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4.2.1. Complementives

Adpositional complementives are generally spatial in nature, as in example (13a), in which the locational adpositional phrase in het zwembad'in the swimming pool' is predicated of the noun phrase Jan.Section, sub II, has argued that the adposition can be considered a two-place predicate that denotes a spatial relation between its complement (the reference object) and the argument the full adpositional phrase is predicated of (the located object). This means that the semantic interpretation of example (13a) is as given in (13b).

Example 13
a. Jan is in het zwembad.
  Jan is in the swimming.pool
b. in (Jan, het zwembad)

However, there are also adpositional complementives that are non-spatial in nature. In the idiomatic examples in (14a), for instance, the PP denotes a mental state of the subject of the clause and therefore typically takes a +humansubject; these PPs are mostly fixed expressions, which is clear from the fact that the noun sas is possible in this construction only. Although they seem less numerous, there are also more or lesss fixed expressions like (14b), which are predicated of -human entities.

Example 14
a. Hij is in de wolken/zʼn sas.
  he  is in the clouds/his sas
  'Heʼs on cloud nine.'
b. Die regeling is al drie jaar van kracht.
  that regulation  is already three years  in force
  'That regulation has already been in effect for three years.'

Spatial and non-spatial complementives will be discussed more extensively in, respectively, Section and Section

    This topic is the result of an automatic conversion from Word and may therefore contain errors.
    A free Open Access publication of the corresponding volumes of the Syntax of Dutch is available at OAPEN.org.