Morphology vs. Word Order in the Acquisition of V-to-I

João Costa, João Loureiro


This article presents an experiment on children’s sensitivity to two phenomena associated with V-to-I: morphology and word order. It is shown that children are highly sensitive to morphology, but accept ungrammatical sentences in which verb and adverb are in the wrong order. These results on children’s accuracy contrast with those reported for production. An analysis is proposed for explaining this asymmetry, discussing the notion of trigger in acquisition.


V-to-I, morphology, adverb, European Portuguese, trigger

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Copyright (c) 2006 João Costa, João Loureiro