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On some morpho-syntax correlations in the Romanian Case system Romanian is a Romance language which partially inherits morphological (i.e., inflec-

In document BOOK OF ABSTRACTS (sivua 53-56)

tional) cases from Latin, namely the Genitive case and the Dative which are homony- mous. This language displays a remarkable alternation between DPs morphologically marked for Genitive case and P(prepositional) P(hrase)s headed by the preposition de, as in (1) below:

(1) fiul regelui vs. fiul de rege son-the king-theGen son-the DE king

“the king’s son” “the royal son”

Note that this alternation is not sensitive either to the lexical nature (i.e., relational, deverbal, picture / icon, object-denoting) of the head noun or to its number marking.

The goal of this paper is (i) to examine the conditions under which the two types of constructions are used and (ii) to propose an analysis for each of these constructions.

The two constructions are alike insofar as they involve a relation (which may either pertain to the lexical meaning of the head N or else be contextually triggered by the presence of the second argument), but they differ regarding the nature of the second argument: a strong correlation can be shown to exist between syntactic categories (DPs vs. NPs), Case marking (morphological vs. prepositional) and semantic type (indi- viduals vs. qualities / properties).

From a morpho-syntactic point of view, I will show that Genitive case can only be marked on the determiner (only D can carry case markings). The constructions with morphological case are projections of D (DPs). In other words, they are full nominal expressions (i.e., nouns with a determiner) (cf. Cornilescu (1993), Grosu (1998)):

(2) a. fiul regelui / fiul unui rege son-the king-theGen son-the aGen king

“the king’ s son” “the son of a king”

b. *fiul rege son-the king

In contrast, those projections of N that do not have a D cannot mark the case morpho- logically, hence the insertion of the preposition de. The constructions with de are NPs (i.e., incomplete nominal expressions) (cf. Dobrovie-Sorin & Giurgea (2005), Mardale (2007)):

(3) a. *fiul de regele / *fiul de un rege son-the DE king-the son-the DE a king b. fiul de rege (african)

son-the DE king African The (African) royal son.

From a semantic point of view, I will show that while in the constructions with mor- phological case the head N denotes a relation between two individuals (the one denoted by DP1 and the one denoted by DP2) (Dobrovie-Sorin (2001a), Beyssade & Dobrovie- Sorin (2005)), in the prepositional constructions, the head N denotes a relation between

an individual (denoted by DP1) and a quality/property (denoted by NP2) (Kolliakou (1999)).

Finally, it will be shown that the above-mentioned correlations explain a number of distributional constraints which are summarized in the following table:

Genitive-marked constituents adnominal de-marked


can appear after the copula no yes

can alternate with APs no yes

can alternate with pronouns yes no

can be antecedents for

anaphoric pronouns yes no


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Méthodes d’analyse) 11: 163–192.

Beyssade, C., Dobrovie-Sorin, C. 2005. A syntax based analysis of predication.

Journées de Sémantique et Modélisation 3: Paris, 17–18 march.

Cornilescu, A. 1993. Notes on the Structure of Romanian DP and the Assignment of the Genitive Case. University of Venice Working Papers in Linguistics 3.2: 107–


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Kolliakou, D. 1999. DE-phrase Extractability and Individual / Property Denotation.

Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 17: 713–781.

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Elena Markus & Fedor Rozhanskiy

Comitative and Terminative in Votic and Lower Luga Ingrian


The problem of distinguishing between a case and a postposition construction is well-known and is especially important for the Uralic languages that are abundant with postpositions. In this presentation the status of Votic Comitative and Terminative will be discussed. In the existing grammars of Votic we can find different opinions. Thus, A.Ahlqvist [Ahlqvist 1856] claims that Terminative is a postposition construction and Comitative is not a case but should be studied more carefully; P.Ariste [Ariste 1968]

and D.Tsvetkov [Tsvetkov 2008(1922)] place both of them in the list of cases; and in [Агранат 2007] we observe them among the postpositions.

However, none of the scholars presented detailed argumentation for the chosen point of view. Our research does not intend to support one of the existing opinions, but is aimed at the detailed analysis of different features of Comitative and Terminative, as compared to other Votic cases and postpositions. There is a following set of criteria, which can be relevant for Votic and Ingrian: a) vowel harmony of the marker;

b) accentuation characteristics; c) phonetic structure; d) reduction of the final vowel;

e) alternations on the border between the stem and marker; f) ability to combine with different types of stems; g) marking of the dependant words in NP; h) obligatory mark- ing of the coordinated nouns. The conducted analysis shows that Votic Comitative demonstrates practically equal amount of features typical for cases and postpositions, while Terminative has more features typical for postpositions.

A comparative analysis of the Lower Luga Ingrian data looks reasonable since the scholars claimed (see, for example, [Лаанест 1966: 104-106]) that the comitative marker ka/kä was borrowed by Lower Luga Ingrian from Votic or from Ingrian Finnish (this marker is absent in Soikkola Ingrian), and the Lower Luga Ingrian Terminative is closer to Votic than to Soikkola Ingrian type. It is interesting that some of the criteria show less postpositional features of Ingrian Comitative that these of Votic (e.g. Ingrian Comitative has vowel harmony variants, while there is only one variant in Votic).

The presented material was collected by the authors during their field work on Votic and Ingrian in recent years.


Ahlqvist A. Wotisk grammatik jemte språkprof och ordförteckning. Helsingfors - Acta Societatis Scientiarum Fennicae, V I. Helinsgforsiae, 1856.

Ariste P. 1968. A grammar of the Votic language. Bloomington - The Hague (Indiana University Publications. Uralic and Altaic Series, vol. 68), 1968.

Tsvetkov D. Vadja keele grammatika (Эсимейн’ ваддя чээле грамаатикк. Первая грамматика водьского языка, 1922), Tallinn, 2008.

Агранат Т.Б. Западный диалект водского языка. Москва-Гронинген, 2007.

Лаанест А. Ижорские диалекты. Лингвогеографическое исследование. Таллин, 1966.

2 Supported by RGNF, project N 08-04-00172a.

Helena Metslang

In document BOOK OF ABSTRACTS (sivua 53-56)