Departmental Bulletin Paper The emergence of group genitives : the emergence of a D system

OSAWA, Fuyo

74pp.47 - 58 , 2017-03-30 , 法政大学文学部
ISSN:04412486
NCID:AN00226157
Description
The group genitives like the king of England's hat are not existent in Old English and this emergence is assumed to be related to the loss of split genitives like (1) observed in earlier English. I propose a new view of this innovation different from the previous studies. ( 1 ) Also he ȝ af hym Ƿe eorles dou ȝter of Gloucetre to wifthe earl's daughter of Gloucester Also, he gave him the earl of Gloucester's d aughter as his wife (Trevisa) Concerning the postmodified possessors, Allen (2013) claims that there are two principles: (i) the possessor Noun (i.e. the head of the possessor phrase) should get the possessive marking -es, and the thematic relation of possession between the possessor and the possessum (i.e. the head of the larger noun phrase) must be expressed and (ii) the possessive marking -es should be at the end of the possessor phrase, that is, it is adjacent to the possessum. The shift from split to group genitives, is that the principle (i) has given way to the principle (ii). The split genitive was sensitive to the principle (i), while the group genitives is subject to the principle (ii). In other words, English grammar first forces English speakers to obey the principle (i), but laterEnglish grammar forces the English speakers to follow the principle (ii). I claim that group genitives appeared after the rise of a DP in English. Old English had no syntacticD system, and then, Old English had no group genitives. Furthermore, in order for group genitives to appear, the liberation of -es ending from meaning possession is necessary. It means that the genitive case has become a structural case, given structurally, which is not associated with a particular thematicrole. This is consistent with the DP hypothesis that genitive case is supposed to be a structural case. The split construction like (1) impedes the reanalysis of -es ending since the possessor noun with -es isadjacent to the possessum. When -es ending was freed from the possessive relation, it was qualified as the functional head. This reanalysis was backed up by the change of case system from a thematically motivated case system proposed by Plank (1983) to a thematically unmotivated one where case is 'uninterpretable' (Chomsky 2008).
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