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BY 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Mouton August 29, 2022

Pronominalization and clitic doubling in Syrian and Omani Arabic

Peter Hallman and Rashid Al-Balushi
From the journal Linguistics

Abstract

This article treats cliticization of a pronoun to a syntactic host and doubling of the clitic pronoun with a non-pronominal counterpart in Syrian and Omani Arabic. Although the two varieties are closely related and the morphological paradigms they display are very similar, the pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling patterns they display are quite different. We trace this difference to a basic difference in whether the relevant syntactic processes are sensitive to intervention effects in the two dialects, with the result being that the restrictiveness of pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling patterns parallel the restrictiveness of basic word order patterns – whether double-object constructions are ‘symmetric’ or ‘asymmetric’ – with Syrian being the more restrictive of the two varieties.

1 Introduction

In this article, we compare patterns of word order, pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling in two varieties of Arabic – Syrian, a Levantine variety, and Omani, a Peninsular variety. We use the term ‘pronominalization’ to refer to the occurrence of a nominal in the form of a pronominal enclitic of a syntactic host. ‘Clitic pronoun doubling’ refers to the co-occurrence of a clitic pronoun on a host with a non-pronominal counterpart in the appropriate argument position. The two varieties of Arabic examined here differ morphologically in that the non-pronominal counterpart of a clitic pronoun in clitic doubling constructions bears an overt grammatical marker in Syrian (like in certain Romance languages) but not in Omani (like in certain Balkan languages). We show that word order in Syrian Arabic ditransitive constructions matches the ‘asymmetric’ language type, in which word order is strict and only the leftmost object in the verb phrase may be pronominalized, clitic doubled, or promoted to subject in the passive. Omani Arabic is a ‘symmetric’ language in which the internal arguments of a ditransitive verb may occur in either order, and either may be pronominalized, clitic doubled or promoted to subject in the passive.

We claim that the difference in symmetry stems from a difference in whether these syntactic processes are subject to ‘intervention’, that is, whether a process affecting a term can ‘pass over’ another term of the same type. The morphological difference in the marking of the double does not appear to play any role. To this end, we investigate two kinds of ditransitive constructions that are found in both Syrian and Omani. One is the typical transfer-of-possession construction found with verbs like ʕaṭa ‘give’, familiar from other languages. The other is that found with causative derivatives of transitive verbs, such as labbas ‘to dress (someone [in] something)’, morphologically derived from libis (Syrian) / labas (Omani) ‘to put on (something)’. Both transfer-of-possession verbs and causative verbs display a complement frame alternation between a double-object construction (with two direct DP arguments) and a prepositional construction (with one DP and one PP argument). We show that the two frames are subject to the same generalizations governing pronominalization and clitic doubling, regardless of whether they are headed by a transfer-of-possession verb or a causative verb, and therefore that the restrictions in question appear to be structural, not tied directly to the thematic roles the objects bear. We expand on the significance of this in Section 2.2. In the service of establishing the correspondence between thematic roles and syntactic hierarchies, we refer to the objects of a verb by the thematic role they bear, rather than ‘direct’ or ‘indirect’ object, ‘primary’ or ‘secondary’ object, etc. But we emphasize here at the outset that our analysis does not ultimately make reference to thematic roles, but instead to the syntactic hierarchy underlying thematic role assignment.

The discussion begins with a description of the basic pronominalization and clitic doubling facts in ordinary transitive constructions in Syrian Arabic in Section 2, followed by a discussion of pronominalization and clitic doubling in ditransitive constructions in Sections 2.1 and 2.2 respectively. Section 3 shows the basic Omani pronominalization and clitic doubling facts in transitive constructions, and Sections 3.1 and 3.2 the pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling facts in ditransitive constructions in Omani, respectively. Section 4 draws the conclusion that Syrian and Omani Arabic differ parametrically in terms of whether syntactic processes are subject to intervention.

Pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling have been previously documented in Syrian and neighboring varieties (Aoun 1993; Brustad 2000: 353–358; Cowell 1964: 435, 539–547; Feghali 1928: 362–363; Koutsoudas 1967; Levin 1987; Shlonsky 1997: 177–196). This article examines constraints on these phenomena in detail. For this purpose, we report judgments elicited from five native speakers for a paradigm of test sentences constructed by the authors to investigate these constraints. The Syrian native speaker consultants are between the ages of 33 and 50 at the time of this writing. They are all from the city of Damascus. Syria displays a degree of linguistic heterogeneity (Behnstedt 1997) and to avoid overextending the scope of our observations and conclusions we henceforth refer to the variety in question as ‘Damascus Arabic’, though the facts reported here appear to be typical of the Levantine varieties, as the works cited above attest.[1]

The Omani data we report represent the native speaker judgments of the co-author of this work Rashid Al-Balushi, who is from the Al-Bāṭinah region in northern coastal Oman. Johnstone (1967: 1) classifies Oman as a dialect area in itself distinct from other dialects of the Arabian Peninsula. Holes (1989, 2011 defines several linguistic features that are common to the varieties of Arabic spoken in Oman but also several subdistinctions – regional distinctions on one hand and on the other a bifurcation between ‘sedentary’ and ‘bedouin’ features, that are in fact shared in part with other varieties in the Arabian Peninsula. Holes (1989: 447–448) remarks that Al-Bāṭinah is a linguistically mixed region in which several varieties of Arabic exist side by side and have influenced each other. We refer to the variety spoken by Al-Balushi as the ‘sedentary Al-Bāṭinah variety’, to distinguish it from the variety of the Bedouin residents of the Al-Bāṭinah coast, whose dialect most likely reflects a geographical origin in Sharqiya, southeast of Al-Bāṭinah, since similar tribal names are found in both regions.

2 Damascus Arabic

In Damascus Arabic, when an object is pronominalized, it occurs as a prosodically weak suffix of the verb. Pronominalization of the name Muna in (1a) is shown in (1b).[2]

(1)
a.
ʃif-na muna.
saw-1pl Muna
‘We saw Muna.’
b.
ʃif-nā-ha.
saw-1pl-acc.3fs
‘We saw her.’

The pronominal object may be ‘doubled’ by a full DP[3] bearing the prefix la-, as illustrated in (2).[4] This prefix generally functions as an allative preposition meaning ‘to’ in this language, and additionally as a dative case marker that marks both recipient arguments of certain double-object verbs (Hallman 2018) and ‘ethical’ dative DPs, that refer to a beneficiary or attitude holder (Brustad 2000: 359–361; Cowell 1964: 483–484; Haddad 2014, 2016, 2018). The use of la- to mark dative is presumably derived historically from its use as a preposition.[5] It is unclear which function it has in clitic pronoun doubling contexts, that is, whether it is a preposition or a case marker there, or some third thing. We gloss it cd for ‘clitic doubling marker’ in order to not prejudice the matter, and we refer to (2) as a ‘clitic pronoun doubling’ construction.

(2)
ʃif-nā-ha la-muna.
saw-1pl-acc.3fs cd-muna
‘We saw Muna.’

Inanimate DPs may be clitic doubled, as (3a) indicates, but not indefinites. Even adding additional modificational material, which could be expected to support a specific reading of that object, fails to license clitic pronoun doubling of an indefinite object, regardless of whether the object is inanimate, as in (3b) or animate, as in (3c).[6]

(3)
a.
ʃif-nā-ha la-l-ʔawārib.
saw-1pl-acc.3pl cd-the-boats
‘We saw the boats.’
b.
*ʃif-nā-ha la-ʔawārib ʔaʃriʕt-a ʔalwān-a fātħa.
 saw-1pl-acc.3pl cd-boats sails-gen.3pl colors-gen.3pl bright
 (‘We saw boats with brightly colored sails.’)
c.
*ʃif-nā-ha la-waħde min l-banāt bi-s-sūʔ
 saw-1pl-acc.3fs cd-one of the-girls at-the-market
 (‘We saw one of the girls at the market.’)

Clitic pronoun doubling is most felicitous when the full DP double is itself referential, so that the DP and the clitic pronoun double can be construed as referentially co-indexed. Speakers still predominantly accept a doubled collective (4a) or distributive (4b) quantifier, though one of the five speakers surveyed rejects these. This same speaker rejects (4c), but so do two additional speakers, meaning the judgments for (4c) are mixed. In this example, a definite noun abū-ha ‘her father’ is clitic doubled and, since the possessive pronoun is bound by a higher quantifier, the doubled DP is not constant in reference.

(4)
a.
ʔarē-nā-hon la-kill ha-l-kitub.
saw-1pl-acc.3pl cd-all these-the-books
‘We read all these books.’
b.
muna ʔar-it-o la-kill ktāb naṣaħ-t-a
Muna read-3fs-acc.3ms cd-every book recommended-1s-acc.3fs
fī-h.
in-gen.3ms
‘Muna read every book I recommended to her.’
c.
%kill binit bās-it-o la-abū-ha.
 every girl kissed-3fs-acc.3ms cd-father-gen.3fs
 ‘Every girl kissed her father.’

These examples indicate that clitic pronoun doubling is most canonical when the full DP double of the clitic pronoun is individual denoting and invariant in reference, just as the clitic pronoun alone would normally be. Doubling of a quantifier is acceptable for most speakers, while variance in reference as shown in (4c) inhibits clitic doubling more robustly. Yet, none of the examples were rejected by all speakers, meaning that for at least some speakers, clitic pronoun doubling is not sensitive to the referential status of the DP, as long as it is high on the definiteness scale, since speakers robustly reject clitic doubled indefinites. As mentioned previously, all of the speakers consulted for this research are from the city of Damascus. It is unclear whether this variation is due to regional microvariation within Damascus or to idiolectal variation.

Subjects do not have clitic pronoun counterparts. The rich agreement morphology on the verb in this language is present regardless of the definiteness of the subject, or whether the subject is overt at all; all varieties of Arabic are pro-drop. But subjects may never occur in a la-phrase. We take this to mean that subjects may not be clitic doubled.[7]

Although subjects may not be clitic doubled, Damascus Arabic differs from better studied languages in allowing clitic pronoun doubling in nominal phrases and prepositional phrases (see Aoun 1993: 711; Feghali 1928: 363; Koutsoudas 1967: 516–517 on Lebanese). Possessor DPs occur directly following the noun describing the possessum, in the ‘construct state’ construction typical of Semitic languages, illustrated in (5a). In such contexts, the possessor – xālid in (5a) – may bear the prefix la while a genitive clitic pronoun double is suffixed to the noun heading the possessive construction, shown in (5b). The la-phrase is syntactically still part of the possessive DP, since topicalization of the DP shown in (5c) takes the full DP double in the la-phrase with it to the topic position.

(5)
a.
laʔē-na ktāb xālid.
found-1pl book Khalid
‘We found Khalid’s book.’
b.
laʔē-na ktāb-o la-xālid.
found-1pl book-gen.3ms cd-Khalid
‘We found Khalid’s book.
c.
ktāb-o la-xālid laʔē-nā-h.
book-gen.3ms cd-Khalid found-1pl-acc.3ms
‘Khalid’s book, we found it.’

As mentioned above, prepositional phrases also allow clitic pronoun doubling of the complement of the preposition, in which case the clitic pronoun occurs as a suffix of the preposition. The base structure in (6a), for example, has the clitic doubled counterpart in (6b). These are the basic pronominalization facts. We turn in the next section to the more complex case of pronominalization in double-object constructions.

(6)
a.
iltaʔē-na ʕand xālid.
met-1pl at Khalid
‘We met at Khalid’s place.’
b.
iltaʔē-na ʕand-o la-xālid.
met-1pl at-gen.3ms cd-Khalid
‘We met at Khalid’s place.’

2.1 Pronominalization in double-object constructions in Damascus Arabic

In Damascus Arabic, a verb may only host one clitic pronoun suffix. It is not possible to cliticize both arguments of a double-object verb to the verb simultaneously. Which of the two objects can be cliticized to the verb in ditransitive constructions is grammatically conditioned in ways described below. We begin by describing two classes of double-object verb in Damascus Arabic and the basic pronominalization patterns found there. Then, we turn to clitic pronoun doubling in the two classes. The two classes of double-object verb differ in the way they mark the DP bearing the recipient thematic role. For both verb classes, the theme is morphologically unmarked, which we take to be an expression of accusative case. One class of verbs also assigns (unmarked) accusative to the recipient as well (like English and other languages, including Classical Arabic), while the other class assigns dative to the recipient (like German, Russian and other languages). Both verb types alternate with what we call a ‘prepositional’ frame in which the theme is accusative and the recipient occurs in a prepositional phrase. We begin with the double accusative class exemplified by the verb ʕaṭa ‘give’.

As in English, the two objects of ʕaṭa occur obligatorily in the order recipient > theme, as shown in (7a). We refer to this complement frame as the ‘double-object’ frame. In this order, the recipient may be pronominalized in the accusative clitic pronoun paradigm, shown in (7b). Also, in the passive, it is the recipient that raises to subject, as seen in (7c).

(7)
a.
ʕaṭē-na sāra l-ktāb.
gave-1pl Sarah the-book
‘We gave Sarah the book.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha l-ktāb.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs the-book
‘We gave her the book.’
c.
sāra n-ʕaṭ-it l-ktāb.
Sarah pass-gave-3fs the-book
‘Sarah was given the book.’

As in (standard) English, the two objects may not be reversed in the double-object frame, as (8a) shows. Furthermore, the theme may not appear as a clitic pronoun on the verb when a recipient DP occurs in the same clause, as (8b) illustrates. Nor may the theme be raised to subject in this case, as (8c) shows.

(8)
a.
*ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb sāra.
 gave-1pl the-book Sarah
 (Lit. ‘We gave the book Sarah.’)
b.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h sāra.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms Sarah
 (Lit. ‘We gave it Sarah.’)
c.
*l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa sāra.
 the-book pass-gave Sarah
 (Lit. ‘The book was given Sarah.’)

We take these facts to mean that the clitic pronoun is in a syntactic dependency with a gap in the position otherwise occupied by the non-clitic pronoun counterpart of the clitic pronoun, and that this dependency may not cross over the recipient, as schematized in (9). Consequently, the recipient itself may cliticize to the verb but the theme may not. The facts reviewed in Section 2 make clear that this is not a restriction on cliticization of the theme as such. The theme can very well cliticize to the verb in monotransitive constructions like that illustrated in (1b), which do not license a recipient argument. The facts reviewed above indicate that the recipient is an ‘intervener’ for cliticization of the theme to the verb.

(9)

The same can be said of raising of an object to subject in the passive. Raising to subject involves a dependency between the subject position (signified by ‘subj’ below) and a gap in a position that the subject would otherwise have occurred in. Like cliticization, this dependency is interrupted by an intervening DP, as schematized in (10).

(10)

In these examples, there is a correspondence between whether a DP can be cliticized to the verb and whether it can be promoted to subject in the passive. This correspondence is preserved in the alternative complement frame seen in (11a). Here, as in English, the theme directly follows the verb and the recipient occurs in a prepositional phrase, as (11a) illustrates. In this case, the theme may cliticize to the verb in the accusative paradigm, as shown in (11b), and raise to subject in the passive, as (11c) shows. The preposition that introduces the recipient argument in this frame is none other than la- ‘to’, the same preposition that marks the full DP double of a clitic pronoun in clitic pronoun doubling constructions. We refer to the alternative complement frames for ʕaṭa and similar verbs seen in (7a) and (11a) as the ‘double-object alternation’, and flesh out the nature of the syntactic relatedness of the two frames on the basis of clitic pronoun doubling patterns described in detail in Section 2.2. We refer to these frames as alternative expressions of the ‘double-object construction’ (but only the former in (7a) is the ‘double-object frame’).

(11)
a.
ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb la-sāra.
gave-1pl the-book to-Sarah
‘We gave the book to Sarah.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-h la-sāra.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms to-Sarah
‘We gave it to Sarah.’
c.
l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa la-sāra.
the-book pass-gave to-Sarah
‘The book was given to Sarah.’

Damascus Arabic has a paradigm of object clitic pronouns that share the l- onset of la-. This paradigm reflects pronominalization of a dative DP but not a prepositional phrase. The prepositional phrase in (11a) cannot be pronominalized in the l- paradigm, as shown in (12a). On the other hand though, this is not expected to be possible for independent reasons: the fact that the theme intervenes between it and the verb, its potential morphological host, could be expected to have the same blocking effect as the recipient does for the theme in (8b). However, ʕaṭa still does not allow cliticization of the la-phrase to the verb when the theme is moved out of the way by raising to subject in the passive, as shown in (12b). It appears that ʕaṭa does not license dative case; its la-phrase argument in (11) is a PP that cannot cliticize to the verb.

(12)
a.
*ʕaṭē-nā-la l-ktāb.
 gave-1pl-dat.3fs the-book
 (‘We gave the book to her.’)
b.
*l-ktāb n-ʕaṭā-la.
 the-book pass-gave-dat.3fs
 (‘The book was given to her.’)

The second class of double-object verbs in Damascus Arabic is exemplified by baʕat ‘send’. Its recipient argument is invariantly marked by the particle la-.

(13)
baʕat-na la-sāra l-ktāb.
sent-1pl dat-Sarah the-book
‘We sent Sarah the book.’

Hallman (2018: 242–246) discusses reasons to believe that the la- that occurs in (13) is not the preposition la- seen in (11), but rather a case marker, so that la-sāra is a DP in (13) while it is a PP in (11). For one, in the case of ʕaṭa ‘give’, the recipient alternates between a morphologically unmarked form that precedes the theme and a form marked with la- that follows it, in an alternation identical to the English double-object alternation. In that alternation, the la-marked form may not precede the theme, as (14) shows. The la-marked recipient of baʕat ‘send’, however, naturally precedes the theme, as (13) shows, suggesting that la- does not play the role of a preposition there, but rather that (13) exemplifies a double-object construction with a dative indirect object.

(14)
*ʕaṭē-na la-sāra l-ktāb.
 gave-1pl to-Sarah the-book
 (‘We gave to Sarah the book.’)

Cliticization facts parallel the contrast between (13) and (14). The la-marked recipient of baʕat in (13) pronominalizes in a morphological paradigm that includes the l of la-, as opposed to the accusative pronominal paradigm that the recipient of ʕaṭa instantiates. Pronominalization of the recipient argument in (13) is shown in (15a). As mentioned previously, the recipient argument of ʕaṭa never pronominalizes in the l-paradigm, as (12a) shows, repeated in (15b), even though it may in principle occur in a la-phrase, as (11a) shows. This again indicates that the la-phrase that ʕaṭa admits is not a dative DP but a PP that cannot be pronominalized.

(15)
a.
baʕat-nā-la l-ktāb.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs the-book
‘We sent her the book.’
b.
*ʕaṭē-nā-la l-ktāb.
 gave-1pl-dat.3fs the-book
 (‘We gave her the book.’)

The recipient argument of baʕat cannot be cliticized to the verb in the accusative paradigm and cannot be promoted to subject in the passive, as the examples in (16) show. This is typical of dative case, which is argued to be ‘lexical’ or ‘inherent’ in other languages (see e.g. Anagnostopoulou 2003; Andrews 1990; Czepluch 1996; Freidin and Sprouse 1991; Zaenen et al. 1985 on Germanic, Slavic and Greek). It is assigned in the base structure in a specific thematic configuration and therefore cannot be removed in the course of a derivation, for example by passivization.

(16)
a.
*baʕat-nā-ha l-ktāb.
 sent-1pl-acc.3fs the-book
 (‘We sent her the book.’)
b.
*sāra n-baʕat-it l-ktāb.
 Sarah pass-give-3fs the-book
 (‘Sarah was sent the book.’)

The la-marked recipient of baʕat ‘send’ may follow the theme, as (17) shows, in which case it is unclear at the outset whether we are looking at a prepositional frame like that seen with ʕaṭa or inversion of the dative and accusative arguments of the double-object frame. It is clear that the theme of baʕat ‘send’ may cliticize to the verb in the accusative paradigm (17b) and promote to subject in the passive (17c), making it the ‘primary object’ by these criteria. Since we observed in the context of ʕaṭa ‘give’ that two object DPs may not be inverted, we assume that two object DPs of baʕat ‘send’ cannot be inverted either, and therefore that the examples in (17) exemplify the prepositional frame of the double-object construction.

(17)
a.
baʕat-na l-ktāb la-sāra.
sent-1pl the-book to-Sarah
‘We sent the book to Sarah.’
b.
baʕat-nā-h la-sāra.
sent-1pl-acc.3ms to-Sarah
‘We sent it to Sarah.’
c.
l-ktāb n-baʕat la-sāra.
the-book pass-sent to-Sarah
‘The book was sent to Sarah.’

Note lastly that although it is not possible to cliticize both objects of a double-object construction to the verb, it is still possible to pronominalize both objects: in this case, the first object cliticizes to the verb and the second is cliticized to a pleonastic place-holder stem jā- that the language employs for this purpose, as illustrated in (18a) and (18b) for ʕaṭa ‘give’ and baʕat ‘send’ respectively. The pleonastic stem jā- is very commonly employed in Damascus Arabic and some other dialects when for morphosyntactic reasons no other host is accessible.

(18)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha jā-h.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs ya-acc.3ms
‘We gave her it.’
b.
baʕat-nā-la jā-h.
gave-1pl-dat.3fs ya-acc.3ms
‘We sent her it.’

The data above point to the following conclusion: a clitic pronoun must be affixed to a host, but affixation is subject to an intervention effect: no other potential target of cliticization may intervene between the clitic pronoun and the gap in the canonical position of the non-pronominal counterpart. The intervention effect means that in double-object constructions, a theme may only be cliticized to a verb in the prepositional frame, where it directly follows the verb, as (11b) shows. In the double-object frame, it is separated from the verb by the recipient and therefore not able to be cliticized to it, as (8b) illustrates. The theme may be pronominalized in that configuration if it is cliticized to the pleonastic stem . The role and etymology of is controversial. Bauer (1914) and Testen (1997/1998) trace it back to a proto-Semitic verb form, while Correll (1994) and Wilmsen (2013) trace it back to a proto-Semitic tonic pronoun (lacking the contemporaneous enclitic). Whatever its etymological source, it has undergone a high degree of grammaticalization. Correll points out explicitly that its contemporary distribution in Arabic is the same as that of a preposition, which would make +cl a PP, while Wilmsen characterizes the contemporary form +cl as a present-day tonic pronoun, somewhat similar to complex pronouns like ‘himself’, which would make it a DP. Whatever the proper decomposition of the form +cl is in modern Arabic, it is clear that nothing intervenes between the stem and the clitic cl, meaning the form obeys the condition on intervention in any case.

2.2 Clitic doubling in double-object constructions in Damascus Arabic

Clitic pronoun doubling in Damascus Arabic is slightly more restrictive than simple pronominalization. In transfer-of-possession constructions of the type discussed above in connection with pronominalization, only the recipient argument may be doubled. That is, a theme may not be clitic doubled in the presence of a clausemate recipient, even when the recipient appears in a prepositional phrase. The recipient blocks clitic pronoun doubling of the theme, regardless of whether it surfaces as a DP, as in (19a), or PP, as in (19b).[8] This is in contrast to monotransitive constructions, in which doubling of the theme is natural, as illustrated in (2). In the examples discussed in this section, we underline the clitic and its full DP associate in order to clarify which object is being doubled.

(19)
a.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h sāra la-l-ktāb.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms Sarah cd-the-book
 (‘We gave Sarah the book.’)
b.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h la-l-ktāb la-sāra.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-book to-Sarah
 (‘We gave the book to Sarah.’)

Since cliticization of the theme over the recipient is not possible in the first place, the fact that clitic pronoun doubling is also blocked in this context, as (19a) shows, is not surprising. The surprising fact is that the theme can still not be doubled in the prepositional frame shown in (19b), where pronominalization of the theme (without doubling) is possible (compare (19b) with (11b)). The recipient does not act as an intervener for pronominalization in the prepositional frame, but yet seems to act as an intervener for clitic pronoun doubling in the same context. Surface adjacency of the theme to the host in the prepositional frame is not a sufficient condition for clitic pronoun doubling of the theme in that context, unlike pronominalization itself.

The recipient itself may be clitic doubled in ditransitive constructions. Since the preposition that marks the full DP double is the same preposition that marks the recipient in the prepositional frame, it is somewhat unclear at first glance which frame we are looking at in (20a). But since the clitic pronoun is accusative, which reflects the case of the recipient in the double-object frame (compare (20) with the basic cliticization pattern in (7b)), we infer that the recipient is being doubled as a DP here, not as a PP, and that the la- seen here is the la- that marks a full DP double of a clitic pronoun, not the preposition seen in Example (11). The fact that this la-marked recipient may also follow the theme, as (20b) shows, unlike the counterpart without la-, as (8a) shows, means that the la-marked double of the clitic pronoun has more flexibility in placement than the corresponding object in the non-doubling structure.

(20)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha la-sāra l-ktāb.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs cd-Sarah the-book
‘We gave Sarah the book.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha l-ktāb la-sāra.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs the-book cd-Sarah
‘We gave Sarah the book.’

Circumstantial support for the conclusion that la-sāra in (20) is not a PP but a DP marked with the clitic doubling marker la- comes from Greek, where DP and PP recipient arguments are morphologically distinguished, and only DP arguments can be clitic doubled (Anagnostopoulou 2003; Dimitriadis 1999). DP recipient arguments bear genitive case and bear no special additional marking when clitic doubled. PP recipient arguments are introduced by the preposition se ‘to’. In this language, a genitive clitic pronoun can double a genitive DP recipient, as in (21a) (Anagnostopoulou 2003: 15, Example 18), but not a PP recipient, as (21b) shows (Anagnostopoulou 2003: 17, Example 22). If there is any crosslinguistic generality to the Greek facts, then (20), too, must represent doubling of an (in this case accusative) DP argument, even though the clitic pronoun doubling marker la- is homophonous with a preposition.

(21)
a.
Tu edhosa tu Giani to vivlio.
gen.3ms gave.1sg the Gianis.gen the book.acc
‘I gave John the book.’
b.
*Tu edhosa to vivlio s-ton Giani.
gen.3ms gave.1sg the book.acc to-the Gianis
 (‘I gave the book to John.’)

We mention in passing at this juncture that clitic pronoun doubling of recipient DPs is subject to the same definiteness restriction as clitic pronoun doubling of theme DPs illustrated in (3) and (4). Suñer (1988: 394–395) and Kallulli (2000: 212) report that in Spanish and Albanian respectively, clitic pronoun doubling of a recipient is not subject to a definiteness requirement. Suñer and Kallulli conclude that the clitic pronoun in those cases is an agreement inflection (obligatory in Albanian) rather than a full fledged pronoun. Damascus Arabic holds theme and recipient arguments to the same definiteness requirement in clitic pronoun doubling constructions. The semantic status of the clitic pronoun is uniform in all clitic doubling constructions in Damascus Arabic.

To return to the analytical problem that (19) poses, the fact that a theme cannot be doubled when a recipient is present stands in contrast not just to the theme in monotransitive constructions but also to theme arguments in locative constructions such as those illustrated in (22). Although locative constructions like those in (22) bear a syntactic resemblance to the prepositional frame of the double-object construction (they have the order V DP PP), they do not alternate with a double-object frame. We argue below that the two cases of V DP PP order have a different derivational source. In locative constructions, the theme may be clitic doubled, in spite of the clausemate PP. Apparently only PPs encoding recipient arguments block clitic pronoun doubling of the theme. Note that in Damascus Arabic, the word ward ‘flowers’ is a mass noun that triggers third person singular agreement. Note, too, that the prefix la- that occurs on the full DP double of a clitic pronoun may occur in the same sentence with the basic allative preposition la- ‘to’, as seen in (22b). This means that the constraint against doubling the theme in the presence of a recipient is not reducible to a superficial rule blocking two occurrences of la- in the verb phrase.

(22)
a.
ħaṭṭē-nā-h la-l-ward bi-l-vāz.
put-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-flowers mass in-the-vase.
‘We put the flowers in the vase.’
b.
waṣṣal-nā-hon la-l-ūlād la-ʔāxir ṭ-ṭarīʔ.
accompanied-1pl-acc.3pl cd-the-children to-end the-street
‘We accompanied the children to the end of the street.’

It is possible to clitic double the dative recipient argument of baʕat ‘send’, just as the recipient argument of ʕaṭa may be clitic doubled (Koutsoudas 1967), although as expected, the clitic pronoun is in the dative paradigm, reflecting the dative case of the recipient of baʕat ‘send’. Compare (23a) with (20a). The doubled recipient may follow the theme, as (23b) shows (Koutsoudas 1967: 512, Example 4). We conclude here as before that we are looking at the double-object frame in both cases, not the prepositional frame, since we concluded above that a recipient PP cannot be cliticized to the verb, much less clitic doubled. This conclusion parallel’s Suñer’s (1988) and Demonte’s (1995) conclusions for Spanish.

(23)
a.
baʕat-nā-la la-sāra l-ktāb.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs cd-Sarah the-book
‘We sent Sarah the book.’
b.
baʕat-nā-la l-ktāb la-sāra.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs the-book cd-Sarah
‘We sent Sarah the book.’

As with ʕaṭa ‘give’, the theme argument of baʕat ‘send’ cannot be clitic doubled when a recipient is present, as Koutsoudas also reports (see Koutsoudas 1967: 513, Example 28) regardless of order; compare (24) with (19). Again, this effect holds regardless of whether we construe la-sāra as a dative DP (as glossed in (24)) or a prepositional phrase.

(24)
a.
*baʕat-nā-h la-sāra la-l-ktāb.
 sent-1pl-acc.3ms dat-Sarah cd-the-book
 (‘We sent Sarah the book.’)
b.
*baʕat-nā-h la-l-ktāb la-sāra.
 sent-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-book dat-Sarah
 (‘We sent Sarah the book.’)

The data above show that in Damascus Arabic, a theme may only be clitic doubled if no recipient is present at all, that is, in monotransitive constructions like (2) or in purely locative double complement constructions like those shown in (22), that designate movement of the theme along a path to a specified location, but not in change-of-possession constructions. When a recipient is present, though, in the form of an accusative or dative indirect object of ʕaṭa ‘give’ or baʕat ‘send’ respectively, this recipient blocks clitic pronoun doubling of the theme, as (19) and (24) show. In this case, only the recipient may be clitic doubled, as in (20) and (23). That pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling are sensitive to the thematic role of the doubled DP is reinforced by the following point (though we will later reduce this thematic sensitivity to a structural generalization). Just as Rappaport Hovav and Levin (2008) show for English send, the counterpart baʕat in Damascus Arabic is ambiguous between a change-of-possession reading and a change-of-location reading. In its change-of-location reading, the preposition la- ‘to’ may be replaced by the preposition ʕala ‘on’ or ‘to’, commonly reduced to the prefix ʕa-. When baʕat takes a locative goal argument introduced by ʕala, it allows clitic pronoun doubling of the theme. The word katībe ‘division’ is feminine in (25), and is doubled by a feminine singular clitic pronoun. That is, in the context of one and the same verb (baʕat ‘send’), the theme may or may not be doubled depending on whether the other argument is construed as a location or a recipient.[9]

(25)
aḍ-ḍābiṭ baʕat-a la-l-katībe ʕa-d-dēr.
the-officer sent-acc.3fs cd-the-division to-the-Deir
‘The officer sent the division to Deir ez-Zor.’

The ungrammaticality of clitic doubling of the theme in change-of-possession examples like (19b) and (24b) is all the more puzzling because pronominalization is allowed in that same context. In the non-clitic doubled counterpart of (19b), shown in (11a) and repeated in (26a) the theme DP precedes the recipient PP and so is adjacent to the clitic host (the verb). Accordingly, the theme can be pronominalized as shown in (11b), repeated in (26b), since nothing intervenes between its canonical position and its host. Yet the theme cannot be clitic doubled here, as (19b) shows, repeated in (26c). And as described above, locative PPs do not block clitic pronoun doubling, even those built with the same preposition la- that PP recipient arguments occur with, as (22b) shows, repeated in (26d).

(26)
a.
ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb la-sāra.
gave-1pl the-book to-Sarah
‘We gave the book to Sarah.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-h la-sāra.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms to-Sarah
‘We gave it to Sarah.’
c.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h la-l-ktāb la-sāra.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-book to-Sarah
 (‘We gave the book to Sarah.’)
d.
waṣṣal-nā-hon la-l-ūlād la-ʔāxir ṭ-ṭarīʔ.
accompanied-1pl-acc.3pl cd-the-children to-end the-street
‘We accompanied the children to the end of the street.’

One possible – but we argue unfruitful – approach to the pattern in (26) is that clitic pronoun doubling is sensitive to the thematic context: when a recipient is present, only it may be doubled, independent of the intervention restriction on pronominalization. This would raise the question of what it is that makes recipient arguments special. One obvious thing that stands out about recipient arguments is that their instantiation as PP systematically alternates with an instantiation as DP preceding the theme. In this frame, they intervene between the theme and its potential host, the verb (see the schema in (9)). Another way of stating the restriction on doubling of a theme in the presence of a PP recipient, then, is that the prepositional frame acts for the purposes of intervention as if it were its alternant, the double-object frame, where the recipient intervenes between the theme and its host. This approach reduces the ungrammaticality of (19b)/(26c), repeated in (27a) below, to the ungrammaticality of (19a), repeated in (27b) below.

(27)
a.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h la-l-ktāb la-sāra.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-book to-Sarah
 (‘We gave the book to Sarah.’)
b.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h sāra la-l-ktāb.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms Sarah cd-the-book
 (‘We gave Sarah the book.’)

The fact that the prepositional frame behaves like the double-object frame in terms of intervention is the kind of constructional relatedness that in the structuralist tradition is taken to be a sign of transformational relatedness between the two formats. In fact, a body of literature on the double-object alternation claims that the prepositional frame is transformationally derived from the double-object frame (Aoun and Li 1989; Bowers 1981; Dryer 1986; Hallman 2015). Schematically, this derivation looks like (28a), where DP1 names the recipient and DP2 the theme. Locative constructions like those in (26d) and others previously mentioned are not derivatives of a double-object construction. They have the base order in (28b), where DP names the theme and PP the location.

(28)
a.
V DP1 DP2 V DP2 [P DP1]   [Double-Object Alternation]
b.
V DP PP       [Locative Construction]

The pattern in (27) lends support to this view. If the prepositional frame is derived from the double-object frame, the fact that the prepositional frame shows the same intervention effect for clitic pronoun doubling as the double-object frame can be captured as a level-ordering effect: unlike pronominalization, clitic pronoun doubling takes place before the derivation that converts the base double-object frame into the prepositional frame. At this point, the recipient still intervenes between the theme and its potential host, blocking doubling of the theme. Like pronominalization, then, clitic pronoun doubling is subject to an intervention effect. The difference between clitic pronoun doubling and pronominalization is that pronominalization may apply after the transformation in (28a), which puts the theme adjacent to the host.[10] This analysis is purely structural and does not make reference to thematic roles. What is special about the recipient role in this analysis is that it is consistently base generated higher than the theme, and so intervenes between the host and the theme at the level of syntactic representation at which clitic pronoun doubling applies.

As a structural intervention effect, we do not expect the phenomenon described here to be sensitive to the particular thematic roles the objects of the verb bear, but only to the structural hierarchical order in which these arguments are found in the base structure. What matters for the analysis we propose here is not what thematic role the potential intervener bears, but where it is structurally situated in the base structure vis a vis the potential target of clitic pronoun doubling. As mentioned in Section 1, this expectation is borne out in another kind of double-object construction. We find the same intervention effect in a ditransitive causative construction in Arabic in which causee arguments function as interveners for theme arguments. Many transitive verbs, such as libis ‘put on (an article of clothing)’, ʕirif ‘know about’, akal ‘eat’ and others have causative counterparts that share the syntactic behavior of change-of-possession verbs described above. In their monotransitive base form, these verbs, as expected, allow clitic pronoun doubling of a theme, as (29) illustrates.

(29)
a.
(i)
l-binit libs-it l-fusṭān.
the-girl put.on-3fs the-dress
‘The girl put on the dress.’
(ii)
l-binit libs-it-o la-l-fusṭān.
the-girl put.on-3fs-acc.3ms cd-the-dress
‘The girl put on the dress.’
b.
(i)
l-mudīr ʕirif l-miʃkle.
the-director found.out the-problem
‘The director found out about the problem.’
(ii)
l-mudīr ʕrif-a la-l-miʃkle.
the-director found.out-acc.3fs cd-the-problem
‘The director found out about the problem.’
c.
(i)
l-walad akal t-tiffāħa.
the-child ate the-apple
‘The child ate the apple.’
(ii)
l-walad akal-a la-t-tiffāħa.
the-child ate-acc.3fs cd-the-apple
‘The child ate the apple.’

These verbs can be causativized, adding a causer to the set of arguments in the transitive base. Causativization is typically morphologically marked templatically, by doubling the middle consonant of the (usually) three-consonant root of the underlying verb, though the causative counterpart of akal ‘eat’ is the distinct lexeme ṭaʕma ‘feed’. The data in (30) below show that the internal arguments of the causative counterparts of the verbs in (29) may surface either in a double-object frame seen in the (i)-examples, or a prepositional frame seen in the (ii)-examples, exactly like we find with change-of-possession verbs like ʕaṭa ‘give’.

(30)
a.
(i)
labbas-na l-binit l-fusṭān.
dress-1pl the-girl the-dress
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
(ii)
labbas-na l-fusṭān la-l-binit.
dress-1pl the-dress to-the-girl
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
b.
(i)
ʕarraf-na l-mudīr l-miʃkle.
inform-1pl the-director the-problem
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
(ii)
ʕarraf-na l-miʃkle la-l-mudīr.
inform-1pl the-problem to-the-director
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
c.
(i)
ṭaʕmē-na l-walad t-tiffāħa.
fed-1pl the-child the-apple
‘We fed the child the apple.’
(ii)
ṭaʕmē-na t-tiffāħa la-l-walad.
fed-1pl the-apple to-the-child
‘We fed the apple to the child.’

These causative verbs allow clitic pronoun doubling of the causee argument, as seen in the (i)-examples below, but not the theme, regardless of whether the causee occurs as a direct argument of the verb in the double-object frame, as seen in the (ii)-examples below (compare with the (i)-examples in (30)) or in the prepositional frame, as seen in the (iii)-examples below (compare with the (ii)-examples in (30)).

(31)
a.
(i)
labbas-nā-ha la-l-binit l-fusṭān.
dress-1pl-acc.3fs cd-the-girl the-dress
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
(ii)
*labbas-nā-h l-binit la-l-fusṭān.
 dress-1pl-acc.3ms the-girl cd-the-dress
 (‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’)
(iii)
*labbas-nā-h la-l-fusṭān la-l-binit.
 dress-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-dress to-the-girl
 (‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’)
b.
(i)
ʕarraf-nā-h la-l-mudīr l-miʃkle.
inform-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-director the-problem
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
(ii)
*ʕarraf-nā-ha l-mudīr la-l-miʃ kle.
 inform-1pl-acc.3fs the-director cd-the-problem
 (‘We informed the director of the problem.’)
(iii)
*ʕarraf-nā-ha la-l-miʃ kle la-l-mudīr.
 inform-1pl-acc.3fs cd-the-problem to-the-director
 (‘We informed the director of the problem.’)
c.
(i)
ṭaʕmē-nā- h la-l-walad t-tiffāħa.
fed-1pl-acc.3ms cd-the-child the-apple
‘We fed the child the apple.’
(ii)
*ṭaʕmē-nā-ha l-walad la-t-tiffāħa.
 fed-1pl-acc.3fs the-child cd-the-apple
 (‘We fed the child the apple.’)
(iii)
*ṭaʕmē-nā-ha la-t-tiffāħa la-l-walad.
 fed-1pl-acc.3fs cd-the-apple to-the-child
 (‘We fed the apple to the child.’)

This is the same grammaticality pattern we see with change-of-possession verbs, where the theme cannot be clitic doubled in the presence of a recipient, even when the recipient is in a prepositional phrase, even though in that case the theme is surface-adjacent to its potential host, the verb. The only difference is that in (31) what blocks clitic doubling of the theme is not a recipient but a causee, again regardless of whether the causee is a direct argument or occurs in a prepositional phrase. But in the case of causative constructions, it is clear that the underlying order is one in which the causee is structurally superior to the theme, since the causee is the agent of the underlying transitive construction that is causativized in (29)–(31). Given a basic transitive construction like (32a) where DP2 names an agent and DP3 a theme, causativization can be schematically represented as in (32b), where DP1 names a causer of an event described by the configuration in (32a), whose thematic structure remains intact in (32b). Raising of the main verb to the causativizing morpheme cause derives the causative morphological alternant of the basic monotransitive verb as well as a syntactic structure that feeds the double-object alternation rule in (28a), converting the (i)-examples in (30) into the (ii)-examples.

(32)
a.
DP2 V DP3
b.
DP1 cause [DP2 V DP3] DP1 cause+V DP2 DP3

The analysis proposed here that clitic pronoun doubling is sensitive to the base structure of the ditransitive construction, where recipient and causee arguments are syntactically superior to theme arguments and therefore closer to the host, captures the parallel behavior of causative and change-of-possession constructions. The fact that causative constructions show the same set of transformations and restrictions that change-of-possession constructions do corroborates the idea that clitic pronoun doubling is not sensitive to the thematic environment per se, but rather to the syntactic hierarchy: recipient and causee arguments are higher in the structure and therefore closer to the morphological host than theme arguments, which in turn are higher than location arguments. The intervention restriction on pronominalization dictates then that recipient and causee arguments interfere with clitic pronoun doubling of a theme, even in the form of a PP, while location PPs do not. This analysis is summarized in (33).

(33)
In Damascus Arabic, both pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling are restricted by a prohibition on intervention, but clitic pronoun doubling transpires prior to the transformation in (28a) that derives the prepositional frame of the double-object construction. At that level of representation, recipient and causee arguments intervene between the theme and the verbal host for cliticization, and therefore block clitic pronoun doubling of the theme.

The fact that this analysis presents an explanation for the puzzling intervention of a prepositional recipient in clitic pronoun doubling of a theme in spite of the surface adjacency between theme and host conversely supports the analysis of the double-object alternation illustrated in (28a), where the double-object frame serves as base structure for the prepositional frame. Other analyses of this alternation are not able to capture the intervention of a PP recipient for clitic doubling of a theme, at least not in purely structural terms, as we have done here. The early analyses of the double-object alternation by Perlmutter and Postal (1984) and Larson (1988, 2014 claim that the derivation goes in the opposite direction: the prepositional frame is the base from which the double-object frame is derived (by inversion of the objects of the verb and deletion of the preposition). In this analysis, the theme is hierarchically higher than the recipient in the base structure, which surfaces with no change in the prepositional frame. This structure makes the prepositional frame identical in structure to locative constructions, offering no explanation for why recipient PPs behave differently from locative PPs in interrupting clitic pronoun doubling of a theme in Arabic.

A similar problem faces a more recent view of the double-object alternation, which claims that the two frames are not transformationally related. Harley (1995, 2002, Bruening (2001, 2010 and many others claim that the double-object frame has the base order recipient > theme (both DPs) while the prepositional frame has the base order theme > recipient (the recipient a PP). The fact that here, too, the prepositional frame is base generated as such attributes to this frame the same structure as locative constructions and leaves us with no account of the difference between recipient/causee PPs and location PPs in whether they block clitic pronoun doubling of a theme. The analysis proposed here, that recipient/causee arguments are base generated higher than theme arguments, even when they ultimately appear in a prepositional phrase, makes it possible to capture their inhibitory effect on clitic pronoun doubling of a theme as a rule ordering effect. This analysis captures the uniform behavior of change-of-possession and causative constructions under one generalization, and captures the distinction between pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling in a parametric manner: both are subject to an intervention restriction, but clitic pronoun doubling is ordered before the derivation of the prepositional frame, while pronominalization is not. With these conclusions about Damascus Arabic in mind, we turn to the pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling facts in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

3 Al-Bāṭinah Arabic

As mentioned previously, we restrict our empirical claims about Omani Arabic to the sedentary Al-Bāṭinah variety spoken by the co-author, Al-Balushi, which we will generally abbreviate to ‘Al-Bāṭinah Arabic’ for the sake of conciseness, though we have reasons to believe the pattern is found in other regions of Oman as well and perhaps in other regions of the Arabic-speaking world. Some aspects of pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic resemble Damascus Arabic, while others do not. The most striking difference between clitic pronoun doubling in Al-Bāṭinah and Damascus Arabic is that Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does not mark the full DP double with the prefix la-, as seen in (34b).[11]

(34)
a.
ʃuf-na fāṭmah.
saw-1pl Fatima
‘We saw Fatima.’
b.
ʃuf-nā-ha fāṭmah.
saw-1pl-acc.3fs Fatima
‘We saw Fatima.’

As in Damascus Arabic, the doubled element need not be animate in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, as (35a) shows. Non-specific indefinite objects cannot be clitic doubled, as (35b) shows. However, partitive (i.e., specific) indefinite objects may marginally be doubled, as (35c) shows. Clitic pronoun doubling therefore correlates with high definiteness in Al-Bāṭinah as in Damascus Arabic, though Al-Bāṭinah Arabic is slightly more permissive, as it at least marginally allows clitic pronoun doubling of specific indefinites, which Damascus Arabic does not.

(35)
a.
ʃuf-nā-hin l-qawārəb.
saw-1pl-acc.3pl the-boats
‘We saw the boats.’
b.
*ʃuf-nā-hin qawārəb ʔaʃriʕit-hin ʔalwān-hin fātħah.
 saw-1pl-acc.3pl boats sails-gen.3pl colors-gen.3pl bright
 ‘We saw boats with brightly colored sails.’
c.
?ʃuf-nā-ha waħd-a mi-l-banāt.
 saw-1pl-acc.3fs one-fs of-the-girls
 ‘We saw one of the girls.’

Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does not readily admit clitic pronoun doubling of quantifiers, a point on which we reported mixed judgments in Damascus Arabic. Clitic pronoun doubling of the collective quantifier kill l-kitib ‘all the books’ in (36a) is judged marginal; doubling of the distributive quantifier kill ktāb ‘every book’ is ungrammatical, as shown in (36b), as is doubling of a referentially dependent definite ʔabū-ha ‘her father’, when the possessive pronoun is bound by a higher quantifier, as shown in (36c). This means that clitic pronoun doubling is most canonical when the doubled DP is referential, like the clitic pronoun itself.

(36)
a.
?qarē-nā-hin kill l-kitib.
 read-1pl-acc.3pl all the-books
 ‘We read all the books.’
b.
*muna qar-itt-oh kill ktāb naṣaħ-t-ha
 Muna read-3fs-acc.3ms every book recommended-1s-acc.3fs
 bī-h.
 in-gen.3ms
 ‘Muna read every book I recommended to her.’
c.
*kill bint bās-itt-oh ʔabū-ha.
 every girl kissed-3fs-acc.3ms father-gen.3fs
 ‘Every girl kissed her father.’

As in Damascus Arabic, subjects may not be clitic doubled in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic. That is, there is no optional pronominal double matching a definite/specific subject in agreement features. Verb agreement with the subject is obligatory and insensitive to definiteness or specificity. Also like Damascus Arabic, Al-Bāṭinah Arabic allows clitic pronoun doubling of possessors within nominal phrases, as (37a) illustrates. The full DP double is part of the DP containing the head hosting the clitic pronoun, since topicalization of that phrase carries the full DP double with it, as (37b) shows.

(37)
a.
ħaṣṣal-na mafātīħ-ha fāṭmah.
found-1pl keys-gen.3fs Fatima
‘We found Fatima’s keys.’
b.
mafātīħ-ha fāṭmah ħaṣṣal-nā-hin.
keys-gen.3fs Fatima found-1pl-acc.3pl
‘Fatima’s keys, we found them.’

And like Damascus Arabic, Al-Bāṭinah Arabic allows clitic pronoun doubling of objects of prepositions, as (38) shows (compare with Damascus Arabic (6)). Thus, the basic pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling facts are the same as in Damascus Arabic, except that the full DP double is not marked with la-.

(38)
a.
ʔiltaqē-na ʕand-oh ʔaħmad.
met-1pl at-gen.3ms Ahmad
‘We met at Ahmad’s place.’
b.
ʕand-oh ʔaħmad ʔiltaqē-na.
at-gen.3ms Ahmad met-1pl
‘At Ahmad’s place, we met.’

We turn below to pronominalization patterns in double-object constructions and clitic pronoun doubling in those contexts, as we did above for Syrian. First, though, we address two issues relevant specifically to the Al-Bāṭinah pattern sketched above. The first is that the doubling phenomenon seen in (34b) is not as robustly documented in the grammatical literature on Omani Arabic as the Levantine Arabic counterpart discussed above. Rhodokanakis’s (1911) description of the Arabic of Dhofar, a region of southern Oman, makes mention (Rhodokanakis 1911: 205–206) of a construction matching the properties described for Al-Bāṭinah Arabic above: an unmarked object is doubled by a clitic pronoun suffix on the verb. Souag (2017: 61–63) points out that a recent grammatical sketch of the Dhofari dialect (Davey 2013) makes no mention of the construction, and theorizes that Rhodokanakis’s description of Dhofari was influenced by the neighboring South Arabian language Jabbali, in which the single native speaker consultant that informed Rhodokanakis’s work was also fluent. But the phenomenon is attested in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic; in Appendix A to this article, we provide a list of examples attested in Youtube videos that the co-author Al-Balushi identifies as Al-Bāṭinah Arabic. We have unfortunately found these videos to be short-lived, many having become unavailable during the preparation of this article. We include links and time-frame references for the occurrence of the listed examples in those videos that are still available at the time of this writing. Nonetheless, all the examples in Appendix A are attested examples not artificially constructed for elicitation purposes. The co-author Al-Balushi is also familiar with speakers from the Dhofar region who use this construction, though the attested examples are from Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

Since these examples are attested not in the written record but in recorded speech, they also bear on the second point that warrants discussion in connection with Omani Arabic. Because Omani does not mark the full DP double of the clitic pronoun in clitic pronoun doubling contexts, it is potentially difficult to distinguish clitic pronoun doubling from clitic right-dislocation in this dialect. In clitic right dislocation constructions, a clitic appears in the usual position for clitic pronouns while the associated full DP appears in a right-peripheral position, as exemplified by (39) for French (Jaeggli 1986: 34).

(39)
Je lui ai racconté mes secrets, le traître.
I him have told my secrets, the traitor
‘I told him my secrets, the traitor.’

Jaeggli (1986: 32–35), Anagnostopoulou (2006: 525–530) and others describe differences between clitic pronoun doubling and clitic right-dislocation. Right dislocated phrases occur sentence-finally following an intonational break, represented by the comma in (39). Clitic doubled DPs in Omani Arabic are not necessarily sentence-final, an empirical point we make in Section 3.2, where we treat clitic doubling in double-object constructions. The examples in Appendix A show furthermore that clitic doubled DPs are not preceded by an intonational break. In the contemporary dialects of Arabic, word-initial consonant clusters are common, but are broken up by incorporating the initial consonant of the cluster into the coda of the final syllable of the preceding word, which often entails inserting an epenthetic vowel, if the preceding word ends in a consonant. As a result, the phrase in (40a) is syllabified as in (40b) in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, where the k of kbār ‘big’ forms the coda of the preceding syllable, which has the final consonant of the preceding word as onset and an epenthetic vowel (the periods signify syllable boundaries). Shaaban (1977: 67–71) describes this pattern for Omani Arabic, and Johnstone (1967: 24–25) for all the Eastern Arabian dialects. Further, Cowell (1964: 21, 30–23) describes the same pattern for Syrian and Watson (2007: 70–74) for Cairene and Ṣanʕāni Arabic, so it seems to be widespread.

(40)
a.
rgāl kbār
men big
‘big men’
b.
/rgā.lək.bār/

The important point for the present purposes is that clitic pronoun doubling does not disrupt incorporation of the first consonant of an initial consonant cluster into the final syllable of the preceding word, unlike what we would expect if the doubled DP were preceded by an intonational break. In (41a), the first of the attested examples in Appendix A, jmīni ‘my right [hand]’ is doubled by the clitic ha, and yet the initial glide in jmīni is incorporated into the coda of the preceding syllable, which happens to be the clitic pronoun itself, and the result is pronounced as in (41b). There is no intonational break before the clitic doubled DP.

(41)
a.
minn-a quṣṣ-ha jmīn-i.
from-here cut-acc.3ms right-my
‘Cut my right [hand] from here.’
b.
/min.na.quṣṣ.haj.mī.ni/

Clitic pronoun doubling therefore does not require the intonational break that is typical of clitic right-dislocation, and therefore cannot be reduced to that phenomenon. We proceed below to the basic pronominalization pattern in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

3.1 Pronominalization in double-object constructions in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic

Like Damascus Arabic, Al-Bāṭinah Arabic has two classes of double-object verb, that take an accusative and dative recipient respectively. We begin as before with the double-accusative class of verbs, exemplified in Al-Bāṭinah as in Damascus Arabic by ʕaṭa ‘give’. As in Damascus Arabic, the double-object construction in (42a) alternates with a prepositional construction where the recipient is marked by the preposition l-, seen in (42b). This preposition is cognate with Damascene la- but lacks the vocalic rhyme, surfacing as a syllabic [l] instead.[12]

(42)
a.
ʕaṭē-na fāṭmah l-ktāb.
gave-1pl Fatima the-book
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
b.
ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb l-fāṭmah.
gave-1pl the-book to-Fatima
‘We gave the book to Fatima.’

Unlike Damascus Arabic, the objects can be freely reversed in the double-object frame. While the order recipient > theme seen in (42a) is regarded as canonical, the other order, illustrated in (43), is acceptable as well.

(43)
ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb fāṭmah.
gave-1pl the-book Fatima
Lit. ‘We gave the book Fatima.’

This optionality goes hand in hand with an optionality in which object may raise to subject in the passive. Just as in Damascus Arabic, the recipient may cliticize to the verb and raise to subject in the passive, as illustrated in (44). But unlike Damascus Arabic, so may the theme, as illustrated in (45).

(44)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha l-ktāb
gave-1pl-acc.3fs the-book
‘We gave her the book.’
b.
fāṭmah n-ʕaṭ-it l-ktāb
Fatima pass-gave-3fs the-book
‘Fatima was given the book.’
(45)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-h fāṭmah.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms Fatima
Lit. ‘We gave it Fatima.’
b.
l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa fāṭmah.
the-book pass-gave Fatima
Lit. ‘The book was given Fatima.’

In the prepositional frame, the theme may cliticize to the verb and may raise to subject in the passive, as (46) illustrates. This is as in Damascus Arabic.

(46)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-h l-fāṭmah.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms to-Fatima
‘We gave it to Fatima.’
b.
l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa l-fāṭmah.
the-book pass-gave to-Fatima
‘The book was given to Fatima.’

Like Damascus Arabic, Al-Bāṭinah Arabic also has a class of double-object verbs that take a dative indirect object, also marked by l-. The verb rasal ‘send’ is characteristic of this class. Example (47a) translates Damascus Arabic (13) into Al-Bāṭinah Arabic. The dative recipient can be cliticized to the verb as a pronoun in a dative inflectional paradigm, illustrated in (47b).

(47)
a.
rasal-na l-fāṭmah l-ktāb
sent-1pl dat-Fatima the-book
‘We sent Fatima the book.’
b.
rasal-nā-lha l-ktāb.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs the-book
‘We sent her the book.’

The dative recipient cannot be cliticized in the accusative paradigm nor promoted to subject in the passive, as illustrated in (48). This is as in Damascus Arabic (16) and is, as mentioned in Section 2.1, typical of dative arguments crosslinguistically.

(48)
a.
*rasal-nā-ha l-ktāb.
 sent-1pl-acc.3fs the-book
 (‘We sent her the book.’)
b.
*fāṭmah n-rasl-it l-ktāb
 Fatima pass-sent-3fs the-book
 (‘Fatima was sent the book.’)

As in Damascus Arabic, the accusative and l-marked internal arguments in (47a) can in principle be reversed, as shown in (49a), but because of the ambiguity of l- between a preposition and a marker of dative case, it is unclear whether we are looking at a prepositional frame here or an inversion of the dative recipient with the accusative theme. Given the availability of this inversion with two accusative objects in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, there is no reason to think that this is not possible when one of the objects is dative, so we assume (49a) is ambiguous between a prepositional frame and an inverted double-object frame with a dative recipient. Nothing hangs on this conclusion, though. It is also difficult to resolve the question of whether the dative recipient blocks cliticization of the accusative theme. Cliticization of the theme and raising to subject in passive are possible with rasal, as (49b) and (49c) make clear, but it remains unclear whether the l-marked recipient in those examples is a PP or a dative DP that is a non-intervener for cliticization of the theme to the verb.

(49)
a.
rasal-na l-ktāb l-fāṭmah.
sent-1pl the-book dat/to-Fatima
‘We sent the book to Fatima.’
b.
rasal-nā-h l-fāṭmah.
sent-1pl-acc.3ms dat/to-Fatima
‘We sent it to Fatima.’
c.
l-ktāb n-rasal l-fāṭmah.
the-book pass-sent dat/to-Fatima
‘The book was sent to Fatima.’

Al-Bāṭinah Arabic uses the same strategy as Damascus Arabic to express two pronominal objects in the double-object frame, namely insertion of jjā- to host the object clitic pronoun, shown in (50).

(50)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-ha jjā-h.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs ya-acc.3ms
‘We gave her it.’
b.
rasal-nā-lha jjā-h.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs ya-acc.3ms
‘We sent her it.’

Al-Bāṭinah Arabic appears to be a great deal more liberal than Damascus Arabic in terms of both word order within the verb phrase and the possibilities for pronominalization. Any DP object of the verb may be cliticized to it (but only one at a time, as in Damascus Arabic). Damascus Arabic lacks this flexibility. We return to this matter in Section 4, where we suggest that Al-Bāṭinah Arabic lacks the intervention restriction that is operative in Damascus Arabic, but turn first to clitic pronoun doubling in double-object constructions in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

3.2 Clitic doubling in double-object constructions in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic

In the double-object frame in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, either argument may be clitic doubled, regardless of order. This is unlike Damascus Arabic but of course correlates with the fact that in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, either object can precede the other and accordingly either may be cliticized to the verb or raised to subject in the passive. The examples in (51) show clitic pronoun doubling of the recipient in both orders, while (52) shows clitic pronoun doubling of the theme in both orders. Recall that in Damascus Arabic, a theme may not be doubled when a recipient is present. The examples in (52) show that this restriction does not hold in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic. We note here, as promised in Section 3, that the clitic doubled DP in (51a) and (52b) is not clause-final, in contrast to the example of clitic right dislocation in French in (39). Clitic doubling in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does not involve right dislocation of the DP associate of the clitic pronoun, and is therefore not reducible to clitic right dislocation. As in our discussion of Damascus Arabic, we underline the two terms that stand in the doubling relation in the Al-Bāṭinah examples below.

(51)
a.
ʕatē-nā-ha fāṭmah l-ktāb.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs Fatima the-book
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
b.
ʕatē-nā-ha l-ktāb fāṭmah.
gave-1pl-acc.3fs the-book Fatima
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
(52)
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-h fāṭmah l-ktāb
gave-1pl-acc.3ms Fatima the-book
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-h l-ktāb fāṭmah
gave-1pl-acc.3ms the-book Fatima
‘We gave Fatima the book.’

The theme may also be doubled in the prepositional frame. This is again unlike Damascus Arabic, where the mere presence of a recipient in the verb phrase blocks clitic pronoun doubling of a theme, regardless of which frame we are looking at. Compare (53) with Damascus Arabic (19b).

(53)
ʕaṭē-nā-h l-ktāb l-fāṭmah.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms the-book to-Fatima
‘We gave the book to Fatima.’

As in Damascus Arabic, a theme may also be clitic doubled in the presence of a locative PP designating the end of a path along which the theme moves.

(54)
a.
ħaṭṭē-nā- hin l-ʔ azhār fi-l-mazharijjah.
put-1pl-acc.3fpl the-flowers in-the-vase
‘We put the flowers in the vase.’
b.
waṣṣal-nā-hom ṣ-ṣɣēr-īn lēn ʔāxər s-sikkah.
accompanied-1pl-acc.3mpl the-child-pl to end the-street
‘We accompanied the children to the end of the street.’

When we turn to the class of dative-assigning verbs exemplified by rasal ‘send’, we find that the recipient may be clitic doubled, but not as a dative (i.e. l-marked) DP, but as a bare DP, as is typical for all the clitic pronoun doubling contexts we have seen in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic so far. That is, the morphological dative case of the clitic pronoun is not reflected on the full DP double. The full DP double is always bare regardless of the morphological case of the associated clitic pronoun. The full DP double of the recipient clitic pronoun may precede or follow the theme.

(55)
a.
rasal-nā-lha fāṭmah l-ktāb.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs Fatima the-book
‘We sent Fatima the book.’
b.
rasal-nā-lha l-ktāb fāṭmah.
sent-1pl-dat.3fs the-book Fatima
‘We sent Fatima the book.’

Here again, it is possible to clitic double a theme in the context of a l-marked recipient of rasal, as shown in (56a), again unlike Damascus Arabic. Here, too, the order of the double with the other argument is immaterial, as (56b) shows. In these respects, rasal is parallel to the way ʕaṭa ‘give’ behaves in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic (compare (56a) with (52)).

(56)
a.
rasal-nā-h l-ktāb l-fāṭmah.
sent-1pl-acc.3ms the-book to-Fatima
‘We sent the book to Fatima.’
b.
rasal-nā-h l-fāṭmah l-ktāb .
sent-1pl-acc.3ms to-Fatima the-book
‘We sent the book to Fatima.’

In light of the parallels between change-of-possession constructions and causative constructions we have observed in Damascus Arabic, we expect the same flexibility of order, pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling seen in change-of-possession constructions in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic to carry over to causative constructions. Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does indeed show the same causativization paradigm as Damascus Arabic and the same syntactic flexibility as it displays in change-of-possession constructions. Since these facts are as expected, and since they do not point to any restrictions crucial for the analysis of pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, we do not address them here, but list them for the record in Appendix B. In summary, there is no apparent difference between the circumstances under which a DP may be doubled by a clitic pronoun and the circumstances under which it may be pronominalized in the first place in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

4 Summary

In Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, it is possible to invert the two objects of a double-object verb, as the examples in (42a) and (43) show, repeated in (57) below.

(57)
Al-Bāṭinah
a.
ʕaṭē-na fāṭmah l-ktāb.
gave-1pl Fatima the-book
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
b.
ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb fāṭmah.
gave-1pl the-book Fatima
Lit. ‘We gave the book Fatima.’

This inversion resembles what in a variety of languages has been referred to as ‘scrambling’. Scrambling is a transformation that shifts the second of two objects to a position preceding the first, schematized in (58).

(58)

The possibility of displacing a DP over another DP is just what distinguishes Al-Bāṭinah Arabic from Damascus Arabic with respect to pronominalization, clitic pronoun doubling and raising to subject in the passive. In Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, the second of two object DPs may be cliticized to the verb ((45a), repeated in (59a)) or doubled by a verbal enclitic ((52a), repeated in (59b)), and may be moved to the subject position in the passive ((45b), repeated in (59c)), over an intervening object DP.

(59)
Al-Bāṭinah
a.
ʕaṭē-nā-h fāṭmah.
gave-1pl-acc.3ms Fatima
Lit. ‘We gave it Fatima.’
b.
ʕaṭē-nā-h fāṭmah l-ktāb
gave-1pl-acc.3ms Fatima the-book
‘We gave Fatima the book.’
c.
l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa fāṭmah.
the-book pass-gave Fatima
Lit. ‘The book was given Fatima.’

These examples instantiate the schemas in (60) for pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling and (61) for passivization.

(60)
(61)

In Damascus Arabic, none of these schemas are grammatical. Scrambling is impossible, as (8a), repeated in (62a) shows. Also impossible are pronominalization of the second of two DP objects over the first ((8b), repeated in (62b)), clitic doubling of the second of two objects ((19a), repeated in (62c)) and raising of the second of two objects over the first to subject in passive contexts ((8c), repeated in (62d)).

(62)
Damascus
a.
*ʕaṭē-na l-ktāb sāra.
 gave-1pl the-book Sarah
 (Lit. ‘We gave the book Sarah.’)
b.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h sāra.
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms Sarah
 (Lit. ‘We gave it Sarah.’)
c.
*ʕaṭē-nā-h sāra la-l-ktāb .
 gave-1pl-acc.3ms Sarah cd-the-book
 (‘We gave Sarah the book.’)
d.
*l-ktāb n-ʕaṭa sāra.
 the-book pass-gave Sarah
 (Lit. ‘The book was given Sarah.’)

That is, the three schemas in (58), (60) and (61) that are licit in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic are illicit in Damascus Arabic. The schemas have in common that they instantiate displacement of a DP over another DP. Therefore, the distinction between Damascus and Al-Bāṭinah Arabic at the root of this pattern is that a DP is an intervener for displacement of another DP in the former but not the latter.

We have also observed that clitic pronoun doubling is restricted to the base structure in Damascus Arabic. This is the level of structure at which a recipient or causee argument is initial in the verb phrase and in a position to block raising of the theme, which it does, even when it is ultimately demoted into a prepositional phrase in the surface structure. It is unclear whether Damascus Arabic differs from Al-Bāṭinah Arabic in this respect, since Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does not show intervention effects in the first place. Even if clitic pronoun doubling is only possible in the base structure in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, this would not actually restrict the possibility of clitic pronoun doubling because Al-Bāṭinah Arabic does not display intervention effects. As a result, Al-Bāṭinah and Damascus Arabic could well be identical in this respect; the independent difference between them obscures this particular parameter.

There is one last obvious morphological difference between the two varieties of Arabic, namely the fact that the full DP double of a clitic pronoun is morphologically marked in Damascus Arabic by the prefix la- while it goes unmarked in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic. It remains unclear whether this morphological difference is related to the difference between the two varieties in the presence of intervention effects. Is it the case that a language displaying intervention must (or may) differentially mark a clitic doubled DP, while a language without intervention must (or may) fail to differentially mark a clitic doubled DP? The detailed crosslinguistic comparison necessary to answer this question is beyond the scope of the present study.

5 Conclusion

In this article, we have discussed word order, pronominalization and clitic pronoun doubling patterns in two varieties of Arabic. Both varieties have clitic pronoun doubling constructions but these are subject to different restrictions, with Damascus Arabic being the more restrictive case. Damascus Arabic is an asymmetric object language, where word order and raising to subject are tightly restricted; only the closest potential target of displacement may be displaced to the host position. We have found that pronominalization and clitic doubling fall under this same restriction, with the additional observation that clitic pronoun doubling transpires before the derivation of the prepositional frame from the double-object frame in double-object constructions. Al-Bāṭinah Arabic is less restrictive; it allows any potential target of displacement to be displaced to the host position, possibly over another potential target. We have suggested that whether or not syntactic displacement is sensitive to intervention is the basic difference between the two varieties to which the different patterns of raising to subject, scrambling, pronominalization and clitic doubling can be traced. The data point to no obvious correlate of the difference in morphological markedness of the full DP double of a clitic pronoun, marked by la- in Damascus Arabic and unmarked in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

Acknowledgments: We extend our thanks to the Syrian native speaker consultants for this work Mohammad Al-Kadamani, H. Al-Khaled, Samah Alouch, Bushra Al-Shalabi and Talal Al-Shlash, and to two anonymous reviewers for their helpful commentary and guidance. This research was supported by a Sultan Qaboos University sabbatical leave at the University of Vienna to Rashid Al-Balushi and by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), grant nr. P27384 to Peter Hallman.

Appendix A: Attested clitic pronoun doubling examples in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic

The following is a selection of examples of clitic pronoun doubling in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic attested in Youtube videos. However, videos for all but the first five examples are no longer available at the time of publication. When available, the videos can be viewed at the URL given under each example. The example occurs in the time frame given to the right of the URL. Examples (65)–(67) are all from the same clip.

(63)
minn-a quṣṣ-ha jmīn-i iðā ṭāʕ j-qurð·-oh.
from-here cut-acc.3fs right-my if agreed 3ms-lend-acc.3ms
‘Cut my right hand from here if he agrees to lend him [money].’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_3guymfsgUs,0:48-0:50
(64)
ʔa-ji-ftaħ-ū-hin gamīʕ l-maħall-āt wə-l-munʃaʔ-āt.
fut-3-open-m.pl-acc.3pl all the-stores and-the-institutions-pl
‘They will open all the stores and institutions.’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hv_13SgIXD4, 1:19–1:21
(65)
xað·ē-t-oh l-bēt?
took-2ms-acc.3ms the-house
‘Did you take [=buy] the house?’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HK4tk-w7Cd0, 1:47–1:48
(66)
h-a-xð·-oh l-bēt.
fut-1s-take-acc.3ms the-house
‘I will take [=buy] the house.’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HK4tk-w7Cd0, 1:50–1:52
(67)
suwwā-ha l-quwwah.
make-acc.3fs the-strength
‘Make [=show] your strength’.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HK4tk-w7Cd0, 2:26–2:28
(68)
ð·əmm-hin flūs-ik.
hide-acc.3pl money(pl)-your
‘Hide your money.’
(69)
ð·arab-nā-h l-ɣada.
hit-1pl-acc.3ms the-lunch
‘We hit [=ate] the lunch.’
(70)
taw b-a-ʃūf-oh l-maqṭaʕ.
now fut-1s-see-acc.3ms the-clip
‘Now I will see the clip.’
(71)
t-ʕarf-eh tamīm?
2ms-know-acc.3ms Tamim
‘You know Tamim?’
(72)
rabʕ-i dāxl-īnn-oh l-film.
friends-my entering-m.pl-acc.3ms the-film
‘My friends entered [and watched] the film.’
(73)
gib-t-ha l-ʔigāzah?
brought-2ms-acc.3fs the-leave
‘Did you bring the sick leave?
(74)
ʔa-bā-ha ðīk l-qəṭʕah s-samāwijjəh.
1s-want-acc.3fs that the-piece the-sky.blue
‘I want that sky blue piece.’
(75)
ʔa-j-tirs-ū-ha ði l-kirʃ.
fut-3-fill-pl-acc.3fs this the-belly
‘They will fill this belly.’
(76)
mbūnn-ak t-surq-oh l-məftāħ.
used.to-2ms 2ms-steal-acc.3ms the-key
‘You used to steal the key.’
(77)
ʕab ʔa-t-ʃūf-oh l-məftāħ.
then not fut-2ms-see-acc.3ms the-key
‘Then you will never see the key again.’

Appendix B: The Al-Bāṭinah Arabic causative pattern

The following examples show word order and clitic pronoun doubling patterns in transitive and causative alternants of the verbs labas ‘put on’, ʕaraf ‘know, find out’, and ʔakal ‘eat’ in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic, parallel to the facts reported for Damascus Arabic in the discussion surrounding Examples (29)–(31). All the sentences listed below are grammatical in Al-Bāṭinah Arabic.

(78)
a.
l-bint labs-it l-fustān.
the-girl put.on-3fs the-dress
‘The girl put on the dress.’
b.
l-bint labs-itt-oh l-fustān.
the-girl put.on-3fs-acc.3ms the-dress
‘The girl put on the dress.’
c.
labbas-na l-bint l-fustān.
dressed-1pl the-girl the-dress
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
d.
labbas-na l-fustān lə-l-bint.
dressed-1pl the-dress to-the-girl
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
e.
labbas-nā-ha l-bint l-fustān.
dressed-1pl-acc.3fs the-girl the-dress
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
f.
labbas-nā-h l-fustān lə-l-bint.
dressed-1pl-acc.3ms the-dress to-the-girl
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
g.
labbas-nā-h l-bint l-fustān.
dressed-1pl-acc.3ms the-girl the-dress
‘We dressed the girl in the dress.’
(79)
a.
l-mudīr ʔaraf l-muʃkilah.
the-director knew the-problem
‘The director knew about the problem.’
b.
l-mudīr ʔaraf-ha l-muʃkilah.
the-director knew-acc.3fs the-problem
‘The director knew about the problem.’
c.
ʕarraf-na l-mudīr l-muʃkilah.
informed-1pl the-director the-problem
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
d.
ʕarraf-na l-muʃkilah lə-l-mudīr.
informed-1pl the-problem to-the-director
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
e.
ʕarraf-nā-h l-mudīr l-muʃkilah.
informed-1pl-acc.3ms the-director the-problem
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
f.
ʕarraf-nā-ha l-muʃ kilah lə-l-mudīr.
informed-1pl-acc.3fs the-problem to-the-director
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
g.
ʕarraf-nā-ha l-mudīr l-muʃ kilah.
informed-1pl-acc.3fs the-director the-problem
‘We informed the director of the problem.’
(80)
a.
l-walad ʔakal t-tuffāħah.
the-boy ate the-apple
‘The boy ate the apple.’
b.
l-walad ʔakal-ha t-tuffāħah.
the-boy ate-acc.3fs the-apple
‘The boy ate the apple.’
c.
ʔakkal-na l-walad t-tuffāħah.
fed-1pl the-boy the-apple
‘We fed the boy the apple.’
d.
ʔakkal-na t-tuffāħah lə-l-walad.
fed-1pl the-apple to-the-boy
‘We fed the apple to the boy.’
e.
ʔakkal-nā-h l-walad t-tuffāħah.
fed-1pl-acc.3ms the-boy the-apple
‘We fed the apple to the boy.’
f.
ʔakkal-nā-ha t-tuffāħah lə-l-walad.
fed-1pl-acc.3fs the-apple to-the-boy
‘We fed the apple to the boy.’
g.
ʔakkal-nā-ha l-walad t-tuffāħah.
fed-1pl-acc.3fs the-boy the-apple
‘We fed the boy the apple.’

Corresponding author: Rashid Al-Balushi, Department of English, College of Arts and Social Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, Seeb, Oman, E-mail:

Funding source: University of Vienna

Funding source: Austrian Science Fund (FWF)

Award Identifier / Grant number: P27384

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Received: 2019-12-31
Accepted: 2021-06-04
Published Online: 2022-08-29
Published in Print: 2022-09-27

© 2022 the author(s), published by De Gruyter, Berlin/Boston

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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