The manner/result complementarity revisited: A syntactic approach

Jaume Mateu, Víctor Acedo-Matellán

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20 Citations (Scopus)


© 2012 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. This chapter argues that the manner/result complementarity (Rappaport Hovav & Levin, 2010), that is, the observation that a verb cannot simultaneously lexicalize manner and result, need not be stipulated, but is derivable from general principles of syntactic computation and properties of the syntax-morphophonology interface. In particular, the complementarity derives from the formal (i.e., non-semantic) fact that a single root cannot simultaneously undergo conflation and incorporation in the lexicalization of a verb (Haugen, 2009). A sharp distinction between syntactically non-transparent conceptual content and syntactically transparent semantic construal is assumed (Mateu, 2002; Ramchand, 2008, i.a.). The manner/result complementarity derives from general syntactic principles and need not and, hence, must not be stipulated as a constraint on the structuring of events. These general principles are also responsible for other complementarities found in the lexicalization of verbs. If our proposal is correct, one should not intend to explain the relevant constraint in event structure terms. The syntactic approach to argument structure assumed in this chapter sheds light on the recalcitrant cases involving manner/result complementarity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe end of argument structure?
Place of PublicationBingley (GB)
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2012

Publication series

NameSyntax and Semantics


  • Argument structure
  • Conflation
  • Incorporation
  • Manner/result complementarity
  • Syntax


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