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Adverb-marking patterns in Earlier Modern English coordinate constructions

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Abstract

In addition to the common pattern of X-<i>ly </i>and Y-<i>ly </i>in the coordination of adverbs, minority patterns such as X and Y-<i>ly </i>have also been observed in Early Modern and Modern English texts. While the pattern is thought typical of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century texts, examples can be found in current English as well. This paper explores the question of whether the choice between the patterns is due to aesthetic criteria such as eurythmy, the maintenance of symmetry, or a desire to avoid repetition. It concludes that all three may play a role. After considering the theoretical alternatives of paradigmatic selection and morphological ellipsis in the analysis of the choice of the non-suffixed adverb in coordinate constructions, it seems that both strategies are available to English speakers. The morphological ellipsis strategy aligns English with a variety of other languages which use zero morphology in similar constructions.

References

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