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      Fronting in Old Spanish

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          Abstract

          The article focuses on a cross-genre study of fronting phenomena in 13 th Century Old Spanish. In particular, we study stage topics and deictic fronting, fronting in quotative inversion, quantifier fronting and information/broad/weak focus fronting comparatively, for the first time, in three types of texts (that is, (a) Cantar de Mío Cid , (b) La Fazienda de Ultra Mar , and (c) Estoria de España and General Estoria) while we compare with equivalent judgements from Modern Spanish in order to establish what exactly has changed. “Fronting” a term which has been used to describe all sorts of configurations ranging from stylistic fronting to focus fronting to non-focus fronting receives here a principled discussion. We show that, overall, fronting with a verum focus interpretation has largely been preserved into Modern Spanish, albeit often restricted, while the most notable change seems to be the loss of a preverbal focus position conveying broad focus. In doing so, we reconcile Leonetti’s ( 2017) claims for an informational partition, which does not divide the fronted element from the verb, but, rather, the fronted element together with the verb from the postverbal subject with our own claims about the syntactic mechanisms which yield this partition. We proceed to conclude that fronting operations are not a derivative of the V2 parameter being operative ( contra  Wolfe 2015).

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          Most cited references69

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          Longman Grammar of Spoken and Written English

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            First language attrition and syntactic subjects: A study of Greek and Italian near-native speakers of English

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              On information structure: Meaning and form

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                2397-1835
                Glossa: a journal of general linguistics
                Ubiquity Press
                2397-1835
                25 June 2020
                2020
                : 5
                : 1
                Affiliations
                [1 ]University of Girona, ES
                [2 ]University of Cambridge, UK
                Article
                10.5334/gjgl.893
                e3f38424-f9b5-4c3a-814d-feceb5ad9b4a
                Copyright: © 2020 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

                Categories
                Research

                General linguistics,Linguistics & Semiotics
                information/broad/weak/unmarked/verum focus,Old and Modern Spanish,fronting,information structure,V2,X/OVS

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