A new analysis of Welsh agreement


  • Frances Dowle University of Oxford


agreement, asymmetry, pronouns, Welsh, weak pronouns, strong pronouns, index agreement, Lexical Functional Grammar


INDEX agreement (Wechsler & Zlatić, 2003) in Welsh occurs only with weak (or ‘dependent’) pronouns, and not with nouns. This poses challenges for the standard model of agreement in LFG, in which agreement is modelled as feature unification (Haug forthcoming). This paper presents data which is not addressed in the previous LFG account of Welsh agreement (Sadler 1997), including data regarding focus-fronting constructions. It introduces the independent-dependent pronoun distinction and overcomes an empirical
challenge to the previous account: in the previous analysis, pronouns have optional PRED values, which means they are not prevented from occurring in the ‘gap’ of long-distance dependencies. Through the use of lexical sharing schemata (Wescoat 2002, Bresnan 2021), the distribution of the dependent pronouns is appropriately restricted.