The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

LF Reading Group 10/19 — Ido Benbaji and Omri Doron (MIT)

Speakers: Ido Benbaji and Omri Doron (MIT)
Title: Adversative only is only only
Time: Wednesday 10/19, 1-2pm
Location: 32-D461


Jespersen (1954) discusses uses of the word only in which it seems to behave as a sentential connective, as in (1) below. Following von Fintel & Iatridou, we call this adversative only.
(1) He’s a nice man, only he talks too much.
We propose a unified analysis for regular only and adversative only, and suggest that the difference between the uses stems from scopal interaction with an operator in LF that enforces the informativity requirement on sentences. We extend our analysis to other cases of CP-taking only and even.