[Lingtyp] odd clitic behaviours

Vladimir Panov panovmeister at gmail.com
Mon Dec 6 11:10:58 UTC 2021

P.S. A colleague has just pointed out that according to Martin's recent
paper (https://zenodo.org/record/4628279#.Ya3vGypBxPY), the Latin
inflectional endings are indeed not affixes, sorry for having overlooked
it. This is very counterintuitive, but it really may be the right way to
look at them.

пн, 6 дек. 2021 г. в 11:33, Vladimir Panov <panovmeister at gmail.com>:

> Dear Alex & all,
> I cannot help joining this discussion as the topic is extremely
> interesting and very controversial.
> Here I would like to mostly reply to Martin. For a while, after having
> read your whole series of articles on the issue, I have found your
> definition of clitics very useful and the least controversial, and I have
> used it myself in my own work. However, recently, I have realized that it
> is not completely unproblematic either. Here are a couple of controversies,
> which are mostly related to the notion of promiscuous attachment.
> (a) Let's say that "attaches to" means "immediately precedes or follows".
> But then if we take, say, the European prepositions, in many cases this is
> true that they "attach" to words of different syntactic classes. Say, in
> "in sum" in attaches to a noun "sum", "in a house" it attaches to the
> indefinite article, and "in these beautiful houses" it attaches to a
> deictic element, and then an adjective follows as well. However, the set of
> elements* in* is able to attach to is limited to what constitutes the
> English noun phrase (it cannot attach to verbs or adverbs). Therefore,
> *in* always attaches to the English noun phrase from the left, no matter
> what constitutes it. Therefore, it is kind of "promiscuous" in your strict
> sense, but it is not promiscuous on a higher level, therefore it is also a
> kind of a prefix. This made many linguists talk of "phrasal affixes", which
> makes sense after all. Moreover, if we take a language in which a noun
> obligatorily occupies the first slot in the noun phrase such a Hebrew (if
> we ignore the article), then it turns out that its prepositions are not
> promiscuous, whereas those of English are, which is very counterintuitive,
> I would say. Rather, it would be more intuitive to say that in both Hebrew
> and English prepositions attach to the noun phrase from the left, but the
> orders of elements within their noun phrases are different.
> (b) One can look even closer at the elements whose attachment is
> promiscuous, but whose promiscuity is very limited. For example, adjectives
> and nouns are definitely different word classes in Latin. However, they
> share a large part of their inflectional endings. Indeed, we have *lup-us
> bon-us* 'wolf-nom.sg.m good-nom.sg.m' and *lup-a bon-a* 'wolf-nom.sg.f
> good-nom.sg.f'. Then it turns out that according to your definition, the
> inflectional endings of Latin are to be treated as clitics in
> cross-linguistic studies. Is this a good solution?
> I still believe that with your definition, we are on the right path, but
> maybe we need some more specifications.
> Best,
> Vadimir
> ср, 1 дек. 2021 г. в 08:53, Alexander Rice <ax.h.rice at gmail.com>:
>> Dear typologists
>> I'm working with a variety of Quechua, I have a set of three morphemes.
>> They and their equivalents in related varieties are traditionally analyzed
>> as evidential enclitcs or suffixes.
>> However in some data that I've been working with recently I've noticed a
>> couple of interesting behaviours of these enclitics:
>> 1) They sometimes manifest as pro-clitics but only on the copular verb
>> and in a much more phonologically reduced from
>> 2) At least one of the three appears to manifest as a phonologically
>> independent "word'. A native speaker with whom I work sometimes transcribes
>> the clitic as a separate word, and upon my review of the recordings, many
>> of these do appear to be phonologically independent from what would usually
>> be the phonological host, and in some instances, they occur at the
>> beginning of an intonational unit.
>> I wonder if any of you have encountered or know of similar phenomena, any
>> references would be most appreciated.
>> Best,
>> Alex
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