Syntactic agreement in Chinese nominal internal structures


  • Yanxiao Ma Memorial University of Newfoundland


Two nominal internal structures in Mandarin Chinese are introduced in this study, one with the order Demonstrative + Numeral + Classifier + Adjective + Noun, the other with the order Adjective + Demonstrative + Numeral + Classifier + Noun. This study assumes an AgrP between DP and NP (Yoon 1995), and movement of adjectival modifiers from Spec-NP to Spec-AgrP in Mandarin. The 'de' and the pre-'de' segment in the Adjectives undergo a fusion process, incorporating them into a frozen AP, prior to further syntactic operations. The differences between these two options arise from successive AP movement in the latter, which supports Zhang's (2015) generalization. This cyclic movement is triggered by a strong [+foc] feature on the covert head D. This analysis supports a similar approach to left peripheries of CPs and DPs, and also empirically explains the freer position of adjectival modifiers in nominal-internal structures in Mandarin.




How to Cite

Ma, Y. (2017). Syntactic agreement in Chinese nominal internal structures. Linguistica Atlantica, 35(1). Retrieved from