A Syntactic and Semantic Investigation of German and English
In this chapter, I discuss the semantic and syntactic structure of benefactive applicative constructions in German and English as exemplified in (227).
As the name “benefactive” indicates, these applicative arguments denote who benefits from the described event. As Kittilä and Zuniga (2010) put it: “The beneficiary is a participant that is advantageously affected by an event without being its obligatory participant (either agent or primary target, i.e. patient)” (p. 2). This describes the meaning of the benefactive applicatives well.
In section 5.2, I distinguish benefactives from other applicatives, discuss different types of benefactives and show which benefactives are applicative arguments according to my definition (4). It is shown that in English, only those benefactives that receive a recipient or intended possessor interpretation are applicative arguments. In German, benefactive applicatives can receive either a plain, deputative, or possessor interpretation. In section 5.3, I show that benefactive applicative arguments contribute only at-issue meaning. Following that, I provide the analyses for the observed types of benefactive applicative arguments. The analysis for German true benefactives is based on Pylkkänen (2002) (section 5.4) and that of English recipient benefactives on Bruening (2010) (section 5.5). In section 5.6, I address the prepositional paraphrase of the benefactive applicative arguments before concluding this chapter in section 5.7.
Before describing benefactives in detail, I need to distinguish them from other applicatives. As I show in detail in section 5.3,...
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