Diacronia 6, September 30, 2017, art. A91 (p. 1–10)

(Pseudo)cleft constructions in old Romanian

Mihaela Gheorghe


  • Faculty of Letters, “Transilvania” University of Brașov, Bd. Eroilor 29, 500036 Brașov, Romania
  • “Iorgu Iordan – Al. Rosetti” Institute of Linguistics, Calea 13 Septembrie 13, 050711 Bucharest, Romania


Received May 9, 2017
Accepted May 13, 2017
Published September 30, 2017

Key words

cleft sentences
pseudo-cleft sentences
relative clauses
old Romanian


The article examines the syntactic and semantic features of cleft sentences in Old Romanian (OR) as compared to Modern Romanian (MR). The clefting strategy in MR can only produce pseudo-cleft constructions (identifying structures with free relative clauses headed by ce, or relative clauses with an antecedent; the focalized constituent follows the relative clause and the copula; the reversed pattern is also possible: the focalized constituent is placed before the copula and the relative clause). The analysis of an OR corpus showed that cleft constructions were quite frequent, but the patterns were more diverse than in MR: besides cleft and pseudo-cleft constructions, OR also employed hybrid constructions, that amalgamate the features of the prototypical clefts.


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    Text:Gheorghe, M. (2017). (Pseudo)cleft constructions in old Romanian, Diacronia 6 (September 30), A91 (1–10),
     author = {Mihaela Gheorghe},
     title = {(Pseudo)cleft constructions in old Romanian},
     journal = {Diacronia},
     ISSN = {2393-1140},
     year = {2017},
     month = {September},
     number = {6},
     eid = {A91},
     doi = {},
     pages = "(1–10)",
     url = {}


© 2017 The Authors. Publishing rights belong to the Journal. The article is freely accessible under the terms and conditions of the CC-BY Open Access licence.

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