• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show full table of contents
With om

Infinitival clauses introduced by a complementiser can form a complex predicate with an evaluative adjective. The infinitival clause must contain an unexpressed argument that is coreferential with the argument of the complex predication. The unexpressed argument inside the infinitival clause may fulfill the function of subject, direct object or prepositional object.


The infinitival clause forms a complex predicate with the adjective, and the combination is predicated of the argument.

Example 1

De som is maklik om op te lossen
the sum is easy for up to solve
The sum is easy to solve

If the adjective is absent, the infinitive can be predicated of an argument and receives a purpose interpretation:

Example 2

De som is om op te lossen en fan te learen
the sum is for up to solve and of to learn
The purpose of the sum is that you solve it and learn from it

The construction with om for cannot be used attributively:

Example 3

*In (maklik) om op te lossen som
an (easy) for up to solve sum
A sum that is easy to solve

The construction with the complementiser om for is different from the one without it, though an Adjective Phrase (AP) like maklik easy allows both constructions. The predication without om for must target the unexpressed direct object of the infinitival. The predication with om for can target subjects and objects of prepositions as well. The subject of an infinitival is targeted in example (4). The argument of the complex predication is coreferential with the covert theme of the predication, which has the grammatical function of infinitival subject. The experiencer of the complex predicate is coreferential with the agent of the passive infinitival; the agent may be expressed in a by Adposition Phrase (PP).

Example 4

De som is te dreech (foar ús) om (troch ús) oplost te wurden
the sum is too difficult (for us) for (by us) solved to be
The sum is too difficult for us to be solved by us

Prepositional arguments can also be targeted for coreference with the argument that the complex predication is predicated of:

Example 5

a. Doutzen is lekker om nei te sjen
Doutzen is hot for at to see
Doutzen is nice (hot) to look at
b. Langpraters binne fervelend om mei te praten
long.talkers are annoying for with to talk
Wordy people are annoying to talk with