subject in nonfinite clauses
dquesada at CHASS.UTORONTO.CA
Tue Feb 17 22:59:04 UTC 1998
On Tue, 17 Feb 1998, Brian MacWhinney wrote:
> To my extremely non-native ears, the problem with (1) is that there is a
> tendency to pull off "por mi abuela" as a separate phrase. This would then
> lead to a possible interpretation in which there is some other subject of
> "decir." In the case of (2) no such temptation arises.
> (1) *Por mi abuela decir estas cosas ...
> (2) Por decir estas cosas mi abuela ...
> In other words (1) could be parsed with a comma intonation after "abuela".
> I realize that this is not "para mi abuela", but still there are plenty of
> preposed "por + nominal" phrases in Spanish. Many more than would be
> possible in English, for example.
In none of the four (and many more) cases I provided in a previous
message (two with 'por' and two with 'para' is there the least sign of a
pause. Hence, the explanation falls short here.
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