Syntax and the morphology of deixis: The loss of demonstratives and paratactic clause linking

Bettelou Los, Ans van Kemenade

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract

This paper investigates the affinities between V2 in Old English, the Spec,CP position, and the deictic þ/s-system (demonstratives se/s¯eo/þæt as well as an etymologically related set of time, place and manner adverbs þa ‘then’, þonne ‘then’, þær ‘there’, þus ‘thus’, swa ‘so’, swylc ‘such’). The interrelations between V2 syntax and an articulated demonstrative paradigm create efficient systems for expressing topic shift and topic continuity. In the course of Middle English, a number of developments conspire to break the system down: the loss of gender and the loss of V2, leading ultimately to a loss in specific reference of the þ/s-elements and a restructuring of discourse relations, with relative pronouns taking over the role of topic shifters.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAtypical Demonstratives
Subtitle of host publicationSyntax, Semantics and Pragmatics
EditorsMarco Coniglio, Andrew Murphy, Eva Schlachter, Tonjes Veenstra
Place of PublicationBerlin; Boston
Publisherde Gruyter
Pages127-158
Number of pages32
ISBN (Electronic)9783110560299, 9783110558050
ISBN (Print)9783110557916
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameLinguistische Arbeiten
PublisherDe Gruyter
Volume568
ISSN (Electronic)0344-6727

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