Complementizers

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6. Complementizers

On the one hand, there are complementizers in the strict sense: that, or, if, then, to, and on the other hand there are combinations of a preposition and a complementizer: doordat 'through.that/because of', nadat 'afther.that/after', omdat 'to.that/because', opdat 'on.that/so that', totdat 'until.that/until', voordat 'before.that/before/until'. Furthermore there are complementizers of the type terwijl 'meanwhile', alhoewel 'although', tenzij 'unless', alvorens 'all/already.forward/before'. In the CGN tagset, these types are all classified as complementizers. This does not seem to be an optimal situation: voor 'for' is from this point of view a preposition, but voordat 'for.that' a complementizer. We therefore decided to assign two different tags to the combination preposition-complementizer; and for this reason we split these combinations in the transcriptions (doordat will be transcribed as door dat).

60000

C

6.1

Inflection

Complementizer agreement constructions involve, just like inflected verbs, person and number features. We therefore expect that the tagging of complementizers corresponds to a high degree with finite verbs in this respect. The question then arises whether these features should also be indicated on complementizers in dialects that lack complementizer agreement. From experience from the written questionnaire, we know it is sometimes difficult to see whether there is agreement or not. This is an argument in favour of treating all complementizers alike: not assigning person and number features to any complementizer. The complementizer (to be) is part of a cluster with the subject pronoun in many cases. The complementizer is redundant. Therefore we decided to select a minial feature set for complementizers. The subject close to the complementizer provides the necessary person and number features. The subject is recognizable because it is assigned the SUBJ tag.

The attribute INFL indicates the presence of an audible morphological marking for categories like person, number, gender, case, mode etc. The following rule applies: INFL is only assigned if the word can also occur without the inflectional morpheme.

61000

C (INFL)

The following tags provide information regarding the encountered inflection:

61100 C (INFL) -(e)n
61200 C (INFL) -(e)t
61300 C (INFL) -e
61400 C (INFL) -(e)s
61500 C (INFL) -st
61600 C (INFL) OT Other inflectional morphology

6.2

Complementizer-clitic-
cluster

This is about enclisis: weak personal pronouns that are phonologically connected to the complementizer, and, moreover, that form one word with the complementizer. In such cases, it is not always clear where the (word) boundaries are, especially if you are dealing with dialects that have visible agreement (e.g. attem '[lit.:] as-t-he.ACC(used NOM)', dakzekik (Standard Dutch: dat ik ze) '[lit.:] that.I-them.ACC-I-I', ovveme 'if.-e-we.ACC(used NOM)'. We use two tiers in the transcriptions: in one (informant or assistant interviewer tier) we transcribe the non-analyzed cluster (non-divided cluster), and the cluster tier contains the divided/split cluster. The assignment of tags is done at both levels/in both tiers: the undivided cluster gets the tag for C-clitic-cluster, and the complementizer and other elements (of the divided cluster) will get separate tags in the cluster tier.

62000

C CL-CL

6.3

Complementizer type

This tag can be assigned at the informant tier or assistant tier (if the complementizer is not part of a cluster) or at the cluster tier (if that is the case).

63000

C TYPE

63100 C TYPE COORD Coordinating complementizer, e.g. and, or.
63200 C TYPE SUBORD Subordinating complementizer, e.g. whether.
63210 C TYPE SUBORD FIN Finite subordinating complementizer
C TYPE SUBORD FIN Q Interrogative finite subordinating complementizer
E.g. I asked whether you knew. Words like why, when, how are treated as interrogative pronouns and not as complementizers.
63212 C TYPE SUBORD FIN DECL Declarative finite subordinating complementizer.
E.g. if, that and their dialectal counterparts. Also then, while, now, as soon as, since, before, if, unless. Then is a complementizer following a comparative, but not when it is initiating a 'result'-sentence in an 'if'-sentence (if...- then...); then is an adverb, because inversion follows (in Dutch: als je niet ophoudt, dan word ik boos, '[lit.:] if you not stop, then will.be I angry'). Words that can be followed by a DP (since, before, except, without) are considered as adpositions. Potentially occurring complementizers in relative clauses (E.g. de man die dat ik gezien heb, '[lit.:] the man that/who that I seen have') are declarative as well.
63220 C TYPE SUBORD INF Subordinating complementizer, introducing an infinitival subordinate clause. In Standard Dutch om, whereas many dialects employ van in these constructions, and also voor.
63221 C TYPE SUBORD INF Q Subordinating complementizer that introduces an interrogative infinitival subordinate clause. Possibly if occurs in these constructions.
63230 C TYPE SUBORD NON-S Complementizers can introduce subordinate clauses, but also smaller phrases, for example in comparatives: richer than Fons, not as big as John. In the latter case the distinction 'finite' vs. 'infinitival' does not apply and the tag non-sentential is assigned.
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