Natural Language & Linguistic Theory

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 607–658 | Cite as

Negative concord with polyadic quantifiers

The case of Romanian
  • Gianina Iordăchioaia
  • Frank Richter


In this paper we develop a syntax-semantics of negative concord in Romanian within a constraint-based lexicalist framework. We show that n-words in Romanian are best treated as negative quantifiers which may combine by resumption to form polyadic negative quantifiers. Optionality of resumption explains the existence of simple sentential negation readings alongside double negation readings. We solve the well-known problem of defining general semantic composition rules for translations of natural language expressions in a logical language with polyadic quantifiers by integrating our higher-order logical object language in Lexical Resource Semantics (LRS), whose constraint-based composition mechanisms directly support a systematic syntax-semantics for negative concord with polyadic quantification in Head-driven Phrase Structure Grammar (HPSG).


Negative concord Romanian Polyadic quantifiers Head-driven phrase structure grammar Lexical resource semantics 



We would like to thank five anonymous reviewers and our NLLT editor, Louise McNally, for insightful criticism and numerous suggestions for improvements. It is only due to their persistent requests that the presentation of LRS became as self-contained as it is. Students at Universität Tübingen and the audience of the 2009 International HPSG Conference in Göttingen asked for clarifications that informed subsequent modifications. Christopher Piñón and Ivan Sag went to great lengths to provide extensive comments that led to substantive revisions and what we hope is a much more lucid line of argumentation than in earlier drafts. Janina Radó did the proofreading, bringing our thoughts into readable shape. Without Manfred Sailer we would not have written this paper. Barbara Partee has much more to do with it than meets the eye: Thank you!


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Linguistik: AnglistikUniversität StuttgartStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.Institut für England- und Amerikastudien, Abteilung LinguistikGoethe Universität Frankfurt a.M.Frankfurt am MainGermany

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