Antecedents of diverse types
The present paper addresses the issue of the grammatical relations in German<i>wh-</i>relative clause constructions. It discusses data demonstrating that the ordinary assumption that German <i>wh-</i>relative clauses generally relate to propositional antecedents must be revised. In particular, it shows that the syntactic antecedent of a <i>wh-</i>relative clause has to be separated from its semantic antecedent(s). <i>Wh-</i>relative clauses relate syntactically to a functionally complete sentential projection, while they relate semantically to entities of various kinds. The semantic objects that may function as antecedents of a <i>wh-</i>relative clause are determined by the semantic type of the anaphoric <i>wh-</i>expression introducing a <i>wh-</i>relative clause. The paper provides an account of the described empirical facts in the framework of Discourse Representation Theory.