The Classes of Old English Inaction VerbsLinking, Alternations and Constructions

  1. Ana Elvira Ojanguren López
Supervised by:
  1. Francisco Javier Martín Arista Director

Defence university: Universidad de La Rioja

Year of defence: 2019

  1. Francisco José Cortés Rodríguez Chair
  2. Luisa García García Secretary
  3. Javier Pérez Guerra Committee member

Type: Thesis


This thesis deals with the syntax and semantics of Old English. To be more precise, it focuses on a group of verbs that can be called inaction verbs (roughly corresponding to Present-Day English end, try, fail, forbid, hinder and refrain) and aims at determining the class membership of these verbs. This is done on the basis of the meaning components and the grammatical behaviour of the verbs in question, including the syntactic constructions and the argument realization alternations in which these verbs are found. The theoretical model draws on Role and Reference Grammar and the framework of verb classes and alternations. The data are gathered from various lexicographical and textual sources of Old English and checked against the syntactic parsing provided by the York-Toronto-Helsinki Parsed Corpus of Old English. The main conclusions are drawn on the questions of class membership, constructions and alternations. Conclusions are also reached with respect to variation and competition