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Historical Syntax and Linguistic Theory$
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Paola Crisma and Giuseppe Longobardi

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199560547

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199560547.001.0001

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Expletive pro and misagreement in Late Middle English *

Expletive pro and misagreement in Late Middle English *

(p.311) 18 Expletive pro and misagreement in Late Middle English*
Historical Syntax and Linguistic Theory

Kleanthes K. Grohmann

Richard Ingham

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with a grammatical phenomenon in Late Middle English here identified as Postfinite Misagreement, in which a finite singular auxiliary form co‐occurs with a plural subject in post‐finite position. It is proposed that an expletive subject played a role in agreement which it has not retained in standard present‐day English.

Keywords:   expletive, Late Middle English, misagreement, number, postverbal subject

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