Deriving and Interpreting Ka(karimusubi) in Premodern Japanese

  • Moreno MITROVIĆ University of Cambridge
Keywords: Old Japanese, syntax-semantics of focus, particles


This paper provides a new syntax and semantics for kakarimusubi (KM), a focus construction prominent in the grammar of Old Japanese (OJ) and Early Middle (Classical) Japanese (CJ), which diachronically developed into the interrogative construction in Modern Japanese (MdJ) headed by the ka particle. Adopting Chierchia & Caponigro’s (2013) novel analysis of Free Relatives (FRs) as embedded interrogatives, an FR-based analysis of KM is proposed so as to obtain a compositional semantic analysis of this focus construction as well as an account of the adnominal marking of the presuppositional musubi component of this grammatical construction.


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Author Biography

Moreno MITROVIĆ, University of Cambridge
Graduate research student in Linguistics


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Supporting Agencies
John Whitman, National Institute for Japanese language and Linguistics, Tokyo, Arts & Humanities Research Council, UK, University of Cambridge, Jesus College
How to Cite
MITROVIĆM. (2015). Deriving and Interpreting Ka(karimusubi) in Premodern Japanese. Acta Linguistica Asiatica, 4(3), 9-28.
Research Articles