Article published in:Advances in Comparative Germanic Syntax
Edited by Artemis Alexiadou, Jorge Hankamer, Thomas McFadden, Justin Nuger and Florian Schäfer
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 141] 2009
► pp. 171–196
The syntax and semantics of the temporal anaphor “then” in Old and Middle English
The fact that þa/þonne ‘then’ trigger V2 in OE is commonly accounted for by assuming that these adverbs are operators that trigger V-to-C movement. This paper presents an alternative analysis based on the observation that þa/þonne and pronouns are in complementary distribution in preverbal position. We identify this position as SpecTP, arguing that OE was a discourseconfigurational language where SpecTP was linked to the discourse anchoring of anaphoric/deictic expressions, including pronouns and temporal anaphora such as þa/þonne. Under these assumptions, V2 with these temporal adverbs results from a spec-head relationship in TP. The loss of V2 in the ME period is then attributed to the independent development of a (subject-oriented) EPP-feature in TP and the overall loss of discourse-configurationality.
Published online: 14 May 2009
Cited by other publications
Xing, Janet Zhiqun
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