•  
  •  
 

University of Pennsylvania Working Papers in Linguistics

Abstract

In this paper, I propose a syntactic treatment for Brazilian Portuguese verbal Prefixes. In an empirical level, I show that prefixes a-, en- and es- can contribute with semantic, aspectual and argument structure of the root to each they attach when they combine with v forming a kind of complex head (v-p). On the other hand, the same prefixes can show no structural contribution and no predictable meaning to the verb when attached to some bound root formations. In a theoretical level, I proposed that prefixation contribution is determined by locality domains of attachment instead of resourcing to an explanation in terms of a lexical vs. non lexical formation. The general proposal is that that prefixes can merge in three different places in syntactic structure implying different results to the final structure : a. within rootP; b. outside rootP but not above the first categorizer (cyclic head in terms of Embick 2010); c. above little v or some other categorized structure, working as word modifiers. Within this approach, the distinction among lexical, inner and superlexical prefixes (Markova & Padrosa-Trias 2008) can be treated in terms of locality attachment on syntactic structure, dispensing with a two place theory of word formation. Moreover, the proposal of a “above VP” and “below VP” attachment for prefixes (Svenonius 2004) is too rough to account for the focused BP data since we would have to assume that prefixes a-, en- and es- always attach below VP and this makes the distinction between rootP internal and rootP external prefix attachment impossible.

Share

COinS
 
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.