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8.2.2. Clause adverbials
quickinfo

This section discusses various types of clause adverbials, that is, adverbials that do not restrict the denotation of the verbal predicate but provide other, additional, information. The meaning contributions of these adverbials are quite varied: their main similarity is that they are located external to the lexical domain of the clause. The following subsections will discuss the subclasses in (57).

Example 57
a. Polarity: negation ( niet'not' ); affirmation (wel)
b. Focus particles: alleen'only', ook'too', zelfs'even', etc.
c. Aspectual: habitual; iterative; frequentative; continuative; etc.
d. Clause-degree ( bijna'nearly'; amper'hardly', etc.)
e. Propositional modal ( waarschijnlijk'probably'; blijkbaar'apparently')
f. Subject-oriented ( stom genoeg'stupidly', wijselijk'wisely', etc.)
g. Subjective: factive ( helaas'unfortunately' ); non-factive
h. Point-of-view ( volgens Els'according to Els' )
i. Spatio-temporal: place; time
j. Contingency: cause; reason; condition; concession
k. Domain ( juridisch gezien'legally', moreel gezien 'morally', etc.)
l. Conjunctive ( echter'however', derhalve'therefore', etc.)
m. Speech-act related ( eerlijk gezegd'honestly', etc.)

We will investigate to what extent these adverbial types satisfy the scope test proposed in Section 8.1, sub III, repeated here as (58a): the test is illustrated in (58b) by means of the prototypical clause adverbial waarschijnlijk'probably'.

Example 58
Clause-adverbial test: scope paraphrase
a. [clause... adverbial [VP ...]] ⇒ Het is adverbial zo [clause dat ... [VP ...]]
b. Jan lacht waarschijnlijk. ⇒ Het is waarschijnlijk zo dat Jan lacht.
  Jan laughs  probably  it  is probably  the.case  that  Jan laughs
readmore
[+]  I.  Polarity adverbials

This section discusses the negative adverb niet'not' and its affirmative counterpart wel in (59). Note in passing that the adverb niet can also be used as constituent negation (cf. Section 13.3.2, sub IC), and that both niet and wel can also be used as intensifiers of adjectives; Jan is niet onaardig/Jan is wel aardig'Jan is quite nice' (cf. Section A3.3). These uses will not be discussed here.

Example 59
a. Jan heeft Marie niet ontmoet.
sentence negation
  Jan has  Marie not  met
  'Jan hasnʼt met Marie.'
b. Jan heeft Marie wel ontmoet.
affirmation
  Jan has  Marie aff  met
  'Jan did meet Marie.'

Polarity adverbials are clearly not VP adverbials, as is shown by the fact that the sentences in (59) do not satisfy the two VP-adverbial tests. The primeless examples in (60) first show that the pronoun doet dat + adverb paraphrase does not give rise to a felicitous result: the left-right arrow with a slash (⇎) indicates that it leads to a contradiction in the case of niet'not' and the left-right arrow without a slash (⇔) indicates that it leads to a tautology in the case of wel. The primed examples show that the entailment test also fails: the entailment holds in neither direction in the case of niet and in both directions in the case of wel (at least in as far as the meaning expressed by traditional predicate calculus is concerned).

Example 60
a. $ Jan heeft Marie ontmoet en hij deed dat niet.
sentence negation
  Jan  has  Marie  met  and  he  did  that  not
a'. Jan heeft Marie niet ontmoet. ⇎ Jan heeft Marie ontmoet.
b. $ Jan heeft Marie ontmoet en hij deed dat wel.
affirmation
  Jan  has  Marie met  and  he  did  that  aff
b'. Jan heeft Marie wel ontmoet. ⇔ Jan heeft Marie ontmoet.

Polarity adverbials take scope over the proposition expressed by the lexical domain of the clause. This is the standard assumption for negation in predicate calculus, which treats negation as an operator taking scope over a well-formed expression Ф: ¬Ф. It is also clear from the fact that both negative and affirmative clauses pass the scope test in (58a): the examples in (59) can easily be paraphrased by the examples in (61).

Example 61
a. Het is niet zo dat Jan Marie heeft ontmoet.
sentence negation
  it  is not  the.case  that  Jan Marie has  met
  'It is not the case that Jan has met Marie.'
b. Het is wel zo dat Jan Marie heeft ontmoet.
affirmation
  it  is aff  the.case  that  Jan Marie has  met
  'It is the case that Jan has met Marie.'

The polarity adverbials are located very low in the functional domain of the clause: they must be preceded by all the clause adverbials that will be discussed in the following subsections. This shows immediately that these other adverbials are also part of the functional domain of the clause and thus cannot function as VP adverbials, cf. Section 8.1, sub II.
      It should also be pointed out that the negative adverbial niet is probably not in an adjoined position, but located in the specifier of a functional projection (NegP): the reason for assuming this is that this position is not only accessible to niet but arguably also functions as a landing site for negative phrases. This is especially clear if the negative phrase is part of a PP-complement of a complementive adjective, as in (62): while there is good reason for assuming that the PP is base-generated in a position following the adjective, it must occur in a position preceding the adjective if the nominal part of the PP is a negative phrase such as niemand'nobody'. This would follow if we assume that a negative phrase must be moved into the specifier of NegP, as indicated in (62c), in order for negation to be assigned scope over the complete proposition. We will not digress on this here but refer the reader to Section 13.3.1 for detailed discussion.

Example 62
a. dat Jan erg dol op Peter/*niemand is.
  that  Jan  very fond  of Peter/nobody  is
  'that Jan is very fond of Peter.'
b. dat Jan op niemand erg dol is.
  that  Jan of nobody  very fond  is
  'that Jan isnʼt very fond of anybody.'
c. dat Jan [NegP [PP op niemand]i Neg [vP ... [AP erg dol ti] is]].
  that  Jan  of nobody  very fond  is

      We want to conclude this section by noting that the semantic contributions of the two polarity adverbials differ considerably: from a logical point of view, the negative adverbial niet is needed to express negation (unless it is expressed in some other way) while the affirmative marker is superfluous. This is demonstrated in (63): omission of niet results in an affirmative expression whereas omission of wel results in a logically equivalent expression.

Example 63
a. Jan heeft Marie (#niet) ontmoet.
sentence negation
  Jan has  Marie     not  met
  'Jan hasnʼt met Marie.'
b. Jan heeft Marie (wel) ontmoet.
affirmation
  Jan has  Marie   aff  met
  'Jan did meet Marie.'

It is therefore not surprising that the use of the affirmative marker wel is mainly pragmatically motivated: it is used to indicate contrast, to deny an assertion or a presupposition held by the hearer, to make a concession, etc. Illustrations are given in (64). The affirmative marker wel thus plays a prominent role in signaling that the background (the shared information of the discourse participants) needs to be updated, and its heavy informational load may be the reason why affirmative wel is always accented (contrary to the modifier wel discussed in Section A3.3, which never carries accent).

Example 64
a. Ik kom vandaag niet, maar morgen wel.
contrast
  come  today  not but  tomorrow  aff
  'I wonʼt come today but tomorrow I will.'
b. A. Je komt morgen toch niet? B. Ik kom wel.
denial
  you  come  tomorrow  prt  not come  aff
  'You wonʼt come tomorrow, will you? I will come.'
c. Ik kom morgen, maar wel wat later.
concession
  come  tomorrow  but  aff  somewhat  later
  'I will come tomorrow, but it will be a bit later.'
[+]  II.  Focus particles

Sentence negation can be preceded by focus particles such as alleen'just/only', ook'also', and zelfs'even'. A number of typical examples are given in the primeless examples in (65). That these particles function as clause adverbials is clear from the fact that they satisfy the scope test in (58a), as is shown in the primed examples.

Example 65
a. Jan is een goed geleerde; hij is alleen niet geschikt als decaan.
  Jan is a good scholar  he  is only  not  suitable  as dean
  'Jan is a good scholar; he is just not suitable as Dean.'
a'. Het is alleen zo dat hij niet geschikt is als decaan.
  it  is only  the.case  that  he  not  suitable  is as dean
b. Marie komt morgen niet en Jan komt ook niet.
  Marie comes  tomorrow  not  and  Jan comes  also  not
  'Marie wonʼt come tomorrow and Jan won't come either.'
b'. Het is ook zo dat Jan niet komt.
  it  is also  the.case  that  Jan not  comes
c. Jan heeft het druk: hij gaat zelfs niet op vakantie.
  Jan has  it  busy  he  goes  even  not  on vacation
  'Jan is busy; he will not even take a vacation.'
c'. Het is zelfs zo dat hij niet op vakantie gaat.
  it  is even  the.case  that  he  not  on vacation  goes

As in the case of negation, there are reasons for assuming that focus particles are not in an adjoined position but in the specifier position of a functional projection (FocusP). In order to show this, it should first be noted that focus particles are not only used as independent adverbials but can also be used as narrow focus markers, in which case they form a constituent with the focused phrase. This can be seen in the examples in (66); the fact that the particle and the focused phrase co-occur in clause-initial position shows that they must be a constituent (cf. constituency test).

Example 66
a. [Alleen als decaan] is Jan niet geschikt.
  only as dean  is Jan not  suitable
b. [Ook Jan] komt morgen niet.
  also Jan  comes  tomorrow  not
c. [Zelfs op vakantie] gaat Jan niet.
  even on vacation  goes  Jan  not

The reason for assuming that the focus particles are in the specifier of FocusP is that this position is not accessible to focus particles only; it also functions as a landing site for narrowly focused phrases. This is especially clear if the focused phrase is a PP-complement of a complementive adjective, as in (67). It is uncontroversial that the PP is base-generated in a position following the adjective; however, it must precede the adjective if it is narrowly focused. This would follow if we assume that narrowly focused phrases must be moved into the specifier of FocusP, as indicated in (67c), in order to be assigned scope over the backgrounded part of the clause. We do not digress on this here but refer the reader to Section 13.3.2, sub IC, which also discusses a number of other focus particles.

Example 67
a. dat Jan erg dol (*zelfs) op Peter is.
  that  Jan  very fond     even  of Peter  is
  'that Jan is very fond of Peter.'
b. dat Jan zelfs op Peter erg dol is.
  that  Jan  even of Peter  very fond  is
  'that Jan is even very fond of Peter.'
c. dat Jan [FocusP [PP zelfs op Peter]i Focus ... [vP ... [AP erg dol ti] is]].
  that  Jan  even of Peter  very fond  is
[+]  III.  Aspectual adverbials

Sentence negation can also be preceded by aspectual adverbs such as habitual gewoonlijk'usually', continuative nog (steeds)'still', terminative niet meer'no longer', iterative weer'again', and frequentative vaak'often'. Other adverbials that may belong to this group are al'already' and spoedig'soon' but these do not easily co-occur with the sentence adverbial niet. Some instances are provided in the primeless examples in (68); the primed examples show that these adverbials satisfy the scope test in (58a).

Example 68
a. dat Jan gewoonlijk niet aanwezig is.
  that  Jan usually  not  present  is
  'that Jan usually isnʼt present.'
a'. Het is gewoonlijk zo dat Jan niet aanwezig is.
  it  is usually  the.case  that  Jan  not  present  is
b. dat Jan nog steeds niet aanwezig is.
  that  Jan still  not  present  is
  'that Jan still isnʼt present.'
b'. Het is nog steeds zo dat Jan niet aanwezig is.
  it  is still  the.case  that  Jan  not  present  is
c. dat Jan vaak niet aanwezig is.
  that  Jan often  not  present  is
  'that Jan often isnʼt present.'
c'. Het is vaak zo dat Jan niet aanwezig is.
  it  is often  the.case  that  Jan  not  present  is

It should be noted that the frequency adverb vaak'often' can also be used as a VP adverbial; cf. Section 8.2.1, sub IIIA. The examples in (69) illustrate this by showing that it may either precede or follow the negative adverb niet'not'. The two examples differ in the relative scope of the adverbials vaak and niet, which can be brought out by the paraphrases in the primed examples.

Example 69
a. dat Jan niet vaak aanwezig is.
VP adverbial: not > often
  that  Jan not  often  present  is
  'that Jan isnʼt present often.'
a'. Het is niet zo dat Jan vaak aanwezig is.
  it  is not  the.case  that  Jan  often  present  is
  'It is not the case that Jan is present often.'
b. dat Jan vaak niet aanwezig is.
clause adverbial: often > not
  that  Jan often  not  present  is
  'that Jan often isnʼt present.'
b'. Het is vaak zo dat Jan niet aanwezig is.
  it  is  often  the.case  that  Jan  not  present  is
  'It is often the case that Jan isnʼt present.'

The scope difference becomes even clearer with frequency adverbials such as drie keer'three times'. Suppose we are dealing with a sequence of four lectures; then example (70a) expresses that Jan attended less than three meetings while (70b) expresses that Jan attended only one lecture. Example (70c) shows that the two uses can co-occur in a single sentence: in case we are dealing with six sequences of four lectures, (70c) expresses that for two of these sequences Jan attended less than three lectures.

Example 70
a. dat Jan niet drie keer aanwezig is geweest.
VP adverbial
  that  Jan not  three times  present  is been
  'that Jan hasnʼt been present three times.'
b. dat Jan drie keer niet aanwezig is geweest.
clause adverbial
  that  Jan three times  not  present  is been
  'that three times Jan hasn't been present.'
c. dat Jan twee keer niet drie keer aanwezig is geweest.
co-occurrence
  that  Jan two times  not  three times  present  is been
  'that twice (in two sequences) Jan hasn't been present three times.'

A more complicated class of adverbs that may be considered aspectual consists of the adverbs helemaal'completely' and gedeeltelijk'partly' in (71a), which indicate whether the eventuality was or was not completely finished. That these adverbs are not VP adverbials is clear from the fact that they do not restrict the denotation of the verbal predicate, as appears from the fact that the entailment test in (71b) fails in the case of gedeeltelijk. However, it is not immediately evident either that these adverbs function as clause adverbials, as is clear from the fact that the scope test in (71c) produces questionable results.

Example 71
a. Jan heeft de appel helemaal/gedeeltelijk opgegeten.
  Jan has  the apple  completely/partly  prt.-eaten
  'Jan has completely/partly eaten the apple.'
b. Jan heeft de appel gedeeltelijk opgegeten. ↛ Jan heeft de appel opgegeten.
c. ? Het is helemaal/gedeeltelijk zo dat Jan de appel heeft opgegeten.
  it  is completely/partly  the.case  that  Jan the apple  has  eaten

There are nevertheless good reasons for supposing that we are dealing with clause adverbials, given that the adverb gedeeltelijk'partly' can precede sentence negation; cf. (72). It should be noted that the order niet gedeeltelijk is also possible if the adverb is accented; this case can be put aside because we are probably dealing with constituent negation in that case. Note also that examples similar to (72) are difficult to construct for helemaal, due to the fact that this adverb can be construed as a modifier of negation in helemaal niet'absolutely not'.

Example 72
Jan heeft de film gedeeltelijk niet gezien.
  Jan has  the movie  partly  not  prt.-seen
'Jan missed a part of the movie.'
[+]  IV.  Clause-degree adverbials

Adverbs like bijna'almost', echt'really', and haast'nearly' are referred to as clause-degree adverbs by Ernst (2002). These are clear cases of clause adverbials: they satisfy the scope test.

Example 73
a. Jan ging bijna kwaad weg.
  Jan went  almost angry  away
  'Jan almost went away angry.'
a'. Het was bijna zo dat Jan kwaad weg ging.
  it  was nearly  the.case  that  Jan angry  away  went
b. Jan werd haast overreden.
  Jan was  nearly  run.over
  'Jan was nearly run over (by a car).'
b'. Het was haast zo dat Jan werd overreden.
  it  was nearly  the.case  that  Jan was  run-over

It may be the case that (inherently negative) adverbs like amper'hardly' and nauwelijks'scarcely' in (74a) belong to the same class, although (74b) shows that they do not pass the scope paraphrase in a convincing way. We leave the problem with these adverbials for future research.

Example 74
a. Jan was amper/nauwelijks thuis toen Marie belde.
  Jan was hardly/scarcely  home  when Marie called
  'Jan was hardly/scarcely home when Marie called.'
b. $ Het was amper/nauwelijks zo dat Jan thuis was toen Marie belde.
  it  was  hardly/scarcely the.case  that  Jan home  was when  Marie called
[+]  V.  Propositional modal adverbials

Propositional modality provides an evaluation of the factual status of propositions expressed by the lexical projection of the main verb. By uttering a sentence such as Marie is thuis'Marie is at home' the speaker normally commits himself to the truth of the proposition expressed by the lexical projection of the main verb. The speaker may, however, also comment on the factual status of the proposition. Palmer (2001) claims that these judgments may be of two different kinds: there are epistemic and evidential judgments. Epistemic judgments are concerned with the likelihood of the actual occurrence of a specific eventuality. Section 5.2.3.2, sub IIIA1, has shown that epistemic judgments can be expressed by means of modal verbs such as kunnen'may', moeten'must' and zullen'will'.

Example 75
a. Marie kan nu thuis zijn.
speculative
  Marie may  now  at.home  be
b. Marie moet nu thuis zijn.
deductive
  Marie must  now  at.home  be
c. Marie zal nu thuis zijn.
assumptive
  Marie will  now  at.home  be

By uttering sentences such as (75a-c), the speaker provides three different epistemic judgments about (his commitment to the truth of) the proposition be at home(Marie). The modal verb kunnen'may' presents the proposition as a possible conclusion: the speaker is uncertain whether the proposition is true, but on the basis of the information available to him he is not able to exclude it. The modal verb moeten'must' presents the proposition as the only possible conclusion: on the basis of the information available the speaker infers that the proposition is true. The modal verb zullen'will' presents the proposition as a reasonable inference on the basis of the available evidence. A wider range of epistemic judgments can be expressed by means of the adverbial phrases in (76a).

Example 76
a. Epistemic adverbials: gegarandeerd'certainly', hoogstwaarschijnlijk'most likely', misschien'maybe', mogelijk'possibly', naar alle waarschijnlijkheid'in all probability', natuurlijk'naturally/of course', noodzakelijk(erwijs)'necessarily', ongetwijfeld'undoubtedly', vermoedelijk'supposedly', waarschijnlijk'probably', zeker'certainly', etc.
b. Marie is misschien/zeker/natuurlijk/... thuis.
  Marie is maybe/certainly/naturally  at.home

Evidential judgments are concerned with the source of information that the judgment is based on: cf. Section 5.2.3.2, sub IIIA2. Perception verbs such as zien'to see', for instance, are used in AcI-constructions such as Ik zag Peter vertrekken'I saw Peter leave' to express that the evidential judgment is based on direct sensory evidence: the speaker was an eye-witness of the eventuality. And modal verbs such as blijken'to turn out', lijken'to appear', and schijnen'to seem' indicate whether there is direct evidence in favor of the truth of the proposition, whether there are identifiable individuals that can be held responsible for the truth of the proposition, or whether we are dealing with hearsay/rumors; see Vliegen (2011).

Example 77
a. Uit deze feiten blijkt [dat Jan de dader is].
direct evidence
  from these facts  turns.out   that  Jan the perpetrator  is
  'These facts clearly show that Jan is the perpetrator.'
b. Het lijkt mij/haar [dat Jan de dader is].
identifiable source
  it  appears  me/her   that  Jan the perpetrator  is
  'It appears to me/her that Jan is the perpetrator.'
c. Het schijnt [dat Jan de dader is].
hearsay/rumors
  it  seems   that  Jan the perpetrator  is
  'It seems that Jan is the perpetrator.'

Again a wider range of evidential judgments can be expressed by means of the adverbial phrases in (78a):

Example 78
a. Evidential adverbials: blijkbaar'evidently', duidelijk'clearly', evident'evidently', kennelijk'obviously', klaarblijkelijk'apparently', ogenschijnlijk'apparently', onmiskenbaar'unmistakably', schijnbaar'seemingly', vermoedelijk'probably', zichtbaar'visibly/evidently', zo te zien 'apparently/by the looks of it', etc.
b. Jan is blijkbaar/duidelijk/zo te zien/... de dader.
  Jan is evidently/clearly/by the looks of it/ ...  the perpetrator

The propositional modal adverbials in (76a) and (78a) satisfy the scope-adverbial test in (58a), as is illustrated in (79) for the examples in (76b) and (78b). That epistemic modal adverbials allow the scope paraphrase is also in conformity with the fact that epistemic judgments are expressed in formal logic by means of the operators □ and ◊, which take scope over a well-formed expression Ф: □Ф and ◊Ф.

Example 79
a. Het is misschien/zeker/natuurlijk zo dat Marie thuis is.
  it  is maybe/certainly/naturally  the.case  that  Marie at.home  is
  'It is maybe/certainly/naturally the case that Marie is at home.'
b. Het is blijkbaar/duidelijk/zo te zien zo dat Jan de dader is.
  it  is evidently/clearly/apparently  the.case  that  Jan the perpetrator  is
  'Evidently/Clearly/By the looks of it, it is the case that Jan is the perpetrator.'
[+]  VI.  Subject-oriented adverbials

Subject-oriented adverbials like slim genoeg'cleverly' and wijselijk'wisely' in (80) provide the speaker’s subjective evaluation of the subject of the clause in relation to the predicate expressed by the lexical projection of the verb. Example (80a) expresses that the speaker considers Jan clever for not attending the performance and (80b) that he considers Marie wise for not contradicting Peter.

Example 80
a. Jan vertrok slim genoeg voor de voorstelling.
  Jan left  clever enough  before the performance
  'Jan cleverly left before the performance.'
b. Marie sprak Peter wijselijk niet tegen.
  Marie said  Peter wisely  not  against
  'Marie wisely didnʼt contradict Peter.'

Example (80b) shows that subject-oriented adverbials may precede negation. The fact that the reverse order gives rise to a marginal result also suggests that they function as clause adverbials. Even more support is that they do not restrict the denotation of the predicate, as (81) clearly shows that the examples in (80) cannot be paraphrased by means of a conjoined pronoun doet dat + adverb clause. Note in passing that the paraphrase Jan vertrok en hij deed dat slim genoeg voor de voorstelling is acceptable but involves restricted scope of the subject-oriented adverb over the time adverbial. The acceptability of this paraphrase is consequently not relevant here; see Section 8.1, sub III, for discussion.

Example 81
a. * Jan vertrok voor de voorstelling en hij deed dat slim genoeg.
  Jan left  before the performance  and  he  did  that  clever enough
b. * Marie sprak Peter niet tegen en zij deed dat wijselijk.
  Marie said  Peter not  against  and  she  did  that  wisely

The examples in (82) show that scope paraphrases are not possible either. However, this is understandable in the light of the fact that the matrix clauses in these paraphrases do not contain a suitable subject that the adverbial could be applied to: the paraphrases are uninterpretable as a result.

Example 82
a. $ Het is slim genoeg zo dat Jan voor de voorstelling vertrok.
  it  is clever enough  the.case  that Jan before the performance left
b. $ Het is wijselijk zo dat Marie Peter niet tegensprak.
  it  is wisely  the.case  that  Marie Peter not  contradicted

For completeness’ sake, it should be noted that the examples in (80) can be paraphrased as in (83). These paraphrases suggest that subject-oriented adverbials have scope over the proposition expressed by the lexical domain of the clause. We will not push this idea any further but provisionally assume that the infelicity of the scope paraphrases in (82) is indeed due to the fact that they do not contain a suitable subject that the adverbial could be applied to.

Example 83
a. Het is slim van Jan dat hij voor de voorstelling vertrok.
  it  is clever of Jan  that  he  before the performance  left
b. Het is wijs van Marie dat zij Peter niet tegensprak.
  it  is wise of Marie  that  she  Peter  not  contradicted
[+]  VII.  Subjective adverbials

Subjective adverbials specify a specific mental attitude towards the state-of-affairs referred to by the clause. These adverbials are difficult to distinguish from the epistemic adverbials because they also comment on the factual status of the proposition in that they express that the proposition is or is not necessarily/yet true.

Example 84
Subjective adverbials
a. Factive: begrijpelijkerwijs'understandably', helaas'unfortunately', gelukkig'fortunately', jammer genoeg 'regrettably', (on)gelukkigerwijs'(un)fortunately', vanzelfsprekend'obviously/self-evidently'
b. Non-factive: hopelijk'hopefully'

However, the main informational load of these adverbials involves a subjective evaluation of the eventuality. By uttering (85a) the speaker expresses that the proposition expressed by the clause is true while the two adverbials gelukkig and helaas'Jan having arrived on time'. By uttering (85b) the speaker expresses that he does not know whether the proposition expressed by the clause is true, but that he would consider it a good thing if it were true.

Example 85
a. Jan is gelukkig/helaas op tijd gearriveerd.
  Jan is fortunately/unfortunately  on time  arrived
  'Jan has fortunately/unfortunately arrived on time.'
b. Jan is hopelijk op tijd gearriveerd.
  Jan is hopefully  on time  arrived
  'Jan has hopefully arrived on time.'

Example (85b) is clearly not epistemic as the speaker does not provide an evaluation of the factual status of the proposition. This is different with adverbial phrases such as naar ik hoop/vrees in (86): these adverbials are subjective in that they provide an evaluation of the proposition, but they are also epistemic in that the speaker expresses that the proposition is a reasonable conclusion on the basis of the evidence available to him. Since the epistemic verb vermoeden'to suspect' can also be used in this phrase, it is not evident that the adverbial phrase naar ik +V should be considered intrinsically subjective in nature.

Example 86
Jan is naar ik hoop/vrees/vermoed op tijd gearriveerd.
  Jan is as I hope/fear/suspect  on time  arrived
'Jan has arrived on time, I hope/fear/suspect.'

That subjective adverbials are clause adverbials is clear from the fact that they satisfy the scope test; this is illustrated in (87a&b) for the examples in (85). For completeness’ sake we have added the paraphrase in (87c) for the examples in (86).

Example 87
a. Het is gelukkig/helaas zo dat Jan op tijd gearriveerd is.
  it  is fortunately/unfortunately  the.case  that  Jan on time  arrived  is
b. Het is hopelijk zo dat Jan op tijd gearriveerd is.
  it  is hopefully  the.case  that  Jan on time  arrived  is
c. Het is naar ik hoop/vrees/vermoed zo dat Jan op tijd gearriveerd is.
  it  is as I hope/fear/suspect  the.case  that  Jan on time  arrived  is

Other examples of subjective adverbials are toch, maar, dan, and nou. These particle-like items often occur in combination and may express various, often subtle, meaning modulations of the sentence; cf. Haeseryn et al. (1997;457/1349).

[+]  VIII.  Point-of-view adverbials

In the linguistic literature on English since Jackendoff (1972) epistemic adverbials have been classified as speaker-oriented adverbs. The epistemic judgments of the proposition are normally taken to be the speaker’s, that is, by uttering the sentence in (88) the speaker takes responsibility for the truth of the assertion that Jan will visit us.

Example 88
Jan komt zeker op visite.
  Jan comes  certainly  on visit
'Jan will certainly visit us.'

Although the speaker-oriented reading of epistemic adverbials is certainly their default interpretation, it is not semantically determined but it is the result of a pragmatic implicature. This is evident from the fact that the speaker’s responsibility for the truth of the assertion can be made explicit or be canceled by adding an adverbial phrase indicating the person responsible for the truth of the relevant information: some more or lesss fixed expressions for, respectively, emphasizing and canceling of the speaker’s responsibility are given in (89).

Example 89
Point-of-view adverbials:
a. Making explicit the speaker’s responsibility: bij /naar mijn/ons weten'as far as I/we know', mijns/ons inziens'in my/our view', naar mijn/ onze mening'according to my/our opinion', naar mijn/ onze overtuiging (lit.: “according to my/our conviction”), etc.
b. Canceling the speaker’s responsibility: blijkens dit rapport'according to this report', zijns inziens'in his view', naar verluidt'according to reports', etc.

A common productive way of expressing a point-of-view is using a PP headed by the preposition volgens'according to': by using volgens mij'according to me' in (90a) the speaker makes his responsibility for the truth of assertion explicit, while he shifts this responsibility to Els by using volgens Els in (90b). Example (90c) shows that point-of-view adverbials pass the scope test.

Example 90
a. Jan komt volgens mij zeker op visite.
speaker’s responsibility
  Jan comes  according.to me  certainly  on visit
  'According to me, Jan will certainly come and visit us.'
b. Jan komt volgens Els zeker op visite.
not speaker’s responsibility
  Jan comes  according.to Els  certainly  on visit
  'According to Els, Jan will certainly come and visit us.'
c. Het is volgens mij/Els zo dat Jan zeker op visite komt.
  it  is according me/Els  the.case  that  Jan certainly  on visit  comes
  'According to me/Els, it is the case that Jan will certainly come and visit us.'

Subjective adverbials like gelukkig'fortunately' and helaas'unfortunately' are normally also considered to be speaker-oriented. This may seem justifiable in (91): the assessment of Jans dismissal as a fortunate event can be attributed to the speaker despite the presence of the point-of-view PP volgens Els'according to Els'. However, it also seems possible to attribute this assessment to Els, as is clear from the fact that the part in parentheses can be added without creating a contradiction. The speaker-oriented reading of evaluation adverbials may therefore still be a pragmatic effect; we leave this issue to future research.

Example 91
Jan is volgens Els gelukkig ontslagen (maar ik vind het naar).
  Jan is according.to Els  fortunately  fired  but  find  it  unpleasant
'According to Els, itʼs a stroke of luck that Jan was fired (but I think its terrible).'
[+]  IX.  Spatio-temporal adverbials

Spatio-temporal adverbials are not only used as VP adverbials (cf. Section 8.2.1, sub III) but also as clause adverbials. That temporal adverbials may be ambiguous in this way is demonstrated in (92); the primeless examples show that these adverbials can either precede or follow a modal adverb such as waarschijnlijk'probably', and the primed examples show that they pass both the clause-adverbial and the VP-adverbial test.

Example 92
a. Jan komt morgen waarschijnlijk op visite.
clause adverbial
  Jan comes  tomorrow  probably  on visit
  'Jan will probably visit us tomorrow.'
a'. Het is morgen waarschijnlijk zo dat Jan op visite komt.
  it  is tomorrow  probably  the.case  that  Jan on visit  comes
b. Jan komt waarschijnlijk om drie uur op visite.
VP adverbial
  Jan comes  probably  at 3 oʼclock  on visit
  'Jan will probably visit us at 3 oʼclock.'
b'. Jan komt waarschijnlijk op visite en hij doet dat om 3 uur.
  Jan comes  probably  on visit  and  he does  that  at 3 oʼclock

The examples in (93) show that the two time adverbials morgen and om drie uurin (92) may co-occur but that they obey certain ordering restrictions: the time interval referred to by the clause adverbial includes the time (interval) referred to by the VP adverbial. Since (93b) becomes fully acceptable if one of the two time adverbials is omitted, it is not likely that we are dealing with a syntactic restriction; Section 8.2.3 will argue that this restriction is semantic in nature, for which reason we have marked the deviating order in (93b) with a dollar sign.

Example 93
a. Jan komt morgen waarschijnlijk om drie uur op visite.
  Jan comes  tomorrow  probably  at 3 oʼclock  on visit
  'Jan will probably visit us at 3 oʼclock tomorrow.'
b. $ Jan komt om drie uur waarschijnlijk morgen op visite.
  Jan comes  at 3 oʼclock  probably  tomorrow  on visit

For locational adverbials we can make more or lesss the same observations. The examples in (94) first illustrate that locational adverbials can either precede or follow a modal adverb and that they pass both the clause-adverbial test in (94a') and the VP-adverbial test in (94b').

Example 94
a. Jan geeft in Amsterdam waarschijnlijk een lezing.
clause adverbial
  Jan gives  in Amsterdam probably  a talk
  'Jan will probably give a talk in Amsterdam.'
a'. Het is in Amsterdam waarschijnlijk zo dat Jan een lezing geeft.
  it  is in Amsterdam probably  the.case  that  Jan a talk  gives
b. Jan geeft waarschijnlijk een lezing op de universiteit.
VP adverbial
  Jan gives  probably  a talk  at the university
  'Jan will probably give a talk at the university.'
b'. Jan geeft waarschijnlijk een lezing en hij doet dat op de universiteit.
  Jan gives  probably  a talk  and  he  does  that  at the university

The examples in (95) show that the two place adverbials in (94) may co-occur but that they obey certain ordering restrictions: the location referred to by the clause adverbial includes the location referred to by the VP adverbial. Since (95b) becomes fully acceptable if one of the two locational adverbials is omitted, it is again not likely that we are dealing with a syntactic restriction, for which reason we have marked the deviating order in (95b) with a dollar sign.

Example 95
a. Jan geeft in Amsterdam waarschijnlijk een lezing op de universiteit.
  Jan gives  in Amsterdam probably  a talk  at the university
  'In Amsterdam Jan will probably give a talk at the university.'
b. $ Jan geeft op de universiteit waarschijnlijk een lezing in Amsterdam.
  Jan gives  at the university  probably  a talk  in Amsterdam
[+]  X.  Contingency adverbials

Section 8.2.1, sub IV, has shown that adverbials indicating cause and reason can be used as VP adverbials. The fact illustrated in (96) that these adverbials may occur on either side of the modal waarschijnlijk'probably' suggests, however, that they can also be used as clause adverbials.

Example 96
a. De pot is waarschijnlijk door de vorst gebarsten.
VP/cause
  the pot  is probably  by the frost  cracked
  'The pot has probably cracked because of frost.'
a'. De pot is door de vorst waarschijnlijk gebarsten.
clause/cause
  the pot  is by the frost  probably  cracked
  'Because of frost the pot has probably cracked.'
b. De winkel is waarschijnlijk vanwege Pasen gesloten.
VP/reason
  the shop  is probably  because.of Easter  closed
  'The shop is probably closed because of Easter.'
b'. De winkel is vanwege Pasen waarschijnlijk gesloten.
clause/reason
  the shop  is because.of Easter  probably  closed
  'Because of Easter, the shop is probably closed.'

That the adverbials indicating cause or reason are clause adverbials in the primed examples in (96) is given greater credence by the fact that these examples can easily be paraphrased by means of the scope paraphrases in (97).

Example 97
a. Het is door de vorst waarschijnlijk zo dat de pot gebarsten is.
  it  is by the frost  probably  the.case  that  the pot  cracked is
b. Het is vanwege Pasen waarschijnlijk zo dat de winkel gesloten is.
  it  is because of Easter  probably  the.case  that  the shop  closed  is

The semantic difference between the primeless and primed examples in (96) is genuinely a matter of relative scope: in the primeless examples the adverbials indicating cause and reason are in the scope of the modal adverb waarschijnlijk, while they are not in the scope of the adverb in the primed examples. This induces the following meaning differences: example (96a) expresses that the pot has probably cracked as a result of frost, while (96a') expresses that the frost is a good reason for assuming that the pot has cracked; example (96b) expresses that the shop is probably closed because of Easter, while (96b') expresses that Easter is a good reason for assuming that the shop is closed.
      The concessive counterparts of the cause/reason adverbials may likewise be used as clause adverbials; the examples in (98) illustrate this by showing that these adverbials can easily occur in front of the modal waarschijnlijk'probably'.

Example 98
a. De pot is ondanks de vorst waarschijnlijk heel gebleven.
concession
  the pot  is despite the frost  probably  intact  remained
  'The pot has probably remained undamaged despite the frost.'
b. Els is ondanks de regen waarschijnlijk vertrokken.
concession
  Els is despite the rain  probably  left
  'Els has probably left despite the rain.'

      Conditionals differ from adverbials indicating cause and reason in that they always function as clause adverbials. Although conditionals are normally expressed by means of adverbial clauses, there are also a number of more or lesss idiomatic prepositional phrases headed by in'in' and bij'with'; cf. Haeseryn et al. (1997:1209). Two typical cases are given in the primeless examples in (99). These conditional adverbials do not restrict the denotation of the verbal predicate, as is clear from the fact illustrated in the singly-primed examples that they do not satisfy the entailment test. Furthermore, the scope paraphrase in the doubly-primed examples seems perfectly adequate. This leads to the conclusion that conditional adverbials differ from adverbials indicating cause and reason in that they function as clause adverbials only.

Example 99
a. Wij helpen u in noodgevallen direct.
  we  help  you  in emergencies  immediately
  'We will help you immediately in case of an emergency.'
a'. Wij helpen u in noodgevallen direct. ↛ Wij helpen u direct.
a''. Het is in noodgevallen zo dat wij u direct helpen.
  it  is in emergencies  the.case  that  we  you  promptly  help
b. Bij diefstal bellen wij altijd de politie.
  in.case.of theft  phone  we  always the police
  'In case of theft, we always call the police.'
b'. Bij diefstal bellen wij altijd de politie ↛Wij bellen altijd de politie.
b''. Het is bij diefstal zo dat wij de politie helpen.
  it  is  in.case.of theft  the.case  that we the police phone

That conditional phrases cannot be used as VP adverbials is due to the fact that they function as the antecedent P of a material implication P → Q and not as a restrictor of Q: we can only conclude that proposition Q is true if proposition P is true as well. For the same reason we can conclude that the conditional clause in (100a) must function as a clause adverbial. Although this cannot be proved on the basis of the entailment test, we should probably conclude the same for its concessive counterpart in (100b). That these conditional and concessive clauses can be used as clause adverbials is evident from the fact illustrated in the primed examples that they pass the scope test.

Example 100
a. Als het mooi weer is, gaan we naar de dierentuin.
  if it nice weather is  go  we  to the zoo
  'If the weather is nice we will go to the zoo.'
a'. Als het mooi weer is, is het zo dat we naar de dierentuin gaan.
  if  it  nice weather  is  is it  the.case  that  we  to the zoo  go
b. Hoewel het regent, gaan we naar de dierentuin.
  although  it  rains  go  we  to the zoo
  'Although it is raining we will go to the zoo.'
b'. Hoewel het regent, is het zo dat we naar de dierentuin gaan.
  although  it  rains  is it  the.case  that  we  to the zoo  go
[+]  XI.  Domain adverbials

Section 8.2.1, sub I, has shown that domain adverbials such as juridisch'legally' in (101a) can be used as VP adverbials. The fact illustrated in (101b) that such adverbials sometimes precede the modal adverb waarschijnlijk'probably' suggests that they can also be used as clause adverbials. The primed examples show that this is supported by the application of the entailment and scope tests.

Example 101
a. Jan vecht zijn ontslag (waarschijnlijk) juridisch aan.
VP adverbial
  Jan fights  his dismissal  probably  legally  prt
  'Jan (probably) contests his dismissal on legal grounds.'
a'. Jan vecht zijn ontslag aan en hij doet dat juridisch.
  Jan fights  his dismissal  prt.  and  he  does  that  legally
a''. Jan vecht zijn ontslag juridisch aan. → Jan vecht zijn ontslag aan.
b. Jan heeft juridisch (waarschijnlijk) gelijk.
clause adverbial
  Jan has  legally   probably  right
  'Legally, Jan is (probably) right.'
b'. Het is juridisch zo dat Jan gelijk heeft.
  it  is  legally  the.case  that  Jan right  has
b''. Jan heeft juridisch gelijk. ↛ Jan heeft gelijk.

The two uses of domain adverbials involve a different scope. VP adverbials restrict the denotation of the verbal projection; consequently, the particular choice of one of the domain adverbials in (102) will have far-reaching consequences for the goal, means and method used in performing the action of investigating adverbs.

Example 102
Jan onderzoekt adverbia syntactisch/morfologisch/semantisch.
  Jan investigates  adverbs  syntactically/morphologically/semantically
'Jan is investigating adverbs syntactically/morphologically/semantically.'

The clause adverbials, on the other hand, have scope over the complete proposition expressed by lexical domain of the clause and may affect the truth value of the clause: as is indicated by the invalidity of the entailment in (101b''), the fact that Jan is right from a legal point of view does not entail that he is right, since he might be wrong from, e.g., a moral point of view. Related to this difference is the fact that the clause (but not the VP) adverbials prototypically surface in the form of a phrase headed by the participle gezien'seen', which embeds a domain adverbial functioning as a modifier of the participle; this is illustrated in (103).

Example 103
a. Jan vecht zijn ontslag waarschijnlijk juridisch (*gezien) aan.
  Jan fights  his dismissal  probably  legally     seen  prt
  'Jan contests his dismissal on legal grounds.'
b. Jan heeft juridisch (gezien) waarschijnlijk gelijk.
  Jan has  legally  seen  probably  right
  'Legally speaking, Jan is probably right.'
[+]  XII.  Conjunctive adverbials

Conjunctives are adverbial phrases relating the clause they modify to some state-of-affairs mentioned earlier in the discourse. Although conjunctives differ syntactically from conjunctions in that they are clausal constituents, Haeseryn et al. (1997: section 8.5) note that they perform a similar semantic function in that both of them specify various relations between utterances. Conjunctives may simply function as linkers, indicate contrast and various contingency relations between utterances, as indicated in (104): we omitted from these lists various obsolete forms provided by Haeseryn et al., as well as particles such as ook'also', zelfs'even', which were discussed in Subsection II as focus particles.

Example 104
Conjunctives
a. Linking: bovendien/ daarenboven'moreover', eveneens'also', evenmin'neither', tevens'also'
b. Contrast: daarentegen'on the other hand', desalniettemin/ desondanks'nevertheless', echter / evenwel'however', integendeel'on the contrary', niettemin'nevertheless', nochtans'still', toch (with accent) 'just the same'
c. Contingency: althans'at least', bijgevolg'as a consequence', derhalve'therefore', dus'thus', dientengevolge'consequently', immers'after all', overigens, 'anyway', trouwens'for that matter', toch (without accent)

That the adverbials in (104) are clause adverbials is clear from the fact that they satisfy the scope test in (58b), as is illustrated in (105).

Example 105
a. Jan is een goed taalkundige. Hij is bovendien een goed schrijver.
  Jan is a good linguist.  he  is moreover  a good writer
  'Jan is a good linguist. Moreover, he is a good writer.'
a'. Het is bovendien zo dat hij een goed schrijver is.
  it  is moreover  the.case  that  he  a good writer  is
b. Els heeft weinig tijd. Ze komt desondanks toch naar je lezing.
  Els has little time  she  comes nevertheless  prt  to your talk
  'Els is very busy. Nevertheless, she will attend your talk.'
b'. Het is desondanks zo dat ze naar je lezing komt.
  it  is nevertheless  the.case  that  she  to  your talk  comes
c. Marie is er niet. Ze is immers ziek.
  Marie is there  not  she  is  after.all  ill
  'Marie is not present. Shes ill, as you know.'
c'. Het is immers zo dat ze ziek is.
  it  is after.all  the.case  that  she  ill  is

Note in passing that some of the conjunctives in (104) also easily occur clause-externally; daarentegen in (106a') is clearly used parenthetically, as is clear from the fact that it is preceded and followed by an intonation break; trouwens in (106b') is clearly clause-external, as it precedes the clause-initial position.

Example 106
a. Marie is erg open. Jan is daarentegen terughoudend.
adverbial
  Marie is very candid.  Jan is on.the.other.hand  reserved
a'. Marie is open. Jan, daarentegen, is terughoudend.
clause-external
  Marie is candid.  Jan on.the.other.hand  is reserved
  'Marie is candid. Jan, on the other hand, is reserved.'
b. Ik wil niet dansen. Ik heb trouwens geen tijd.
adverbial
  want  not  dancing  have  anyway  no time
b'. Ik wil niet dansen. Trouwens, ik heb geen tijd.
clause-external
  want  not  dancing  anyway,  have  no time
  'I do not want to dance. I don't have time, for that matter.'
[+]  XIII.  Speech-act related adverbials

Speech-act adverbials such as eerlijk gezegd'honestly speaking' are normally phrasal and consist of a participle preceded by a manner adverb. They are always speaker-oriented and provide information about the performance of the speech act; by using the adverbial eerlijk gezegd in (107a), for instance, the speaker expresses that he gives his opinion straightforwardly despite the fact that he is aware of the fact that the addressee may feel uneasy about it. That speech-act adverbials are clause adverbials is clear from the fact that they easily pass the scope test, as is shown for eerlijk gezegd in (107b).

Example 107
a. Eerlijk gezegd heb ik geen zin in dansen.
  honestly said  have  no liking  in dance
  'Honestly speaking, I donʼt feel like dancing.'
b. Het is eerlijk gezegd zo dat ik geen zin in dansen heb.
  it is honestly  said  the.case  that  no liking  in dancing  have

Speech-act adverbials are placed high in the functional domain of clause; they are often the first adverbial in the clause. Furthermore, they also occur and, in fact, often feel more comfortable in clause-external position.

Example 108
a. Eerlijk gezegd: ik heb geen zin in dansen.
  honestly said  have  no liking  in dance
  'Honestly speaking, I donʼt feel like dancing.'
b. Kort/ruwweg gezegd/samengevat: Jan is ontslagen.
  briefly/roughly  said/summarized  Jan is fired
  'In short, Jan is fired.'
c. Vertrouwelijk gezegd: hij wordt ontslagen.
  confidentially said  he  is  fired
  'Confidentially, he will be fired.'
References:
  • Ernst, Thomas2002The syntax of adjunctsCambridge (UK)/New YorkCambridge University Press
  • Haeseryn, Walter, Romijn, Kirsten, Geerts, Guido, Rooij, Jaap de & Toorn, Maarten C. van den1997Algemene Nederlandse spraakkunstGroningenNijhoff
  • Haeseryn, Walter, Romijn, Kirsten, Geerts, Guido, Rooij, Jaap de & Toorn, Maarten C. van den1997Algemene Nederlandse spraakkunstGroningenNijhoff
  • Haeseryn, Walter, Romijn, Kirsten, Geerts, Guido, Rooij, Jaap de & Toorn, Maarten C. van den1997Algemene Nederlandse spraakkunstGroningenNijhoff
  • Jackendoff, Ray1972Semantic interpretation in Generative GrammarCurrent studies in linguistics seriesMIT Press
  • Palmer, F.R2001Mood and ModalityCambridge University Press
  • Vliegen, Maurice2011Evidentiality. Dutch <i>seem </i>and <i>appear </i>verbs: <i>blijken</i>, <i>lijken</i>, <i>schijnen</i>Nouwen, Rick & Elenbaas, Marion (eds.)Linguistics in the Netherlands 2011Amsterdam/Philadelphia125-137
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