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Verbstellungsvariation in hypothetischen Vergleichssätzen 


Zurück zum Heft: Linguistische Berichte Heft 238
EUR 14,90


Recent work on clause linkage in Present Day-German suggests a correlation between word order and type of clause linkage considering paradigm cases as conditional and causal clauses. In the present paper, I will show that this correlation does not hold for comparative clauses establishing a relationship of hypothetical equality to their matrix clause. There is no question that these clauses exhibit different degrees of clause integration, the position of the finite verb, however, varies independently of the type of clause linkage as indicated by classical diagnostics for clause linkage types such as sequence of clauses, correlative elements and focus background-structure. The historical record of German witnesses different types of clause linkage while exhibiting no word order variation with clauses of hypothetical comparison. Taking a diachronic perspective, I will argue that the present word order variation arises in the 16th century due to the steady weakening of the subjunctive: With the introduction of the new subordinator als wenn and the replacement of V-final clauses by V1-clauses, it is the form of the comparative clause and no longer verbal mood that indicates its open truth value.