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3.1 Subject-initial sentences.

The single most common sentence type in Old English is the subject-initial sentence, in which the first constituent is the subject and the second is the tensed verb. The subject is a nominative case noun phrase or pronoun which moves to the specifier of a functional projection in the C/I system, while the tensed verb also moves to the head of a functional projection. Subject-initial matrix clauses are not SVO sentences but just V2 sentences in which the topic happens to be the subject.[5] In the case of embedded clauses, the correct analysis of subject-initial sentences is trickier and will be discussed further in section 4.

Anthony Kroch
Wed Jan 10 09:14:48 EST 1996