Bare adjectives as syncretic forms


  • Avel·lina Suñer Universitat de Girona
  • Angela Di Tullio Instituto de Filología Dr. Amado Alonso. UBA



adjective, adverb, default agreement, secondary predication, manner, Aktionsart


The goal of this paper is to discuss the categorical status and semantic properties of the so-called adjective adverbs (ngrale 2009: 2295-2301). As these forms are actually real adjectives lacking productive gender and number agreement, we will call them here bare adjectives. We will argue that the default agreement (masculine, singular) which characterize such forms naturally follows from the fact that they cannot check their agreement features against the gender and number features of their respective subjects before spellout. Therefore we propose that these words are the syncretic correlate of standard agreeing adjectives in certain contexts. In this sense, the alleged adverbial behaviour that such predicative elements display can be seen as an epiphenomenon instead of a basic syntactic feature. Likewise, we will explain the syntactic and interpretive properties of these adjectives according to the different levels of the VP and CP areas they are associated with.




How to Cite

Suñer, A., & Di Tullio, A. (2014). Bare adjectives as syncretic forms. Borealis – An International Journal of Hispanic Linguistics, 3(1), 23–47.