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Elliott Lash

This article reconstructs the syntax of pre-Old Irish copular clauses using relic or anomalous formations within Old Irish. It is therefore an exercise in syntactic internal reconstruction. The two patterns that are reconstructed are (a) the word order of subject and predicate, which was Predicate Subject in Old Irish but is argued to have been Subject Predicate in pre-Old Irish; (b) the order of negation, the clause-typing enclitic *de, the relative pronoun and the copula which is argued to be NEG+REL+de+COP. Furthermore, It is argued that a change from a fully verbal copula *issi in pre-Old Irish to a clause-typing particle is in Old Irish is implicated in the innovation of both (a) and (b). The reconstruction is evaluated using the technique of ‘local directionality’, by examining detailed feature/phrase-structure analyses of the constructions in at least two languages and hypothesizing the most economical and plausible relation between the two.

Götz Keydana

In this paper I argue that the unembedded Accusativus cum Infinitivo in Ancient Greek is a case of hearer-induced grammaticalization. AcI embedded under verba dicendi or δοκεῖν in deontic contexts are ambiguous: while the speaker intends the deontic reading as a side meaning of the embedding verb, it can also be attributed to the AcI. If the hearer opts for the latter analysis, a new function of the AcI emerges, which ultimately leads to its de-embedding. I show that this grammaticalization process is parallel to similar reanalyses in sound change. In a short outlook the analysis is extended to the emergence of absolute constructions.

Finite vs. non-finite complementation in Post-classical and Early Byzantine Greek

Towards a pragmatic restructuring of the complementation system?

Klaas Bentein

While Classical Greek has a particularly rich complementation system, in later times there is a tendency towards the use of finite complementation. In this context, Cristofaro (1996) has claimed that the Classical opposition whereby the accusative and infinitive is used for non-factive complements, and ὅτι with the indicative and the accusative and participle for factive ones, is disappearing, ὅτι being used as a ‘generic’ complementiser. In this article, I investigate to what extent Cristofaro’s (1996) claim of the pragmatic neutralisation of complementation patterns can be upheld, and whether it could be claimed that a new pragmatic opposition, in terms of ‘register’, is being established. For this purpose, I turn towards documentary papyri, a corpus which is particularly fruitful for socio-historical investigations.

From the editors

Among our goals

Dag T.T. Haug, Brian D. Joseph and Anna Roussou

From the Editors

Briefly put

Dag T.T. Haug, Brian D. Joseph and Anna Roussou

Georg F.K. Höhn, Giuseppina Silvestri and M. Olimpia Squillaci

The term ‘unagreement’ describes configurations with an apparent person-mismatch between a typically definite plural subject and non-third person verbal agreement found in several null subject languages. Previous works have suggested that languages which have an obligatory definite article in adnominal pronoun constructions (APCs) allow unagreement (cf. standard modern Greek emeis oi glossologoi “we (the) linguists”), while languages that rule out definite articles in APCs do not allow unagreement constructions (cf. standard Italian noi (*i) linguisti). This article presents new evidence from Calabrian Greek (Greko), which corresponds to the predictions for other varieties of Greek, and two southern Italian Romance varieties (northern and southern Calabrese): these varieties exhibit Italian-type APCs but still allow unagreement, contrary to expectations. We discuss how the Romance data may be accommodated by extending a previous account of unagreement and propose that the hybrid pattern observed in the Italo-Romance varieties is a result of historical contact with local Greek varieties.

David Sasseville

This paper offers an analysis of the Lydian nominal paradigm of i-mutation. The main goal is to uncover the accentual type of this paradigm. This is achieved, first, by analyzing the phonological outcome of the endings and, second, by identifying the position of the accent within each given lexeme. In the end, a barytone character is posited for this paradigm. This observation has consequences regarding the original distribution of i-mutation in Anatolian and its chronological spread.

Olav Hackstein

Under a formal and functional reconstruction, the form and semantics of Old High German huuanta and Dutch want receive an explanation for the first time. Both conjunctions, together with Latin unde and Tocharian B ente, A äntā(ne), descend from PIE interrogative-relative *k w o-m-d h eh 1, *k w o-m-d h oh 1, *k w o-m-d h ah 2 ‘whence, where’, whose semantics may be compositionally analyzed as ablatival-instrumental *k w o-m plus locatival-directional *-d h o(h 1 ), *-d h a(h 2 ). The novel equation of Old High German huuanta, Dutch want with Latin unde and Tocharian B ente, A äntā(ne) sheds light on a number of phonological and syntactic questions, including the merger of PIE *-nd- and *-nd h- in Latin and Tocharian (§ 2.1) and the non-affrication of *-nd- in Tocharian (§ 3.1.2). Another consequence is that a case can be made for clause-initial aphaeresis which triggered the loss of the labiovelar onsets in unde and ente/äntā(ne), thus pointing to the existence of wh-movement and clause-initial wh-words in both Latin and Tocharian (§ 3.1.1).

Marika Lekakou

This introduction lays out the issues in the study of morphosyntactic variation in Modern Greek dialects and summarizes the contents of the papers included herein.

Jason Merchant and Natalia Pavlou

In Cypriot Greek, the negated future is marked by the element tha, which appears instead of the expected present tense copula and a selected subordinating element. This paper documents the distribution of this item for the first time, and presents an analysis in Distributed Morphology that analyzes tha as a portmanteau morpheme realizing two heads in the context of negation. This analysis requires that spans (or targets of Fusion) can include a verb and the head of its C complement.