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Rethinking Verb Second$
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Rebecca Woods and Sam Wolfe

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198844303

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198844303.001.0001

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Reassessing the historical evidence for embedded Verb Second

Reassessing the historical evidence for embedded Verb Second

(p.536) 22 Reassessing the historical evidence for embedded Verb Second
Rethinking Verb Second

George Walkden

Hannah Booth

Oxford University Press

This chapter revisits the significant question of embedded Verb Second in historical Germanic, in light of recent developments in research on present-day V2 languages. Drawing on novel corpus data for Old English, Old Saxon, historical Icelandic, and historical Yiddish, it shows that there is little support for an analysis which permits embedded V2 outside a narrow subset of contexts, or one which hosts both the verb and the preverbal constituent within the IP domain (‘IP-V2’). The chapter puts forward the tentative suggestion that there is only one type of V2 language, at least as regards word order in embedded clauses.

Keywords:   embedded V2, Old English, Old Saxon, Icelandic, Yiddish

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