Chapter

Coordination, gapping, and the Portuguese inflected infinitive: the role of structural ambiguity in syntactic change

Ana Maria Martins

in Grammatical Change

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199582624
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731068 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199582624.003.0014
Coordination, gapping, and the Portuguese inflected infinitive: the role of structural ambiguity in syntactic change

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This chapter examines the change that contributes to the extension of inflected infinitives to the complement of Exceptional Case Marking (ECM) verbs from the sixteenth century on. The chapter is organized in six sections. Section 14.2 draws some diachronic parallels between ECM verbs and control/raising verbs. Section 14.3 shows that causative and perception verbs entered both the faire-infinitive construction and the ECM construction in Old Portuguese. This is a relevant matter because it was the existence of the ECM structure that made room for the emergence of the inflected infinitive in the clausal complements of ECM verbs. Section 14.4 identifies a type of independent inflected infinitival clause, in Old Portuguese, which played a central role in the change. Section 14.5 spells out a proposal to explain how the inflected infinitive came to be allowed in the clausal complements of ECM verbs. It discusses how the change also affected raising and control verbs. Section 14.6 concludes the chapter.

Keywords: inflected infinitives; Old Portuguese; Exceptional Case Marking verbs; faire-infinitive construction; independent inflected infinitival clause

Chapter.  7126 words. 

Subjects: Historical and Diachronic Linguistics

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