Merge Position of Floating Quantifier "Hame" in Persian

Document Type : Research Paper

Authors

1 Ph.D. Candidate General Linguistics, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.

2 Professor of General Linguistics, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.

Abstract

This paper investigates the External Merge position of the floating quantifier “hame” (all) in Persian. Quantifier floating has received two major analyses: stranding adverbial. In this paper, the former approach is shown to be more explanatorily justified. The paper provides evidence to indicate that “hame” is adjoined acyclically to the argument DP after the DP moves from its θ-position, along the lines of Boskovic (2004). More specifically, quantifier floating is shown not to be possible from θ-positions. The evidence comes from the prosodic pattern of Persian unmarked sentences as well as the scope interaction of negation and the floating quantifier “hame”. In regard to prosodic pattern of Persian unmarked sentences, main sentence stress has been argued by Kahnemuyipour (2009) to mark the left edge of vP. Floating quantifier is shown to occur before the element bearing main sentence stress in unmarked sentences, so it is claimed to be outside of vP, and therefore outside of the θ-position. As regards the second evidence, i.e. scope interaction, in negative sentences containing floating “hame’ when negation is not focused, ‘hame’ is constantly out of the scope of negation, and this means that in such sentences, neither the floating quantifier nor its copies are within the c-commanding domain of NegP. To put it another way, the base position of the floating quantifier is higher than NegP, which is argued to be between TP and vP. To determine the position of NegP in Persian, evidence is provided from negation in gerund phrases in Persian, and the scope interaction between manner and speaker-oriented adverbs on the one hand and between these adverbs and negation on the other. Showing that NegP is located between vP and TP within the scope of “hame”, it is concluded that the External Merge position of quantifier is higher than vP, and therefore is outside the θ-domain.

Keywords


Adger, D. 2003. Core syntax: a minimalist approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Anushe, M. 2008. Sentence structure and its functional projections in Persian: a minimalist approach, Doctoral dissertation, University of Tehran. [In Persian]
Anushe, M. 2017. The position of NegP and licensing N-words in Persian: a distributed morphology approach, Language Research, 8(1): 1-20. [In Persian]
Aoun, J, E. Benmamoun, and D. Sportiche 1994. Agreement and conjunction in  some  varieties  of  Arabic, Linguistic Inquiry, 25:195 – 220.
Bahrololoum, D. 2009. Quantifier raising in Persian, MA thesis, University of Tehran. [In Persian]
Baltin, M. 1995. Floating Quantifiers, PRO and Predication,.Linguistic Inquiry, 26: 199-248.
Belletti, A. 1982. On the Anaphoric Status of the Reciprocal Construction in Italian. The Linguistic Review. 2: 101-138.
Benmamoun, E.. 1999. The Syntax of Quantifiers and Quantifier Float, Linguistic Inquiry, 30: 621-642.
Bijankhan, M. 2013. Phonetic system of the Persian language, Tehran: SAMT. [in Persian]
Bobaljik, J. 2003. Floating Quantifiers: Handle with Care, L. Cheng and R. Sybesma (eds.), The Second Glot International State-of-the-Article Book (107–148), Berlin: Mouton.
Boškovic, Z. 2004. Be careful where you float your quantifiers, Natural Language & Linguistic Theory, 22: 681-742.
Cinque, G. 1999. Adverbs and Functional Heads: A Cross-Linguistic Perspective. New York/ Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Cirillo, R. 2009. The syntax of floating quantifiers: stranding revisited. Doctoral dissertation. University of Amsterdam.
Chomsky, N. 1986. Barriers, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.
Dowty, D. and B. Brodie. 1984. A Semantic Analysis of Floated Quantifiers in Transformationless Grammar, Proceedings of the West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics 3. Stanford: Stanford Linguistics Association, Stanford University.
Ghadiri, L. 2014. Quantifiers in Persian, Language Research, 5(1): 95-108. [In Persian]
Giusti, G. 1990. Floating quantifiers, scrambling, and configurationality. Linguistic Inquiry. 21: 633–641.
Haegeman, L. 1994. Introduction to Government and Binding Theory, 2nd Edition. Oxford and Cambridge: Blackwell.
Kahnemuyipour, A. 2003. Syntactic categories and Persian stress. Natural Language & Linguistic Theory, 21: 333-379.
Kahnemuyipour, A. 2009. The syntax of sentential stress. Oxford: OUP.
Kahnemuyipour, A. 2017. Negation is low in Persian: evidence from nominalization, Proceedings of the annual conference of the Canadian Linguistic Association.
Karimi, S. 2000. A minimalist approach to scrambling: evidence from Persian, University of Arizona.
Karimi, S. 2005. A minimalist approach to scrambling: evidence from Persian, The Hague: Mouton.
Kayne, R. 1981. On certain differences between French and English, Linguistic Inquiry, 12: 349-371.
Kwak, S, and A. Darzi, 2006. The syntax and semantics of Persian NCI, hič-phrase. Proceeding of the 2nd workshop on the Persian language and computer, 55-69. Tehran Uni.
Lebeaux, D. 1988. Language acquisition and the form of the grammar, doctoral dissertation, University of Massachusetts.
Miyagawa, S. 1989. Structure and case marking in Japanese, San Diego: Academic Press.
May, R. 1977. The Grammar of Quantification, Doctoral dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. MIT.
Mo’azzami, A. 2006. The syntax of DP in Persian, Doctoral dissertation, University of Tehran. [In Persian]
Sadeghi, A.A. and Gh. Arzhang. 1980. Persian Grammar: 2nd Grade, Tehran: MoE. [In Persian]
Sadeghi Ashrafi, S. 2016. Gerund phrases in Persian, MA thesis, University of Tehran. [In Persian]
Samiian, V. 1983. Origins of phrasal categories in Persian: an X-Bar analysis. Doctoral dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles.
Sato, Y. and S. Karimi, 2016. Subject-object asymmetries in Persian argument ellipsis and the anti-agreement theory. Glossa: a journal of general linguistics, 1: 1-3.
Shlonsky, U. 1991. Quantifiers as functional heads: a study of quantifier float in Hebrew, Lingua, 84: 159–180.
Sportiche, D. 1988. A theory of floating quantifiers and its corollaries for constituent structure. Linguistic Inquiry, 19 (3): 425-449.
Taleghani, A. 2006. The interaction of modality, aspect and negation in Persian. Doctoral dissertation. University of Arizona.
Zubizarreta, M. L. 1998. Prosody, focus, and word order. Cambridge/Londen: The MIT Press.
Volume 12, Issue 2
December 2022
Pages 77-100
  • Receive Date: 15 November 2019
  • Revise Date: 18 April 2021
  • Accept Date: 27 June 2021
  • First Publish Date: 27 June 2021