Abstract

On the basis of certain semantic intuitions, Barros (2012) argues that ellipsis does not require structural isomorphism between elided structure and its antecedent. We tackle this claim. Semantic intuitions cannot be a pointer to the analysis of silent structure. We provide empirical evidence that raises the question of to what extent semantic intuitions about plausible articulable syntax must inform one’s analysis of silent structure. We conclude that the answer to this question must be crosslinguistically informed. We conjecture that ellipsis introduces ellipsis-specific interpretive mechanisms, so that intuitions about “how the unelided structure would be interpreted” are not empirically relevant.

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