Icelandic Case Syncretism and the Syntax-Morphology Interface
Einar SigurĂ°sson, Jim Wood
July 2021

In this paper, we provide an initial overview of an understudied area of Icelandic morphosyntax, namely the effect of case syncretism of the acceptability of a variety of syntactic constructions. We outline a set of hypotheses as to how morphological case syncretism might interact with the narrow syntax, along with the empirical questions that need to be answered in order to test these hypotheses. We observe that the constructions we examine come in two types: cases where the construction makes it unclear which case to expect, and cases where the construction seems to simultaneously demand two distinct cases. We consider the possibility that the effects of case syncretism and its underlying causes may be distinct in these two kinds of constructions. Finally, we elaborate on five different kinds of syncretism, locating them in distinct parts of the grammar, leading to distinct predictions about how the resulting structures are affected.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/006078
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Working Papers in Scandinavian Syntax 105,18–44
keywords: syntax, morphology, icelandic, atb, syncretism, case, rnr, passive, reflexive, ditransitive, coordination, coordinate object drop, morphology, syntax
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