Reflexive verbs and the restructuring of clitic clusters

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In Old French, all clitic clusters containing objects observed the order ACC–DAT. During the 15th and 16th centuries this order was changed into DAT–ACC in cases where objects of the 1st and 2nd person were involved. This change took place rather abruptly. In this paper I will argue that increased use of reflexive forms provoked a change in the order in these clitic clusters. More specifically, I will argue that clusters involving 1st and 2nd person argumental clitics form true clusters in Modern French (in the sense of Pescarini (2012)), whereas they formed split clusters in the old language.


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