The Celtic Languages

Maggie Tallerman

in The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Syntax

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780195136517
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Linguistics

 The Celtic Languages

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  • Linguistics
  • Grammar, Syntax and Morphology
  • Language Families


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This article examines the syntactic patterns in Celtic languages. It discusses the existence of what is often termed I-SVO order (where I indicates the inflected element), which has been significant in generative analyses of Celtic clause structure. The analysis reveals that despite the close genetic relationship between the four surviving Celtic languages, their syntax differs in nontrivial ways. The general conclusion is that the Celtic languages are not syntactically exotic but, rather, can be analyzed with existing syntactic apparatus.

Keywords: Celtic languages; syntactic patterns; I-SVO order; clause structure; generative analyses; syntactic apparatus

Article.  13843 words. 

Subjects: Linguistics ; Grammar, Syntax and Morphology ; Language Families

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