On the Development of the Complementation System in English and its Relation to Switch-Reference

In J. Berman (ed.), Proceedings of the North East Linguistic Society. GLSA (1995)
Authors
Pierre Pica
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Abstract
In this paper, we show that many of the dramatic changes that took place in the course of the history of the English complementation system are the result of a simple morphological Change in the determiner system. We propose that Old English (OE) evolved from a system in which 'complements' clauses, relative clauses and DP were interpreted as adverbials to a system in which they are interpreted as arguments of the verb. As the determiner acquired certain certain type of morphological feature , a complementation system developed. We show that this claim is is reinforced by the fact that apparently unrelated changes all follow from the nature of the determiner system.
Keywords Government and Binding  old english  determiner  complementation  switch-reference
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