Nonfinite Structures in Theory and Change

Hardcover | February 15, 2002

byD. Gary Miller

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This book investigates the precise nature of nonfinite structures and explores the ways in which they change. Gary Miller examines a broad range of structures, including traditional infinitives, gerunds, and participles, across different Indo-European (and some non-Indo-European) languages nowand in the past.As structures which are nonfinite in some languages are not so in others, the question arises whether the concept 'nonfinite' has any meaning or explanatory power. In seeking an answer to this conundrum, the author shows that infinitives with subject person agreement, such as in West Greenlandic,Modern Greek, Portuguese, Welsh, and Hungarian, share properties with prototypical nonfinite formations. Professor Miller examines languages with morphologically marked tense on infinitives, including Ancient Greek and Latin, and Modern Turkish. He demonstrates that nonfinite structures that can beassigned non-structural (inherent or semantic) case differ systematically from those with either structural or no case.The book concludes with a substantial history of infinitives, gerunds, and participles in Old and Middle English, which reveals why and how nonfinite structures change and vary over time.Gary Miller1s innovative theoretical reasoning and the wide range of evidence on which it is brought to bear make this book a considerable contribution to the understanding of grammatical change and its formal expression, as well as to the history of English.

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This book investigates the precise nature of nonfinite structures and explores the ways in which they change. Gary Miller examines a broad range of structures, including traditional infinitives, gerunds, and participles, across different Indo-European (and some non-Indo-European) languages nowand in the past.As structures which are non...

D. Gary Miller is Professor of Classics and Linguistics at the University of Florida. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1969 with a dissertation on Studies in Some Forms of the Genitive Singular in Indo-European. He has authored some forty articles on Indo-European, Classical, and General Linguistics. His books include Homer and t...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:484 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 1.2 inPublished:February 15, 2002Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198299605

ISBN - 13:9780198299608

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. Case Checking and Accord2. Tense and Nonfinite Clauses3. Null Subjects and Control4. Plain and Conjugated Infinitives5. West Greenlandic6. Small Clauses and ECM7. The ECM Innovation in English8. Infinitives in Older English9. The -Ing Participle and Perception Complements10. English Gerundials11. History of English Gerundials12. Infinitive, Gerundive, ParticiplePrimary SourcesEditions of Older English Texts