A Syntactic and Semantic Investigation of German and English
4 Not-At-Issue Applicative Arguments
As shown in section 3.9.2, Hebrew and French have applicative arguments that contribute only not-at-issue meaning. In this chapter, I discuss such applicative arguments with only not-at-issue for German and English. Both of these languages have subject co-referential applicative arguments (166) that contribute only not-at-issue meaning. In addition, German has a so-called ethical dative not-at-issue applicative (165). These constructions share their not-at-issue contribution and their form: they are all weak pronouns. After investigating each of these types of applicative arguments individually, I will briefly explore the relationship of being an applicative argument with only not-at-issue meaning and being a weak pronoun in section 4.4. This also includes a discussion of their status in the system of CIs presented by Potts (2005).
First, I discuss German ethical datives (165) in section 4.2. Gutzmann (2007) argues that these contribute only not-at-issue meaning. While I agree with this, I will provide a different analysis than Gutzmann by taking their restricted occurrence into account. Second, I analyze subject co-referential applicative arguments of English (166a) and German (166b) in section 4.3. Horn (2009) proposes that these applicatives contribute not-at-issue meaning. I provide a formal analysis of them, which is missing from his account. My investigation of not-at-issue applicative arguments is concluded in section 4.5.
4.2 Ethical Dative
In this section, I discuss a German applicative argument that contributes only not-at-issue meaning, namely the ethical dative (“Dativus Ethicus”) (167).
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