Roles, hierarchies, and the double marking of objects.

2016. №5, 7-48

Peter M. Arkadiev
Institute of Slavic Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation;
Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow, 125993, Russian Federation;
Moscow State Pedagogical University, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation


The article presents a typological study of double marking (by means of case and verbal agreement) of objects (monotransitive patients and ditransitive recipients) in ca. 80 genealogically and geographically diverse languages. The investigation considers the factors that determine the patterns of double marking of objects, similarities and differences in the formal expression of different object relations, the types of mismatch between head and dependent marking, and instances of areal diffusion of this phenomenon. It is shown, first, that contrary to the claims advanced in the literature, double marking of recipients is more frequent and systematic than that of patients and, second, that the best represented type of double marking involves both the recipient and the prominent (animate / definite / topical) patient, and that in such cases identical marking is often used for both roles.