Note sur les pronoms dits "intensifs" du basque



Argitaratua 1988-04-02
Georges Rebuschi


This paper examines the relationship between ordinary, reflexive and emphatic pronouns in different varieties of Basque from a contrastive viewpoint and with a view to checking the following interpretation of the "Avoid Pronoun Principle": other things being equal, anaphoric items are preferred to emphatic ones, which in turn have precedence over ordinary pronominals. First, a comparison of the use of the reflexive genitive bere in Axular's Gero, published in Labourdin Bsq. in 1643, and that of both bere and the pure emphatic bera in the translation of that text into 18th C. Biscayan, shows that when the morpho-syntactic context prevents the inherent genitive bere from appearing, the emphatic item bera takes over. The Souletin adaptation of a recent Labourdin translation of the N.T. confirms this analysis. A wider look at the pronominal systems of the Souletin and Guipuzcoan dialects also shows that emphatic pronominals can be used in spite of their being bound within their binding or governing category: their licensing results from the interaction of the morpho-syntactic blocking of the anaphor, and the discourse-linked fact that they do not merely denote coreference: in addition to that, they also indicate that their antecedent, whatever it is, is unexpected  (a notion already defended in Faltz's dissertation (1977)). Finally, another dimension is introduced, which draws upon the distinction between "light" and "heavy" (generally, but not necessarily, compound) item; thus it appears that bere and bera are not only an unemphatic anaphor and an emphatic pronominal respectively, but also belong to two other distinct paradigms: bere (just as the pronominal genitive haren) is a "light" element, whereas bera is a "heavy" one, as is corroborated by its genitive form ber(h)aren - and just as is too the complex reflexive expression bere buru(a), 'himself', lit. 'his (own) head'.

Nola aipatu

Rebuschi, Georges. 1988. «Note Sur Les Pronoms Dits "intensifs" Du Basque». Anuario Del Seminario De Filología Vasca "Julio De Urquijo" 22 (3):827-44.
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