Operator movement and verb second phenomena in basque



Argitaratua api 2, 1987
Jon Ortiz de Urbina


This article presents an anlysis of wh-formation and focalization in Basque, framed within Chomsky's 'Barriers' system. In language like Basque and Hungarian, both foci and wh-words have to appear in a position immediately preceding the inflected verb. Rather than allowing, as a parametric option, such operators to move to a special pre-verbal FOCUS position, it is claimed that the correct parameter involved is the level of operator movement. In much the same way as wh-words may move to SPEC at LF (Chinese) or at S-structure (English, Basque), foci may also move at LF (English) or at S-structure (Basque). The fact that both types of operators have to precede the verb is interpreted as another instance of the well-known V2 (verb-secont) phenomenon, whereby inflected verbs move to the COMP position  when SPEC is occupied by an operator, as observed in English wh-formation. An extension of ths anlysis to the negative operator ez 'not' is also examined, attempting to explain inversion phenomena in negative clauses.

How to Cite

Ortiz de Urbina, Jon. 1987. «Operator Movement and Verb Second Phenomena in Basque». Anuario Del Seminario De Filología Vasca "Julio De Urquijo" 21 (2):321-55. https://doi.org/10.1387/asju.7843.
Abstract 94 | PDF (English) Downloads 266