DOI: 10.1162/ling_a_00512 ISSN: 0024-3892

3/4 of a Monster: On Mixed Shifty Agreement in Telugu

Troy Messick
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Language and Linguistics

Within the typology of embedded pronouns, there are languages that allow for non–first person pronouns to apparently control first person agreement morphology when in certain embedded contexts. This type of agreement displays some degree of optionality: it is also possible for the pronoun to control the expected agreement morphology given the pronoun’s own overt morphological features. This squib provides new data from the Dravidian language Telugu showing that when the embedded pronoun controls agreement on two separate targets, agreement may be uniform across the two targets or the two targets can mismatch in one direction, but crucially not the other. I show how this paradigm can be accounted for using the assumptions that the pronouns in question are similar to so-called hybrid nouns and that agreement features are restricted in principled ways.

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