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Slavic Grammar from a Formal Perspective

The 10th Anniversary FDSL Conference, Leipzig 2013


Gerhild Zybatow, Petr Biskup, Marcel Guhl, Claudia Hurtig, Olav Mueller-Reichau and Maria Yastrebova

The proceedings of the 10th European Conference on Formal Description of Slavic Languages in Leipzig 2013 offer current formal investigations into Slavic morphology, phonology, semantics, syntax and information structure. In addition to papers of the main conference, the volume presents those of two special workshops: «Formal Perspectives and Diachronic Change in Slavic Languages» and «Various Aspects of Heritage Language». The following languages are addressed: Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian (BCS), Bulgarian, Czech, Macedonian, Old Church Slavonic, Polish, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Resian, Slovak and Slovene.
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On pied-piping and feature percolation


← 244 | 245 →Jiri Kaspar

University College London

In this text, I consider some of the properties of the particle že in Czech wh-questions. While authors agree that it links the given utterance to the immediately preceding discourse, some assume that že is located within SpecCP and others that it is located in C. I use novel data to demonstrate that the two assumptions about the particle’s distribution are not mutually exclusive. I claim that there are two types of že: the phrase-internal že (which is restricted to occur within SpecCP) and the phrase-external že (which is restricted to occur in C). Combining this dual analysis of že with some further assumptions makes it possible to account for the distribution of the particle in a variety of constructions.

Even though Czech has a relatively free word order, the unmarked order of constituents in a declarative sentence is SVO. The language has an inventory of clitics. At least since Toman (1981), these are assumed to follow the first major constituent of their containing clause.1 Information questions are usually formed by fronting all wh-elements.2 At least since Rudin (1988), the landing site of the first wh-element is assumed to be SpecCP.3 In general, wh-movement can target ← 245 | 246 →complements and adjuncts. When že appears in the structure,4 it must come immediately after the fronted wh-element. Consequently, clitics have to follow the particle.5


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