On Root Modality Predicates and their Radical Clausal Desires

Bar Avineri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In Modern Hebrew some root modality predicates which express volition, obligation and need show a phenomenon which is known in the cross-linguistic literature as 'subject obviation' - a requirement of predicates such as 'want' for disjoint reference between the matrix subject and a pronominal subject of a subordinate clause. This paper approaches the phenomenon from a diachronic perspective and examines the clausal complement requirements of 'want' in Classical Hebrew and their developments. In light of the historical data presented, this work suggests understanding the synchronic disjoint reference construction as a coerced clause with the extended meaning of a wish or request for root modal predicates, and proposes that their core complement is non-finite and co-referential and is strongly associated with intent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)365-380
Number of pages16
JournalHebrew Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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