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University of Pennsylvania Working Papers in Linguistics

Abstract

The identity condition in ellipsis has received a great deal of attention in formal studies, one of the most prominent topics of inquiry being its precise nature. This paper contributes to this debate by examining a rather ignored equative (equality comparative) context where unexpected differential object marking is obligatory irrespective of its canonical features. The data come from Romance (taking Romanian as a representative sample) and one Indo-Aryan variety, namely Nepali. We show that such marking poses a challenge to most theories examining the precise nature of the identity condition in ellipsis and comparatives. The answer we propose follows mixed theories (Mártin González 2016); crucially, we also show that (some types of) Case identity can be reduced to the requirement of certain structures to manipulate arguments instead of predicates (oftype). Our remarks are relevant to licensing of arguments and identity conditions that go beyond ellipsis.

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