In this paper I demonstrate that in Mòcheno, a German dialect spoken in Northern Italy, scrambling, i.e. the movement of any constituent above sentential adverbs and below the finite verb, is permitted like in Continental Germanic languages. Unlike in these languages, however, leftward movement is not triggered by specificity or scope-fixing (A-scrambling) or by the need to check any topic or contrastive/new-information focus discourse-features (A’-scrambling). By relying on information structure, the syntax of modal particles and the distribution of scrambling in sentences with fronted operators, I provide evidence that scrambling in Mòcheno triggers a verum focus reading on the truth value of the sentence and involves a type of focus movement to a FocusP in CP. That scrambling can be associated with verum focus is a unicum among Continental Germanic languages, which I show follows from a reanalyis of the properties of Germanic focus scrambling under the influence of Romance anaphoric anteposition.

Scrambling as verum focus: German scrambling meets Romance anaphoric anteposition

COGNOLA, FEDERICA
2017

Abstract

In this paper I demonstrate that in Mòcheno, a German dialect spoken in Northern Italy, scrambling, i.e. the movement of any constituent above sentential adverbs and below the finite verb, is permitted like in Continental Germanic languages. Unlike in these languages, however, leftward movement is not triggered by specificity or scope-fixing (A-scrambling) or by the need to check any topic or contrastive/new-information focus discourse-features (A’-scrambling). By relying on information structure, the syntax of modal particles and the distribution of scrambling in sentences with fronted operators, I provide evidence that scrambling in Mòcheno triggers a verum focus reading on the truth value of the sentence and involves a type of focus movement to a FocusP in CP. That scrambling can be associated with verum focus is a unicum among Continental Germanic languages, which I show follows from a reanalyis of the properties of Germanic focus scrambling under the influence of Romance anaphoric anteposition.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/3720582
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