Article published in:In Search of Universal Grammar: From Old Norse to Zoque
Edited by Terje Lohndal
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 202] 2013
► pp. 131–172
Topics and the left periphery
A comparison of Old French and Modern Germanic
Just as the Modern Germanic languages (with the exception of English) have a verb second structure (V2), Old French was a V2 language. In this paper I compare Old French and Modern Germanic and show that they share the basic configuration. I suggest that these languages all have obligatory verb movement to Fin°, and that only material in SpecFocP and SpecFinP are visible for V2. All the V2-languages investigated exhibit instances of apparent V3-constructions that may be accounted for in a split-CP-framework. Crucially, there is a difference between Modern Germanic and Old French regarding topics. In Modern Germanic, a left dislocated topic must be immediately followed by its resumptive pronoun, a constraint which is not operative in Old French.
Published online: 17 January 2013
Cited by other publications
Bech, Kristin & Christine Meklenborg Salvesen
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de Andrade, Aroldo
Haegeman, Liliane & Ciro Greco
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