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Reports Year : 2011

Datives and adpositions in North-Eastern Basque


Many languages show a degree of overlapping between the distinct categories of adpositions and oblique cases. The use of oblique cases very frequently extends to cover semantic roles that are typically expressed by adpositions. Spatial roles, such as locations, goals of motion or sources are a case in point. A common approach to this general phenomenon assimilates dative case-suffixes to adpositions, and specifies in the lexicon the relation between particular spatial roles and the two types of entities. In north-eastern varieties of Basque, datives can express spatial roles, such as targets of motion or locations. Basque is a particularly intriguing case of overlap, in the sense that its dative case-suffix behaves as a bona fide case marker outside the spatial cases, on the same level as absolutive and ergative cases, triggering agreement with the auxiliary and showing behaviour typical of DPs. We will argue that the spatial dative cases in north-eastern Basque are not different from what we see in canonical dative DPs: they are case suffixes, attached to nominal phrases, and expressing purely syntactic relations. The only difference being that the kind of functional support necessary to license case in verbal predicates can also be found internal to adpositional phrases, within certain conditions. Concretely, we will capitalize on recent work by Koopman (2000), Tortora (2009) and Den Dikken (2010) and argue that the spatial dative cases of north-eastern Basque are licensed in an aspectual projection internal to a phrase headed by a Path adposition. The argument will require a detailed discussion of some of the aspects involved in the syntax of postpositional phrases in Basque.


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artxibo-00605885 , version 1 (04-07-2011)


  • HAL Id : artxibo-00605885 , version 1


Ricardo Rikardo, R. Etxepare, Bernard Beñat, B. Oyharçabal. Datives and adpositions in North-Eastern Basque. 2011. ⟨artxibo-00605885⟩
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