Antipassives without overt expression of O

Balthasar Bickel balthasar.bickel at UZH.CH
Wed Dec 21 07:06:01 UTC 2011

Hi Stefanie

An example from the Himalayas is discussed here:

Bickel, B., M. Gaenszle, A. Rai, P. D. Rai, S. K. Rai, V. S. Rai, & N. P. Sharma (Gautam), 2007. Two ways of suspending object agreement in Puma: between incorporation, antipassivization, and optional agreement. Himalayan Linguistics 7, 1–18.

Bickel, B., 2011. Multivariate typology and field linguistics: a case study on detransitivization in Kiranti (Sino-Tibetan). In Austin, P. K., O. Bond, D. Nathan, & L. Marten (eds.) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3, 3–13. London: SOAS.

All best,


On Dec 20, 2011, at 5:46 PM, Stefanie Fauconnier wrote:

> Dear colleagues,
> I am looking for examples of antipassive constructions where it is syntactically impossible to overtly express the original O argument as an oblique-marked adjunct.
> In the following example from Tzutujil, the transitive verb has antipassive marking. Normally, this verb takes an A and an O argument, but in this construction it appears that only the A can be mentioned (Dayley 1985:346).
> Jaa7 ma xa ko7 nchapooni
> 3SG  a lot     scolds/grabs.ANTIP
> 'He scolds/grabs a lot'
> The reverse phenomenon appears to be well attested: it is not very difficult to find examples of passives that do not allow overt expression of the A. It is my impression that this is not the case for antipassives. In fact, Tzutujil is the only example I know of. Of course this impression might be wrong, so if anyone has other examples I would like to hear about them.
> Best wishes,
> Stefanie Fauconnier
> University of Leuven

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