions in French which do not
exhibit exactly the same characteristics of (1) and (2)
but which can also have overt subjects, as in (34):
(34) a. Jeanne revoir Pierre, jamais de la vie!
'Jeanne seeing Pierre again, no way!'




Jean etant malade, on ne pouvait pas

'Jean being ill, we could not leave'
The abstract marker G' could then be extended to present
participles, i.e., "ant" constructions. We also note
that the environments in which overt subjects can appear
in French present participles constructions are the same
as with infinitives, i.e., we do not get the equivalent
sentences of (11) as shown in (35):
(35) a. *Jean n'est pas content de Pierre y allant
b. *Je veux la France battant le Bresil.
c. *Je me demande quand Paul partant en
d. *Le frigidaire tombant en panne socait


To conclude, we have demonstrated that there really

is an abstract Nominative Marking in the subject position
of these clauses. We have also shown that the way in
which this NP is governed, simply reflects the core case
of government. As a special assumption, it was claimed
that G', an abstract marker representing infinitives and
present participles, governs its subject just like AG
does. Furthermore, a principle was stipulated to circum
scribe the syntactic environment in which this situation
can be found in the grammar of French.



* The research reported here was funded in part by grants from

the Office de la Langue Frangaise, Montreal,
1. Such constructions as in (3) have always been ignored by
traditional grammars and this fact probably explains why they have
never been the object of any attention in prescriptive manuals.
They are used quite freely by native speakers from different social
Sentences with overt subjects, however, seem to be
less frequent.
2. For a more detailed analysis of the interpretation of Pro,
see Vinet (1983).
3. One of the consequences which can be drawn from the absence
of COMP in these infinitival clauses, for our present study, is sim
ply that is makes it clear that the NP in subject position of S can
never be governed nor Case-marked by any element preceding it. This
argument would not hold, for instance, for a dialectal form from the
North of France (cf. Vinet 1981);
(i) J'ai rentr le foin pour les vaches le manger.
'I took in the hay for the cows to eat it1
In this case, the noun phrase les vaches would apparently be
governed and assigned its Case by the preposition pour.
4. It could be argued that in such cases we have a small pro

Bouchard, Denis. 1982. On the Content of Empty Categories. Unpub
lished M.I.T. Ph.D. dissertation.
Chomsky, Noam. 1976. "On WH-movement". Formal Syntax, ed. by Peter
Culicover, Thomas Wasow and Adrian Akmajian, 71-132. New York:
Academic Press
. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht:
Foris Publications.
Dulong, Gaston. 1952. "La langue franco-canadienne". Pdagogie
Orientation 6.148-155. Universit Laval.
Hirschbuhler, Paul. 1975. "On the Source of Lefthand NPs in French".
Linguistic Inquiry 6.155-165.
Kayne, Richard. 1979. "Binding, Quantifiers, Clitics and Control".
Unpublished manuscript. Universit de Paris VIII.
Lasnik, Howard, and Joseph J. Kupin. 1978. "A Restrictive Theory of
Transformational Grammar". Theoretical Linguistics 4.173-196.
Reuland, Eric J. 1983. "Governing-ing". Linguistic Inquiry 14.
Rizzi, Luigi. 1982. "Lexical Subjects in Infinitives: Government,
case and binding". Issues in Italian Syntax, ed. by Foris Pub
lications, Jan Koster and Henk Van Riemsdijk, Editors, 77-116.



Ronat, Mitsou. 1979. "Pronoms topiques et pronoms distinctifs".

Langue Franaise 44.106-128.
Rouveret, Alain. 1980. "Sur la notion de proposition finie: gouvernement et inversion". Langages 60.75-107.
Villiard, Pierre and Marie Threse Vinet. 1983. "Remarques sur l'expression de l'hypothese en quebecois". Travaux de Linguistique
Qubcoise 4.209-221. Presses de l'Universit LaVal.
Vinet, Marie-Therese. 1978. "An Analysis of French Right-Dislocated
Structures". Montreal Working Papers in Linguistics 9. 209-230.
. 1981. "La reprsentation des infinitives dans la grammaire". Revue Qubcoise de Linguistique, 11.69-93. Universit
du Quebec a Montreal.
. 1983. "Une analyse des phenomnes de controle". Unpub
lished manuscript. Universite de Sherbrooke.
Zubizarreta, Maria Luisa. To appear. "Theoretical Implications of
Subject Extraction in Portuguese". Linguistic Review.




Basque 148
Bearnais 88, 94
Breton 66

Catalan 99, 148, 153-54, 221

Celtic 59, 61, 65-66, 75


Finnish 279
French 1-16, 33-34, 36, 38-39,
43-45, 47, 52, 54, 63-65,
69, 71, 73, 93, 99, 100,
103-09, 111, 113-15,
157-58, 163-85, 203,
221-22, 233-59, 287,
290-91, 297, 300, 304-06,
377-403, 407-22
Dialectal 238-39, 241
Formal Modern 110, 112
Creoles 239
Dialects 38
Middle 100, 110-11, 113-14
Old 10-11, 109, 114, 240
Popular Spoken 110, 112
Quebec 408-09, 411
Regional 235-243

58, 60-62, 66, 68-69

English 1, 11, 19-20, 23, 25,
28, 31-33, 35-36, 43-44,
48, 51-58, 60-62, 64,
67-69, 71, 73-75, 117-21,
148, 275, 309, 410-411
American 125
Buffalo (N.Y.) 123, 125
Differences with Spanish

Galician 158
Gallo-Romance South 79
Gascon 77-95, 160
German 43-44, 58, 60-62, 66,
Greek 148, 338




218, 224



Indo-European 58
Italian 33-34, 37-39 43, 45,
52, 63, 99, 107, 153,
173, 203, 217, 291,
293-94, 298, 409
Dialects 38, 47, 240

Japanese 46, 51-58, 60-62,

67-9, 73-74, 95
Judeo-Spanish 293, 295, 299,

Korean 51-58, 60-62, 67-69,



Portuguese 43, 46, 99, 108,
154, 156, 160, 293, 358,
366, 409
Brazilian 43, 356-357, 361,
Galego 293, 299
Old 153
Peninsular Portuguese 293,
Provencal 99, 107

Riojano 160
Romance Languages 31-32, 35,
37, 43, 47, 51-58, 61-67,
74-75, 99, 103, 106-07,
112, 114, 242-243, 289,
293, 296
Pre-Romance 103
Rumanian 204

Latin 283, 296, 330, 339

Classical 100-01, 112
Late 101-02, 106, 112-13,
Leonese 154, 161




238, 243

Santanderino 157
Spanish 21, 23, 25, 33-39,
43-45, 47-48, 52-55, 63,
65, 99-100, 103, 106,
113-14, 117-20, 122-25,
127-48, 149-61, 190,
201-03, 204-06, 213, 217,
219-21, 226-28, 240-42,
261-63, 265, 267-69,
274-75, 279, 281-82,
291-311, 315-29, 331-53,
Aragons 103

Argentinian 147, 192-93,
195-97, 204-05, 209, 284
Asturian 292, 295
Caribbean 281, 283
Catalan 298
Eastern 292
Cuban 128-48, 281-83
Dialects 39-40
Dominican 271, 282
Latin American 187, 198-201
Leones 103
Medieval 147
Old 108, 149-51, 157, 159,
Paraguayan 204-05
Peninsular 198-201, 210
Peruvian 204-05
Uruguayan 192-93, 195-97,
204, 205, 209

Tamil 224
Turkish 279





Alarcos 292
Alonso 262
Alum 284
Alvar 293
Anderson 66, 378, 385-86,
391-92, 396, 402-03
Aoun 20, 192

Babby 322, 346

Bach 28
Baldinger 94
Baltin 74, 342
Barnes 245, 249, 251
Baroja, Po 210
Baseboll 378, 385, 402
Beaucoudrey 243
Bec 78
Bek-Bennema 48
Belletti 173-74
Benveniste 92, 94
Berceo 160
Birdsong 14
Blanche-Benveniste 245, 257
Bolinger 11
Borer 192
Bouchard 378, 403, 418
Bourciez 95, 149, 150, 160
Bouzet 78, 80, 83, 87, 94-95


Brame 29
Bresnan 29, 74
Broselow 401
Brunsewitz 113-14
Burston 245-47, 256-57
Burzio 45

Cairns 242
Camproux 94
Cervantes 337
Chalkley 5
Chomsky 2, 20, 26-27, 31,
35-36, 41, 44, 47, 51,
56-57, 59, 66, 73-75,
118, 124, 166-67, 169-70,
172, 183, 187-88, 215,
221, 299, 302-04, 307-08,
332, 340, 344, 356, 362,
380, 410, 413, 418
Chung 66
Clements 261, 267, 279,
282-83, 291
Coleman and Kay 5
Comrie 32, 250
Contreras 263-65, 276, 284
Copprieters 8
Cornulier 378, 381, 396,
Corominas 151
Couquaux 167-68



Dahlen 112
Damourette and Pichon 3
Delattre 240
Dell 243, 377-78, 380-84,
386, 391-92, 401-03
Daz y Diaz 113
D'Introno 35
diScuillo 214
d'Orleans 115
Downing 361
Dulong 411

Ellegard 367
Emonds 23-24, 51-52, 54,
59, 62-63, 65, 74, 245,
Erteschik-Shir 2, 11-12
Evers 68

Feinstein 242
Fernndez Ramirez
Field 95
Fiengo 294, 306
Fillmore 250
Fredegarius 101
Freidin 346
Froissart 113


Galambos 102, 110, 113-14

Garcia de Diego 157
Gili Gaya 336
Givon 13, 113
Goldsmith 283
Granda 262-63, 267
Gregory of Tours 101
Grimshaw 24

Guerlin de Guer 243
Guerssel 146
Guitart 117, 122, 128-29,
133, 146, 281, 282

Haik 167, 177, 180-81, 183
Hale 223
Halle 118, 124, 146, 380
Hare 81, 86, 90
Harris 127-30, 132, 141,
146-47, 237, 240, 273-74,
276, 284, 288, 380, 390,
Hartman 153, 155, 157
Hatcher 322
Hendrick 167, 180-81
Herschensohn 245
Hetzron 78, 88, 95
Higginbotham 189
Hirschbuhler 331, 350, 414
Hockett 287
Hofman 338
Hooper 265-67, 396
Houston 366
Huang 296
Hudson 396
Huot 3, 5-7, 10, 13, 16
Hurtado 187, 197, 201
Hyman 257

Jackendoff 25, 361
Jaeggli 33-34, 40, 46, 192,
Jakobson 258
Jensen 294
Jimnez Sabater 271
Jo 60
Joinville 111
Joly 78
Joshi 214, 218-19, 223, 226


Kahn 283
Kato 361
Kay 5
Kayne 46, 63, 164, 169-71,
173, 180, 192-93, 245, 420
Keenan 32
Kenstowicz 380
Keyser 261, 267, 279, 282-83,
Kiparsky 141, 288, 310, 390,
Kisseberth 380
Klavans 298
Klein 63
Klima 23
Kukenheim 114
Kuno 2, 11-12
Kupin 287, 307, 413


Milner 164
Mohanan 141, 280, 288, 390
Moignet 108
Montaigne 105, 111
Montreuil 239
Monville-Burston 245, 257
Morin 238, 251, 378, 392,
398-99, 401, 403
Muller 101, 113
Muysken 214

Navarro, Toms 267
Neidle 283
Neira 292
Nodal 284
Nunez-Cedeno 284

Labov 214
Lafont 78-79, 87-88, 94
Lanchetas 160
Langacker 245
Lapointe 288, 294, 298
Lasnik 56, 287, 307, 413
Lowenstamm . 237-38, 242
Lujn 11
Lyons 94

(de) Machaut 104, 115
Malmberg 262
Manzini 409
Maratsos and Chalkley 5
Marguerite de Navarre 105, 111
Mascaro 127
May 183
Menendez Pidal 103, 149-51,
153, 158-61
Meyer-Lubke 114, 149, 153,
Miller 73


151, 153, 158-59,
161, 271, 294, 299

Palay 160
Perlmutter 33, 46, 245, 297
Petronius Arbiter 100
Pfaff 213-14, 218, 226
Pichon 3
Plann 350
Poplack 213-14, 218, 220,
223, 226
Pullum 95

Rabelais 105
Ramsden 99
Reighard 401
Reuland 409, 411, 420
Rivero 188, 331, 343, 350
Rizzi 45, 63, 173-74, 409



Rohlfs 78, 94
Romaine 366
Ronat 414-15
Ronjat 78
Rosch 5
Ross 2, 95
Rouveret 409
Ruwet 166, 180

Teulat 94
Thompson and Thompson 293
Torrego 63, 172, 198-99, 306
Tranel 235, 378, 380, 384,
392, 401

Safir 69-73
Sankoff 213-14, 218, 220,
Saporta 263-65
Sarabasa 147
Schane 401
Schwartz 57, 72
Searle 81, 90
Seguy 87, 94
Selkirk 304, 309, 378, 380,
385, 387-92, 401-02
Singh 214
Smith 11
Steele 73, 90-91, 95
Steriade 146
Stowell 19-21, 23, 25-29
Strozer 298
Suner 315-17, 322, 325,
331-32, 348

Taraldson 221
Tarallo 363, 366

Vendler 11
Venemann 399
Vergnaud 146
Villiard 408
Villon 113, 115
Vinet 408, 414, 419, 422

Walker 381, 401
Walsh 157
Wanner 99, 103, 107, 113-14,
Wasow 6
Williams 154, 188
Woolford 214, 220, 222

Zagona 25
Zamora 129
Zamora Munn 122
Zamora Vicente 122
Zimmer 257
Zubizarreta 409


abstractness/concreteness 378
acceptability 3, 6, 14
acoustic contrast 156
active predicates 315, 326-27
Adjacency Condition 19, 27-28
Adjacency Identity Constraint
affix movement 54, 57, 63, 75
agent 10
agent NP phrase 317-22, 325-26
agreement 33-36, 38, 74, 187,
allomorphy 289
anaphora 8-9, 12-13, 36,
206, 356, 363, 372
animacy 246, 250
aperture principle 240
Argentina 120
aspect 11, 92
aspiration 281
assertion 78, 80-82, 87, 90,
assimilation 134, 146
attributive 11
autosegmental (phonology)
129-30, 132, 142, 146
AUX 51-58, 60-64, 67-69,
73-75, 78, 90-92, 95
Aux-inversion 56, 61, 63
Aux-to-comp 63
Avoid Pronoun Principle 320


be raising 69
Bijection Principle 183
binary 28, 118-25, 151
binding 2, 31, 42
Binding Theory 26-27, 37,
41-45, 189, 205
Boliva 120
borrowing 117-25
boundary information 386
morpheme (bound) 54
branching 239
Buffalo 120

case 19-23, 25-29, 33, 169,
175, 182-83, 214, 223-25,
Case-assigning, categories 19
exceptional case-assignment
filter 20, 28
Case Resistance Principle
19-21, 23-25, 27
Case Theory 27
causatives 29, 64-65, 68, 75
C-command 58-60
cleft sentence 89



3 1 - 3 2 , 34-35, 38, 40,
4 3 , 5 3 , 7 7 , 367
a c c u s a t i v e 9 1 - 9 2 , 139, 195,
2 0 4 - 0 5 , 207, 209-10
and AG 2 0 1 - 0 6
chains 190, 197-98, 205-07,
cooccurrence r e s t r i c t i o n s
1 9 5 , 1 9 7 , 2 0 7 , 209
"doubling" 71, 187, 192-97,
placement 75, 92
resumptive 188-91
sequences 245-59
Closed Syllable Adjustment
(CSA) 377, 382, 401-02
coda 263
code-switching 213-30
asymmetries 217-29
vs. context 247, 252-53, 255
Colombia 120
COMP 85-86, 95
comparative method 73
complement 88
hierarchy 32
complementizer 89
complex words 299
computer 157
conditional sentence 86
consonant clusters 234-41
final deletion 384, 401
strength hierarchy 265
continuancy assimilations 139,
141-42, 145-46, 148
continuant 155
spreading 127-28, 136-37,
Control Theory 41, 205-06
Costa Rica 120
converse rule 157
cv prototype 263
cv skeleton 291

declarative 80
de complements (French) 253-54
de-construction 1-16
de-Insertion 23
definite 8, 13-14
definite article 7-9, 12-13
deep structure 52-53, 58
delayed release 161
depalatalization 156
depersonalization (verb)
derivation 3, 4
diachronic 398, 400
dialectology 281
diglossic 93
directionality 400
discourse 8-11, 13-14, 92
condition 187, 189, 203,
206-08, 209 fn 3, 210 fn 5
dominance 11-12
distinctive feature 117, 131
do-support 55-56
Double Branching 239, 241
doubling 39-40
dubitative 79, 81, 94

Ecuador 120
elision 241
El Salvador 120
Elsewhere Condition 295
embedded sentence 85-86
empathy 11
Empty Category 35, 196, 198,
201-03, 205-06
Empty Category Principle (ECP)
167, 171-72, 176-79, 181,

English as a Second Language
English-Spanish borrowing
English Vowels 117-25
E-node 63, 74
enonciatif 77-78, 85, 91
En placement 165, 167-68,
172, 178, 180-82, 184
epenthesis 233-44
exclamation 78
explosive 262
extrapositions 75

feature value saliency 119,
filter 4
finite 52, 64
finite form 51
focus 11-12
foot 378, 385, 387
formation 387-91
force 93
free matrix 130
free relative 331
functional sentence perspec
tive 88
future and conditional 391-94,
396, 400

Generalized Head Uniqueness 72
gerundive clause 19
government 74, 205-17, 407,
410, 417, 421
and binding 26-28, 166, 340
exceptional 170, 172-73,
grammar simplification 397,
grammaticality 225-28



Habanero 129
head stability 57-60, 64,
68-69, 73
Hispanics 117-25
hypothetical negative 83

illocutionary act 81, 90
force 77, 80, 90
strength 81
ilium mihi order 99 ff
impersonal 84
impersonal discourse 93
implosive 262
indefinite 7, 13
NP's 208
individuation 245-59
infinitival clause 19, 20, 21
infinitival marker 52
inflection 51, 52, 53, 55, 56,
62, 63, 64, 68, 72, 73,
74, 214, 218, 220-23, 228
Inflection Government Theory
insertion analysis of liaison
intensity 81
interlude 264
interrogative 79-80, 82, 95
inverse attraction 338
simple-verb 74
subject-AUX 54-55, 61
verb 63
stylistic 63

Korean poetry




lambdacism of r 281
landing site theory 64, 70
acquisition 395
apositional 242
death 94
verb-final 67-69
verb-first 68
verb second 65, 67-68
VSO 65
language-particular rule 62
left dislocation 187-89,
194-97, 202-03, 207
lexical head 58-59, 66
insertion 289, 294
"lexical integrity hypo
thesis" 296
performative 95
Phonology 141, 288, 296,
299, 390
rule 141, 289, 390
Schwas 235
semantics 88
lexicon 247, 257
liaison 380, 402
as consonant insertion 384
ligature 379, 382-84, 389, 401
linear phonology 378
linear treatment 391
linguistic atlas 95
linked matrix 130-32, 139-40,
143, 145-46
linking 129-30, 135-39, 141-43
linking consonant 380, 382,
391, 401-02
liquid 135
liquid assimilation 132, 146
movement 62-5
operation 59, 61, 75
rule 62-64, 66
v fronting 65
v movement 63-64, 67-68,


Logical Form (LF) 182-84,

188-91, 194, 199, 206-07
Long Foot Adjustment (LFA) 388

marked vs. unmarked 247
marking 246, 257
matching condition 331
maximization of clusters 242
final 276
melody unit 129-31, 147
merged matrix 131-32, 146
merger 156
metathesis 299
metrical analysis 391
metrical structures 378
Mexico 120
Mexico City 122
mihi ilium order 99
modal 51-52
modality 51, 53, 91-92, 95
mood 94
analysis 399
context 393
natural class 395
solution 394
treatment 400
move 21
move-alpha 188-90, 195-97,
208 fn 2

narrative style 61
n-ary phonetic valves 124
nasalization (progressive)
negation 91
negative 77, 83-84, 95
negative conditions 261
neustic 81, 86, 90
new information 88, 95
No Case Filter 168

non-configurational 223-25
nucleus 241, 262-63
null subjects 190, 194, 198,
206-07, 208 fn 1

object marking 91
onsets 236-40, 263
optative 84
ordering 382, 401

palatalization 150, 152, 155,
Panama 120
parameters 51, 65, 189, 191,
204, 207-09
parasitic gap 36, 41
parentheticals 75
Parsing 242
particle 77-81, 83-87, 89-95
clause-final 67
movement 58
passive 5, 10-11
passive subjects 326-327
passivization 322
perception of English vowels by
Hispanics 118-25
personalization of the verb
Peru 120
phatic utterance 84
ambiguity 117-25
analysis 400
component 342
form 53
template 265
treatment 378, 394
and morphology 378
phrase markers 287
phrase structure grammar 263
phrastic 81, 86, 90



point of articulation 138,

portmanteau words 287
positive conditions 261
postlexical rule 141, 289-90
Postnominal modification 1-16
pragmatic 13, 77, 79, 81, 85,
88-90, 92, 95
predicate complement 87, 89
predicate complement clause 90
predication 2, 11-13, 188,
192, 194
rule 188
head 188, 190, 192, 194-96,
199, 207
variable 188, 190-91, 196,
201-07, 209 fn 3
prenominal modifiers (French)
presentationalism 323-24
presentational sentences
315-17, 324-27
derived 315, 317, 322
principle B 74
PRO 26-27, 169, 175-76,
182, 205-06
and agreement 205-06
pro 27, 332
determination 344, 349
drop 214, 221-23
pro-drop parameter 57
pro-head hypothesis 332, 346
progressive 52
projection (extra) 73
Projection Principle 74, 340
pronominalization 356, 359,
361-62, 364-65, 369
pronouns 36, 191, 201-06, 208
bound 189-92, 205, 208
disjunctive 252, 257
pronominal clitic chain
190, 198
relative and interrogative
resumptive 36
as variables 189, 198,



prosodic skeleton 129-31, 138,

prototype 5
Puerto Rico 5
Puerto Ricans 122


R-spreading 135-36, 139,

Rule Application Convention
132, 142, 144-46
rule inversion 399
rules of distribution 393, 397

Q-element 95
quantified phrase 164
quantifier 2, 79, 188-89,
188, 207, 209
raising (QR) 183
question 82, 94
formation 62

raising case-assignment 28
raising to subject 165,
167-68, 180, 182
recit 92
reflexive 85
relative clause 87
restrictive, appositional
relativization 355-56, 358-59,
361-66, 368-69, 372
relinking rule 146
request 82
REST model of grammar 315-16
restricted stem 394
restructuring 395-97, 399
resumptive 79, 82
resyllabification 237, 279,
retroflected alveolar 133
retroflection 130, 134-36,
142, 147
rheme 316, 318-20, 328
rhotacism of 1 281
rhyme retroflection 135-37,
rime 238, 241
romance clitic order 99
root operation 59-61, 70

saliency conditions 250

schwa 233-44, 384, 391-92,
deletion 388-91, 393, 398,
word-final 386, 401-02
morpheme-final 383-85,
word-internal 392
scope of assertion 326, 328
segmental melody 130
semantic(s) 5, 10, 12-13
drift 401
focus 316-17, 319-20,
324, 326-27
intransitivity 315, 322-23,
transitivity 326-327
Shared Feature Convention 131
sibilant devoicing 147
simplification 282
simplification of lexical
markings 400
small-clause 25-27
Spain 120
active predicates 315, 317,
passive predicates 315, 317,
319, 321, 326-28
vocalic variation 122
vowels 117-25
specifier 58, 74
speech act 80-81, 91
spelling out condition 37
Spirantization 127
split (phonological/
morphological) analysis



s-structure 56-57, 62, 64,
66, 75, 194-95, 199-200,
stem regularization 397
strength 82, 95
stress assignment 382
strident voicelessness 140-42,
structure preservation 59-60,
64, 68-70, 72, 74-75
structure-preserving constraint
59, 61, 63, 68, 70-75
stylistic(s) 4, 6, 14
subcategorization 28
subcategorization properties
subjacency and clitic chains
subject-honorific 52
subject NP 53-54, 63-64, 66,
69, 318-21, 323, 326-28
subordinate clause 88-99
subordinating conjunction
Suffixation Principle 54-56,
syllabic constituent 263
syllabicity 238
syllabification 237, 240-43,
385, 402
syllable 261, 378, 380, 385
markedness 242-43
structure 233, 236-44
syntactic integrity 56

tag question 52, 54-55, 57,

target predicate 74
tautomorphemicness 379, 383,
tautomorphemic segment 380
tense 52-53, 91-92
tensed clause 19-21, 90-91
theme 316, 318, 320, 328

Theta Criterion 20-21, 28-29

three-tiered syllabic theory
topicalization 75, 208
trace 356-57, 364
trace theory 75
tropic 81, 86, 90
true generalization condition
typology 203-05

unagreement 201-06, 210 fn 5
unagreement hypothesis 202
unitary lexical insertion 297
universal grammar 27, 29
universal principle of onset
maximization 269
universal syllabic theory 267

variable 183-184
velarization of n 281
velar vocalization 158
Venezuela 120
"associative" verbs 250
clause-final 57
dative 248
finite 55
fronting 61, 63-67, 75
knowledge and perception 29,
333, 347
morphology 51
"polar" verbs 251
preposing 187, 198-201
raising 54, 57, 63, 68-69,
"symmetric verbs" 250
valency 322
verbal complex 'V' 63
verb-final 58, 60
verb-first 58



verb initial clause 75

Visibility Hypothesis 26-27
vocalization 150
voiced strident obstruent 140
vowel epenthesis 233-44


word-final 384, 402

word-internal 384, 402
word relative frequency 123
word stress assignment 381,


fronting 75
movement 191, 195-97, 208
phrase 356
as quantifiers 195-97,

X-bar Theory