Edited by Mar Garachana Camarero, Sandra Montserrat Buendia and Claus Dieter Pusch
[IVITRA Research in Linguistics and Literature 31] 2022
► pp. 149–170
This paper proposes a quantitative analysis of the opposition between the Old Spanish intransitive constructions aver (‘have’) + participle and ser (‘be’) + participle. It is misleading to characterise this opposition as auxiliary selection in a strict sense because aver and ser are not allomorphs. Whereas aver + PtcP is used as an anterior, ser + PtcP often receives a resultative interpretation. For this reason, the two constructions display distributional differences. In particular, the use of ser + PtcP is disfavoured in contexts that also disfavour a resultative interpretation: sentences involving bounded temporal adverbials or stative locative adverbials, as well as sentences involving irrealis modality. The use of multivariate statistical methodology demonstrates the significance of these constraints. In addition, it suggests a difference in the use of the two constructions with reflexive morphology that illuminates their different historical origin, and likewise, their difference in function.