The Role of Agreement in Non-Finite Predication

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This comparative syntactic study claims that agreement is the most central functional category responsible for licensing predication in finite, non-finite and small clauses alike. Intriguing syntactic phenomena like Icelandic infinitival predicates taking non-nominative (quirky) subjects; <i>psych-impersonal</i> and <i>modal</i> predicates in Italian, Hungarian and Russian; meteorological predicates, existential clauses, post-verbal and null subjects in the so-called<i> null-subject</i> VSO languages can all be better analyzed through a concept of predication that is closely related to AGRP, manifesting subject-verb agreement. The overt agreement marking in Hungarian and Portuguese infinitival clauses further strengthens this view. <i>Obviation</i> and <i>control </i>subjunctive clauses in the Balkan languages, Welsh finite and non-finite infinitival clauses as well as case-marked secondary predicates in Icelandic, Slovak, Hungarian, Russian and Finnish also lend support to an analysis where the [+pred] feature is checked in AGRP.

Subjects: Syntax; Theoretical linguistics; Generative linguistics

  • Affiliations: 1: Károly Eszterházy College

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