The Verb Krijgen 'To Get' as an Undative Verb

H. Broekhuis, L.M.E.A. Cornips*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This article will argue that the typology of verbs currently assumed in generative grammar has an incidental gap; we would expect that besides dyadic verbs with two internal arguments, in which the theme argument surfaces as subject, there are also dyadic verbs with two internal arguments, in which the goal argument surfaces as subject. We will show that such verbs do indeed exist and are instantiated by the verb krijgen 'to get' and its cognates hebben and houden 'to keep'. We will call these verbs undative verbs given that they are characterized by the fact that they can assign accusative, but not dative case. We will further provide a discussion of the syntactic behavior of the krijgen-passive and what we will call the semicopular construction in (so-called standard and nonstandard) Dutch in order to show that these case properties of the main verbs krijgen, hebben and houden are also present in their uses as auxiliary and semicopular verbs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1205-1249
Number of pages45
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012

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