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Abstract

Definite descriptions may give rise to anaphoric interpretations. Addressing this, work in semantics has led to syntactic claims that anaphora-encoding indices are syntactically represented in the DP (i.a. Elbourne 2005; Schwarz 2009). An open question is, however, how these indices interact syntactically with another type of anaphoric element within the DP: modifiers. An example of one such modifier is ‘same,’ which readily participates in anaphora cross-linguistically. ,In this dissertation, I address this interaction by investigating the morphosyntactic properties of anaphoric DPs both with and without ‘same.’ Rejecting the null hypothesis that ‘same’ is simply a modifier that appears in an otherwise unchanged DP syntax, I argue that, while anaphoric definite descriptions do in fact house indices in their structure, anaphora with same arises from a different source: ‘same’ is a degree head that encodes anaphora by selecting an index of its own – a common trait of degree elements more generally. This proposal leads to testable predictions, which I show to be borne out with data from German and from fieldwork on Washo, a Native American isolate. ,Crucial to the treatment of ‘same’ as a degree head is an account of its use in introducing ‘as’-relatives. I argue that while the degree head ‘same’ selects for an index on its anaphoric use, an ‘as’-relative may occupy the same structural position in cases of clausal modification, obviating the need for an antecedent. I give an analysis of ‘as’-relatives assuming a matching structure of relative clauses, and further relate this type of embedded clause to restrictive relatives introduced by ‘same.’ ,Finally, the claim that ‘same’ is a degree head rather than an adjective raises pertinent questions about the nature of inflection. The dissertation therefore addresses problems posed by German for current accounts of nominal concord, which are presented from degree modifiers of various types. I argue for a postsyntactic account along the lines of Norris (2014), for whom inflection is achieved by the insertion of Agr nodes onto individual heads post-syntactically, but argue instead that Agr is inserted phrasally, at DegP, which I show to account for a wide range of inflectional patterns. ,In sum, the dissertation addresses three core topics, concerning: i) the way anaphoric interpretations arise from distinct structural sources, both within and across languages; ii) the relationship between individuals and gradable expressions; and iii) the nature of attributive degree modification.

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