A Study of Extraposition of Persian Restrictive Relative Clauses and their Landing Site

Document Type : Research Paper


Linguistics Department, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran


The present article mainly aims to investigate Persian data in order to clarify how the process of extraposition moves a relative clause (RC) from its base position. To do so, relative clauses are first classified into two categories which are called restrictive (RRC) and non-restrictive relative clauses (NRRC). Since it is not possible to discuss both categories, the present article focuses only on the restrictive ones. As evidenced, a RRC moves from its base position next to the noun it modifies to a position after the verb and since the verb moves from vP to TP or AspP in Persian, the RRC must obligatorily be adjoined to TP itself or a position higher than TP in order to be uttered after the verb linearly. In this article, two arguments are prsented to show that RRCs are adjoined to TP. The first argument comes from the position of extraposed relative clauses with respect to high adverbials. In fact, an extraposed RRC can be attached to a position before or after high adverbials. The second argument comes from gapping- a type of ellipsis. More specifically, gapping sometimes deletes an RRC earlier attached to the TP, which leads to ungrammatical derivations. Finally, after proving that extraposed subject and object RRCs are adjoined to TP, an optional *uC feature on T, which is selected from the numeration, is introduced to trigger the movement of the relative clause. Taking the position of the exraposed relative clauses with respect to complement clauses (CPs), it is propsed that complement clauses move to the secondary Spec of TP. Such an analysis provides us with a symmetry between clausal complements and specific objects as well. Finally, the obligatory status of extraposition of RRCs with matrix stative predicates is attributed to the obligatory presence of the *uC feature on T.


Main Subjects

Articles in Press, Accepted Manuscript
Available Online from 23 May 2022
  • Receive Date: 22 November 2021
  • Revise Date: 20 August 2022
  • Accept Date: 23 May 2022
  • First Publish Date: 23 May 2022