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The Even Yearbook 7 (2006)

ELTE SEAS Working Papers in Linguistics

the first online-only volume, ISSN 2061–490X

Eitler, Fodor, Górász, Huber, Kamper, Kertész, Nagy, Newson/Maunula, Starcevic, Surányi, Törkenczy
editor: László Varga

water fowls editorial note [pdf],
would-be cover illustration: Table XXIII (Water fowls)
from Joh. Amos Comenii Orbis Sensualium Pictus Trilinguis, Nuremberg, 1669.

Tamás Eitler
Identity construction, speaker agency and Estuary English
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The main results and conclusions in this corpus study relevant for Estuary English include:

Keywords: Estuary English, Identity construction, Speaker agency, Accommodation, Audience design, MeWe generation, Mike Skinner, Stylistic practice

Alexandra Fodor
A corpus study of and as a subordinating conjunction from Middle English to Early Modern English
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This article intends to examine the occurrence of the conditional subordinator and (`if') in Middle English and Early Modern English prose texts. The principal target is to prove that and functioning as a conditional subordinator was in fact not an unusual phenomenon and should thus not be neglected when analysing conditional constructions in the given periods (from ME1 to E3 — in accordance with the distribution of the Helsinki Corpus). Besides the diachronic examination, diatopic as well as genre peculiarities are also considered.

Keywords: Middle English, Early Modern English, conditional, subordinator, diachronic, diatopic, genre, Penn-Helsinki Parsed Corpus of Middle English/Early Modern English

Judit Górász
Always and never in Late-Middle-English sentences
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As a case-study on historical word-order, the paper focuses on the placement of always and never in Malory's Le Morte Darthur. While the data show that both adverbs could occur in a number of different positions in the various clause types, the post-finite-verb position seems to be a plausible base position for both always and never. The paper attempts to find explanation for occurrences in the various other positions.

Keywords: always, never, adverbial, position, movement, fronting, finite verb, non-finite verb, inversion, pronoun (pronominal)

Dániel Huber
Velars in the history of Old English
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The paper reviews phonological processes in the history of Old English where velars played a role. (1) In connection with nasal loss before Prim. Gmc. */x/, two proposals are made. First, that the velar fricative, lacking a phonological place of articulation, is too weak to perform its governing duties on a preceding nasal. Second, that the later loss of nasals before the other fricatives in OE and Old Frisian is quite reasonably the consequence of the nasal deletion before /x/. (2) As for the phonetic interpretation of breaking, its phonetic realization may be a simple [ə] or [u], of a melodically empty vocalic slot. Also, the problem of the short vs long diphthongs of OE is discussed, with representations in terms of elements. (3) With respect to the loss of /x/ between sonorants, it is argued that to assume compensatory lengthening for words of the -{l,r}x- shape (e.g. mearh `horse') is unwarranted because (a) there is no conclusive positive evidence that it actually lengthened; (b) the process is theoretically suspect. (4) The changes to the initial velar clusters are discussed.

Keywords: velars, Old English, nasal loss, breaking, compensatory lengthening, government phonology

Gergely Kamper
Differential Object Marking
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There are a number of disparate languages that only mark a subset of their direct objects overtly. Using an Optimality Theoretical framework Aissen (2002) gave an account of this phenomenon when it occurs based on the semantic features (definiteness or animacy) of the direct object. In this paper I try to widen the circle of analysis by including Differential Object Marking (DOM) based on the morphology of the direct object (data is taken from Hungarian) and syntactical DOM (data is taken from Chichewa).

Keywords: case marking, direct object, Optimality

Zsuzsa Kertész
Approaches to the phonological analysis of loanword adaptation
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The present paper gives a brief — and by far not exhaustive — summary of different approaches to what is called the phonology of loanword adaptation, a fairly new branch of modern phonological theory. The first part of the paper introduces some theoretical issues of how to build an adequate model of the lexicon of a given language considering the behaviour of foreign elements. The second part discusses how perception affects adaptation processes in different languages.

Keywords: loanword phonology, lexicon models, perception, Russian, Korean, Cantonese, Optimality Theory

Gizella Mária Nagy
Multiple questions in English, German and Hungarian: A cluster-based approach
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The aim of the paper is to present a cluster-based approach to multiple questions. In accordance with the Cluster Hypothesis, it is assumed that wh-phrases that take part in multiple movement to the same head form a cluster, and this cluster takes the last step of movement to the target position. It will be shown that cross-linguistic differences arise due to the availability of cluster formation in particular languages: the different orderings of wh-phrases in English and German multiple questions can be easily accounted for if we argue that German is a language capable of wh-cluster formation, whereas English is not. Furthermore, a cluster-based analysis of Hungarian multiple questions will also be carried out, deriving the possible orders and impossible combinations of wh-phrases in multiple questions.

Keywords: syntax, multiple movement, multiple wh-question, operator, wh-phrase, wh-cluster

Mark Newson and Vili Maunula
Word Order in Finnish: Whose side is the focus on?
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This paper investigates the organising principles of Finnish sentences and proposes an Alignment Syntax analysis for a number of observed phenomena concerning the positioning of Focus, Topic and Contrastive elements. The main observation is that only contrastive elements are specifically fronted and simple topic and focus elements usually occupy their grammatical function positions (SVO). A focus subject, however, will be postposed in the presence of a fronted contrastive element. We analyse this as the result of the interaction of alignment constraints of two main types: gradient alignments, which place an element with respect to a particular point (a stated host or the edge of a domain) and non-gradient alignments, which place an element with respect to a stretch of the expression (in front or behind the host or domain). This theory is argued to be superior to one which makes use of differentially violated constraints both on empirical and conceptual grounds.

Keywords: Optimality Syntax, Alignment Syntax, Finnish, Topic, Focus, Contrast, Gradient and Non-gradient constraints

Attila Starcevic
Middle English quantity changes — Further squibs
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The article attempts to add some new insights and also further problems and doubts into the pool of Middle English quantitative changes, a topic described amply from various perspectives. The article’s attempt is to give an overview of the problems and suggest a tentative solution awaiting further research in the framework of CV/VC phonology. The aim is to question some of the age-old suppositions on Middle English vocalic changes, such as open syllable lengthening, trisyllabic laxing, shortening before consonant clusters, compensatory lengthening following the loss of Middle English word-final schwa, etc. It is suggested that there was no general open syllable lengthening in Middle English (this is also supported by some of the rarely mentioned and/or overlooked cases of Middle English open syllables followed by vowels other than the schwa which never underwent lengthening). It is tentatively suggested in the end of the article that Middle English words had to abide by a ... V C V ... template (the word template is not used in the traditional sense known from the morphology of the Semitic languages, for example, and is ambiguous between a CV or VC unit because the minute details of the analysis are still wanting). All in all, it is argued at some length that Middle English quantitative changes were in fact templatic in nature.

Keywords: Middle English, Old English, quantitative changes, open syllable lengthening, trisyllabic shortening, homorganic lengthening, template, CV/VC phonology

Balázs Surányi
Towards a purely derivational approach to syntax
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A strongly derivational approach to syntax is proposed (cf. Epstein et al. 1998, Brody 2002), which is characterized by a lack of projection, a lack of constituents, and adherence to a strong form of Inclusiveness. The model has no Merge operation, and posits no syntactic representations either. The operation Transfer accesses LIs in a cyclic fashion, providing appropriate input to both phonology and semantics. Transfer implements checking, and follows a Linearization rule that is generalized across the two interface components.

Keywords: strongly derivational, representational, projection, constituent, Merge, linearization

Miklós Törkenczy
The phonotactics of Hungarian verbs
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This paper is a detailed and essentially descriptively-oriented study of the well-known claim that in Hungarian verbs and non-verbs belong to different strata of the lexicon, which can be seen in their phonotactics. Specifically, the phonotactics of (monomorphemic) verb stems is more restrictive than the phonotactics of non-verb stems. The paper shows that this manifests itself (i) in the stricter constraints that apply to the (complex) coda and (ii) the frequency effects intervocalic consonant clusters display. It is also suggested that — although the Syllable Contact Law does not hold in Hungarian in general — the phonotactics of verbs is skewed towards it.

Keywords: Hungarian, phonotactics, stratification of the lexicon

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edited by <peter.szigetvari@elte.hu>
contents last touched Mon Jan 18 21:23:18 CET 2010