On gerunds and the theory of categories

Some recent theories of gerunds account for their hybrid properties by saying that the gerund is both a noun and a verb simultaneously. Such theories are inconsistent with the Reference-Predication Constraint (RPC), a cornerstone of Baker’s (2003) theory of lexical categories. In contrast, I defend the traditional idea that gerunds are fusions of a true verb and a syntactically distinct nominal Infl. Moreover, I give new evidence in favor of the RPC, showing how it explains the fact that nominal gerunds never show subject agreement in Mapudungun, and the fact that gerunds with verb-final word order have surprising agreement properties in Lokaa. Keywords: gerunds, lexical categories, nouns, verbs, Mapudungun, Lokaa..
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