By David Purves
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Additional resources for A Scots Grammar: Scots Grammar & Usage
The conjunction of values Preliminaries 27 of the relevant θ-specifications in the matrix and the controlled clause respectively, provides the appropriate format. The crucial relation between the θ-specifications of the potential controller and PRO is particularly effective iff the complement clause of which PRO is the subject is itself an internal argument of the matrix “control” verb, θgoverned and/or L-marked by it. Subject complement clauses of which PRO is the subject, which are external arguments and selected rather by VP, are less able to sustain the relation formulated in the constraints.
Suppose constraints (B a,b) are considered unmarked if α = +, and marked if α has the negative value. g. Manzini’s (59), the marked one. Note that in (55) as well as in (56), the subject NP, by projection from the lexicon, is marked 〈intact,+〉 and the object-NP receives 〈intact, –〉. Thus, only in (55), with PRO being assigned 〈intact, +〉(PRO), the matrix object NP is a licit controller sanctioned by constraint (C,b′), (α = +). In other words, the “natural” conceptual-semantic identification of the person(s) to whom the request is directed with the person(s) intended to come to comply with it substantiates the control relation in (55).
For example, in (47), PRO can have a generic interpretation (For mankind it is important to solve the ecological problems). Or PRO may have an “understood” or implicit antecedent in the matrix clause. The burden of identifying the (domain of) persons to whom something is important rests with the matrix clause. PRO “inherits” its interpretation from the matrix clause. Of course, there is another interpretation of (47) in which the interpretation of PRO is independent of an optional prepositional argument in the matrix clause.