Natural Language & Linguistic Theory

, Volume 26, Issue 4, pp 795–832

Object-sharing as Symmetric Sharing: predicate clefting and serial verbs in Dàgáárè

Original paper


Dàgáárè (a Gur language) allows various patterns of predicate clefting together with object pied-piping. This article investigates interactions of Predicate Cleft Constructions (PCCs) and object-sharing Serial Verb Constructions (SVCs) in Dàgáárè and argues that the object in object-sharing SVCs is symmetrically shared. Namely, we argue, building on Citko (2005), that it is an instance of Parallel Merge. Thus we present support for Baker’s (1989) insight of the Double-Headedness and against Collins’ (1997) VP-shell structure with a pro. This kind of empirical evidence is not available in other languages (cf. Baker 1989, Collins 1997 among others) and hence Dàgáárè provides a novel argument for a permissible structure of object-sharing SVCs and the availability of symmetric structure in UG.


Predicate cleft Serial verbs Object-sharing Double-Headedness Pied-piping Symmetry Parallel Merge Multi-dominance 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of LinguisticsUniversity of VictoriaVictoriaCanada
  2. 2.Department of LinguisticsUniversity of Hong KongHong KongChina

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