Natural Language Semantics

, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 277–314 | Cite as

Decomposing notions of adjectival transitivity in Navajo

Article

Abstract

Points of variation manifested by adjectives crosslinguistically have received much recent attention in the literature. This paper argues that one way in which adjectives may differ (crosslinguistically or within a single language) is in their projection of a degree argument position in the syntax. Under standard analyses of adjectival meaning, semantic transitivity implies syntactic transitivity. However, the Navajo data presented in this paper suggests that while all Navajo adjectives have a degree argument in their semantics, syntactic projection of the degree argument is only licensed by special morphology on the adjective.

Keywords

Adjectives Degree semantics Comparison Transitivity Navajo 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of LinguisticsUniversity of Massachusetts at AmherstAmherstUSA

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