Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Rise of the To-Infinitive$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Bettelou Los

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199274765

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199274765.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 22 September 2018

The category of the to-infinitive

The category of the to-infinitive

Chapter:
(p.153) 7 The category of the to-infinitive
Source:
The Rise of the To-Infinitive
Author(s):

Bettelou Los (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199274765.003.0007

This chapter argues that the to-infinitive cannot be analysed as a prepositional phrase in Old English. Its distribution is no longer that of a to-PP, its dative inflection has fossilized and does not behave like the dative inflection found on true N-heads, and it takes accusative objects rather than the genitive objects that would be expected if it was still nominal. Evidence from relative clauses, the position of the to-infinitival object, and the emergence of an overt complementizer — for — in early Middle English all argue for clausal rather than phrasal status. The most telling piece of evidence is the fact that the to-infinitive has entered into competition with the finite subjunctive clause and can be seen to gradually oust it in a number of environments. All the available evidence suggests that the to-infinitive was being analyzed as a non-finite subjunctive already in OE.

Keywords:   to-infinitival relative, finite, complementizer, dative inflection, derivation, infinitival marker, subjunctive, verb complement, syntactic reanalysis

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .