Residual V-to-I in Faroese and its lack in Danish: Detecting the final stages of a syntactic change

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  • Sten Vikner
  • Caroline Heycock, University of Ediburgh, United KingdomAntonella Sorace, University of Edinburgh, United KingdomZakaris Svabo Hansen, Fróðskaparsetur Føroya, Faroe IslandsFrances Wilson, University of Delaware, United States
In Heycock et al. (2010a) it was shown that V-to-I in contemporary Faroese has much lower acceptability than might be expected from a number of descriptions in the literature. Given that it was also argued that Faroese has a relatively free distribution of embedded V2 (EV2), it might be concluded that all putative instances of V-to-I in the language can be attributable to EV2. Here we demonstrate, however, that the judgments on clear cases of EV2 and on possible cases of V-to-I differ subtly but measurably, showing that the loss of V-to-I in this language has not yet gone entirely to completion.
We further demonstrate that the situation in Faroese contrasts with that in Danish, as expected under the assumption that V-Neg orders in subordinate clauses in Danish are entirely attributable to EV2, as argued in e.g. Vikner (1995).
Original languageDanish
JournalWorking Papers in Scandinavian Syntax
Pages (from-to)137-165
Number of pages28
StatePublished - 2011

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