A unified analysis of Niuean Aki

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This paper re-examines the alternation in the Polynesian language Niuean involving the instrumental particle <i>aki</i> (Seiter 1980, Massam 1998), where <i>aki</i> can appear both as an apparent preposition and in the verbal complex, with its notional object having concomitantly different properties. A lexically-driven analysis is given for this alternation; namely, the morphosyntactic behavior of <i>aki</i> and its notional object in this alternation, as well as in long-distance dependency constructions, can be understood through the basic lexical entry of <i>aki</i> and its interaction with various other lexical operations, including argument structure extension, argument composition, and constraints on gap realization.


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