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Looking High and Low for NegP in Early English

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Published in Larrivée, P. & Ingham, R. The Evolution of Negation. Beyond the Jespersen Cycle. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 2011, p. 115-144
Collection Trends in linguistics : studies and monographs; 235
Abstract The emergence of a secondary negator (na, later not) in the early history of English raises the question as to how such an element is integrated into the syntactic structure. Responding to work by van Kemenade (2011), this paper starts by providing evidence in support of her proposal that the secondary negator can occur in a high and in a low structural position in Old English. However, no conclusive evidence is found for the presence of a dedicated position for negation in the clause structure (NegP) at this stage of the history of English. As for the variation in the placement of the secondary negator, it is shown that, contrary to what van Kemenade proposes, low negation is not restricted to certain contexts but is available more generally. The restriction of high negation to V-to-C contexts is confirmed and an analysis of this restriction in terms of binary Agree relations is proposed. Finally, it is shown that this analysis is compatible with the diachronic developments occurring during the Middle English period.
Keywords AgreeMiddle EnglishNegationNegPOld English
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ISBN: 978-3-11-023860-0
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HAEBERLI, Eric. Looking High and Low for NegP in Early English. In: Larrivée, P. & Ingham, R. (Ed.). The Evolution of Negation. Beyond the Jespersen Cycle. Berlin : Mouton de Gruyter, 2011. p. 115-144. (Trends in linguistics : studies and monographs; 235) https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:29591

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Deposited on : 2013-09-10

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