A morphologically guided matching approach to German(ic) relative constructions

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This article argues for a matching analysis of attributive constructions in German proposed by Struckmeier (2007): The suffixal morphology found on attributive adjectives and participles (traditionally called case, gender and number), and similar markers found on relative pronouns in German, constitute evidence that is problematic for raising analyses of attributive constructions (Kayne 1994): Morphological, syntactic and semantic facts are adduced which raising analyses cannot explain. This paper proposes to regard attributive morphology as a phase head (Chomsky 2000), which identifies relativized arguments in its domain. This approach derives the synchronic facts, and extends to diachronic and typological comparisons, giving the analysis a wider empirical reach than raising analyses. Keywords: attributive; agreement; relative clause; raising; matching; antisymmetry


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