The specific problem we address in this study is what explains the coherent cross-linguistic variation in the array of reflexive verbs. We show that a single parameter straightforwardly derives the variation. In addition, the parameter turns out to be responsible for parallel variations in other empirical arrays. Crucially, the parameter is applicable only if the grammar includes an active lexicon (Siloni 2002), which is more than a mere list of items, and allows the application of derivational operations. Evidence is presented that certain operations must take place prior to syntactic insertion. Our results cast heavy doubts on the plausibility of recent approaches that aim to eliminate the operative role of the lexicon altogether (Marantz 1997,2000, Borer 2004)
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