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In many of the first English headed which-relatives, which has an NP complement. Using distributional tests grounded in contrasts revealed by research in formal semantics, we demonstrate that the presence of an NP complement forces a nonrestrictive interpretation of the relative, while ‘bare’ which-relatives may be restrictive or nonrestrictive. We situate this finding in relation to both the formal semantics of relative clauses, and the history of wh-relatives in English.
- relative clauses
- middle english
- discourse anaphora
- parsed corpora
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- School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences - Senior Lecturer- Chancellor's Fellow
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