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, 2019. 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 July 2019

The expression of purpose in Old English

The expression of purpose in Old English

Chapter:
(p.27) 2 The expression of purpose in Old English
Source:
The Rise of the To-Infinitive
Author(s):

Bettelou Los (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199274765.003.0002

This chapter describes the earliest syntactic function of the to-infinitive: that of purpose adjunct, as in Present-day English, I left early to catch the train. Data from Gothic and Old English show that this function could be encoded by three expressions: the du- or to-infinitive, the du- or to-prepositional phrase, and the subjunctive clause introduced by ei in Gothic and by þæt in Old English. It has been claimed in the literature that the bare infinitive could also express purpose in Old English, but a closer look at the data shows that these infinitives occur after verbs of motion and rest, and are parallel to the present participles in Present-day English, he came running, he sat thinking. Such bare infinitives do not express purpose by simultaneity.

Keywords:   bare infinitive, category change, purpose adjunct, prepositional phrase, Gothic, verbs of motion, verbs of rest, Old English syntax, Middle English syntax

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 .