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Multiple Determiners in Magahi: A Case Beyond Agreement

Chandan Kumar

Abstract: The paper proposes that Magahi, a modern Indo-Aryan language, presents the phenomenon of multiple determiners in the syntax of modification and argues that the phenomenon is not a simple case of agreement in definiteness in the noun phrase whereby the additional determiner carries a similar semantic feature. I present examples that contest the possibility of it as a case of concord or agree. For the semantic motivation of the phenomenon, following Plank (2003) & Kumar (2020), the paper claims that the definite determiner /-wa/ in Magahi is not an exclusively dedicated definiteness morpheme, and therefore, the language needs an additional linguistic element. I claim that the additional determiner weakens the definiteness of the definite determiner /-wa/, creating a projection problem in the overall referentiality of the NP. By further describing the individual semantics of the determiner on the noun and the adjective, the paper claims that the determiner on the adjective exudes the semantics of specificity that can co-occur with the numeral. However, the determiner on the noun has the semantics of familiarity or identifiability. The paper further provides an exhaustive account of semantic and structural description and motivation of the phenomenon.
Keywords: noun / Magahi / Agreement / adjective / structural / claims / semantic / language / motivation / phenomenon

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