• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show full table of contents
2.5.1.3. Object experiencer psych-verbs
quickinfo

This section discusses object experiencer verbs. Object experiencers can be either accusative or dative. In the former case we are dealing with causative psych-verbs, which can generally be used in two different ways: (i) they may take a causer subject, in which case they behave more or lesss like regular transitive verbs, or (ii) they may take a cause subject, in which case they exhibit behavior that is not typical for regular transitive verbs. To avoid lengthy descriptions like "causative psych-verb with a causer/cause subject", we will sometimes distinguish the two types by referring to them as transitive and nom-acc psych-verbs, respectively, as in the (a)-examples in (457). Object experiencer verbs with a dative object, like behagen'to please' in (457b), do not differ syntactically from the nom-dat verbs discussed in Section 2.1.3. Recall that the notion "object of emotion" in (457b) is used as a cover term for subject matter and target of emotion.

Example 457
Types of object experiencer psych-verbs
a. PeterCauser ergert MarieExp.
transitive
  Peter  annoys  Marie
a'. Die opmerkingenCause ergeren MarieExp.
nom-acc
  those remarks  annoy  Marie
b. Zulk onbeleefd gedragObject of emotion behaagt henExp niet.
nom-dat
  such impolite behavior  pleases  them  not

Because the nom-dat psych-verbs in (457b) simply constitute a semantic subclass of the nom-dat verbs, we begin with a very brief discussion of these in Subsection I, subsection II provides a more lengthy discussion of the transitive and nom-acc psych-verbs. Since transitive/nom-acc psych-verbs have been claimed to have an underlying structure similar to that of the periphrastic causative psych-construction in (458a), Subsection III compares these constructions and argue that this claim is indeed well founded.

Example 458
a. JanCauser maakt Marie boos.
periphrastic causative psych-verb
  Jan  makes  Marie angry
b. Die opmerkingCause maakt Marie boos.
periphrastic causative psych-verb
  that remark  makes  Marie angry

Subsection IV concludes with a discussion of the inherently reflexive counterparts of causative psych-verbs like ergeren'to annoy'; an example is given in (459).

Example 459
JanExp ergert zich erg (aan zijn oude auto).
reflexive psych-verb
  Jan  annoys  refl  very   of his old car
'Jan is much ashamed (of his old car).'
readmore
[+]  I.  nom-dat psych-verbs

Objects of nom-dat verbs are normally assumed to be experiencers. It will therefore not come as a surprise that many of these verbs can be characterized as psych-verbs. Example (460) provides some examples that may be given this characterization.

Example 460
a. Nom-dat psych-verbs selecting zijn 'to be': bevallen'to please', meevallen'to turn out better than was expected', tegenvallen'to disappoint', ( goed/slecht) uitkomen'to suit well/badly'
b. Nom-dat psych-verbs selecting hebben 'to have': aanspreken'to appeal', aanstaan'to please', behagen'to please', berouwen'to regret', bevreemden'to surprise', spijten'to regret', tegenstaan'to pall on', voldoen'to satisfy', (niet) zinnen'to dislike'

The verbs in (460) differ from causative psychological verbs in that the subject of the construction is not a causer/cause. Instead, it seems more appropriate to characterize the subject as the object (target/subject matter) of emotion. This is compatible with the conclusion reached in Section 2.1.2 that the subject of a nom-dat verb is a DO-subject given that an object (subject matter/target) of emotion is normally an internal argument of the verb; cf. (421) in Section 2.5.1.1, sub ID.

Example 461
a. Dat pretparkObject of emotion bevalt JanExp.
  that amusement park  pleases  Jan
b. Deze laffe daadObject of emotion stond ElsExp erg tegen.
  this cowardly deed  palled  Els  much  on
  'That cowardly deed disgusted Els.'

Since the verbs in (460) constitute a subset of the verbs in (88), we refer the reader to Section 2.1.2 for a more detailed discussion of them. Note, however, that the subject of a nom-dat verb is characterized as a theme there, because the notion of object of emotion is not directly relevant in that discussion.

[+]  II.  Causative (transitive and nom-acc) psych-verbs

This subsection is devoted to psych-verbs with an accusative experiencer. The claim that the experiencer is assigned accusative case cannot be directly substantiated for Dutch given the lack of morphological case marking, but can be made plausible by comparing the relevant Dutch verbs to their German counterparts (which normally do take an accusatively marked experiencer object) and/or by investigating the syntactic behavior of these verbs (e.g., by considering the question as to whether the experiencer can be promoted to subject by passivization). The verbs under consideration are causative in the sense that their subjects generally refer to a causer or a cause of the event. The causer and cause can be expressed simultaneously, but in that case the cause must be expressed in the form of an adjunct-PP; cf. example (462c). Experiencer objects are normally obligatory; they can only marginally be omitted in generic examples like ?dat soort opmerkingen kwetst'that kind of remark hurts'.

Example 462
a. JanCauser kwetste MarieExp.
  Jan  hurt  Marie
b. Die opmerkingCause kwetste MarieExp.
  that remark  hurt  Marie
c. JanCauser kwetste Marie met/door die opmerkingCause.
  Jan  hurt  Marie with/by that remark

Example (463) provides a representative sample of causative object experiencer verbs. The verbs in (463a) can all be used in a way similar to kwetsen in (462), that is, with either a causer or a cause subject. The causative object experiencer verbs in (463b), on the other hand, tend to prefer a cause subject (although some may occasionally occur with a causer).

Example 463
a. Causative object experiencer verbs with a causer/cause subject: afstoten'to repel', alarmeren'to alarm', amuseren'to amuse', beledigen'to offend', bemoedigen'to encourage', boeien'to fascinate', ergeren'to annoy', fascineren'to fascinate', grieven'to hurt', hinderen'to bother', imponeren'to impress', interesseren'to interest', intrigeren'to intrigue', irriteren'to irritate', kalmeren'to calm', krenken'to hurt', kwetsen'to hurt', motiveren'to motivate', ontmoedigen'to discourage', ontroeren'to move', opfleuren'to cheer up', opmonteren'to cheer up', opvrolijken'to cheer up', opwinden'to excite', overrompelen'to take by surprise', overtuigen'to convince', overvallen'to take by surprise', prikkelen'to annoy', storen'to disturb', shockeren/ choqueren'to shock', verbazen'to amaze', verbijsteren'to bewilder', verblijden'to make happy', vermaken'to entertain', verrassen'to surprise', vertederen'to move', vervelen'to annoy'
b. Causative object experiencer verbs with (preferably) a cause subject: aangrijpen'to move', beangstigen'to frighten', bedaren'to calm down', bedroeven'to sadden', benauwen'to oppress', bevreemden'to surprise', deprimeren'to depress', frustreren'to frustrate', opkikkeren'to cheer up', raken'to affect', verbitteren'to embitter', verheugen'to rejoice', verontrusten'to alarm', verwonderen'to surprise'

The following subsections will extensively discuss the properties of these verbs. Special attention will be paid to the differences between the constructions in (462a&b) with a causer and a cause subject, respectively.

[+]  A.  The verb does not select an object of emotion

A remarkable fact about causative object experiencer verbs is that they do not occur with a subject matter of emotion. Whereas we have seen in (418), repeated here as the (a)-examples in (464), that constructions with the psych-adjective bang'afraid' may contain a causer, a cause and a subject matter of emotion, the (b)-examples in (464) show that a subject matter of emotion cannot be used with the almost synonymous causative verb beangstigen'to frighten'.

Example 464
a. PeterCauser maakt JanExp met zijn verhalenCause bang voor spokenSubjM.
  Peter  makes  Jan  with his stories afraid  of ghosts
a'. Peters verhalenCause maken JanExp bang voor spokenSubjM.
  Peterʼs stories  make  Jan afraid  of ghosts
b. PeterCauser beangstigt JanExp met zijn verhalenCause (*voor spokenSubjM).
  Peter frightens  Jan  with his stories     of ghosts
b'. Peters verhalenCause beangstigen JanExp (*voor spokenSubjM).
  Peterʼs stories  frighten  Jan     of ghosts

Perhaps we can even generalize this and claim that causative psych-verbs cannot occur with any object (subject matter/target) of emotion. If so, the verb interesseren'to interest' is an exception to the general rule, given that it seems to allow a voor-PP expressing the target of emotion.

Example 465
PeterCauser/het verhaalCause interesseerde JanExp voor dat onderwerpTarget.
  Peter/the story  interested  Jan  for that topic
'Peter/the story interested the boys in that topic.'

Note in this connection that Pesetsky (1995: 61/283) claims that causative psych-verbs with a particle are able to select an object of emotion in English, whereas in Dutch this seems to be completely excluded. This can be seen by comparing the Dutch examples in (466) to their English renderings in the primed examples, which Pesetsky gives as fully acceptable.

Example 466
a. Het nieuws vrolijkte Sue op (*over haar toestand).
  the news  cheered  Sue up     about her plight
a'. The news cheered Sue up about her plight.
b. De lezingen wonden Bill op (*over klassieke muziek).
  the lectures  turned  Bill on     about classical music
b'. The lectures turned Bill on to classical music.
[+]  B.  The verb is possibly a derived form

Subsections C to I below will show that the psych-verbs in (463) differ from regular transitive verbs in various respects. It has been suggested that these differences are due to the fact that causative object experiencer verbs are not simple forms but morphologically complex ones. Although this claim is not always easy to substantiate, the following subsections will show that there are reasons for assuming that it is indeed correct for a large number of these verbs.

[+]  1.  Verbs derived from an adjective

That the causative psych-verbs in (463) are morphologically complex is, of course, uncontroversial for the deadjectival verbs in (467). Note that the prefixes ver- and be- may also express causation when the base adjective does not refer to a mental state, as is clear from ver-edel-en'to ennoble' and be-vochtig-en'to moisten'.

Example 467
Deadjectival causative psych-verbs
a. prefixed with ver-: blij'happy'- verblijden'to make happy', bitter'bitter'- verbitteren'embitter', teder'tender/soft'- vertederen'to move/soften'
b. prefixed with be-: angst'fear'- beangstigen'to frighten', droef'sad'- bedroeven'to sadden', moed'courage'- bemoedigen'to encourage', nauw'narrow'- benauwen'to oppress', vreemd'strange'- bevreemden'to surprise'

The fact that many of the verbs in (463) are prefixed with ver-, be- and ont- might be better understood if we assume that these affixes are responsible for the causative meaning aspect in all these cases.

[+]  2.  The causative-inchoative alternation

There are verbs that can be used both as unaccusative and as transitive verbs. A prototypical verb that exhibits this alternation is breken'to break', which can be used both as an inchoative, unaccusative verb and as a causative, transitive verb. It has been claimed that the causer is introduced by a zero-morpheme that attaches to the (simple) unaccusative verb; see Section 3.2.3 for more discussion.

Example 468
Inchoative-causative alternation
a. Het glasTheme breekt.
  the glass  breaks
b. JanCauser breekt het glasTheme.
  Jan  breaks  the glass

Although Section 2.5.1.2, sub III, has shown that there are only a few unaccusative psych-verbs, the same alternation can be found with psych-verbs. The (a)- and (b)-examples of (469) show this for the verbs kalmeren/bedaren'to calm down' in (448a&b). The unaccusative verb schrikken'to get frightened' in (448c) does not participate in this alternation, but it is nevertheless possible to derive a causative form of it by making use of the prefix ver-, which results in the perhaps somewhat obsolete verb verschrikken'to frighten' (causative verschrikken is mainly known in its adjectival participial form verschrikt'frightened' and as part of the instrumental compound noun vogelverschrikker'scarecrow'). The somewhat formal example in (469c') is relevant, however, in that the prefix ver- is perhaps an overt counterpart of the postulated phonetically empty causative morpheme that derives the causative forms in the primed (a)- and (b)-examples in (469).

Example 469
a. Zijn boze vriendExp kalmeerde snel.
  his angry friend  calmed.down  quickly
a'. JanCauser kalmeerde zijn vriend snel.
  Jan  calmed.down  his friend  quickly
b. MarieExp bedaarde snel.
  Marie  calmed.down  quickly
b'. Zijn vriendelijke woordenCause bedaarden MarieExp snel.
  his kind words  calmed.down  Marie  quickly
c. JanExp schrok van de plotselinge verschijning van de geestCause.
  Jan  got.frightened  of the sudden appearance of the ghost
c'. $ De plotselinge verschijning van de geestCause verschrok Jan.
  the sudden appearance of the ghost  frightened Jan

Unaccusative psych-verbs with particles all have causative counterparts. Since the particle is claimed to function as a kind of predicate, the primed examples in (470) can probably be considered to be on a par with the causative non-psych-construction Jan breekt het glas in stukken'Jan breaks the glass to pieces'.

Example 470
a. JanExp montert helemaal op.
  Jan cheers  completely  up
a'. PeterCauser montert JanExp helemaal op.
  Peter  cheers  Jan  completely  up
b. PeterExp fleurt helemaal op.
  Peter  cheers  completely  up
b'. Maries opmerkingCause fleurt PeterExp helemaal op.
  Marieʼs remark cheers  Peter  completely  up
c. JanExp kikkert helemaal op.
  Jan  cheers  completely  up
c'. Die lekkere soepCause kikkert JanExp helemaal op.
  that tasty soup  cheers  Jan  completely  up

Note that it is not the case that all causative psych-verbs have an unaccusative counterpart; the other verbs in (463) do not or only with difficulty.

[+]  3.  Verbs ending in -eren

Many causative psych-verbs are Latinate, or at least Romance, forms ending in -eren. Although there are no attested words from which these verbs are derived, it seems plausible that they are derived from non-verbal stems by means of affixation with the causative morpheme -eren. Table (471) shows that these postulated non-verbal stems can also be used to derive nouns and adjectives; cf. De Haas & Trommelen (1993:348) and Booij (2002:127-8).

Example 471
Latinate forms in -eren
stem derived verb derived noun derived adjective
amus- amus-eren
to amuse
amus-ement
amusement
amus-ant
amusing
frustr- frustr-eren
to frustrate
frustr-atie
frustration
frustr-erend
frustrating
intrig- intrig-eren
to make curious
intrig-e
intrigue
intrig-erend
intriguing
irrit- irrit-eren
to irritate
irrit-atie
irritation
irrit-ant
irritating
stimul- stimul-eren
to stimulate
stimul-atie
stimulation
stimul-erend
stimulating

The idea that -eren is or can act as a causative morpheme is supported by the fact illustrated in (472) that it also derives causative object experiencer verb from nouns.

Example 472
Denominal causative psych-verbs ending in -eren: alarm'alarm'- alarmeren'to alarm', charme'charm' - charmeren'to charm', motief'motive'- motiveren'to motivate', shock'shock'- shockeren'to shock'
[+]  4.  Conclusion and caveat

The previous subsections have shown that for many causative psych-verbs there is reason for assuming that some causative affix is present, and that the verb is therefore complex, subsection III will show that, syntactically seen, causative psych-verbs resemble periphrastic causative constructions such as (473b), which might be considered as additional evidence for the assumption that the causative psych-verbs are morphologically complex.

Example 473
a. JanExp is bang.
  Jan  is afraid
b. De schaduwen op de muurCause maken Jan bang.
  the shadows on the wall  make  Jan afraid

It should be noted, however, that the presence of a (possibly phonetically empty) causative morpheme is not immediately plausible in all cases. The psych-verbs in (474a), for example, are probably denominal, but to our knowledge, there is no reason for assuming that the verbal ending -en is causative in nature. Moreover, the psych-verbs in (474b) do not seem to be derived at all as there does not seem to exist a base form that may be considered the input of the verb (in present-day Dutch, at least).

Example 474
a. prikkel'stimulus'- prikkelen'to stimulate', schok'shock' schokken'to shock'
b. ergeren'to annoy', krenken'to offend', kwetsen'to hurt'

Of course, we may adopt a similar assumption for the verbs in (474b) as for Latinate verbs like irriteren'to irritate', and claim that they are derived from stems that only occur as bound morphemes. The adjectives and nouns in (475) can then be seen as derived directly from this stem. On this assumption, the two sets of verbs in (474a&b) would form a single class of problem for the assumption that all causative psych-verbs are complex.

Example 475
a. erger-lijk'annoying', krenk-end'offensive', kwets-end'hurtful'
b. erger-nis'annoyance', krenk-ing'offence', kwets-uur'hurt'
[+]  C.  The semantic role of the subject

We have already noted that (in the majority of cases) the subject of an object experiencer verb can have the semantic role of causer or cause; cf. the discussion of (463). A question that should be raised is whether the role of causer can or should be distinguished from the thematic role of agent, since in many respects causers and agents behave in the same way. For example, agent-oriented adverbs like opzettelijk'deliberately' can readily be used with a causer subject; cf. the primeless examples in (476). In addition, the primed examples show that causative psych-verbs with a causer subject can readily be embedded under the volitional verb willen'want' or the causative verb laten'to make', which suggests that the causer is not only agent-like but also has control over the event.

Example 476
a. JanCauser irriteert MarieExp opzettelijk.
  Jan  irritates  Marie  deliberately
a'. JanCauser wil MarieExp irriteren.
  Jan  wants  Marie  irritate
a''. Peter laat JanCauser MarieExp irriteren.
  Peter makes  Jan  Marie  irritate
b. JanCauser kwetst zijn vriendExp opzettelijk.
  Jan  hurts  his friend  deliberately
b'. JanCauser wil zijn vriendExp kwetsen.
  Jan  wants  his friend  hurt
b''. Peter laat JanCauser zijn vriendExp kwetsen.
  Peter makes  Jan  his friend  hurt

The examples in (477) show that causative psych-verbs with a cause subject behave totally differently in this respect: they do not allow the agent-oriented adverb opzettelijk, and they cannot be embedded under volitional willen or the causative verb laten, which shows that the cause subject certainly cannot be considered agentive.

Example 477
a. * Jans jaloezieCause irriteert zijn vriendExp opzettelijk.
  Janʼs jealousy  irritates  his friend  deliberately
a'. * Jans jaloezieCause wil zijn vriendExp irriteren.
  Janʼs jealousy  wants  his friend  irritate
a''. * Peter laat Jans jaloezieCause zijn vriendExp irriteren.
  Peter makes  Janʼs jealousy  his friend  irritate
b. * Jans opmerkingCause kwetst zijn vriendExp opzettelijk.
  Janʼs remark  hurts  his friend  deliberately
b'. * Jans opmerkingCause wil zijn vriendExp kwetsen.
  Janʼs remark  wants  his friend  hurt
b''. * Peter laat Jans opmerkingCause zijn vriendExp kwetsen.
  Peter makes  Janʼs remark  his friend  hurt

      It is important to note that the unacceptability of the examples in (477) has nothing to do with the inanimateness of the subject. In order to see this it should be noted that examples with a +human subject, like Jan irriteert MarieExp'Jan irritates Marie', are actually ambiguous between two readings; on the first reading the subject functions as the causer, and the example expresses that the irritation on the part of Marie is caused by some action of Jan; on the second reading, the subject functions as the cause and under this reading the example expresses that it is simply Jan's presence that irritates Marie. In the primed examples of (476), it is only the causer subject reading that survives. This can be illustrated in a slightly different way by means of the examples in (478), in which the +human subject is preferably construed as a cause: the preferred reading of this example is that it is the whining of the children that irritates the father. As long as we stick to this interpretation, the constructions in (478b-d) are unacceptable: these examples are only (marginally) acceptable under the less prominent interpretation of (478a) that the cause of the irritation is something other than the whining.

Example 478
a. Kinderen die jengelenCause irriteren hun vaderExp.
  children that whine  irritate  their father
b. # Kinderen die jengelenCause irriteren hun vader opzettelijk.
  children that whine  irritate  their father  deliberately
c. # Kinderen die jengelenCause willen hun vader irriteren.
  children that whine  want  their father  irritate
d. # Jan laat kinderen die jengelenCause hun vaderExp irriteren.
  Jan makes  children that whine  their father  irritate

The examples in (478) therefore show that it is agentivity that is at stake: the cause subject of a causative psych-verb is not agentive. Another indication that cause subjects are non-agentive is that they may take the form of a clause, which is never possible with agentive subjects. The clause can be placed in sentence-initial or in sentence-final position; in the latter case, the subject position is normally occupied by the anticipatory subject pronoun het.

Example 479
a. [Dat de muziek zo hard staat]Cause, irriteert de jongensExp.
  that  the music  so loud  is  irritates  the boys
  'The fact that the music is so loud is irritating the boys.'
b. Het irriteert de jongensExp [dat de muziek zo hard staat]Cause.
  it  irritates  the boys  that  the music  so loud  is
  'It is irritating the boys that the music is so loud.'

Note in passing that the causative psych-verb bedaren'calm down' in (480) seems exceptional in not allowing a clausal subject; although we do not see any relation at this moment, it may be useful to note that bedaren is also special in that it can be used in the imperative and as a nominalized form in the complement of the preposition tot; see the discussion of the examples in (453).

Example 480
a. Dat de interviewer ook een vrouw was, kalmeerde/*bedaarde Marie snel.
  that the interviewer also a woman was  calmed.down  Marie rapidly
b. Het kalmeerde/*bedaarde Marie dat de interviewer ook een vrouw was.
  it  calmed.down  Marie  that the interviewer also a woman was

      For completeness' sake, we want to note that causative psych-verbs generally do not give rise to er-nominalization, irrespective of whether the referent of the er-noun is construed as a causer or a cause.

Example 481
a. * amuseerder
  amus-er
d. * frustreerder
  frustrat-or
b. * boeier
  fascinat-or
e. * irriteerder
  irritat-or
c. * fascineerder
  fascinat-or
f. * kwetser
  hurt-er
[+]  D.  Passive

It is often claimed that passivization of causative psych-verbs is unrestricted; cf. Everaert (1982), Den Besten (1985), and Pesetsky (1995:36). Examples like the primed ones in (482) are given as crucial evidence in favor of this claim and intend to show that causative psych-verbs can be passivized, regardless of whether the subject of the corresponding active construction is a causer or a cause.

Example 482
a. De narCauser amuseert de koningExp met zijn grappenCause.
  the jester  amuses  the king  with his jokes
a'. De koningExp wordt door de narCauser met zijn grappenCause geamuseerd.
  the king  is  by the jester  with his jokes  amused
b. Zijn grappenCause amuseren de koningExp.
  his jokes  amuse  the king
b'. De koningExp wordt geamuseerd door zijn grappenCause.
  the king  is  amused  by his jokes

Although the argument seems sound at first sight, it may nevertheless be flawed; it is based on the presupposition that the door-PPs in the primed examples are passive door-phrases, whereas we have seen that they can also have the function of expressing the cause; cf. Section 2.5.1.1, sub ID. The examples in (450a-c), repeated here as (483), have shown that the cause must then be inanimate.

Example 483
a. MarieExp bedaarde door zijn rustige optredenCause/*JanCause.
  Marie  calmed.down  by his quiet way.of.acting /Jan
b. Zijn boze vriendExp kalmeert door zijn vriendelijke woordenCause/*JanCause.
  his angry friend  calmed.down by his friendly words/Jan
c. PeterExp schrok door het plotselinge lawaaiCause/*JanCause.
  Peter  got.frightened  by that sudden noise/Jan

Given this inanimacy restriction on causative door-PPs, we can safely conclude that (482a') is a genuine example of the passive construction, and this need not surprise us given that causative constructions with a causer subject, like Jan brak het glas'Jan broke the glass', can generally be passivized: Het glas werd door Jan gebroken'The glass was broken by Jan'. The situation is different, however, in the case of (482b'). One reason for doubting that this example is the passive counterpart of the active construction in (482b) is that active constructions with an inanimate subject normally do not passivize: if (482b') is really the passive counterpart of (482b), this would be pretty exceptional. This leaves us with two alternatives: the first option is to assume that (482b') is a passive construction, but one that is derived from an active sentence with a causer subject; the second option is to assume that we are not dealing with a passive construction, but with a copular construction in which the past/passive participle is actually an adjective, the so-called adjectival passive. We will discuss these two options in the following subsections.

[+]  1.  The first option

The first option, according to which we are dealing with a passive construction derived from an active sentence with a causer subject, implies that the passive door-phrase corresponding to the causer is suppressed; this would lead to the wrong prediction that example (484a) should be acceptable. Another prediction is that the participle is verbal, and must hence be able to appear after the finite verb in clause-final position (which is impossible with predicative adjectives); judgments on example (484b) seem to vary from speaker to speaker, but we tend to think that this prediction is indeed correct. If example (484b) is indeed grammatical, we end up with an ambiguous result. One way of solving this is by saying that apparently, the unacceptability of (484a) is due to the fact that there is a problem with having two door-phrases in a single clause.

Example 484
a. *? De koningExp wordt door de narCauser geamuseerd door zijn grappenCause.
  the king  is  by the jester  amused  by his jokes
b. % dat de koning door zijn grappen wordt geamuseerd.
  that  the king  by his jokes  is  amused

Another prediction that would follow from the first option is that passivization of a causative psych-verb is possible only if the verb is able to take a causer subject. Since the verbs in (463b) cannot readily take a causer subject, these verbs can be used to test this prediction. And, indeed, it seems that at least some of these verbs categorically resist passivization; the unacceptability of the examples in (485) therefore supports the suggestion that (482b') is derived from an active construction with a causer subject. Observe that we placed the participle after the finite verb in the primed examples in (485) in order to exclude the adjectival passive reading.

Example 485
a. dat zijn dood/??Jan mij bedroeft.
  that  his death/Jan  me  saddens
a'. * dat ik word bedroefd door zijn dood.
  that  am  saddened  by his death
b. dat zijn gedrag/??Jan mij bevreemdt.
  that  his behavior/Jan  me  surprises
b'. * dat ik word bevreemd door zijn gedrag.
  that  am  surprised  by his behavior
[+]  2.  The second option

The fact that the first option is (at least partly) supported by the facts in (484) and (485) does not exclude the possibility that (482b') could also be an adjectival passive, that is, a construction in which the past/passive participle is used as a predicative adjective. Such an analysis is certainly viable, given that the verb worden is not only used as a passive auxiliary, but also as a copular verb. That it may be the correct analysis in many cases is also supported by the fact that many participles of causative psych-verbs can enter copular constructions headed by the verb raken'to get', which is never used as a passive auxiliary.

Example 486
a. Jan raakt/?wordt geïrriteerd door zijn gezeur.
  Jan  gets/is  irritated  by his nagging
b. Jan raakt/wordt geboeid door het schouwspel.
  Jan  gets/is fascinated  by the spectacle
c. Jan raakt/wordt gedeprimeerd door dit donkere weer.
  Jan  gets/is depressed  by this dark weather
d. Jan raakt/?wordt verbitterd door zijn ontslag.
  Jan  gets/is  embittered  by his discharge

That we are not dealing with passive constructions in (486) but with adjectives is also supported by the fact that the participles can readily be coordinated with true adjectives as, for example, in Jan raakt/wordt [gedeprimeerd en angstig] door dit donkere weer'Jan is getting depressed and frightened by this dark weather'. Note, finally, that examples (486c&d) involve causative psych-verbs that (preferably) take a cause subject, so that for this reason also these examples cannot be analyzed as passive constructions; see the discussion of (485).

[+]  3.  Conclusion

The discussion in the previous subsections suggests that passivization of causative psych-verbs is only possible if the subject is a causer, not if it is a cause. Observe that the issue at stake is not whether or not the subject is animate. In (487a), the subject is animate, but what is actually expressed is that it is the whining of the children that irritates the speaker, which suggests that we are dealing with a cause. As long as we stick to this interpretation, the passive construction in (487b) is excluded (it is marginally acceptable if the cause of the irritation is something other than the whining). The adjectival construction in (487c) is fully acceptable.

Example 487
a. dat kinderen die jengelenCause mijExp irriteren.
  that  children that whine  me  irritate
b. # dat ik word geïrriteerd door kinderen die jengelenCause.
  that  am  irritated  by children that whine
c. dat ik geïrriteerd raak door kinderen die jengelenCause.
  that  irritated  get  by children that whine
[+]  E.  Attributive and predicative use of present participles

This subsection discusses the attributive and predicative use of present participles derived from causative psych-verbs. It will be shown that causers and causes systematically differ in that attributive modification of nouns that correspond to causers require the present participles to be verbal in nature, whereas causes can be modified both by verbal and by adjectival present participles; see Section A9.2.1 for the distinction between verbal and adjectival present participles. We will also see that predicatively used present participles, which are always adjectival in nature, can only be predicated of noun phrases that correspond to causes. This is of course in line with the first finding.

[+]  1.  Attributive use

Generally speaking, present participles of verbs can be used attributively to modify nouns that correspond to the subject of the verb. The examples in (488) show that the verb can be intransitive, (di-)transitive, or monadic/dyadic unaccusative.

Example 488
a. de lachende jongen
intransitive
  the  laughing  boy
b. de het meisje kussende jongen
transitive
  the  the girl  kissing boy
b'. het de koningin bloemen aanbiedende meisje
ditransitive
  the  the queen  flowers  prt.-offering  girl
c. de vallende bladeren
monadic unaccusative
  the  falling  leaves
c'. de haar goed bevallende vakantie
dyadic unaccusative
  the  her  well  pleasing  holiday

Causative psych-verbs simply follow this pattern: The examples in (489) show that the modified noun can correspond to a causer or a cause subject. Since the experiencer object is realized in the primed examples of (489), we can safely assume that the present participles are verbal in nature. This conclusion is also consistent with the fact that these examples are interpreted as referring to an ongoing event; cf. the English renderings of these examples.

Example 489
a. De jongenCauser kwetst haarExp met zijn opmerkingenCause.
  the boy  hurts  her  with his remarks
a'. de haar met zijn opmerkingen kwetsende jongenCauser
  the  her  with his remarks  hurting  boy
  'the boy who is hurting her with his remarks'
b. De opmerkingenCause kwetsten haarExp.
  the remarks hurt  her
b'. de haar kwetsende opmerkingenCause
  the  her  hurting  remarks
  'the remarks that are hurting her'

      Present participles of causative psych-verbs have the special property that they can also be used purely adjectivally, that is, as property denoting elements (without any aspectual meaning). In such cases, however, the modified noun cannot correspond to a causer; if the modified noun corresponds to the cause, on the other hand, the result is fully acceptable. This is illustrated in (490).

Example 490
a. * een erg kwetsende jongenCauser
  very hurting  boy
b. een erg kwetsende opmerkingenCause
  very hurting  remark

Note in passing that we used the modifier erg to highlight the adjectival nature of the present participle kwetsend. If it is left out, example (490a) may be marginally acceptable for some speakers with a verbal reading; the marginality is then due to the omission of the experiencer argument. In this context, it might be interesting to note that we found a small number of occurrences of kwetsende ouders'hurting parents' with this agentive reading, where the experiencer was clearly the implied internal argument of the relational noun ouders (which in fact was sometimes overtly expressed by means of a possessive pronoun).
      That the present participles in (490) are purely adjectival can be supported by the fact that present participles of a well-defined set of psych-verbs cannot obtain a purely adjectival reading. One example is the present participle irriterend: regardless of whether or not the arguments are expressed, this form is interpreted with a verbal reading–the adjectival reading is blocked by the fact that there already exists an adjective that expresses this meaning, viz. irritant'irritating'. The noun modified by this adjective is always interpreted as a cause, which is indicated by the number sign before example (491a''); this example is acceptable but only if jongen is construed as a cause.

Example 491
a. De jongenCauser irriteert haarExp.
  the boy  irritates  her
b. De opmerkingenCause irriteren haarExp.
  the remarks  irritate  her
a'. de ?(haar) irriterende jongenCauser
  the    her  irritating  boy
  'the boy who is irritating her'
b'. de ?(haar) irriterende opmerkingCause
  the    her  irritating  remarks
  'the remarks that are irritating her'
a''. # de irritante jongenCauser
  the  irritating  boy
b''. de irritante opmerkingen
  the  irritating  remarks
[+]  2.  Predicative use of present participles

Present participles of most verb types cannot be used in predicative position, which is shown in (492) for the same set of present participles that were used attributively in (488).

Example 492
a. * De jongen iscopular lachend.
intransitive
  the boy  is  laughing
b. * De jongen iscopular (het meisje) kussend.
transitive
  the boy  is   the girl  kissing
b'. * Het meisje iscopular (de koningin bloemen) aanbiedend.
ditransitive
  the girl  is   the queen  flowers  prt.-offering
c. * De bladeren zijncopular vallend.
monadic unaccusative
  the leaves  are  falling
c'. * De vakantie iscopular (haar goed) bevallend.
dyadic unaccusative
  the holiday  is   her  well  pleasing

The present participles of causative psych-verbs, on the other hand, do allow predicative use of the present participle. Given our conclusion from the previous subsection that present participle of causative psych-verbs can be truly adjectival, this need not surprise us as this simply predicts that present participles like kwetsend'hurting' can be used in the same way as an adjective like irritant. In (493), the noun phrase that the adjective is predicated of is necessarily interpreted as a cause, just as in (490) and the doubly-primed examples in (491).

Example 493
a. Die opmerkingCause/*JanCauser iscopular erg kwetsend.
  that remark/Jan  is  very hurting
a'. Wij vinden die opmerkingCause/*JanCauser erg kwetsend.
  we  consider  that remark/Jan  very hurting
b. Die opmerkingCause/#JanCauser iscopular erg irritant.
  that remark/Jan  is  very irritating
b'. Wij vinden die opmerkingCause/#JanCauser erg irritant.
  we  consider  that remark/Jan  very irritating
[+]  F.  Attributive and predicative use of the past/passive participle

This subsection discusses the attributive and predicative use of past/passive participles derived from causative psych-verbs. We will show that attributively used participles are somewhat special in that they are preferably construed as purely adjectival. A similar tendency can be detected in clauses that are expected to be ambiguous between a passive and a copular construction; the latter interpretation seems to be the preferred one.

[+]  1.  Attributive use

Example (494) shows that the past/passive participles of causative psych-verbs can be used attributively to modify a noun that corresponds to the experiencer object in the corresponding verbal construction. Both the causer and the cause subject of the verb can optionally be expressed as the complement of a door-phrase.

Example 494
a. de (door Peter/die opmerkingen) gekwetste vrouw
  the   by Peter/those remarks  hurt  woman
  'the woman that is hurt (by Jan/those remarks)'
b. de (door Peter/die opmerkingen) geïrriteerde vrouw
  the   by Peter/those remarks  irritated  woman
  'the woman that is irritated (by Jan/those remarks)'

Since attributively used past/passive participles are normally used to modify a noun that corresponds to the theme argument of the verb, this raises the question as to whether the object in the causative psych-verbs should be characterized as an experiencer or whether it would be more appropriate to simply characterize it as a theme. This question seems to become more urgent once we take into account that past/passive participles of nom-dat verbs modify the DO-subject, and not the experiencer object, of the verb; see examples (105) and (106) in Section 2.1.3, sub D.
      We may argue, however, that the question is irrelevant and that objects of causative psych-verbs are, in fact, neither experiencers nor themes. This claim is related to the suggestion discussed in Section 2.5.1.3, sub V, that causative psych-verbs have a similar underlying structure as periphrastic causative constructions such as (495a). If it is true that causative psych-verbs are always morphologically complex, it seems plausible that the object is not an internal argument of the verbalizing suffix -eer, but an inherited external argument of the non-verbal stem irrit-; this gives rise to the underlying structure in (495b). This structure is very similar to that of the periphrastic causative construction in (495a), in which the object is likewise an external argument of the adjective kwaad'angry', and not an internal argument of the verb maken. Since this decomposition analysis of the causative psych-verbs voids the question as to whether we are dealing with a theme or experiencer of any theoretical or descriptive significance, we will not address this question any further and simply continue to use the label "experiencer" for the object of these causative psych-verbs.

Example 495
a. dat Jan/die opmerking [VP [AP Marie kwaad] maakte].
  that  Jan/that remark  Marie angry  made
b. dat Jan/die opmerking [VP [XP Marie irrit-] -eert].
  that  Jan/that remark  Marie stem caus

For completeness' sake, example (496) shows that the complex phrase boos gemaakt'made angry' can be used attributively and behaves in this respect like geïrriteerd in (494b), which, according to the proposal under discussion, is likewise a complex phrase.

Example 496
de (door Jan/die opmerkingen) boos gemaakte vrouw
  the    by Jan/those remarks  angry  made  woman
'the woman that was made angry (by Jan/those remarks)'

We will not discuss here in detail the various technical ways that will ensure that the stem irrit - and affix -eert in (494b) surfaces as a single verb form, but simply note that it is often assumed nowadays that vocabulary items are inserted post-syntactically on the basis of more abstract information provided by the syntax; for more information we refer the reader to the brief introduction to Distributed Morphology at ling.upenn.edu/~rnoyer/dm by Rolf Noyer.

[+]  2.  Predicative use

Past/passive participles can be used predicatively, provided that they are truly adjectival in nature; cf. Section A9.3. The examples in (497) show that virtually all past/passive participles of causative psych-verbs have this option; since raken'to get' cannot be used as a passive auxiliary, it must function as a copular and, therefore, the participles in these examples cannot be verbal but must be truly adjectival in nature. The examples in (497b&c) further show that these adjectival participles differ from causative psych-verbs in being able to take a PP expressing the subject matter of emotion; cf. the discussion of the examples in (464).

Example 497
a. De jongenExp raakte geïrriteerd (door die opmerkingCause).
  the  boy  got  irritated  by that remark
b. JanExp raakte verbijsterd (over zijn weigeringSubjM).
  Jan  got  interested   in that topic
c. JanExp raakt gedeprimeerd (over zijn ontslagSubjM).
  Jan  got  depressed   about his dismissal

Showing that past/passive participles can be truly adjectival is somewhat harder with verbs like zijn'to be', which can be used both as a copular verb and as a passive auxiliary; cf. the discussion of worden in Subsection D above. Recall from Subsection A that the verb interesseren is special in allowing a voor-PP that expresses a target of emotion; we show this again in (498a). Now consider the construction with zijn in (498b), in which it is also possible to use the preposition in to introduce a target of emotion (we will return to the reason for the marked status of the voor-PP in the next subsection). The fact that in is the only option in the adjectival passive construction in (498c) shows that the past/passive participle in (498b) can be truly adjectival.

Example 498
a. PeterCauser/het verhaalCause interesseerde JanExp voor/*in dat onderwerpTarget.
  Peter/the story  interested  Jan  for/in that topic
  'Peter/the story interested the boys for that topic.'
b. Jan is geïnteresseerd in/??voor dat onderwerpTarget.
  Jan is interested  in/for that topic
c. JanExp raakte geïnteresseerd (in/*voor dat onderwerpTarget).
  Jan  got  interested   in/for that topic

More evidence that shows that the choice of the PP signals whether we are dealing with a verbal or an adjectival past/passive participle is given in (499). If we are dealing with an in-PP the participle clearly shows adjectival behavior: it can be modified by the adverbial modifiers heel'very' and zeer'very', as in (499a), and allows a comparative/superlative form, as in (499b); it can be prefixed with the negative affix on-, as shown by (499c); finally, the PP-complement in zijn verhaal can be placed between the participle and the finite verb in clause-final position, as in (499d), which is never possible if the participle is verbal. All examples in (499) become unacceptable if the preposition in is replaced by voor.

Example 499
a. De toeschouwers zijn heel/zeer geïnteresseerd in/*voor zijn verhaal.
  the spectators  are  very/very  interested  in/for his story
b. De toeschouwers zijn meer/het meest geïnteresseerd in/*voor zijn verhaal.
  the spectators  are  more/the most  interested  in/for his story
c. De toeschouwers zijn ongeïnteresseerd (?in/*voor zijn verhaal).
  the spectators  are  uninterested     in/for his story
d. dat de toeschouwers geïnteresseerd in/*voor zijn verhaal zijn.
  that  the spectators  interested  in/for his story  are
[+]  3.  The verbal and adjectival reading of the past/passive participle

The previous two subsections have shown that past/passive participles of causative psych-verbs can have either a verbal or an adjectival reading. There is, however, a strong tendency to construe the participle as non-verbal (which also accounts for the marked status of example (498b) with the preposition voor). In order to show this, we will discuss the outcome of two tests that were developed in A9.3.1, sub I to distinguish the two readings.
      The first test involves temporal modification. The main difference between verbal and adjectival past/passive participles is that the former denote perfective events whereas the latter denote a property of a noun phrase. This is reflected in that the two types of participle co-occur with different kinds of temporal adverbial phrases; verbal participles may combine with adverbial phrases like gisteren'yesterday' that refer to a certain time interval during which the event was completed, whereas adjectival participles instead combine with adverbial phrases like al jaren'for years' that refer to a larger continuous span of time at which the property denoted by the participle holds. When we consider the data in (500), it turns out that the attributively used participles are preferably construed as adjectival.

Example 500
a. de al jaren/*gisteren geïrriteerde jongens
  the  for years/yesterday  irritated  boys
  'the boys that have been irritated for years'
b. het al jaren/*gisteren geïnteresseerde publiek
  the  for years/yesterday  interested  audience
  'the audience that has been interested for years'

The verbal reading of the attributively used participles may arise if they are accompanied by an agentive or a causative door-phrase, but even then the examples in (501) seem somewhat marked.

Example 501
a. ? de gisteren door die opmerking geïrriteerde jongen
  the  yesterday  by that remark  irritated  boys
  'the boys that were irritated/annoyed yesterday at that remark'
b. ? de gisteren door dat feit verbaasde man
  the  yesterday  by that fact  surprised  man
  'the man that was surprised by that fact yesterday'

It should be noted, however, that not all past/passive participles of psych-verbs allow modification by means of al jaren. Exceptions are the verbs raken'to affect' and treffen'to move' and verrassen'to surprise', which may be related to the fact that these psych-verbs denote punctual events, that is, events that do not have an extension in time: since properties normally hold for a longer period of time, the formation of an adjectival participle on the basis of these verbs arguably results in a semantically incoherent meaning. The number sign in (502a) indicates that gisteren is possible on the reading "hit (by, e.g., a bullet)"; construal as a causative psych-verb is impossible.

Example 502
a. de *al jaren/#gisteren getroffen/geraakte man
  the  for years/yesterday  hit/hit  man
b. de *al jaren/??gisteren verraste man
  the  for years/yesterday  surprised  man

      The second test involves the position of the participle in clause-final position. Examples with the verb zijn'to be' are expected to be ambiguous between a passive reading and a reading in which the participle is predicative; cf, subsection D. Under the passive reading, we are dealing with a verbal participle, and we hence predict that it can be placed after the finite verb in clause-final position. The examples in (503) show, however, that this prediction is not correct: the participle must precede the finite verb, from which we can conclude that it is adjectival.

Example 503
a. dat de koning verrast/geamuseerd/geïrriteerd/verbaasd was.
  that  the king  surprised/amused/irritated/amazed  was
a'. * dat de koning was verrast/geamuseerd/geïrriteerd/verbaasd.
b. dat het publiek geïnteresseerd/geboeid was.
  that  the audience  interested/fascinated  was
b'. * dat het publiek was geïnteresseerd/geboeid.

The unacceptable examples in (503) improve somewhat if a passive door-phrase is added, as in the primeless examples in (504), but even then the result is often dubious. The primed examples show that the addition of a causative door-phrase cannot be used to evoke the verbal reading of the participle. Note that acceptability judgments may differ from case to case and speaker to speaker.

Example 504
a. dat de koning door de nar was verrast/geamuseerd/*geïrriteerd/*verbaasd.
  that  the king  by the jester  was surprised/amused/irritated/amazed
  'that the king has been surprised/amused/irritated/amazed by the jester.'
a'. dat de koning door die grap was *?verrast/*?geamuseerd/*geïrriteerd/*verbaasd.
  that the king  by that joke  was surprised/amused/annoyed/irritated/amazed
b. ? dat het publiek door die docent voor taalkunde was geïnteresseerd.
  that  the audience  by that professor  for linguistics  was interested
  'that the audience has been interested for linguistics by that professor.'
b'. * dat het publiek door die lezing voor taalkunde was geïnteresseerd.
  that  the audience  by that lecture  for linguistics  was  interested

The passive reading is only fully acceptable if the passive auxiliary worden is used. Note that the passive door-phrase is optional then. The primed examples show that using a causative door-phrase often has a degrading effect on the passive construction. This seems to support our earlier conclusion from Subsection D that causative psych-verbs with a cause subject cannot be passivized; those cases that are acceptable are cases of adjectival passives.

Example 505
a. dat de koning (door de nar) werd verrast/geamuseerd/geïrriteerd/verbaasd.
  that the king   by the jester  was  surprised/amused/annoyed/irritated/amazed
  'that the king has been surprised/amused/irritated/amazed (by the jester).'
a'. dat de koning door die grap werd verrast/?geamuseerd/*?geïrriteerd/*verbaasd.
  that the king  by that joke  was  surprised/amused/irritated/amazed
b. dat het publiek door die docent voor taalkunde werd geïnteresseerd.
  that  the audience  by that professor  for linguistics  was  interested
  'that the audience has been interested for linguistics by that professor.'
b'. ?? dat het publiek door die lezing voor taalkunde werd geïnteresseerd.
  that  the audience  by that lecture  for linguistics  was  interested
[+]  G.  Argument order

This subsection discusses the relative order of the subject and the direct object of the causative experiencer verbs. Consider the examples in (506). Nothing special needs be said about the primeless examples: as usual the subject precedes the object of the clause. Example (506a') is special, however, in that it is not the subject that precedes the object but the object that precedes the subject. This order is possible with all causative experiencer verbs provided that the subject is -animate; examples such as (506b') are generally considered degraded.

Example 506
a. dat die grapjesnom de koningacc amuseren.
  that  those jokes  the king  amuse
  'that those jokes amuse the king.'
a'. dat de koningacc die grapjesnom amuseren.
b. dat de narrennom de koningacc (met hun dolle fratsen) amuseren.
  that  the jesters  the king   with their silly pranks  amuse
  'that the jesters amuse the king (with their silly pranks).'
b'. dat de koningacc de narrennom??(*met hun dolle fratsen) amuseren.

There are at least two ways to account for the degraded status of (506b'). The first way would be to say that, since Dutch has no morphological case marking, the order acc-nom with an animate subject gives rise to parsing problems on part of the speaker since the experiencer object is also animate. This account is severely weakened by the fact that these parsing difficulties are apparently not resolved by the fact that the number marking on the verb in principle provides sufficient information to correctly interpret the sentence. That this should be sufficient to resolve the problem can be illustrated by means of the contrast in (507). The infelicity of the use of the third person plural pronoun ze in (507b) can plausibly be attributed to parsing problems given that it can be used both as a subject and an object pronoun. The parsing problem does not, however, occur in (507a) due to the fact that number agreement on the verb unambiguously shows that ze must be interpreted as an object pronoun.

Example 507
a. Zijn verhaal interesseert hen/ze.
  his story  interests  them/them
b. Zijn verhalen interesseren hen/*?ze.
  his stories  interest  them/them

The second way of accounting for the degraded status of (506b') would be to say that the difference in acceptability is related to the fact that the inanimate subject DP de grapjes in the (a)-examples of (506) can only be interpreted as the cause, whereas the animate subject DP de narren in the (b)-examples is preferably construed as a causer. Support for such an approach is that the addition of a causative met-PP makes (506b') completely unacceptable: whereas the DP de narren could in principle be interpreted as a cause if the met-PP is absent, this is totally impossible if it is present. This second approach to the difference in acceptability between the two primed examples in (506) implies that there is a syntactic difference between causative experiencer verbs with a causer and those with a cause subject: the former simply behave like regular transitive verbs, whereas the latter do not.
      Evidence for the second, syntactic, approach is provided by the verbs treffen/raken and boeien. In the primeless examples in (508) these verbs are used as regular transitive verbs with the meanings "to hit" and "to chain", respectively. In the primed examples, on the other hand, these verbs receive an interpretation as causative experiencer verbs. Only under the latter reading, in which the subject is interpreted as a cause, can the order of the subject and the object be inverted. Observe that (508a) shows that it is not sufficient for nom-acc inversion that the subject is inanimate.

Example 508
a. dat <de stenen> de politicusacc <*de stenen> troffen/raakten.
  that    the stones  the politician hit/hit
  'that the stones hit/hit the politician.'
a'. dat <die opmerkingen> de politicusacc <die opmerkingen> troffen/raakten.
  that    those remarks  the politician  hit/hit
  'that those remarks affected the politician.'
b. dat <de agent> de studentenacc <*de agent> boeit.
  that  the policeman  the students  chains
  'that the policeman chains the students.'
b'. dat <dat onderwerp> de studentenacc <dat onderwerp> boeit.
  that     that subject  the students  fascinates
  'that that subject fascinates the students.'

For completeness' sake, note also that, just as in the case of inversion with the nom-dat and passive ditransitive verbs, the information-structural status of the two noun phrases may affect the order possibilities. For example, if the subject is a weak pronoun it always precedes the object.

Example 509
a. dat <het> de koningacc <*het> amuseert.
  that    it  the king  amuses
  'that it amuses the king.'
b. dat <het> de jongensacc <*het> boeit.
  that    it  the boys  fascinates
  'that it fascinates the boys.'
[+]  H.  Binding

Example (510a) shows that, not surprisingly, the causer argument is able to bind an anaphoric experiencer. The same thing seems to be the case if the subject is a cause, but this is of course less evident since the cause subject must be +animate in this case in order to be able to serve as an antecedent of the +animate experiencer, so example (510b) is actually ambiguous between a cause and a causer reading; the binding relation in these examples is indicated by italics.

Example 510
a. Die jongensCauser irriteren elkaarExp met die opmerkingenCause.
  those boys  irritate  each other  with those remarks
b. Die jongensCause/Causer irriteren elkaarExp.
  those boys  irritate  each other

Given that an experiencer object may also precede a cause subject, it need not come as a surprise that it can function as the antecedent of an anaphor embedded in the subject in (511a); note that the subject itself cannot be realized as an anaphor since, for some reason, anaphors cannot be marked with nominative case. As is shown by (511b), the binding relation is maintained if the cause subject precedes the experiencer object. Note that we added a percentage sign to example (511a) because some speakers report that they consider the order in this example marked compared to the order in (511b). It is not clear what causes this effect.

Example 511
a. % dat die jongensExp elkaars opmerkingenCause irriteren.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs remarks  irritate
b. dat elkaars opmerkingenCausedie jongensExp irriteren.

      The question that we will address now is whether binding relations like those in (511) are also possible if the subject is a causer. Example (512) is an attempt to construct an example comparable to (511a). Not surprisingly, this example is unacceptable under the intended reading given that experiencers never precede causers (cf, subsection G); this sentence only allows the reading in (511a), in which elkaars ouders is interpreted as experiencer.

Example 512
a. * dat die jongensExp elkaars oudersCauser met hun opmerkingenCause irriteren.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs parents  with their remarks  irritate
b. dat die jongensCauser elkaars oudersExp met hun opmerkingenCause irriteren.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs parents  with their remarks  irritate
  'that those boys irritate each otherʼs parents with their remarks.'

The interesting cases are therefore constructions in which the causer subject contains a reciprocal and precedes the experiencer. Examples such as (513a) have been extensively discussed in the literature and are generally given as grammatical; cf. Hoekstra (1991:150) and references cited there. This example cannot, however, be used for our purpose because +animate subjects can in principle also be interpreted as the cause argument of a psych-verb, and thus illustrate the same point as (511b). What we need to find out is therefore whether the noun phrase elkaars ouders can be used as a causer. We may force this reading by adding the causative met-phrase in (513b). Giving a judgment of this example seems a tricky matter, but to us it seems that the sentence is degraded compared to the fully acceptable example in (513a).

Example 513
a. dat elkaars ouders? die jongensExp irriteren.
  that  each otherʼs parents  those boys  irritate
  'that each otherʼs parents irritate those boys.'
b. ?? dat elkaars oudersCauser die jongensExp irriteren met hun opmerkingenCause.
  that  each otherʼs parents  those boys  irritate  with their remarks
  'that each otherʼs parents irritate those boys with their remarks.'

A difficulty in judging (513b) is that the hearer may start interpreting this example such as (513a), that is, with a subject that functions as a cause; only if the met-PP is pronounced does the hearer reinterpret the subject as a causer, but by then the intended interpretation of the anaphor may already have been grasped. This problem can be avoided, however, if we place the met-PP in clause-initial position, as in (514), and we believe that the resulting example is indeed unacceptable.

Example 514
* Met hun opmerkingenCause irriteren elkaars oudersCauser die jongensExp.
  with their remarks  irritate  each otherʼs parents  those boys
'that each otherʼs parents irritate those boys with their remarks.'

We do realize that the complexity of the examples above makes it difficult to provide reliable judgments, and that a more careful investigation than we can conduct here is welcome. Nevertheless, we will provisionally conclude on the basis of the discussion above that experiencers of causative psych-verbs can only bind an anaphor embedded in the subject if the latter is a cause, not if it is a causer.
      We want to conclude this subsection on a more technical note. The fact that (511b) is grammatical has led to the claim that the order in (511a) represents the underlying order and that (511b) is derived from this order by moving the cause into the regular subject position, that is, that examples like these have a similar derivation as the nom-dat verbs; cf. Den Besten (1985). An analysis of this sort is problematic, however, given that D, will show that we find similar facts with periphrastic causative constructions, in which the experiencer originates as the logical subject of a predicative adjective. The base structure of these periphrastic constructions is therefore something like what is shown in (515a). If constructions with a causative experiencer verb indeed have a similar structure as the periphrastic construction, the assumption that (511a) is the base order cannot be maintained: the base structure should then be as given in (515b). We refer the reader to Subsection III for more discussion.

Example 515
a. [... DPCause ... [ DPExp APRED] maken]
b. [...DPCause ... [ DPExp irrit-] -eren]
[+]  I.  Nominalization

The previous subsections have discussed several differences between causative experiencer verbs with, respectively, a causer and a cause subject. This subsection discusses a final difference concerning nominalization. The examples in (516) suggest that the possibility of nominalization depends on whether the base verb is of the type amuseren and beledigen in (516a&b), which may take a causer subject, or whether it is of the type bedroeven and verheugen in (516c&d), which preferably take a cause subject; cf. the samples in (463).

Example 516
a. het amuseren van de koningExp
  the amusing  of the king
c. ?? het bedroeven van JanExp
  the saddening  of Jan
b. het beledigen van de mannenExp
  the insulting  of the men
d. ?? het verheugen van JanExp
  the rejoicing  of Jan

The idea that only causative experiencer verbs with a causer subject can be the input for nominalization is also supported by the fact that the examples in (516a&b) become unacceptable if a door-pharse expressing a cause is added; if the door-phrase expresses a causer, on the other hand, the result is fully acceptable (although somewhat marked).

Example 517
a. * het amuseren van de koningExp door die grapjesCause
  the amusing  of the king  by those jokes
a'. het amuseren van de koning door de narrenCauser
  the amusing  of the king  by the jesters
  'the entertaining of the king by the jesters'
b. * het beledigen van de mannenExp door die opmerkingCause
  the insulting  of the men  by that remark
b'. het beledigen van de mannenExp door JanCause
  the insulting  of the men  by Jan

Observe that it is not the presence of a cause that makes the nominalizations unacceptable, but the fact that the cause is given in a door-PP; the examples in (518) with a causative met-PP are fully acceptable.

Example 518
a. het amuseren van de koningExp met die grapjesCause
  the amusing  of the king  with those jokes
b. het beledigen van de mannenExp met die opmerkingCause
  the insulting  of the men  by that remark

This contrast strongly suggests that the door-PP in (517) must be construed as referring to the subject of the corresponding verbal construction, that is, that we have to conclude that nominalization of verbs with a cause subject is excluded. This shows again that causative experiencer verbs with a causer subject pattern with regular transitive verbs, whereas those with a cause subject deviate from them; see Subsection D.

[+]  J.  Conclusion

The previous subsections have shown that causative experiencer verbs with, respectively, a causer and a cause subject differ in various respects. First, passivization seems possible with the former only. Present participles can be used attributively with nouns corresponding to the subject of both verb types, but this only holds if the participle is verbal in nature; if the present participle is adjectival in nature it can only be used to modify nouns that correspond to a cause subject. Given that predicatively used participles are always adjectival, it does not come as a surprise that these can only be predicated of noun phrases that function as a cause in the corresponding verbal construction. It is not clear whether the past/passive participles of the two verb types are syntactically different: we can only observe that they can both be used attributively to modify a noun that corresponds to the experiencer object of the verb; the same thing holds if they are used predicatively. The two verb types do differ with respect to inversion of the subject and object; this is only possible if the subject is a cause. The two types of causative experiencer verbs also seem to differ with respect to whether the experiencer object is able to bind an anaphor embedded in the subject; this is clearly possible if the subject is a cause but seems to be excluded if it is a causer. The final difference concerns nominalization, which is possible only if the subject is a causer. Table 14 summarizes these observations.

Table 14: Causative experiencer verbs with a causer and a cause subject.
  causer subject cause subject
passive +
attributively used present
participles modifying the subject
verbal + +
  adjectival +
attributively used past/passive participles
modifying the experiencer
+ +
nom-acc-inversion +
binding of an anaphor embedded in the subject
by the object experiencer
+
nominalization +

Since the syntactic behavior of causative experiencer verbs with a causer subject is more or lesss identical to that of regular transitive verbs, it seems reasonable to simply consider them transitive verbs as well. The syntactic behavior of causative experiencer verbs with a cause subject, on the other hand, is very different from that of regular transitive verbs, for which reason we assume that they constitute a separate class of so-called nom-acc verbs.

[+]  III.  Periphrastic causative psychological constructions

Subsection IIB suggested that causative psych-verbs like amuseren'to amuse' are not simple verbs but instead are derived by means of a causative affix, which is responsible for introducing a causer/cause argument. Some researchers have suggested that this cause affix is inserted in syntax, and that the causative psych-verb comes into existence by moving the stem of the verb to this cause affix, as depicted in (519a'); cf. Pesetsky (1995) and references cited there. According to this proposal the structure of causative psych-verb constructions is essentially identical to that of constructions with periphrastic causative psych-predicates like vrolijk maken'to make merry' in (519b'); the only difference is that the stem of the causative psych-verb must move to the affix in order to merge with it, whereas the psych-adjective in vrolijk maken can remain in its original position.

Example 519
a. dat de narrenCauser de koningExp amuseren.
  that  the jesters  the king  amuse
a'. dat [de narren [de koning amus-] -eren] ⇒
dat [de narren [de koning ti ] amusi-eren]
b. dat de narrenCauser de koningExp vrolijk maken.
  that  the jesters  the king  merry  make
b'. dat [de narren [de koning vrolijk] maken]

This proposal predicts that the two constructions behave in a similar way in various respects, and this subsection will therefore compare some of the properties of the two constructions in order to see whether this prediction is indeed correct.

[+]  A.  The semantic roles of the arguments in the periphrastic construction

The psych-adjective and the verb make independent contributions to the argument structure of the periphrastic causative psych-construction as a whole. Section 2.5.1.1, sub I, has already shown that psych-adjectives may select several types of arguments: they are always predicated of an experiencer argument, and some psych-adjectives are in addition able to take an object (subject matter/target) of emotion. This is illustrated again for the psych-adjective boos'angry' in (520a). Note that we take the term psych-adjective rather broadly here by including non-verbal past/passive participles like geïnteresseerd'interested' in (520b), which were argued to be truly adjectival Subsection IIF, as well as idiomatic PPs like in de war'confused' in (520c), which exhibit several characteristic traits of psych-adjectives; see Sections A8.4 and P3.3 for discussion.

Example 520
a. JanExp is boos op MarieTarget over die opmerkingSubjM.
  Jan  is  angry  at Marie  about that remark
b. JanExp is geïnteresseerd in dat boekSubjM.
  Jan  is  interested  in that book
c. Jan is in de war over die opmerkingSubjM.
  Jan is in the war  about that remark
  'Jan is confused about that remark.'

The verb in (521) introduces the causer/cause argument, and is thus responsible for the causative interpretation of the periphrastic construction as a whole. As in the case of causative psych-verbs, the causer and cause argument can be expressed simultaneously provided that the latter is expressed by means of an adjunct-PP.

Example 521
a. PeterCauser maakt JanExp boos.
  Peter  makes  Jan angry
b. Die opmerkingenCause maken JanExp boos.
  those remarks  make  Jan  angry
c. PeterCauser maakt JanExp boos met die opmerkingenCause.
  Peter makes  Jan  angry  with those remarks

The main difference between the periphrastic causative psych-constructions and constructions with a causative psych-verb is that in the former the presence of a causer/cause does not block the presence of an object (subject matter/target) of emotion, whereas in the latter it does; see the discussion in Subsection II, from which we repeat the examples in (522), and Pesetsky (1995:ch.6) for an attempt to account for this difference.

Example 522
a. PeterCauser maakt JanExp met zijn verhalenCause bang voor spokenSubjM.
  Peter  makes  Jan with his stories  afraid  of ghosts
b. PeterCauser beangstigt JanExp met zijn verhalenCause (*voor spokenSubjM).
  Peter  frightens  Jan  with his stories     of ghosts
c. Zijn verhalenCause beangstigen JanExp (*voor spokenSubjM).
  his stories  frighten  Jan    of ghosts

The causative verb in the periphrastic construction is normally maken'to make'. In the more or lesss fixed collocations in (523) and (524) the verbs stellen'to put' and brengen'to bring' are used with, respectively, an adjectival and prepositional psych-predicate. Since maken is the one productively used in this construction, we will restrict our attention to this verb in the remainder of the discussion.

Example 523
a. JanCauser stelt zijn baasExp tevreden/gerust/teleur.
  Jan  puts  his boss  satisfied/calm/teleur
  'Jan satisfies/reassures/disappoints his boss.'
b. Die opmerkingCause stelt zijn baasExp tevreden/gerust/teleur.
  that remark  puts  his boss  satisfied/calm/teleur
c. JanCauser stelt zijn baasExp tevreden/gerust/teleur met die opmerkingCause.
  Jan  puts  his boss  satisfied/calm/teleur  with that remark
Example 524
a. MarieCauser bracht onsExp in verrukking/vervoering.
  Marie  brought  us  in delight/ecstasy
  'Marie delighted/thrilled us .'
b. Dat liedCause bracht onsExp in verrukking/vervoering.
  that song  brought  us  in delight/ecstasy
  'That concert delighted/thrilled us.'
c. MarieCauser bracht onsExp in verrukking/vervoering met dat liedCause.
  Marie  brought  us  in delight/ecstasy  with that song
  'Marie delighted/thrilled us with that song.'
[+]  B.  Passivization

Example (525a) shows that, like causative psych-verb constructions, periphrastic causative psych-constructions can be passivized if the subject is a causer. The result is also marginally acceptable if the door-phrase expresses the cause, but such constructions are probably not derived from active constructions with a cause subject for the reasons indicated in Subsection IID.

Example 525
a. JanExp werd door PeterCauser boos gemaakt.
  Jan  was  by Peter  angry  made
  'Jan was made angry by Peter.'
b. ? Jan werd door die opmerkingCause boos gemaakt.
  Jan was  by that remark  angry  made
[+]  C.  Argument order

Subsection IIG, has shown that the cause and experiencer arguments of causative psych-verbs can be inverted. The examples in (526) show that the same thing holds for the periphrastic causative construction.

Example 526
a. dat die opmerkingCause de jongensExp boos maakt.
  that  that remark  the boys  angry  makes
  'that that remark makes the boys angry.'
b. dat de jongensExp die opmerkingCause boos maakt.

Inversion of the causer and experiencer arguments of a causative psych-verb, on the other hand, is excluded. Again, we find the same thing in the periphrastic construction.

Example 527
a. dat het meisjeCauser de jongensExp (met die opmerkingCause) boos maakt.
  that  the girl  the boys  with that remark  angry  makes
  'that the girl makes the boys angry with that remark.'
b. dat de jongensacc het meisjenom ??(met die opmerkingCause) boos maakt.
[+]  D.  Binding

Periphrastic causative psych-constructions and causative psych-verb constructions also behave in a similar way with respect to binding. This can easily be established by comparing the examples in (528)-(531) below with those in (510)-(513) from Subsection IIH. Example (528a) shows that the causer argument is able to bind an anaphoric experiencer. The same thing seems to be the case if the subject is a cause, but this is again less evident given that the cause subject must be +animate in order to be able to serve as an antecedent of the +animate experiencer, so that example (510b) is actually ambiguous between a cause and a causer reading.

Example 528
a. Die jongensCauser maken elkaarExp boos met die opmerkingenCause.
  those boys  make  each other  angry  with those remarks
b. Die jongensCause/Causer maken elkaarExp boos.
  those boys  make  each other  angry

The examples in (529) show that the experiencer object may function as the antecedent of an anaphor embedded in the cause subject, regardless of whether it precedes or follows the subject. The percentage sign in (529a) indicates that some speakers report that they consider the order in this example marked compared to the order in (529b). As in the case of the examples in (511) in Subsection II, it is not clear what causes this effect.

Example 529
a. % dat die jongensExp elkaars opmerkingenCause boos maken.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs remarks  angry  make
b. dat elkaars opmerkingenCausedie jongensExp boos maken.

If the subject is a causer, it cannot follow the experiencer: it is therefore not surprising that example (530a) is unacceptable under the intended reading; this sentence only allows the reading in (530b), in which elkaars ouders is interpreted as the experiencer.

Example 530
a. * dat die jongensExp elkaars oudersCauser met hun opmerkingenCause boos maken.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs parents  with their remarks  angry  make
b. dat die jongensCauser elkaars oudersExp met hun opmerkingenCause boos maken.
  that  those boys  each otherʼs parents  with their remarks  angry  make
  'that those boys make each otherʼs parents angry with their remarks.'

The interesting cases are therefore, again, constructions in which the causer subject contains a reciprocal and precedes the experiencer. Like (513a), example (531a) is grammatical. This example cannot, however, be used for our purpose because the +animate subject DP can be interpreted either as a cause or as a causer. We should therefore find out whether the noun phrase elkaars ouders can be used as a causer. We may force this reading by adding the causative met-phrase in topicalized position, as in (531b); this example seems unacceptable to us.

Example 531
a. dat elkaars ouders die jongens boos maken.
  that  each otherʼs parents  those boys  angry  make
b. * Met hun opmerkingenCause maken elkaars oudersCauser die jongensExp boos.
  with their remarks  make  each otherʼs parents  those boys  angry
[+]  E.  Conclusion

The previous subsections compared several syntactic properties of periphrastic causative psych-constructions and causative psych-verb constructions. The two constructions are similar in most respects. The main difference is that objects of emotion can occur in periphrastic causative psych-constructions, but not in causative psych-verb constructions. This suggests that the hypothesis in (519), according to which the two constructions have more or lesss the same underlying structure, is well founded.

[+]  F.  Some possibly related constructions with a psychological noun

The periphrastic psych-construction discussed in the previous subsections involved predicative psych-adjectives like boos'angry'. There is, however, a totally different sort of causative psych-construction, which involves a psychological noun phrase that functions as a direct object. This subsection briefly discusses two subtypes which, to our knowledge, have played no part in the discussion on psych-verbs so far; the double object construction in Subsection 1, for example, was only mentioned as a special case in Pesetsky (1995), and the periphrastic constructions in Subsection 2 have not been discussed at all.

[+]  1.  Double object constructions

Double object constructions such as (532a) are special in that they often alternate with constructions containing a periphrastic indirect object such as (532b). The difference between the two constructions is normally described in terms of possession; cf. Section 3.3.1. In the double object construction in (532a), for example, the indirect object is the person for whom the book is intended: Peter is said to be the recipient, the new owner, of the book. This implication is missing, however, in the periphrastic construction in (532b): Peter is simply the goal, that is, the receiver but not necessarily the new owner of the book.

Example 532
a. Jan bezorgde PeterRec het boek.
  Jan delivered  Peter the book
b. Jan bezorgde het boek aan PeterGoal.
  Jan delivered  the book  to Peter

The relevance of this difference becomes clear if the direct object is more abstract, like een nieuwe baan in (533a). Since the indirect object Peter clearly functions as a recipient in this construction, the periphrastic alternant in (533b) is unacceptable.

Example 533
a. Jan bezorgde PeterRec een nieuwe baan.
  Jan delivered  Peter a new job
b. * Jan bezorgde een nieuwe baan aan PeterGoal.
  Jan delivered  a new job  to Peter

If the direct object is a psychological noun phrase, the indirect object is also clearly a recipient, or, since the direct object refers to an emotion which can only be experienced by the referent of the indirect object him/herself, an experiencer. As can be seen in the (a)-examples in (534), the subject of a double object construction of this type can be either a causer or a cause: the two can also be expressed simultaneously, but then the cause must be expressed by means of an adjunct-PP. The periphrastic indirect object construction in (534b) is unacceptable.

Example 534
a. JanCauser bezorgt MarieExp veel angst/irritatie/plezier met die opmerkingCause.
  Jan  delivers  Marie  much fear/irritation/fun  with that remark
  'Jan gives Marie a lot of fear/irritation/fun with that remark.'
a'. Die opmerkingCause bezorgt MarieExp veel angst/irritatie/plezier.
  that remark  delivers  Marie  much fear/irritation/fun
b. * Jan/Die opmerking bezorgt veel angst/ergernis/irritatie/plezier aan Marie.
  Jan/that remark  delivers  much fear/irritation/irritation/fun  to Marie

The psych-constructions in (534) resemble the constructions in (535), which differ in that the noun does not refer to a psychological state, but to a physical state that comes into existence. That the borderline between the two constructions is small is clear from the fact that the (a)-examples in (535) can also be construed metaphorically with the meaning "to shock", in which case we are dealing with a psych-construction (this is actually the preferred reading of (535a)).

Example 535
a. JanCauser bezorgde MarieExp een hartaanval met die opmerkingCause.
  Jan  delivered  Marie  a heart attack  with that remark
  'Jan gave Marie a heart attack/shocked Marie.'
a'. Die opmerkingCause bezorgde MarieExp een hartaanval.
  that remark  delivered  Marie  a heart attack
  'That remark gave Marie a heart attack/shocked Marie.'
b. * Jan/Die opmerking bezorgt een hartaanval aan Marie.
  Jan/that remark  delivers  a heart attack  to Marie
[+]  2.  Constructions with a verb of causation

Example (536) provides constructions with the verb of causation veroorzaken'to cause'. This construction is special in that what seems to be the experiencer is expressed by an adjunct-PP headed by bij, subjects in this construction, however, exhibit properties similar to those of the causative psych-constructions discussed earlier: the subject of the construction can be a causer or a cause, and when the two are expressed simultaneously, the cause must be expressed by means of an adjunct-PP. Example (536b) shows that the experiencer cannot be realized as a noun phrase.

Example 536
a. JanCauser veroorzaakt met die opmerkingCause veel angst/irritatie bij MarieExp.
  Jan  causes  with that remark  much fear/irritation  at Marie
  'Jan causes Marie a lot of fear/irritation with that remark.'
a'. Die opmerkingCause veroorzaakt veel angst/irritatie bij MarieExp.
  that remark  causes  much fear/irritation  at Marie
b. * Jan/Die opmerking veroorzaakt Marie veel angst/ergernis/irritatie/plezier.
  Jan/that remark  causes  Marie much fear/irritation/irritation/fun

In (537), we give an example with the more or lesss fixed collocation indruk maken op'to impress', in which the experiencer is part of an op-PP. And in (538), we provide a number of more or lesss fixed collocations with doen'to do'. Note that example (538b) is special in not allowing a causer subject.

Example 537
a. JanCauser maakte een diepe indruk op meExp met zijn woordenCause.
  Jan  made  a deep impression  on me  with his words
  'Jan made a deep impression on me with his words.'
b. Zijn woordenCause hebben een diepe indruk op meExp gemaakt.
  his words  have  a deep impression  on me  made
  'His words made a deep impression on me.'
Example 538
a. JanCauser deed meExp behoorlijk pijn met die opmerking.
  Jan  did  me  considerably  pain  with that remark
  'Jan hurt me a lot with that remark.'
a'. Die opmerkingCause deed meExp behoorlijk pijn.
  that remark  did  me  considerably pain
  'That remark hurt me a lot.'
b. * JanCauser doet meExp absoluut niets met die opmerking.
  Jan  does  me  absolutely nothing  with that remark
b'. Die opmerkingCause doet meExp absoluut niets.
  that remark  does  me  absolutely nothing
  'That remark means nothing to me.'
[+]  IV.  Inherently reflexive psych-verbs

The examples in (539) illustrate that some causative psych-verbs have inherently reflexive alternants; see Pesetsky (1995:ch.4) and references cited there. The inherently reflexive psych-verbs in the primed examples differ in several respects from their causative counterparts. First, the inherently reflexive verb obligatorily takes a simplex reflexive pronoun like the third person pronoun zich. Second, the experiencer is realized as the subject of the reflexive construction, not as the object. Third, the inherently reflexive verb may take a PP-complement that refers to the object (subject matter/target) of emotion, which is excluded in the case of the causative verbs; cf, subsection IIA.

Example 539
a. De jongensCauser ergerde de agentenExp met hun ongepaste gedragCause.
  the boys  annoyed  the policemen  with their improper behavior
a'. De agentenExp ergeren zich aan het ongepaste gedrag van de jongensTarget.
  the policemen  annoy  refl  of the improper behavior of the boys
  'The policeman are annoyed about the boysʼ improper behavior.'
b. MarieCauser verbaast JanExp met haar asociale gedragCause.
  Marie  amazes  Jan  with her asocial behavior
b'. JanExp verbaast zich over Maries asociale gedragSubjM.
  Jan  is.amazed  refl  about Marieʼs asocial behavior

It is not the case that all causative psych-verbs have an inherently reflexive counterpart; only a relatively small number of the causative psych-verbs in (463) do so. The relevant cases are given in (540); these verbs virtually all select a PP that expresses an object of emotion.

Example 540
Inherently reflexive psych-verbs with a causative counterpart: zich amuseren (over/met)'to be amused about', zich ergeren (aan)'to be annoyed at', zich interesseren (in/voor)'to be interested in', zich irriteren (aan)'to be irritated about', zich opwinden (over)'to be/get incensed about', zich storen (aan)'to be annoyed at', zich verbazen (over)'to be surprised about', zich verheugen (op)'to rejoice in', zich vermaken (met)'to enjoy oneself', zich vervelen'to be bored', zich verwonderen (over)'to be amazed about'

The examples in (539) perhaps suggest that causes of the causative psych-verb constructions surface as objects of emotion in the corresponding inherently reflexive constructions. The examples in (541) show, however, that such an assumption would not be without its problems; the (a)-examples illustrate that, like all causative psych-verbs, vervelen may take a cause, which can be realized either as an optional met-PP or as the subject of the clause, but that the corresponding inherently reflexive construction in (541b) does not take a PP expressing an object of emotion.

Example 541
a. PeterCauser verveelt JanExp (met zijn flauwe grapjesCause).
  Peter  bores  Jan   with his insipid jokes
a'. Zijn flauwe grapjesCause vervelen JanExp.
  his insipid jokes  bore  Jan
b. JanExp verveelt zich (*met/over/... zijn flauwe grapjes).
  Jan  is.bored  refl     with/about/...  his insipid jokes

      Although the fact that a large number of causative psych-verbs do not have inherently reflexive counterparts suggests that the alternation between these verb types is not regulated by means of a productive (morphological or syntactic) rule, there are nevertheless reasons for assuming that there is a systematic relation between constructions headed by them. A first reason is that the some periphrastic causative psych-constructions exhibit the same alternation; cf. the examples in (542).

Example 542
a. PeterCauser maakt MarieExp kwaad/boos met die opmerkingCause.
  Peter  makes  Marie  angry  with that remark
b. Die opmerkingCause maakt Marie kwaad/boos.
  that remark  makes  Marie angry
c. MarieExp maakt zich kwaad/boos over die opmerkingSubjM.
  Marie  makes  refl  angry  about that remark
  'Marie is getting angry about that remark.'

Another reason for assuming that there is a systematic relationship is that the idiomatic meaning of example (543a) is preserved in the corresponding inherently reflexive construction in (543c). For completeness' sake, (543b) shows that the idiomatic reading is not available if the cause surfaces as the subject of the causative construction.

Example 543
a. JanCauser maakt MarieExp blij met een dode mus.
  Jan  makes  Marie  glad  with a dead sparrow
  'Jan is making Marie happy with something worthless.'
b. # Een dode musCause maakt Marie blij.
  a dead sparrow  makes  Marie glad
c. MarieExp maakt zich blij met een dode mus.
  Marie  makes  refl  glad  with a dead sparrow
  'Marie is getting all excited about nothing.'

Something similar holds for the more or lesss fixed periphrastic expression tevreden stellen'to satisfy' in (523); example (544a) provides the inherently reflexive counterpart of this expression. The examples in (544b&c) show that the alternation is not productive; the periphrastic expressions gerust stellen'to reassure' and teleur stellen'to disappoint' in (523) do not have inherently reflexive counterparts.

Example 544
a. JanExp stelde zich tevreden ??(met dat antwoord).
  Jan  put  refl  satisfied      with that answer
  'Jan contented himself with that answer.'
b. ?? JanExp stelt zich met dat antwoord gerust.
  Jan  puts  refl  with that answer  calm
  'Jan calms himself down with that answer.'
c. * JanExp stelt zich teleur.
  Jan  puts  refl  teleur
  'Jan disappoints himself.'

      That there is no productive rule that regulates the alternation between causative and inherently reflexive psych-verbs is also clear from the fact that the inherently reflexive psych-verbs in (545) do not have causative alternants. Observe that these verbs all select a PP-complement referring to the object of emotion.

Example 545
Inherently reflexive psych-verbs without a causative counterpart: zich bekommeren (om)'to take care (about)', zich schamen (over/voor)'to be ashamed (of/for)', zich verlustigen in'to delight in', zich verkneukelen om/over'to chuckle at'

It is interesting in this connection to note that the periphrastic inherently reflexive examples in (546) with the psych-adjective druk and the psychological noun phrase zorgen'worries' do not have a causative counterpart either.

Example 546
a. Jan maakt zich zorgen over zijn dochter.
  Jan makes  refl  worries  about his daughter
  'Jan worries about his daughter.'
b. Jan maakt zich druk over zijn incompetentie.
  Jan makes  refl  busy  about his incompetence
  'Jan is getting worried/excited about his incompetence.'

This subsection has shown that there is some systematic relationship between the causative and inherently reflexive psych-verbs, despite the fact that the alternation does not seem to be mediated by some fully productive morphological or syntactic process. We refer the reader to Section 2.5.2, sub II, on inherently reflexive verbs for a discussion of the mechanism that may be behind the systematic relationship between the two constructions.

[+]  V.  A note on causative non-experiencer object verbs

There is a small set of causative non-experiencer object verbs that more or lesss resembles the object experiencer verbs in allowing both a causer and a cause subject. Some examples are: verduidelijken'to clarify', verkleinen'to reduce', voorkomen'to prevent', beëindigen'to end', creëren'to create', duperen'to damage', redden'to save', vermeerderen'to enlarge'. Many of these verbs can be paraphrased by means of a periphrastic construction; verduidelijken, for example, can be paraphrased as duidelijk(er) maken'to make clear(er)'.

Example 547
a. Jan verduidelijkt de stelling met een voorbeeld.
  Jan clarifies  the thesis  with an example
a'. Jan maakt de stelling duidelijk(er) met een voorbeeld.
  Jan makes  the thesis  (more).transparent  with an example
b. Dit voorbeeld verduidelijkt de stelling.
  this example  clarifies  this thesis
b'. Dit voorbeeld maakt de stelling duidelijk(er).
  this example  makes  the thesis  (more).transparent

There are also certain differences, however. The examples in (548), for instance, show that present participles of these verbs often cannot be used predicatively. Not much has been said so far about these verbs in the literature, and we therefore leave further investigation of them to future research.

Example 548
a. Deze voetballer dupeert het team met zijn domme solo-acties.
  this soccer.player  harms  the team  with his stupid solo.actions
  'This soccer player is damaging his team with his stupid solo actions.'
b. Zijn domme solo-acties duperen het team.
  his stupid solo.actions  harm  the team
  'His stupid solo actions are damaging the team.'
c. * Zijn domme solo-acties zijn duperend.
  his stupid solo.actions are  harming
References:
  • Besten, Hans den1985The ergative hypothesis and free word order in Dutch and GermanToman, Jindřich (ed.)Studies in German GrammarDordrecht/CinnaminsonForis Publications23-65
  • Besten, Hans den1985The ergative hypothesis and free word order in Dutch and GermanToman, Jindřich (ed.)Studies in German GrammarDordrecht/CinnaminsonForis Publications23-65
  • Booij, Geert2002The morphology of DutchOxfordOxford University Press
  • Everaert, Martin1982A syntactic passive in DutchUtrecht Working Papers in Linguistics1137-73
  • Haas, Wim de & Trommelen, Mieke1993Morfologisch handboek van het Nederlands. Een overzicht van de woordvormingSDU Uitgeverij
  • Hoekstra, Eric1991Licensing conditions on phrase structureGroningenUniversity of GroningenThesis
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
  • Pesetsky, David1995Zero syntax: experiencers and cascadesCurrent studies in linguistics 27Cambridge, MAMIT Press
Suggestions for further reading ▼
phonology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
morphology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
syntax
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
  • 3.2.1.3. The regular passive
    [95%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 3 Projection of verb phrases II:Verb frame alternations > 3.2. Alternations involving the external argument > 3.2.1. Passivization
  • 2.2.3. Resultative constructions
    [95%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 2 Projection of verb phrases I:Argument structure > 2.2. Complementives (secondary predicates)
  • 5.2.3.4. Causative laten ''to make/let'' and doen ''to make''
    [95%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 5 Projection of verb phrases IIIb:Argument and complementive clauses > 5.2. Infinitival argument clauses > 5.2.3. Bare infinitivals
  • 3.3.3. Nominative/PP alternations
    [95%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 3 Projection of verb phrases II:Verb frame alternations > 3.3. Alternations of noun phrases and PPs
  • 3.3.2. Accusative/PP alternations
    [95%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 3 Projection of verb phrases II:Verb frame alternations > 3.3. Alternations of noun phrases and PPs
Show more ▼
cite
print
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.