Abstract and Keywords
We compare periphrastic (analytic, multiword) constructions with the synthetic (morphological) inflection of verbs, nouns, and adjectives. We summarize recent characterizations starting with the canonical type, in which a syntactic construction realizes cells in an inflectional paradigm which is otherwise defined by morphological features (‘feature intersection’), as in the Latin passive perfect periphrasis, and sketch various types of non-canonicity, including ‘anti-periphrasis’, in which only a small minority of lexemes have non-periphrastic realization of a given set of inflectional properties. We discuss criteria for distinguishing periphrasis from ordinary function word syntax, and especially the problems posed by clitics for the concept ‘multiword’ (the Serbian-Croatian future tense, the Hausa ‘genitive linker’, and verbal clitics in Bulgarian/Macedonian). We conclude with brief typological remarks.
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