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Word Order and Parameter Change in RomanianA Comparative Romance Perspective$
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Alexandru Nicolae

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198807360

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198807360.001.0001

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Demonstrative specialization and the emergence of the determiner cel

Demonstrative specialization and the emergence of the determiner cel

Chapter:
(p.163) 5 Demonstrative specialization and the emergence of the determiner cel
Source:
Word Order and Parameter Change in Romanian
Author(s):

Alexandru Nicolae

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198807360.003.0005

The first part of the chapter discusses the gradual steps of the diachronic specialization of Romanian demonstratives, the effect of which is a strict correlation between morphological strength (weak/strong) and syntactic status (head/phrase). The postnominal demonstrative construction of modern Romanian is shown to emerge diachronically from the structural simplification of a biphrasal appositional construction in a parametrically ambiguous context. The adjacency constraints active in DPs with postnominal demonstratives result from the phrasal status of strong demonstratives in conjunction with the general DP-internal movement options of modern Romanian. One of the effects of the specialization of demonstratives is the detachment of a distal weak form from the class of demonstratives (i.e. cel), and its grammaticalization as a freestanding definite determiner with special distributional and interpretative properties in Romanian; the development of the cel-constructions is taken up in the second part of the chapter.

Keywords:   adjacency constraint, adjectival article construction, categorial specialization, demonstratives, determiner grammaticalization, structural simplification

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