Skip to content
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton November 16, 2018

Stative and eventive passives of subject experiencer verbs in Polish

Anna Bondaruk and Bożena Rozwadowska


The paper addresses the question whether Subject Experiencer (henceforth, SE) verbs can form the stative and eventive passive in Polish. The analysis shows that SE verbs in Polish only sporadically give rise to the stative passive, and whenever this is possible, the stative passive derived from an SE verb can be classed as the target state passive in Kratzer’s typology (2000). Polish SE verbs are susceptible to two types of eventive passive – (i) with the auxiliary zostać ‘to become’, co-occurring with the perfective passive participle; and (ii) with the auxiliary być ‘to be’, followed by the imperfective passive participle. The fact that SE verbs can give rise to zostać-passives is unproblematic, as this type of passive contains the passive participle derived from the perfective form of the verb, which is always eventive. Stative SE verbs can serve as good inputs to the być + imperfective passive on account of the fact that they can be coerced from states into non-dynamic events, as proposed for Spanish in Fábregas and Marín (2017).

Anna Bondaruk John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin al. Racławickie 14 20-950 Lublin Poland


Aalstein, A. and P. Blackburn. 2009. “An aspectual classification of Polish verbs”. <>Search in Google Scholar

Alexiadou, A., B. Gehrke and F. Schäfer. 2014. “The argument structure of adjectival passives revisited”. Lingua 149. 118–138.10.1016/j.lingua.2014.05.018Search in Google Scholar

Alexiadou, A., E. Anagnostopoulou and F. Schäfer. 2015. External arguments in transitivity alternations. A layering approach Oxford: Oxford University Press.10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199571949.001.0001Search in Google Scholar

Anderson. 2017. “Affectedness”. In: Everaert, M. and H.C. Van Riemsdijk (eds.), The Wiley Blackwell companion to syntax (2nd edition). New York: Wiley-Blackwell. 169–189.10.1002/9781118358733Search in Google Scholar

Arad, M. 1998. “Psych-notes”. UCL Working Papers in Linguistics 10. 203–223. London: University College London.Search in Google Scholar

Arad, M. 1999. “What counts as a class? The case of Psych Verbs”. MIT Working Papers in Linguistics 35. 1–23.Search in Google Scholar

Bar-el, L. 2005. Aspectual distinctions in Squamish. (PhD dissertation, Department of Linguistics, University of British Columbia.)Search in Google Scholar

Belletti, A. and L. Rizzi. 1988. “Psych-verbs and θ theory”. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 6. 291–352.10.1007/BF00133902Search in Google Scholar

Biały, A. 2005. Polish psychological verbs at the lexicon-syntax interface in crosslinguistic perspective Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang.Search in Google Scholar

Biały, A. and B. Rozwadowska. 2017. “The non-achievement status of Polish psych verbs”. Paper presented at the 5th LingBaW conference, 18–19 October 2017, Lublin.Search in Google Scholar

Bondaruk, A. and B. Rozwadowska. 2018. “Heterogeneity of states in Polish stative passives”. In: Guz. W. and B. Szymanek (eds.), Canonical and non-canonical structures in Polish Lublin: Wydawnictwo KUL. 33–55.Search in Google Scholar

Bondaruk, A., B. Rozwadowska and W. Witkowski. 2017a. “Passivisation of Polish Object Experiencer verbs vs. the unaccusativity hypothesis (Part 1)”. Studies in Polish Linguistics 12(2). 57–73.10.4467/23005920SPL.17.003.7021Search in Google Scholar

Bondaruk, A., B. Rozwadowska and W. Witkowski. 2017b. “Passivisation of Polish Object Experiencer verbs vs. the unaccusativity hypothesis (Part 2)”. Studies in Polish Linguistics 12(3). 123-144.10.4467/23005920SPL.17.006.7199Search in Google Scholar

Brennan, J. and L. Pylkkänen. 2010. “Processing psych verbs: Behavioural and MEG measures of two different types of semantic complexity”. Language and Cognitive Processes 25(6). 777–807.10.1080/01690961003616840Search in Google Scholar

Duden (ed.). 2005. Der Duden in zwei Bänden. Bd.4. Duden – Die Grammatik 7 Mannheim: Dudenverlag.Search in Google Scholar

Egerland, V. 1998. “The affectedness constraint and AspP”. Studia Linguistica 52. 19–47.10.1111/1467-9582.00028Search in Google Scholar

Fábregas, A. and R. Marín. 2015. “Deriving individual-level and stage-level psych verbs in Spanish”. The Linguistic Review 32(2). 227–275.10.1515/tlr-2014-0022Search in Google Scholar

Fábregas, A. and R. Marín. 2017. “On non-dynamic eventive verbs in Spanish”. Linguistics 55(3). 451–488.10.1515/ling-2017-0001Search in Google Scholar

Gehrke, B. 2013. “Still puzzled by adjectival passives?”. In: Folli, R., Ch. Sevdali and R. Truswell (eds.), Syntax and its limits Oxford: Oxford University Press. 175–191.10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199683239.003.0010Search in Google Scholar

Gehrke, B. 2015. “Adjectival participles, event kind modification and pseudo-incorporation”. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 33. 897–938.10.1007/s11049-015-9295-7Search in Google Scholar

Gehrke, B. and N. Grillo. 2009. “How to become passive”. In: Grohmann, K. (ed.), Explorations of Phase Theory: Features, arguments and interpretation at the interfaces Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 231–268.Search in Google Scholar

Gehrke, B. and C. Marco. 2014. “Different by-phrases with adjectival and verbal passives: Evidence from Spanish corpus data”. Lingua 149. 188–214.10.1016/j.lingua.2014.07.011Search in Google Scholar

Grafmiller, J. 2013. The semantics and syntactic choice. An analysis of English emotion verbs. (PhD dissertation, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.)Search in Google Scholar

Grestenberger, L. 2017. “Depondency in finite and non-finite contexts”. <>10.1353/lan.0.0229Search in Google Scholar

Harley, H. and R. Noyer. 2000. “Formal versus encyclopedic properties of vocabulary: Evidence from nominalizations”. In: Peeters, B. (ed.) The lexicon–encyclopedia interface Amsterdam/Oxford: Elsevier. 349–374.Search in Google Scholar

Helbig, G. and J. Buscha. 2001. Deutsche Grammatik. Ein Handbuch für Ausländerunterricht Berlin and Munich: Langenscheidt.Search in Google Scholar

Jaeggli, O. 1986. “Passive”. Linguistic Inquiry 17. 587–622.Search in Google Scholar

Kibort, A. 2004. Passive and passive-like constructions in English and Polish. (PhD dissertation, University of Cambridge.)Search in Google Scholar

Kratzer, A. 2000. “Building statives”. Proceedings of Berkley Linguistics Society 26. 385–399.10.3765/bls.v26i1.1131Search in Google Scholar

Landau, I. 2010. The locative syntax of Experiencers Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.10.7551/mitpress/8387.001.0001Search in Google Scholar

Laskowski, R. 1998. “Kategorie morfologiczne języka polskiego – Charakterystyka funkcjonalna” [Morphological categories in Polish – Functional characteristics]. In: Grzegorczykowa, R., R. Laskowski and H. Wróbel (eds.), Gramatyka współczesnego języka polskiego. Morfologia [A grammar of contemporary Polish. Morphology].Warszawa: PWN. 151–221.Search in Google Scholar

Maienborn, C., H. Gese and B. Stolterfoht. 2016. “Adverbial modifiers in adjectival passives”. Journal of Semantics 33. 299–358.10.1093/jos/ffv004Search in Google Scholar

Marín, R. and L. McNally 2011. “Inchoativity, change of state, and telicity: Evidence from Spanish reflexive psychological verbs”. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 29. 467–502.10.1007/s11049-011-9127-3Search in Google Scholar

Meltzer-Asscher, A. 2011. “Adjectival passives in Hebrew: Evidence for parallelism between the adjectival and verbal system”. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 29. 815–855.10.1007/s11049-011-9138-0Search in Google Scholar

Meltzer-Asscher, A. 2013. “Verbal passives in Hebrew and English: A comparative study”. In: Everaert, M., M. Marelj and T. Siloni (eds.), The Theta System: Argument structure at the interface Oxford: Oxford University Press. 279–307.Search in Google Scholar

Nagórko, A. 1996. Zarys gramatyki polskiej [An outline of Polish grammar]. Warszawa: Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN.Search in Google Scholar

Næss, Å. 2003. “What markedness marks: The markedness problem with direct objects”. Lingua 114. 1186–1212.10.1016/j.lingua.2003.07.005Search in Google Scholar

Pesetsky, D. 1995. Zero syntax: Experiencers and cascades Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Search in Google Scholar

Piñón, Ch. 1999. “Durative adverbials for result states”. In: Bird, S., A. Carnie, J.D. Haugen and P. Norquest (eds.), Proceedings of the 18th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press. 420–433.Search in Google Scholar

Pylkkänen, L. 1997. Stage and individual level psych verbs in Finnish. Paper presented at the Workshop on Events in Syntax and Semantics. LSA Summer Institute, Cornell University.Search in Google Scholar

Pylkkänen, L. 2000. “On stativity and causation”. In: Tenny, C. and J. Pustejovsky (eds.), Events as grammatical objects: The converging perspective of lexical semantics and syntax Stanford, CA: CSLI Publications. 417–444.Search in Google Scholar

Reinhart, T. 2002. “The Theta System – An overview.” Theoretical Linguistics 28(3). 229–290.10.1515/thli.28.3.229Search in Google Scholar

Rothmayr, A. 2009. The structure of stative verbs Amsterdam: John Benjamins.10.1075/la.143Search in Google Scholar

Rothstein, S. 2004. Structuring events: A study in the semantics of aspect Oxford: Blackwell.10.1002/9780470759127Search in Google Scholar

Rozwadowska, B. 1988. “Thematic restrictions on derived nominals”. In: Wilkins, W. (ed.), Syntax and semantics: Thematic relations New York, NY: Academic Press. 147–165.Search in Google Scholar

Rozwadowska, B. 2003. “Initial boundary and telicity in the semantics of perfectivity”. In: Kosta, P., J. Błaszczak, J. Frasek, L. Geist and M. Żygis (eds.), Investigations into formal Slavic linguistics Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang. 859–872.Search in Google Scholar

Rozwadowska, B. 2012. “On the onset of psych eventualities”. In: Cyran. E., H. Kardela and B. Szymanek (eds.), Sound, structure and sense. Studies in memory of Edmund Gussmann Lublin: Wydawnictwo KUL. 533–554.Search in Google Scholar

Tenny, C. 1992. “The aspectual interface hypothesis”. In: Sag, I. and A. Szabolcsi (eds.), Lexical matters Stanford: CLSI. 1–27.Search in Google Scholar

Tenny, C. 1994. Aspectual roles and the syntax–semantics interface. Dordrecht: Kluwer.10.1007/978-94-011-1150-8Search in Google Scholar

Tenny, C. 1998. “Psych verbs and verbal passives in Pittsburghese”. Linguistics 36. 591–597.Search in Google Scholar

Zabrocki, T. 1981. Lexical rules of semantic interpretation Poznań: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu im. A. Mickiewicza w Poznaniu.Search in Google Scholar

Published Online: 2018-11-16
Published in Print: 2018-11-27

© 2018 Faculty of English, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland

Scroll Up Arrow