[Lingtyp] Double marking of the goal argument

Irina Nikolaeva in3 at soas.ac.uk
Wed Aug 25 02:27:28 UTC 2021

Dear Farhad,

My point is this: The goal in your example (1) is only marked once, by the
preposition ‘until, while RA signals something else. Its general function
in Persian has to do with the expression of some sort of
topicality/identifiability on various grammatical functions (objects, some
obliques, some external possessors and left-dislocated topics including
PPs). So (1) is not unlike its English equivalent ‘to the house’, where the
preposition ‘to’ marks the goal and ‘the’ marks definiteness.

How the information structural meaning of RA interacts with boundedness is
a separate question, but this does not occur in all cases where RA is used.



Prof. Irina Nikolaeva, FBA, MAE


On Mon, 23 Aug 2021 at 23:29, Farhad Moezzipour <fmp59i at gmail.com> wrote:

> Dear Prof. Nikolaeva and Bohnemeyer (and the other members)
> Yes, you are absolutely correct. RA has been said to serve different
> functions when it appears on direct objects and dislocated NPs. In the
> given *TA-RA* example (example 1 in my previous email), the referent of
> *xune* ‘house’, I assume, should be ‘identifiable’ for the hearer; hence
> a topic in the information structure of the sentence. It might be the case
> that in example (2) where *xune *‘house’ appears without RA, it plays a
> focus role as it is an argument-adjunct (using RRG terminology), bearing in
> mind adjuncts express foci (If I am correct). But this is pragmatics! I
> believe, as Prof. Bohnemeyer mentioned, that RA in example (1) contributes
> somehow to the semantics of the sentence in a way that it
> signals/indicates/marks (I am not sure) the bounded path, which is missing
> in example (2). The relation of RA with boundedness can be supported by the
> fact that it appears on quantized direct objects of consumption verbs, as
> in (3).
> (3) *Man sib=o              xord-æm*.
>       1SG   apple=POSP eat.PST-1SG
>       ‘I ate the (whole) apple.’
> Intuitively, example (4) is infelicitous because RA entails the entire
> traversal of the path.
> (4) **mæn kuh=o                     bala ræft-am       væli be qolle-e**š
>           næ-res-id-æm.*
>        1SG  mountain=POSP up  go.PST-1SG but to summit=3SG
> NEG-reach-PST-1SG
>       ‘I climbed the mountain but did not reach the summit.’
> Regards,
> Farhad
> On Tue, Aug 24, 2021 at 12:59 AM Irina Nikolaeva <in3 at soas.ac.uk> wrote:
>> Dear Farhad,
>> I am not sure the function or RA here is to mark the goal argument per se
>> (hence no double marking). RA can occur on a variety of grammatical
>> functions, and many people have argued that its function is to mark
>> specificity/topicality/identifiability or the like.
>> Best,
>> Irina
>> Prof. Irina Nikolaeva, FBA, MAE
>> https://www.soas.ac.uk/staff/staff31522.php
>> On Mon, 23 Aug 2021 at 14:52, Farhad Moezzipour <fmp59i at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Dear all,
>>> Is anyone aware of a language where the goal in a motion event is doubly
>>> marked? This happens in colloquial Persian:
>>> (1) *Ta     xune=ro          tu  20  *dæqiqe* dæv-id-æm*.
>>>       until  house=POSP in  20  minute  run-PST-1SG
>>>       'I ran the distance to the house in 20 minutes.'
>>> The goal is marked once by the preposition and once with the
>>> postposition RA, which is basically an object maker in Modern Persian. The
>>> given example is also possible without RA, as in (2).
>>> (2) *Ta     xune    20  *dæqiqe* dæv-id-æm*.
>>>       until  house  20  minute  run-PST-1SG
>>>       'I ran toward the house for 20 minutes.'
>>> Regards,
>>> Farhad
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Lingtyp mailing list
>>> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
>>> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/lingtyp
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/lingtyp/attachments/20210825/cc0ea730/attachment.htm>

More information about the Lingtyp mailing list