Datives with psych nouns and adjectives in Basque

Fernández, Beatriz; Zúñiga, Fernando; Berro, Ane (2020). Datives with psych nouns and adjectives in Basque. Folia Linguistica, 54(2), pp. 1-50. Mouton de Gruyter 10.1515/folia-2020-2050

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This paper explores the formal expression of two Basque dative argument types in combination with psych nouns and adjectives, in intransitive and transitive clauses: (i) those that express the experiencer, and (ii) those that express the stimulus of the psychological state denoted by the psych noun and adjective . In the intransitive structure involving a dative experiencer (DatExpIS), the stimulus is in the absolutive case, and the intransitive copula izan ‘be’ shows both dative and absolutive agreement. This construction basically corresponds to those built upon the piacere type of psychological verbs typified in Belletti & Rizzi’s (1988) three-way classification of Italian psych verbs. In the intransitive structure involving a dative stimulus (DatStimIS), the experiencer is marked by absolutive case, and the same intransitive copula shows both absolutive and dative agreement (with the latter corresponding to the dative stimulus and not to the experiencer). We show that the behavior of the dative argument in the two constructions is just the opposite of each other regarding a number of morphosyntactic tests, including agreement, constituency, hierarchy and selection. Additionally, we explore two parallel transitive constructions that involve either a dative experiencer and an ergative stimulus (DatExpTS) or a dative stimulus and an ergative experiencer (DatStimTS), which employ the transitive copula *edun ‘have’. Considering these configurations, we propose an extended and more fine-grained typology of psych predicates.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Linguistics and Literary Studies > Institute of Linguistics

UniBE Contributor:

Zúñiga, Fernando


400 Language > 410 Linguistics
400 Language > 490 Other languages




Mouton de Gruyter




Fernando Zúñiga

Date Deposited:

18 Sep 2020 15:08

Last Modified:

18 Sep 2020 15:08

Publisher DOI:






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