Chris Golston – Phonological Movement

Models of grammar from the 1980s assumed that syntax is ‘phonology free’, that word-order is all syntax, no phonology. Well-known phenomena like second-position clitics, however, showed clearly that phonology has to influence syntax somehow. Current work either has syntax and phonology co-present and keeps movement restricted to syntax, or has synax precede phonology and posits movement in phonology as well as in syntax. We’ll look at work in both frameworks.

Slides available here

Day 1

  • Phonology-free syntax (Zwicky & Pullum 1986ab) 
  • Syntax-phonology interaction (Selkirk 1986; 1995
  •   Phonology-syntax interaction (Zec & Inkelas 1990)

Day 2

  • Second-position clitics
  • Modern Greek (Revithiadou 2006)
  • Hittite (Agbayani & Golston 2010a)

Day 3

  • Ancient Greek (Devine & Stephens 2000, Agbayani & Golston 2010b)
  •  Latin (Devine & Stephens 2006, Agbayani & Golston 2016)

Day 4

  • Russian (Sekerina 1997, Henderer 2010)
  • Ukrainian (Féry et al. 2007, Teliga 2011)
  • Slovenian (Corona 2011)

Day 5

  • Irish (Bennet et al. 2016)
  • Japanese (Agbayani et al. 2015, Agbayani & Ishii 2019)


Agbayani, Brian, & Chris Golston (2010a). Phonological movement in Classical Greek. Language 86.1, 133-167.

Agbayani, Brian, & Chris Golston (2010a). Second-position is first-position: Wackernagels Law and the role of clausal conjunction. Indogermanische Forschungen 115, 1-21.

Agbayani, Brian, & Chris Golston (2016). Phonological constituents and their movement in Latin. Phonology 33, 1–42.

Agbayani, Brian, Chris Golston & Toru Ishii (2015). Syntactic and prosodic movement in Japanese. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 33.1 47-77.

Bašić, Monika (2004). Nominal subextraction and the structure of NP in Serbian and English. Doctoral dissertation, Tromsø.

Bennett, Ryan, Emily Elfner & James McCloskey (2016). Lightest to the right: an apparently anomalous displacement in Irish. Linguistic Inquiry 47.2,, 169–234.

Corona, Keith (2011). Phonological movement in Serbian. Ms, California State University Fresno.

Danckaert, Lieven (2012). Latin embedded clauses: the left periphery. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: Benjamins.

Devine, A. M. & Laurence D. Stephens (2000). Discontinuous syntax: hyperbaton in Greek. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Devine, A. M. & Laurence D. Stephens (2006). Latin word order: structured meaning and information. Oxford & New York: Oxford University Press.

Féry, Caroline, Alla Paslawska & Gisbert Fanselow (2007) Nominal split constructions in Ukrainian. Journal of the Slavic Linguistics Society.

Henderer, Dasha (2010). Prosodic movement in colloquial Russian. Ms, California State University Fresno.

Revithiadou, Anthi (2006) Prosodic filters on syntax: an interface account of second position clitics. Lingua 116, 79–111.

Sekerina, Irina (1997) The syntax and processing of scrambling constructions in Russian. Doctoral dissertation, City University of New York.

Selkirk, Elisabeth (1986). On derived domains in sentence phonology. Phonology Yearbook 3, 371–405.

Teliga, Victoria (2011) Phonological movement in Ukrainian. MA thesis, CSUFresno.

Zec, Draga & Sharon Inkelas (1990). Prosodically constrained syntax. In Sharon Inkelas & Draga Zec (ed.) The phonology–syntax connection. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 365–378.

Zwicky, Arnold M. & Geoffrey K. Pullum (1986a). The principle of phonology-free syntax: introductory remarks. Ohio State University Working Papers in Linguistics 32, 63–91.

Zwicky, Arnold M. & Geoffrey K. Pullum (1986b). Two spurious counterexamples to the principle of phonology-free syntax. Ohio State University Working Papers in Linguistics 32, 92–99.