Saturday, February 22, 2014

Determiner in Latin

So we explored English determiners in syntax class last week. Dull dreary stuff, but completely necessary to the machinery of language. One of the rules in English is that you can't put two determiners onto one noun. That is
*this the cat
is no good. And it set me to thinking. Latin obviously has neither definite nor indefinite articles. But it does have demonstrative adjectives and other similar sorts of things. Which further set me to wondering whether Latin had a rule against two determiners on one noun. Some very cursory searches have led me to realize that
nullus ille
isn't an attested construction. But
ipse ille
is attested, though really uncommon. I'm wondering if I can fiddle with the results enough to see if the pronomial sorts of things aren't in complementary distribution.

Yet another thing to think about for future research.