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Noun Phrase Structure and Movement: A Crosslinguistic comparison of such/sådan/solch and so/så/so

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  • Department of English

We investigate the etymologically related words so and such (English); and sådan (Danish); and so and solch (German). Similarities and differences that have to be accounted for cross-linguistically are i. position (pre- or post- indefinite article), ii. agreement morphology (in Danish and German), and iii. semantics (whether an AdjP or a DP/NP is modified). English and Danish so/så may only modify an AdjP, while German so may also modify the DP/NP. English such may only modify the DP/NP (Bolinger 1972, Wood 2002) and may only precede the indefinite article. Danish and German allow inflected sådan/solch to follow the article. We discuss two possible syntactic derivations, predicate raising (e.g. Corver 1998, Bennis, Corver & den Dikken 1998) and XP movement from an attributive adjective position within the nominal (e.g. Matushansky 2002). The analysis links up with the morphological agreement facts of predicate and of attributive adjectives in Danish and German (Vikner 2001).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Noun Phrase in Romance and Germanic : Structure, variation, and change
EditorsHarry Perridon, Petra Sleeman
Number of pages21
Place of publicationAmsterdam
PublisherJohn Benjamins Publishing Company
Publication year2011
ISBN (print)978 90 272 5554 9
ISBN (Electronic)978 90 272 8729 8
Publication statusPublished - 2011
SeriesLinguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today

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