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National Centre for Language Technology (NCLT) Seminar Series Dublin City University July 18 th National Centre for Language Technology (NCLT) Seminar Series Dublin City University July 18 th 2007 A feature valuation approach to the prohibition on two definite determiners in genitive noun phrases in Irish Gearóid Ó Donnchadha University College Dublin This research has been funded by a scholarship received from the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS).

Research Question Possessed noun cannot be accompanied by a definite determiner (An Gúm, 1999: Research Question Possessed noun cannot be accompanied by a definite determiner (An Gúm, 1999: 45; Doyle, 2001: 63; Duffield, 1995: 268; Mac Congail, 2002: 26; Ó Cadhlaigh, 1940: 193). Prohibition on two determiners in genitive noun phrases. Using the framework of the Minimalist Program (Chomsky, 1995) and subsequent related work, as well as Distributed Morphology (Halle and Marantz, 1993; 1994; Marantz, 1998). As far as we are aware there is no significant dialectal variation in the constructions discussed 2

Syntactic Theories Several frameworks for syntactic research Principles and Parameters Minimalism Lexical Functional Grammar Syntactic Theories Several frameworks for syntactic research Principles and Parameters Minimalism Lexical Functional Grammar Head Driven Phrase Structure Grammar Categorial Grammar 3

Generative Syntax Early Generative Grammar was based on Phrase Structure (PS) rules which generate Generative Syntax Early Generative Grammar was based on Phrase Structure (PS) rules which generate Deep Structure (DS) and transformational rules which operate on DS to generate Surface Structure (SS). SS output feeds into the semantic and phonological interface levels called Logical Form (LF) and Phonetic Form (PF). Proliferation of rules proved problematic and had to be constrained. 4

Principles and Parameters Constraints on possible grammars were defined in modules or theories according Principles and Parameters Constraints on possible grammars were defined in modules or theories according to the level at which they applied (DS, SS, LF, PF). n n n X-bar theory Case theory Movement theory Binding theory theta theory Abstracting of general principles to replace rules in defining possible languages. Variation across languages could be accounted for by parameters. 5

The Minimalist Program Minimalism is a model of Transformational Grammar which is outlined in The Minimalist Program Minimalism is a model of Transformational Grammar which is outlined in Chomsky (1995; 2000; 2001; 2004; 2005). Using the minimum amount of theoretical machinery seeks to explain the computational processes involved in human language. Derivational – syntactic structure is built incrementally by Merge and Agree. Well formedness conditions are internal to the derivation. Representational – syntactic structure is given and well-formedness conditions apply at a specific level of representation. Derivational versus representational approach is still a highly contentious issue. 6

The Minimalist Program DS and SS eliminated, LF and PF remain (interface levels). A The Minimalist Program DS and SS eliminated, LF and PF remain (interface levels). A Lexicon and a Computational System (CS). In CS two operations Merge and Agree build the syntactic structure required for a sentence. Merge may be either external (insertion) or internal (movement). 7

Research Question How can we explain the following examples? (1) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat Research Question How can we explain the following examples? (1) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ (2) *an hata an mhairnéalaigh the hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ 8

Determiner Phrase (DP) (Abney, 1987: 9) ‘the DP Hypothesis’. Noun phrase in Irish (Acquaviva, Determiner Phrase (DP) (Abney, 1987: 9) ‘the DP Hypothesis’. Noun phrase in Irish (Acquaviva, 2005; Bondaruk, 2006; Carnie, 2000; Doyle, 2002; Duffield, 1995; 1996; Harley, 2000; Mc. Closkey, 2001; 2006) (3) [DP D [NP N … DP D NP N 9

Possessor Noun Phrases Duffield (1995; 1996) comparative analysis with the Semitic languages : (4) Possessor Noun Phrases Duffield (1995; 1996) comparative analysis with the Semitic languages : (4) [DP D [Agr. P Agr [Num. P Num [NP N … Assumes that D has D-features that must be checked which happens when D is occupied by a determiner, a possessive pronoun or a noun. If D is occupied by a noun it assigns Case (genitive) to the possessor noun phrase (Duffield, 1995: 313). (5) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ [DP D hatai [Agr. P Agr ti [Num. P Num an mhairnéalaigh k [NP tk N ti … Move 10

Determiner Phrase (DP) In (6) the possessive pronoun base generated in Agr where it Determiner Phrase (DP) In (6) the possessive pronoun base generated in Agr where it functions as an agreement marker licensing pro in Spec NP. (6) mo theach ‘my house’ License [DP D moi [Agr. P Agr ti [Num. P Num theachk [NP proi N tk… Move 11

Possessor Noun Phrases D is already occupied. Determiners, possessive pronouns and prenominal determiners cannot Possessor Noun Phrases D is already occupied. Determiners, possessive pronouns and prenominal determiners cannot co-occur in possessor noun phrases as shown in (7)-(9): (7) *an mo theach the my house (8) *mo hata an mhairnéalaigh my hat the sailor (9) *an hata an mhairnéalaigh the hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ 12

Type Constructions Type constructions (Doyle, 1996; Green, 2004). In (10)-(12) - head noun has Type Constructions Type constructions (Doyle, 1996; Green, 2004). In (10)-(12) - head noun has raised to D checking the D features of D and assigning genitive case to the complement. Following examples from De Bhaldraithe (1959): (10) hata mairnéalaigh hat sailor (Gen) ’a sailor hat’ (11) bean tí woman house (Gen) ’a housewife’ (12) sagart paróiste priest parish (Gen) ’a parish priest’ 13

Type Constructions Definite version of (10)-(12) shown in (13)-(15) are more problematic for Duffield's Type Constructions Definite version of (10)-(12) shown in (13)-(15) are more problematic for Duffield's framework: (13) an hata mairnéalaigh the hat sailor (Gen) ’the sailor hat’ (14) an bhean tí the woman house (Gen) ’the housewife’ (15) an sagart paróiste the priest parish (Gen) ’the parish priest’ 14

Type Constructions (13)-(15) cannot be a noun-noun compound following the determiner as in (18), Type Constructions (13)-(15) cannot be a noun-noun compound following the determiner as in (18), as this type of compound (19) does not have a genitive complement, examples are from (Ó Dónaill, 1977). (18) [DP D [NP N … DP NP D N (19) othar + carr ‘Masc’ ‘Sg’ ‘Nom’ N an t-otharcharr ’the ambulance’ ‘Masc’ ‘Sg’ ‘Nom’ 15

Determiner Placement Correlation between the placement of the determiner and type of reading involved. Determiner Placement Correlation between the placement of the determiner and type of reading involved. (16) an hata mairnéalaigh the hat sailor (Gen) ’the sailor hat’ (17) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ In (13)-(15) how is genitive case assigned? If D is filled no explanation for the determiner. 16

Type Constructions Major stumbling block, (13)-(15) are commonplace. Examples (20)–(22) are from (Ó Dónaill, Type Constructions Major stumbling block, (13)-(15) are commonplace. Examples (20)–(22) are from (Ó Dónaill, 1977): (20) an mála scoile the bag school (Gen) ’the schoolbag’ (21) an páirc imeartha the field play (Gen) ‘the playing field’ (22) an múinteoir eolaíochta the teacher science (Gen) ‘the science teacher’ 17

Paradigm The following paradigm emerges: (23) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat the sailor (Gen) ’the Paradigm The following paradigm emerges: (23) hata an mhairnéalaigh hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ (24) *an hata an mhairnéalaigh the hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ (25) an hata mairnéalaigh the hat sailor (Gen) ’the sailor hat’ 18

New Developments New developments (Chomsky, 2000; 2001; 2004; 2005). Elimination of Agr and the New Developments New developments (Chomsky, 2000; 2001; 2004; 2005). Elimination of Agr and the introduction of Merge and Agree. Hypothesis - lexical categories such as verb and noun are not primitive but are compositional and are defined by functional heads within their internal structure i. e. little [v] and little [n] (Borer, 2005 a; 2005 b; Chomsky, 2001; 2004; Marantz, 1998; Ouhalla, 2005). Can look at the previous examples (23)-(25) in a new light. 19

The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Merge from right to left until required sentence The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Merge from right to left until required sentence is derived: (26) The man has closed the door External Merge (27) [DP the [NP door]] Merge of (27) with the verb: (28) [VP closed [DP the door]. . . 20

The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Merge of (28) with [v]: (29) [v. P The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Merge of (28) with [v]: (29) [v. P [DP the man v [VP closed [DP the door] Merge of (29) with tense (T): (30) [TP T has [v. P [DP the man v [VP closed [DP the door] Internal Merge moves the subject to Spec T resulting in the required derivation: (31) [TP [DP the man T has [v. P v [VP closed [DP the door] 21

The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology NATURE and FUNCTION of [v] enters the derivation The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology NATURE and FUNCTION of [v] enters the derivation with its agreement features unvalued and enters Agree with the direct object (DO). Merge with DO results in the valuation of the agreement features of [v] (32) (Chomsky, 2004: 123). Merge also results in the valuation of the Case feature of DO to accusative (33). (32) [v. P v [u. Person, u. Class, u. Num] [DP it [v. P v [‘ 3 rd. Pers’. , ‘Neut’. , ‘Sing’. ] [‘ 3 rd. Pers’. , ‘Neut’. , ‘Sing’. , u. Case] [DP it … [‘ 3 rd. Pers’. , ‘Neut’. , ‘Sing’. , u. Case] … Agree 22

The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology (33) [TPT [v. P [Subj][v’ v [u. Pers, The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology (33) [TPT [v. P [Subj][v’ v [u. Pers, u. Class, u. Num] [DP it [‘ 3 rd. Pers’, ‘Neut’, ‘Sing’, u. Case] [TPT [v. P [Subj][v’ v [‘ 3 rd. Pers’, ‘Neut’, ‘Sing’] [DP it [‘ 3 rd. Pers’, ‘Neut’, ‘Sing’, ‘Acc’] … … Agree Lexical category verb is not a primitive category but a combination of [v] as a verbaliser which when merged with a root defines that root as a verb: (34) [v] + [Root] Verb 23

The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Proposal - Merge must be motivated. - Need The Minimalist Program and Distributed Morphology Proposal - Merge must be motivated. - Need to value unvalued features. - Features are valued by Agree under Merge. - Structure building is driven by feature valuation. 24

Little [n] as a nominaliser Gender as a subdivision of Class systems can be Little [n] as a nominaliser Gender as a subdivision of Class systems can be considered to fall out into three types: (sexbased) gender systems consisting in two or three genders, with Romance as a typical representative; noun class or multiple (> 3) gender systems, as exemplified by many Niger-Congo languages; and numeral classifier systems, as in Chinese (Kihm, 2001 a: 2) Gender associated with little [n]. gender, a particular realization of Class, expresses the functional element n, whose primary function is to assign nounness to roots. (Kihm, 2001 b: 9) 25

Little [n] as a nominaliser Acquaviva (2006: 1879) following Kihm (2001 b) claims for Little [n] as a nominaliser Acquaviva (2006: 1879) following Kihm (2001 b) claims for Irish: The properties that define a noun independent of its syntactic context include gender; in this framework [n] is therefore the host for gender features. Distributed Morphology (Halle and Marantz, 1993; Marantz, 1998), deconstructs the traditional lexicon and replaces it with three distinct lists. n n n List 1 consists of the Roots and Abstract Morphemes or grammatical feature bundles of the language List 2 contains the Vocabulary Items that match the items of List 1 to their phonological content List 3, called the Encylopaedia, contains the semantic information associated with a Root or a syntactically constructed object i. e. an idiom such as ‘kick the bucket’ (Embick and Noyer, 2005). 26

Distributed Morphology Semantic Interface Morphology. Phonology Interface Vocabulary Computational System Lexicon 27 Distributed Morphology Semantic Interface Morphology. Phonology Interface Vocabulary Computational System Lexicon 27

Little [n] as a nominaliser An Gúm (1999: 141) states (my translation) that: The Little [n] as a nominaliser An Gúm (1999: 141) states (my translation) that: The second person singular, Imperative is called the root of the verb The notion of root is discussed in Ó Sé (1991; 2000). Ó Sé (1991: 61) in a detailed discussion of verbal inflection in Modern Irish, states that: Irish verbal forms should be segmented into roots, stems and endings. 28

Little [n] as a nominaliser In the following example, I am assuming that Root Little [n] as a nominaliser In the following example, I am assuming that Root is acategorial. Examples from (Ó Dónaill, 1977). Root [n]] = Noun meabhr séid bodhr aistr meabhr-án [Masc] ‘memorandum’ meabhr-óg [Fem] ‘thoughful girl’ séid-eán [Masc] ‘gust (of wind)’ séid-eog [Fem] ‘puff (of wind)’ bodhr-án [Masc] ‘deaf person’ aistr-eog [Fem] ‘transfer (picture)’ [Root [v]] = Verb meabhr-aím ‘I remember’ séid-im ‘I blow’ bodhr-aím ‘I deafen’ aistr-ím ‘I transfer’ The association of Class (gender), in the form of little [n], with the root identifies it as a noun. 29

Little [n] as a nominaliser (35) Noun + cigilt [Fem] ‘tickle’ [n] Noun –án Little [n] as a nominaliser (35) Noun + cigilt [Fem] ‘tickle’ [n] Noun –án [Masc]] cigilteán [Masc] ‘ticklesome person’ bláth [Masc] ‘flower’ –óg [Fem]] bláthóg [Fem] ‘floret’ In (35) the Class feature of [n] defines the Class of the newly formed noun. (36) [n. P n[‘Fem’] [Root]] N[‘Fem’] (Noun) [n. P n[‘Masc’] [n. P n[‘Fem’] [Root]] N[‘Masc’] (Noun) Necessary to assume the [n] enters the derivation with its Class feature already valued. 30

Det-N Agreement Determiner (D) in Irish agrees with the noun [n [Root]] in terms Det-N Agreement Determiner (D) in Irish agrees with the noun [n [Root]] in terms of Class (gender), Case and Number. Definite nouns in Irish indicated by the use of an in the singular and na in the plural. (37) an mhuc the-sg pig-sg-f ’the pig’ (38) an mac the-sg son-sg-m ’the son’ (39) na muca the-pl pig-pl-f ’the pigs’ (40) na mic the-pl son-pl-m ’the sons’ 31

Det-N Agreement The genitive singular form of the definite determiner is na when feminine, Det-N Agreement The genitive singular form of the definite determiner is na when feminine, and an when masculine. (41) teach na caillí house the-sg-gen old woman-sg-f (gen) ’the old woman’s house’ (42) teach an fhir house the-sg-gen man-sg-m (gen) ’the man’s house’ 32

Det-N Agreement The genitive plural form of the definite determiner is na for both Det-N Agreement The genitive plural form of the definite determiner is na for both classes of noun. (43) teach na gcailleach house the-pl-gen old woman-pl-f (gen) ’the old women’s house’ (44) teach na bhfear house the-pl-gen man-pl-m (gen) ’the men’s house’ 33

Det-N Agreement Why is it that Det-N agreement occurs? From (37)-(44) it appears that Det-N Agreement Why is it that Det-N agreement occurs? From (37)-(44) it appears that Det-N agreement occurs under Agree with [n]. D is a Probe and according to Chomsky (2000: 122), a Probe by virtue of having unvalued features: seeks a goal, namely, “matching” features that establish agreement. Feature valuation takes place in a Probe-Goal relationship. According to Chomsky (2001: 4): uninterpretable features of P and K render their relevant subparts active, so that matching leads to agreement. 34

Det-N Agreement Valued features that enter the derivation assign their value to their unvalued Det-N Agreement Valued features that enter the derivation assign their value to their unvalued counterparts by Agree. Unvalued features are indicated by prefixation with the letter ‘u’ for unvalued [u. Num]. Elimination of unvalued features after valuation is indicated in the examples by red [u. Num]. (45) [DP D [u. Class, u. Num, u. Case] [n. P n [‘Masc’, ‘Sing’, u. Case] [Root. P Root… Agree 35

Genitive Case Genitive case syntactically conditioned. Assume [n] has an unvalued Case feature valued Genitive Case Genitive case syntactically conditioned. Assume [n] has an unvalued Case feature valued by same functional head that values Case on D. Case agreement is a One Probe-Two Goals relationship: (46) Head (= v) [DP D [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Acc’] [n. P n [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Acc’] [Root. P Root… Agree (47) Head(=Finite T)[DP D [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Nom’][n. P n [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Nom’][Root. P Root… Agree 36

Genitive Case Proposal - Genitive structures such as (41)-(44) have the derivation shown in Genitive Case Proposal - Genitive structures such as (41)-(44) have the derivation shown in (48) or as a tree diagram in (49), where the Case feature of the possessor is valued to genitive by [n]. (48) [n. P n [CLASS, ‘Sg’, u. Case][Root. P Root [DP D[‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, u. Case][n. P n[‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, u. Case] [Root. P Root [n. P n (49) [CLASS, ‘Sg’, u. Case][Root. P Root [DP D [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Gen’][n. P n [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, ‘Gen’] [Root. P Root Agree n. P n DP D ‘Gen’ n. P n ‘Gen’ Agree 37

Definiteness Proposal - Definiteness is an unvalued feature on the noun and is an Definiteness Proposal - Definiteness is an unvalued feature on the noun and is an inherent feature of a determiner and nouns have no inherent definiteness. In the following examples N = [n + Root]. (50) an fear ’the man’ D [‘Def’] + N [u. Def] DP [D [‘Def’] Null indefinite determiner (51) Ø fear ’a man’ D [‘In. Def’] + N [u. Def] DP [D +N [u. Def]] Agree [‘In. Def’] +N [u. Def]] Agree 38

Definiteness How to account for (52)? (52) *an hata an mhairnéalaigh the hat the Definiteness How to account for (52)? (52) *an hata an mhairnéalaigh the hat the sailor (Gen) ’the sailor’s hat’ Merge of the noun mhairnéalaigh ‘sailor’ with the definite determiner. (53) [DP D an [DEF, u. Class, u. Num, u. Case] [n. P n mhairnéalaigh [CLASS, NUM, u. Def, u. Case] [DP D an [‘Def’, u. Num, u. Class, u. Case] [n. P n mhairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, u. Def, u. Case] Agree 39

Definiteness Merge of (53) an mhairnéalaigh ‘the sailor’s’ with hata ‘hat’. (54) [n. P Definiteness Merge of (53) an mhairnéalaigh ‘the sailor’s’ with hata ‘hat’. (54) [n. P n hata[CLASS, u. Num, u. Def, u. Case][DP D an[DEF, u. Case][n. P n mhairnéalaigh[CLASS, u. Case] [n. P n hata[‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Case][DP D an [‘Def’, ‘Gen’] [n. P n mhairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, ‘Gen’] Agree No motivation exists for Merge of (54) with a determiner. Under the above assumptions how might (13) repeated below as (55) be derived: (55) an hata mairnéalaigh the hat sailor (Gen) ’the sailor hat’ 40

Definiteness Merge of mairnéalaigh with a determiner we get either (56) a definite DP Definiteness Merge of mairnéalaigh with a determiner we get either (56) a definite DP or (57) an indefinite DP: (55) an hata mairnéalaigh (56) [DP D an [‘Def’, u. Class, u. Case] [n. P n mhairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Case] Agree (57) [DP D Ø [‘In. Def’, u. Class, u. Case] [n. P n mairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Case] Agree (56) will not result in the required derivation (55). Continue with the derivation of (57): 41

Definiteness (57) [DP D Ø [‘In. Def’, u. Case] [n. P n mairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, Definiteness (57) [DP D Ø [‘In. Def’, u. Case] [n. P n mairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, u. Case] Merge with hata: (58) [n. P n hata [‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Case][DP D Ø [‘In. Def’, ‘Gen’][n. P n mairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, ‘Gen’] Agree No motivation for Merge with a definite determiner resulting in (59). Possessor reading derives from the merger of the indefinite determiner with the possessor (57). (59) hata mairnéalaigh hat sailor (Gen) ’a sailor’s hat’ 42

Definiteness Merge of two nouns: (60) [n. P n hata [‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Definiteness Merge of two nouns: (60) [n. P n hata [‘Masc’, u. Def, u. Case] [n. P n mairnéalaigh [‘Masc’, u. Def, ‘Gen’] Agree Merge of (60) with a definite determiner: (61) [DP an[‘Def’, u. Num, u. Class, u. Case][n. P hata[‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, u. Def, u. Case][n. P mairnéalaigh[‘Masc’, u. Def] Agree an hata mairnéalaigh the hat sailor (Gen) ’the sailor hat’ Type reading (definite) 43

Definiteness Merge of (60) with an indefinite determiner: (62) [DP Ø[‘In. Def’, u. Num, Definiteness Merge of (60) with an indefinite determiner: (62) [DP Ø[‘In. Def’, u. Num, u. Class, u. Case][n. P hata[‘Masc’, ‘Sg’, u. Def, u. Case][n. P mairnéalaigh[‘Masc’, u. Def] Agree hata mairnéalaigh hat sailor (Gen) ’a sailor hat’ Type reading (indefinite) 44

Conclusion In this presentation the following points were discussed: agreement and derivation of noun Conclusion In this presentation the following points were discussed: agreement and derivation of noun phrases in Irish using feature valuation by Merge and Agree. an explanation of why the prohibition on two definite determiners exists. the ambiguity of hata mairnéalaigh as ’a sailor’s hat’ or ’a sailor hat’. n the possessor reading ’a sailor’s hat’ results from an initial Merge with a null determiner followed by a Merge with a noun whereas n the type reading ’a sailor hat’ results from an initial Merge with a noun followed by a Merge with a null determiner. 45

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