• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show full table of contents
As NP argument of the verb
quickinfo

The relative pronoun may function as the argument of the verb in the relative clause.

readmore

The relative pronoun has a paradigm of two forms in case it functions as the argument of the tensed verb of the relative clause. These two forms are found in tensed clauses only. They are given in (1): dat as the neuter singular dy't as all other (common singular, common plural and neuter plural). This relative pronoun agrees with its antecedent for the features number and gender. A minimal pair for the feature number is given below. The first example (a) involves a singular antecedent, the second one (b) a plural antecedent:

Example 1

a. It famke dat se seagen
the girl.NG.SG REL.NG.SG they saw
The girl that they saw
b. De famkes dy't se seagen
the girl.PL that.PL they saw
The girls that they saw

A minimal pair for the feature gender is given below. The first example in (a) involves common gender, the second one in (b) neuter gender:

Example 2

a. De feint dy't se seagen
the young.man.CG.SG REL.CG.SG they saw
The young man that they saw
b. It famke dat se seagen
the girl.NG.SG REL.NG.SG they saw
The girl that they saw.

The paradigm of the relative pronoun makes the same distinctions with respect to number and gender as attributive adjectives do (such adjectives exhibit agreement with the following noun):

  • Both distinguish between singular and plural in the neuter gender.
  • Both conflate singular and plural in the common gender.
  • Both distinguish between common and neuter gender in the singular.
  • Both conflate common and neuter gender in the plural.
These relative pronouns function as subject or object in the relative clause. In the following example, the relative pronoun functions as indirect object in the relative clause:

Example 3

It famke dat ik it boek joech
the girl.NG.SG REL.NG.SG I the book gave
The girl that I gave the book

The relative pronoun for the common gender is homophonous to the topic pronoun, to which an alveolar plosive has been appended. The alveolar plosive has been argued to be the cliticised form of the subordinating complementiser datthat (Hoekstra (1993)). For many speakers, the alveolar plosive is optionally present.

References:
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1989The split CP hypothesis and the Frisian complementiser system
Suggestions for further reading ▼
phonology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
morphology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
syntax
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
cite
print