The Development of Latin Clause Structure: A Study of the Extended Verb Phrase by Lieven DanckaertThe Development of Latin Clause Structure: A Study of the Extended Verb Phrase by Lieven Danckaert

The Development of Latin Clause Structure: A Study of the Extended Verb Phrase

byLieven Danckaert

Hardcover | July 22, 2017

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 551 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


This book examines Latin word order, and in particular the relative ordering of i) lexical verbs and direct objects (OV vs VO) and ii) auxiliaries and non-finite verbs (VAux vs AuxV). In Latin these elements can freely be ordered with respect to each other, whereas the present-day Romancelanguages only allow for the head-initial orders VO and AuxV. Lieven Danckaert offers a detailed, corpus-based description of these two word order alternations, focusing on their diachronic development in the period from c. 200 BC until 600 AD. The corpus data reveal that some received wisdom needsto be reconsidered: there is in fact no evidence for any major increase in productivity of the order VO during the eight centuries under investigation, and the order AuxV only becomes more frequent in clauses with a modal verb and an infinitive, not in clauses with a BE-auxiliary and a pastparticiple. The book also explores a more fundamental question about Latin syntax, namely whether or not the language is configurational, in the sense that a phrase structure grammar (with "higher-order constituents" such as verb phrases) is needed to describe and analyse Latin word order patterns. Four piecesof evidence are presented that suggest that Latin is indeed a fully configurational language, despite its high degree of word order flexibility. Specifically, it is shown that there is ample evidence for the existence of a verb phrase constituent. The book thus contributes to the ongoing debateregarding the status of configurationality as a language universal.
Lieven Danckaert is a researcher at CNRS and the University of Lille 3. He was previously employed at Ghent University, where he obtained his PhD in 2011. His research focuses on Latin syntax, particularly word order and the use of quantitative, corpus-based methods. His work has been published in journals including Lingua and Transact...
Title:The Development of Latin Clause Structure: A Study of the Extended Verb PhraseFormat:HardcoverDimensions:384 pages, 9.21 × 6.02 × 0.03 inPublished:July 22, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198759525

ISBN - 13:9780198759522

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

Series prefaceAcknowledgementsAbbreviationsA note on glossing conventions1. What is at stake: Word order, configurationality, and the potential for structural ambiguity2. Latin corpus linguistics and the study of language change: Methods, problems and prospect3. Multiple object positions and how to diagnose them4. VOAux: A typologically rare word order pattern5. Changing EPP parameters: Clause structure in Classical and Late Latin6. The development of BE-periphrasesEpilogue: Variable direction of complementation in the Latin clause: A synthesisGlossaryReferences