The Structure of Infinitival Perception Verb Complements in a Transformational Grammar

  • Renaat Declerck
Part of the Studies in Language book series (STUDLANG)


This article will be concerned with the structure of Infinitival Perception Verb Complements (henceforth: IPVC’s), i.e. with constructions involving ‘bare’ (‘naked’) infinitives, as in I saw/heard/smelt Tom light a cigarette. For structures like this no fewer than five analyses have been proposed within the framework of transformational grammar. In this paper I will go into these and come to the conclusion that every one of them raises serious problems, though the traditional raising analysis fares somewhat better than the others. The overall conclusion will be that English IPVC’s still present a serious problem for transformational grammar, especially for the version that has been developed by Chomsky (1973 and later work)1.


Underlying Structure Object Shift Intensional Context Adverbial Clause True Subject 
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Copyright information

© Communication and Cognition 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Renaat Declerck
    • 1
  1. 1.Katholieke Universiteit Leuven-KortrijkBelgium

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