P-D-Drop and Pseudo-incorporation in London English
David Hall
September 2019

For a subset of English speakers in London (and some surrounding areas), the preposition to and the definite article the on the goal of the verbs go and come can be dropped, for a certain set of goal nouns e.g., (1) I went (to the) chicken shop every day last week. (2) John didn’t come (to the) pub yesterday. In this paper I report the basic empirical facts of P-D-drop and constraints on its availability, and propose an analysis for the phenomenon. I argue that in cases of P-D-drop there is no structurally represented P or D, and, following Gehrke & Lekakou (2013), I show that properties of P-D-drop goals suggest that they can be analysed as pseudo-incorporated nouns. If P-D-drop really does involve pseudo-incorporation of truncated nominal structure, then some nominal elements that look structurally large (viz., proper names) must actually be base generated as reduced structures, much smaller than DP (as has been suggested in much previous literature). I adopt the idea from Levin (2015) that pseudo-incorporation in this case is a last resort licensing mechanism, allowing a reduced nominal to be licensed where it would otherwise lead to a Case Filter violation.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/004771
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: To appear in Proceedings of NELS 49
keywords: pseudo-incorporation, prepositionless goals, p-drop, dialect syntax, semantics, syntax
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