Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: Relative clauses

From:Thomas Wier <trwier@...>
Date:Sunday, August 7, 2005, 6:35
From:    Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>
> I have a question: are there natlangs where in a relative > construction, the modified noun is part of the subordinate clause? I > mean, it belongs to the matrix clause logically, of course, since the > relative clause modifies it there.
To chime in with the others: Yes, there's a large literature on what are called internally headed relative clauses. Check out the following citations on Scholar-Google: <> Such relative clauses are apparently very common in leftbranching languages, such as Japanese, Korean, Quechua. I take the following Japanese sample from a recent paper by Junko Shimoyama: Yoko-wa [[ Taro-ga sara-no ue-ni keeki-o oita] Yoko-Top Taro-Nom plate-Gen on-Loc cake-Acc put -no]-o tabeta. -NM-Acc ate ‘Yoko ate a piece of cake which Taro put on a plate.’ (Based on the principle that every Japanese sentence involves an omnipresent and omnifacient man named Taroo) It's not universal for leftbranching languages, for one language I know (guess which?), Georgian, doesn't, as far as I know, have any such construction. I should also say that, in such languages, AFAIK it always occurs in addition to a construction in which the relativizee is part of the matrix clause. ========================================================================= Thomas Wier "I find it useful to meet my subjects personally, Dept. of Linguistics because our secret police don't get it right University of Chicago half the time." -- octogenarian Sheikh Zayed of 1010 E. 59th Street Abu Dhabi, to a French reporter. Chicago, IL 60637