- Why all John's Friends are Dutch, Not German: On the Determiner-Like Characteristics of the Inflection on the Universal Quantifier in West Germanic
- Journal of Germanic Linguistics
- Volume | Issue number
- 28 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication (ACLC)
The word order in a phrase such as all John's friends, in which a universal quantifier is immediately followed by a genitive, is perfectly grammatical in Dutch but unacceptable in German. This article shows that there are three explanations for this difference between the two closely related languages. First, in German, the Saxon Genitive is a true case assigned in Spec, NP. In contrast, in Dutch and English, genitive case cannot be assigned in Spec, NP without a preposition. The Saxon Genitive in these languages is comparable to a possessive adjective that originates as the head of PossP and moves to D. Second, in a definite DP in a Germanic language, either D or Spec, DP must be occupied; if one of these positions is overtly occupied, and if genitive case has already been assigned, the movement of a genitive phrase to D or Spec, DP is unmotivated and causes ungrammaticality. Third, there is evidence that the -e inflection on the universal quantifier alle ‘all’ in German and Dutch has the characteristics of a determiner.
- go to publisher's site
If you believe that digital publication of certain material infringes any of your rights or (privacy) interests, please let the Library know, stating your reasons. In case of a legitimate complaint, the Library will make the material inaccessible and/or remove it from the website. Please Ask the Library, or send a letter to: Library of the University of Amsterdam, Secretariat, Singel 425, 1012 WP Amsterdam, The Netherlands. You will be contacted as soon as possible.