Edited by Julia Herschensohn
[Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 318] 2011
► pp. 155–176
Peninsular Spanish pre-nominal possessives and definite articles contrast in ellipsis environments (los/*nuestros ___ rojos “the/our red ones”), yet all these words are unstressed and, therefore, should violate what I call the Stress Condition on Remnants (ellipsis remnants must be stressed). I claim articles, being externally merged in D, escape such condition as it only affects the most recently spelled-out NP-Phase Complement (Nissenbaum 2000) containing the ellipsis site; instead, pre-nominal possessives raise from NP to D, thus leaving an offending unstressed copy in NP. Strikingly, the combined presence of a post-nominal modifier and a numeral makes pre-nominal possessives compatible with ellipsis (nuestros seis ___ rojos “our six red ones”). A Kayne 1994-style relative-clause configuration for nominal modifiers explains this: the post-nominal modifier is the predicate of a subject DP-Phase (introduced by the numeral) containing the ellipsis site and excluding the possessive, which thus complies with the Stress Condition on Remnants.
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