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On the morpho-syntax of verb/adverb placement and fronting in embedded clauses in Modern Övdalian

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Abstract

The constructions under investigation in this chapter include verb second (V2) and topicalization in various types of embedded clauses, stylistic fronting (SF) and transitive expletive constructions (TECs). It turns out that the older speakers of Övdalian allow V2 more freely than the younger speakers and the results from a verbal paradigm fill-in task reveal substantial variation in the use of verbal affixes and, interestingly, a tendency, especially by the younger speakers, to simplify the verbal morphology. Both SF and TECs receive very low acceptance scores. The data does not provide support for the ‘strong version’ of the Rich Agreement Hypothesis (RAH) but it is argued that the facts regarding verb/adverb placement can be accounted for under a ‘weak’ RAH analysis.

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