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Variation in DativesA Microcomparative Perspective$
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Beatriz Fernandez and Ricardo Etxepare

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199937363

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199937363.001.0001

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Dative versus Accusative and the Nature of Inherent Case

Dative versus Accusative and the Nature of Inherent Case

(p.144) Chapter 5 Dative versus Accusative and the Nature of Inherent Case
Variation in Datives

Jóhannes Gísli Jónsson

Oxford University Press

This chapter argues that inherent datives in Icelandic are found with three classes of two-place verbs: emission verbs, verbs of ballistic motion, and pour verbs. Since the object of a motion verb is a theme, this kind of inherent dative is at odds with Woolford’s (2006) theory of possible case types across languages. It is also shown that themes with inherent dative case are found among verbs displaying variation between accusative and dative objects, ball verbs, and verbs of mixing or creating. The dative with these verbs expresses ballistic motion or mixing, as opposed to forceful contact or creation/preparation, and this is fully consistent with the case marking of objects showing no variation.

Keywords:   dative, accusative, object, inherent case, motion verb, variation

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