The syntax of relative clauses in Croatian

In this paper, I propose that Croatian relative clauses (RCs) introduced by the complementizer to 'what/that' do not form a homogeneous class with respect to their derivation: some are derived by movement, and some are derived by a non-movement strategy. Unless the relativized element is the subject, sto-RCs normally require a resumptive pronoun to appear in the site of relativization. However, this requirement is removed under morphological case matching between the head of the RC and the resumptive pronoun: the resumptive pronoun, may be omitted if the pronounced head of the RC, case-marked in the matrix clause, appears in the morpho-phonological form that it would have if it were case-marked by the embedded predicate. I argue that the absence of a resumptive pronoun in a sto-RC indicates that the RC is derived by movement. I propose that the matching analysis of RCs (Bhatt 2002; Citko 2001; Hulsey and Sauerland 2006; Sauerland 1998, 2002), coupled with a version of the Inverse Case Filter (Boskovic 1997, 2002; Martin 1999) and a particular view of inverse (case) attraction offers a natural explanation for why such sto-RCs may receive a movement analysis only if the matching requirement is satisfied.

Citation Formats
M. Gracanın Yüksek, “The syntax of relative clauses in Croatian,” LINGUISTIC REVIEW, vol. 30, no. 1, pp. 25–49, 2013, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: