Number morphology on honorific nouns


  • Yash Sinha Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Singular honorific nouns in Hindi, Punjabi and Marathi show interesting behavior with respect to number morphology. While they uniformly trigger plural agreement, we find that certain plural affixes occur on these nouns, but others do not. I propose a morphosyntactic analysis for this asymmetry. I argue that the two types of plural affixes realize different syntactic heads: the plural affixes that occur on singular honorific nouns realize n, while the others realize Num. Building on Bhatt & Davis (2021) and using a mechanism for feature copying within the nominal phrase, I propose a structure for singular honorific nouns that can capture this generalization.