Morphological and abstract case – Julie Legate

REVISED DRAFT OCT 2005 (This is a draft paper arguing (a) that abstract Case features are realized morphologically according to the Elsewhere Condition; (b) abstract absolutive Case does not exist; in one class of languages, absolutive is nominative Case; in another class, absolutive is a morphological default masking abstract nominative Case on intransitive subjects and abstract accusative Case on transitive objects. I focus mostly on ergative-absolutive languages, with a brief look at Icelandic quirky case for good measure.)