Cº realizations along the left edge across English and Spanish

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This paper investigates the lexicalization of the complementizer that/que in English and Spanish varieties in different contexts along the left edge of the clause. This is performed through discussion of a range of constructions traditionally attributed to the CP domain/left periphery, primarily (but not only) in certain embedded clauses. The ubiquity of that/que, that is, the lexical realization of that/que in subordinating environments, exclamative clauses, interrogative contexts, and subjunctive clauses, amongst others, sheds light not only on the characterization of the relevant constructions but also on the make-up of the left edge of the clause. The fact that such realizations can be obligatory, optional, or, on occasion, impossible, sometimes depending on the variety in question, furthers our understanding of head lexicalizations while contributing to macro and microvariation studies in syntactic theory. In so doing, this paper paves the way for holistic investigations devoted to complementizer realization in the head position of different left-edge-related constructions and in different linguistic varieties.

Original languageEnglish
Article number268
Issue number4
Early online date14 Nov 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2023


  • dialectal variation
  • dislocations
  • exclamatives
  • finiteness
  • head lexicalizations
  • interrogatives
  • left periphery
  • subordination


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