Document Type : Research Paper


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


Quantifiers basically occur adjacent to a nominal phrase. However, sometimes the quantifier and the nominal phrase appear apart in sentences. This phenomenon is referred to as quantifier floating (Q-floating). The most prominent approach to Q-floating is stranding analysis, according to which the quantifier and the adjacent nominal phrase together make up a single constituent, and in the course of derivation, the nominal phrase moves from this constituent to a higher position, stranding the quantifier in situ; in other words, stranding analysis considers the floating quantifier construction as the result of a transformation from non-floating quantifier construction. This paper addresses the structure of floating and non-floating quantifier constructions, provides evidence from Persian to indicate the independence of their structures, and argues for the oblige toriness of each structure. The floating quantifier is shown to be a late adjunct to a copy of its associated DP: in the derivation leading to quantifier floating, a DP moves from its θ-position and then receives a QP as an adjunct, and then it moves again to a higher position and strands the quantifier in situ.  According to Chomsky’s (2013) Labeling Algorithm, when QP is an adjunct to DP, the movement of DP and it’s leaving the QP behind is obligatory; to put it another way, floating quantifier construction is obligatory. As opposed to floating quantifier construction, in non-floating quantifier construction, QP is not an adjunct. In this construction, the DP is the complement of the quantifier head. Given Labeling Algorithm, this construction is obligatorily motivated, too. In addition, since quantifier phrase is the topmost nominal phrase in such constructions, it is a phase; and in order for the DP to move out of this phase, it needs to move first to the specifier position of the QP, but this movement is considered too short. For this reason, DP cannot move off the QP in non-floating quantifier constructions


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