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Preverbal Number Phrases in Mandarin and the Scalar Reasoning of jiu
Cheng-Yu Edwin Tsai
554-561 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


This paper addresses the licensing problem of indefinite/numeral subjects in Mandarin (Li 1998, Tsai 2001). It proposes that what have been deemed "exceptional" cases, where such subjects are grammatical without an expected licenser, are inherently conditional constructions. The meaning of the preverbal particle jiu is shown to be both scalar and modal, and it is also demonstrated how modal sentences without jiu come to license indefinite/numeral subjects through a similar conditional structure.

Published in

Proceedings of the 34th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Aaron Kaplan, Abby Kaplan, Miranda K. McCarvel, and Edward J. Rubin
Table of contents
Printed edition: $410.00