• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show full table of contents
Second person agreement and premodification
quickinfo

The second person singular agreement may be found even if there is no accompanying pronominal subject. An example is given below:

Example 1

Moatst dy noait fan in faam belêze litte
must.2SG you.OBJ never of a girl lecture let
You should never let yourself be lectured by a girl

Of course, the subject can also be present:

Example 2

Do moatst dy noait fan in faam belêze litte
you.SUBJ must.2SG you.OBJ never of a girl lecture let
You should never let yourself be lectured by a girl

The subject can be modified in preverbal position, as is shown below:

Example 3

Sels do moatst dy noait fan in faam belêze litte
you.SUBJ must.2SG you.OBJ never of a girl lecture let
Even you should never let yourself be lectured by a girl

If the 2SG subject pronoun occurs after the verb, it cannot be premodified. Similar facts are found involving the complementiser instead of the tensed verb.

readmore

If the subject occurs after the tensed verb, verb + subject are written as one word:

Example 4

Moatsto mei dit waar de feart út?
must.you with this weather the canal out
Do you have to go out on the water in this weather?

This orthographic matter would not be worth mentioning, if it were not for the fact that it reflects a morphosyntactic issue. The point is that the second person pronoun cannot be premodified if it occurs after the tensed verb:

Example 5

a. *Moatst sels do mei dit waar de feart út?
must.2SG even you with this weather the canal out
Lit: Do even you have to go out on the water in this weather?
b. *Moatst ek do mei dit waar de feart út?
must.2SG also you with this weather the canal out
Do you also have to go out on the water in this weather?

The ungrammaticality is not due to the fact that a question is involved. The same facts obtain in case a statement with a non-subject topic is involved:

Example 6

a. *Dan moatst sels do mei dit waar de feart út
then must.2SG even you with this weather the canal out
Lit: Then even you have to go out on the water in this weather
b. *Dan moatst ek do mei dit waar de feart út
then must.2SG also you with this weather the canal out
Lit: Then you also have to go out on the water in this weather

Furthermore, the lack of premodification is restricted to the 2SG pronoun. Neither the 1SG pronoun nor the 3SG pronoun shows this restriction:

Example 7

a. ?Moat sels ik mei dit waar de feart út?
must.1SG even you with this weather the canal out
Do even I have to go out on the water in this weather?
b. ?Moat ek hy mei dit waar de feart út?
must.3SG also he with this weather the canal out
Does he also have to go out on the water in this weather?

The tensed verb above has a /t/ in the stem so that the stem /t/ and the agreement /t/ coalesce. If this is not the case, the form without agreement (the first person) seems less acceptable:

Example 8

a. *Dan rin sels ik de maraton
then walk even I the marathon
Then even I run the marathon
b. Dan rint sels hy de maraton
then walk even he the marathon
Then even he runs the marathon

Similar facts are found involving the complementiser. Just as the 2SG pronoun is written as one word with the tensed verb, it is also written as one word with the complementiser. The example below illustrates the pro-drop variant, with agreement on the complementiser:

Example 9

Ik tink datst de maraton rinne kinst
I think that.2SG the marathon walk can.2SG
I think that you can run the marathon

The example in (10) shows that, if the pronoun doyou is present, it must be written as one word with the complementiser:

Example 10

Ik tink datsto de maraton rinne kinst
I think that.2SG.you the marathon walk can.2SG
I think that you can run the marathon

The second person pronoun cannot be premodified, regardless of whether agreement is present on the complementiser:

Example 11

a. *Ik tink datst sels do de maraton rinne kinst
I think that.2SG even you the marathon walk can.2SG
I think that even you can run the marathon
b. *Ik tink dat sels do de maraton rinne kinst
I think that even you the marathon walk can.2SG
I think that even you can run the marathon

Similarly, it is not possible to insert a pauze between the inflected complementiser and the pronoun:

Example 12

*Ik tink datst eh do de maraton rinne kinst
I think that.2SG eh you the marathon walk can.2SG
I think that … eh … you can run the marathon

Neither the 1SG pronoun nor the 3SG pronoun exhibits this lack of premodification following the complementiser, which is clear from the examples below:

Example 13

a. Ik tink dat sels ik de maraton rinne kin
I think that even I the marathon walk can
I think that even I can run the marathon
b. Ik tink dat sels hy de maraton rinne kin
I think that even he the marathon walk can
I think that even he can run the marathon

These data need further investigation in order to test their robustness.

[show extra information]
x Literature

More details can be found in Hoekstra (1994).

References:
  • Hoekstra, Eric1994Agreement and the Nature of SpecifiersGroninger Arbeiten zur Germanistischen Linguistik37159-168
Suggestions for further reading ▼
phonology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
morphology
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show more ▼
syntax
  • Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
  • 6.5. Clausal subjects
    [84%] Dutch > Syntax > Adjectives and Adjective Phrases > 6 Predicative use of the adjective phrase
  • 5.2.1.1. Referential personal pronouns
    [84%] Dutch > Syntax > Nouns and Noun Phrases > 5 Determiners: articles and pronouns > 5.2. Pronouns > 5.2.1. Personal pronouns
  • 2.2.3. Resultative constructions
    [84%] Dutch > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > 2 Projection of verb phrases I:Argument structure > 2.2. Complementives (secondary predicates)
  • 5.2.2.1. Classification
    [83%] Dutch > Syntax > Nouns and Noun Phrases > 5 Determiners: articles and pronouns > 5.2. Pronouns > 5.2.2. Possessive pronouns
  • 6.6. PP subjects
    [83%] Dutch > Syntax > Adjectives and Adjective Phrases > 6 Predicative use of the adjective phrase
  • The 2SG subject pronoun
    [88%] Frisian > Syntax > Nouns & Noun Phrases > Pronouns > Strong and weak pronouns
  • The pronominal possessive construction
    [86%] Frisian > Syntax > Nouns & Noun Phrases > Modification > Relative clauses > Syntactic function > As possessor
  • The PPI-B construction
    [84%] Frisian > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > Expression of irrealis > The verb sille 'shall' > Participio-pro-Infinitivo
  • The suffix -ste
    [84%] Frisian > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > Agreement > Complementiser agreement
  • The PPI-A construction
    [83%] Frisian > Syntax > Verbs and Verb Phrases > Expression of irrealis > The verb sille 'shall' > Participio-pro-Infinitivo
Show more ▼
cite
print