Resultatives in Icelandic – A Preliminary Investigation
Matthew Whelpton
June 2006

This paper offers a preliminary survey of the resultative in Icelandic. It addresses data offered in Levin & Rappaport Hovav's 1995 discussion of unaccusativity as well as Higginbotham's 1999 claim, building on observations in Talmy 1985, that languages which systematically make available the verb-particle construction will also make available the resultative construction, as both constructions involve telic pair formation in the composition of argument structure. The paper confirms that Icelandic has the resultative construction with three clear provisos: 1. resultatives with unaccusatives and adjectival predicates are largely absent; 2. resultatives with unergatives and adjectival predicates almost invariably require a reflexive object; 3. the restrictions in (1) and (2) weaken or disappear with PP or particle resultatives. The paper also shows how rich adjectival inflection distinguishes between predicational and adverbial uses of the adjective (with implications for Kratzer's 2005 account).
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Reference: lingbuzz/000292
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keywords: resultative, predication, adverbial, icelandic, argument, syntax, semantics
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