Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

Determiner spreading

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In linguistics, determiner spreading (DS) is the appearance of more than one determiner associated with a noun phrase, usually marking an adjective as well as the noun itself. The extra determiner has been called an adjectival determiner. Typical examples involve multiple occurrences of the definite article or definiteness marking, such as is found in Modern Greek:

(1)

Determiner spreading in Greek is not obligatory, and it contrasts with a non-spreading example:

(2)

Researchers have tried to elucidate the nature of the difference (both syntactically and semantically) between these two kinds of structures. One widely accepted conclusion is that the determiner spreading structure requires a kind of focus, usually contrastive, on the adjective (so that (1) is appropriate as where I bought the RED dress (, not the BLUE one) would be) and that the adjective in question must be intersective (so no determiner spreading is possible in the equivalent of the former minister, Greek o proigoumenos (*o) ipurgos), and that loose compounds cannot participate in this:

(3)

When determiner spreading involves the definite article, such noun phrases are sometimes called polydefinites. Determiner spreading is also found in Albanian, and in certain Germanic varieties; in some dialects of Swedish, it has also been reported to occur with the indefinite article.

References

Determiner spreading Wikipedia


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