Chapter published in:The Copy Theory of Movement
Edited by Norbert Corver and Jairo Nunes
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 107] 2007
► pp. 175–216
Dutch 's-prolepsis as a copying phenomenon
This chapter investigates Dutch expressions involving two instances of the bound morpheme –s, which is traditionally analyzed as a genitival case suffix, as in bloot-shoofds (lit.: bare-s-head-s; ‘bare headed; with the head bare’) or 's Zondags (lit.: -s Sunday-s; ‘on Sundays’). The fi rst instance of –s in these expressions is traditionally qualified as being proleptic in that it anticipates the occurrence of the final –s that is right-attached to the noun. An analysis of –s-prolepsis is proposed in terms of the operations movement/copying. More specifically, it is argued that in expressions like blootshoofds, for instance, –s is not a genitival case suffix but rather a small clause head that establishes a predication relationship between a predicate and a subject (schematically: [XP hoofd [X' –s [AP bloot]]]. The surface order is derived by movement of the predicate to a position preceding the subject and concomitant head movement of the small clause head –s to the functional head into whose specifier position the displaced predicate has moved (schematically: [FP blootj [F' –si +F [XP hoofd [X' –si blootj]]]]). The multiple realization of the two –s copies is accounted for in terms of Nunes's (1995, 2004) theory about the linearization of movement chains. Cases likes 's Zondags receive the same basic account, with the difference that –s is analyzed as a (weak) demonstrative pronoun (i.e. a reduced variant of the word des) rather than a small clause head. A parallel is then drawn with phenomena of demonstrative-doubling in prepositional structures in German dialects.
Published online: 27 June 2007