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Restriction of the B-construction to modals
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The B-construction is only found with tensed modals.

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The B-construction is found with the following modals:

Example 1

Kinne 'can'
a. De man koe gjin better plak útsocht ha
the man could no better place selected have
The man could not have selected a better place
b. As it wetter hjit west hie, koene jim jim droevich baarnd ha
if the water hot been had could you you sadly burnt have
If the water had been hot, you could have burnt yourselves badly

The examples indicate that the B-construction is often found in the company of a comparative constituent or in the company of negation or in the company of both, as in the first example, or in the company of a counterfactual conditional clause, as in the second example:

Example 2

Moatte 'must'
a. Do moast it my mar net ferteld ha
you should it me DcP not told have
You should not have told it to me
b. As er mei de auto de sinteldyk delkommen wie moasten de melkers him sjoen ha
if he with the car the cinder road down.come was must the milkers him seen have
If he had come down the cinder road, the milkers would have seen him

The second example in (2) involves a B-construction carrying the semantics of logical necessity. It is in this particular epistemic usage that the B-construction is still found in Modern Frisian and, for that matter, Dutch. This does not hold of the other examples presented in this section. They would nowadays be realised as A-constructions. So the first example in (2), would nowadays be realised as in (3); some further examples are given in (4):

Example 3

Do hiest it my mar net fertelle moatten
you had it me DcP not tell.OI must.PfP
You should not have told it to me
Example 4

Wolle 'want'
a. Ik woe langer mei dy sprutsen ha
I wanted longer with you talked have
I wanted to have talked with you longer
b. As ik foarôf berekkenje koe, dat Clara in spuonnen doaze wie, dan woe ik har net hân ha
if I beforehand calculate could that Clara a wood.chips box was then wanted I her not had have
If I could have calculated beforehand that Clara had such a weak health, then I would not have wanted to have her

The second example in (4) is peculiar in two respects. First, the conditional clause clearly has a perfective interpretation, but this is not formally reflected in the presence of a perfective auxiliary. Second, the B-construction in the main clause must be translated, in this particular example, as a double perfective in English. This may be due to the fact that want is not a normal modal auxiliary in English, if we consider that want, unlike the real modals, has a full-fledged paradigm containing an infinitive and a perfect participle:

Example 5

Meie 'may'
a. Jy mochten it wol ôfsein ha
you might it DcP cancelled have
You might have cancelled it
b. As er my dan útlake, dan mocht ik wol út myn fel sprongen ha
if he me then out.laughed then might I DcP out my skin jumped have
If he laughed at me like that, I could have gone off the deep end

The examples in (5) involve the modal meiemay. Nowadays, the modal kinnecan would be used in the corresponding A-constructions, as in the example in (6):

Example 6

a. As er my dan útlake, dan hie ik wol út myn fel springe kind
if he me then out.laughed then had I DcP out my skin jump.OI can.PfP
If he laughed at me like that, I could have gone off the deep end
b. ?*As er my dan útlake, dan hie ik wol út myn fel springe mocht
if he me then out.laughed then had I DcP out my skin jump.OI may.PfP
If he laughed at me like that, I could have gone off the deep end

The last example is ungrammatical in the intended reading. The example is grammatical in the reading in which the speaker has permission to fly into a rage. It seems that the meaning of the modal meiemay has undergone a shift from expressing possibility to expressing permission only:

Example 7

Hoeve 'need'
a. Jy hoefden al yn lang gjin hierde boer west te hawwen
you needed DcP in long no rent farmer been to have
Already for quite a while, you would not have had to be a farmer who rents his farm
b. Hie er fan dat tinkbyld west dan hoefde er sa'n belofte net fan har ferge te hawwen
had he of that idea been then needed he such.a promise not of her demanded to have
If he had been of that persuasion, he need not have demanded such a promise from her

What is interesting about this modal is that it selects a to-infinitive. This to-infinitive must participate in the process of verb clustering taking place at the end of the middle field. The marker teto is invariantly present in the six examples presented by Jarich Hoekstra and taken from nineteenth-century literature. Note, though, that hoeveneed is occasionally treated as a verb selecting an ordinary infinitive, as in the following example:

Example 8

Salang't der net by him wekke wurde hoecht
as.long.as there not at him watch.kept be.OI needs
As long as he does not need to be watched over

The corresponding construction with teto would run as follows:

Example 9

Salang't der net by him wekke hoecht te wurden
as.long.as there not at him watch.kept needs to be
As long as he does not need to be watched over

So the verb hoeveneed, and its variant hoege, can either select an ordinary infinitive or a to-infinitive. As a result, the A-construction corresponding to the B-constructions above may either feature the infinitival marker, as in the (a) example below, or it may feature an ordinary infinitive, as in (b) below:

Example 10

a. Jy hiene al yn lang gjin hierde boer hoefd te wêzen
you had DcP in long no rent farmer needed to be
Already for quite a while, you would not have had to be a farmer who rents his farm
b. Jy hiene al yn lang gjin hierde boer wêze hoefd
you had DcP in long no rent farmer be needed
Already for quite a while, you would not have had to be a farmer who rents his farm

The verb doaredare exhibits the same behaviour:

Example 11

a. Ik hie it yn Fryslân net doarst te sizzen
I had it in Fryslân not dared to say
I would not have dared to say it in Fryslân
b. Ik hie it yn Fryslân net sizze doarst
I had it in Fryslân not say dared
I would not have dared to say it in Fryslân

What is interesting about this modal is that it may optionally select a to-infinitive, just like hoeveneed. However, the B-constructions with hoeveneed all involved the infinitival marker, whereas the B-construction with doaredare features the ordinary infinitive. Examples with this verb are probably scarce, seeing that Jarich Hoekstra only presents one example.

The A-construction corresponding to the B-constructions above may either feature the infinitival marker, as in the first example, or it may feature an ordinary infinitive:

Example 12

a. Ik hie it yn Fryslân net doarst te sizzen
I had it in Fryslân not dared to say
I would not have dared to say it in Fryslân
b. Ik hie it yn Fryslân net sizze doarst
I had it in Fryslân not said dared
I would not have dared to say it in Fryslân

It may also be mentioned that the verb doaredare has slowly been changing from being a strong verb (doare – doarst – doarst) to being a regular weak verb (doare – doarde – doard). There is possibly a statistical correlation between the choice of conjugation (strong versus weak) and the choice of selection (ordinary infinitive versus to-infinitive), but, if correct, it is unclear what to conclude from it. Note further that Standard Dutch nowadays features the weak conjugation and the selection of the to-infinitive, which is also the direction of change in Frisian, although it lags behind a little compared to Dutch.

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