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Agreement alternations with quantified nominals in Modern Hebrew1

  • GABI DANON (a1)

Cross-linguistically, quantified noun phrases (QNPs) trigger one of four agreement patterns: with the quantifier, with the noun, default agreement, or semantic agreement. This paper focuses on agreement alternations in Hebrew, and argues that they follow not from variations in hierarchical structure but from the availability of multiple means of assigning values to the QNP's features. Building upon the index-concord analysis of Wechsler & Zlatić (2003) and adapting it to the Minimalist framework, it is argued that certain agreement patterns are the result of the quantifier bearing a set of abstract features that do not match its morphologically-triggered ones. Variations in QNP agreement patterns are then argued to be subject to constraints at the interfaces of syntax with both semantics and morphology. Overall, it is claimed that even apparent cases of non-local agreement with non-nominative NPs do not really pose a counterexample to established models of agreement, and that this supports the view that the system of ϕ-features cannot be simply an unstructured bundle of morphological features.

Corresponding author
Author's address: Department of English, Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan 52900,
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This research was supported by the Israel Science Foundation (grant No. 853/11). I am also very grateful to three anonymous Journal of Linguistics referees for their valuable comments and suggestions. All remaining errors are of course my own.The following abbreviations are used in example glosses in this article: 1 = first person; 3 = third person; aux = auxiliary; def = definite; f = feminine; fut = future; gen = genitive; hab = habitual; impf = imperfective; indef = indefinite; m = masculine; n = neuter; neg = negation; nom = nominative; om = object marker; p = plural; pprt = past participle; s = singular.

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