Volume 7, Issue 5 (2016)                   LRR 2016, 7(5): 97-118 | Back to browse issues page

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Assistant General Linguistics, University of Gilan, Gilan, Iran
Abstract:   (7450 Views)
The present article aims to explore VP ellipsis as well as modal and main verb (Those that take a clause as their complement) complement ellipses in Persian. This research therefore addresses the question: what is the account of modal and main verb (Those that take a clause as their complement) complement ellipses, which are superficially similar to VP ellipsis, in Persian? The proposed hypothesis is that by definition, Persian lacks VP ellipsis; however, modal and main verb complement ellipses exist in this language which both are regarded as a single structure and an example of v-stranding VP ellipsis.
Having critically reviewed the previous studies done on the structure under discussion, modal and main verb complement ellipses are explored in detail. Unlike English, Persian disallows VP ellipsis (according to the most accepted definition in Generative Linguistics) in the sense that it is impossible to delete the verb phrase of a sentence and strand the tense. But, in a similar structure, it is possible to delete the complements of modals except ‘bayad’ meaning ‘should’ and main verbs if the conditions on ellipsis are met. Persian modals are morpho-syntactically main verbs and they appear in the same syntactic positions as main verbs. For this reason, the complement ellipses of both are regarded as a single structure. Extracting a constituent like an object out of the ellipsis site, Missing Antecedent Phenomenon, and finally strict and sloppy readings are the major syntactic properties of this structure which all back up the ellipsis analysis of the structure under investigation.
The results of this research suggest that E-feature resides on v. When the verb raises to v and as soon as the uninterpretable features are checked via Agreement, the complement of v is deleted but v itself is stranded. Since indirect objects and adverbs occupying positions higher than CP undergo ellipsis as well, it can be argued that the VP, which is situated higher than CP, is deleted. This structure is, therefore, regarded as an instantiation of v- stranding VP ellipsis.
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Article Type: Research Paper | Subject: Linguistics
Published: 2016/11/21

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