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A partial syntactic description of Arikara is presented, with primary emphasis on the relationships of nouns to verbs in the language. Major types of surface intransitive and transitive constructions are described. A transformational description of person agreement in the verb is presented. Major types of pos­sessive constructions are examined. Finally, the process of noun incorporation, characteristic of the Caddoan language family generally, is examined, and evidence is presented for the direct role played by nominal features in Arikara syntax.

The discussion of problems in syntax is preceded by a brief outline of Arikara phonology, which, although neither ex­haustive nor definitive, shows that the language has relatively complex and deep phonology, in that the abstract representations of fonnatives are quite different from their surface counterparts.

On the basis of the examination of noun-verb relationships, it is shown that Arikara is not a language of the ergative type, as has been suggested for other closely affiliated members of the Caddoan language family, but rather is a language exhibiting a split-intransitive verb system. Tentative suggestions are made regarding the semantic interpretation of the split in the intransi­tive paradigm.

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First Committee Member (Chair)

Bruce Joseph Rigsby

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Third Committee Member

Stanley Stewart Newman

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