The displacements characterized in (1-2) have received a great deal of attention. (Boldface in the gloss here is simply to highlight the alternation.) (1) Scrambling (exx. from Bergsland 1997: 154) a.... gan nagaan slukax igaaxtakum (Aleut) his.boat out.of seagull.ABS flew ‘... a seagull flew out of his boat’ b.... quganax hlagan kugan husaqaa rock.ABS his.son on.top.of fell ‘... a rock fell on top of his son ’ 1 (2) Object Shift (OS) a. Hann sendi sem betur fer bréfi ni ur. (Icelandic) he sent as better goes the.letter down 2 b. Hann sendi bréfi sem betur fer ni ur. he sent the.letter as better goes down (Both:) ‘He fortunately sent the letter down’ * I am grateful to the University of Tromsø Faculty of Humanities for giving me leave to traipse the globe on the strength of the promise that I would write some papers, and to the MIT Department of Linguistics & Philosophy for welcoming me to breathe in their intellectually stimulating atmosphere. I would especially like to thank Noam Chomsky, Norvin Richards, and Juan Uriagereka for discussing parts of this work with me while it was underway, without implying their endorsement. Thanks also to Kleanthes Grohmann and Ora Matushansky for valuable feedback on earlier drafts, and to Ora Matushansky and Elena Guerzoni for their beneficient editorship. 1 According to Bergsland (pp. 151-153), a subject preceding an adjunct tends to be interpreted as definite (making (1b) unusual), and one following an adjunct tends to be indefinite; this is broadly consistent with the effects of scrambling cross-linguistically. Here I have used examples with sentence-initial adjunct material (omitted), to eliminate the possibility that the subject in (1b) is topicalized. 2 The phrasal adverbial here, sem betur fer, approximately meaning ‘fortunately, ’ has the distribution of a sentential adverb. The use of the particle ni ur ‘down ’ shows that the adverb is not right-adjoined in (2b), on the assumption that particles do not move rightward.
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