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The bridge complement is realised as a Verb-First clause

The Verb-First clause is used for questions, generally speaking, but also when bridge verbs are involved. In addition, Verb-First clauses are used for linking to the previous discourse, and as such they are characteristic of spoken language.


Verb-First clauses are used when long question formation applies to the Verb-Second (V2) complement of a bridge verb (see verb-second in embedded clauses without a complementiser (NCV2s)). An example is given below:

Example 1

Wa, tocht hy, soene se oannimme?
who thought he would they on.take
Who, he thought, would they hire?

In addition, Verb-First is used for providing a link to the previous discourse, as in the following example. The phenomenon is also referred to as topic-drop:

Example 2

a. Kensto Jouke?
know.you Jouke
Do you know Jouke?
b. Ken ik net
know I not
Don't know him

D-pronouns are demonstrative pronouns used as topic pronouns. These are used for the same purpose:

Example 3

Die ken ik net
that know I not
I do not know him

In addition, certain clause types feature Verb-First, such as clauses of appearance or comparison following the complementiser as as if and net liker as as if:

Example 4

Under syn boarstelige wynbrauwen wei seach er de mannichte kâld gnyskjend oer, net liker as socht er oanslach
below his bushy eyebrow away saw he the crowd sardonical.smiling over not like.COMP if looked he work
From below his bushy eyebrows, he looked over the crowd, smiling sardonically, as if he was looking for work

In the example above, the hangman is not really looking for work, but it may appear so. In the example below, the Verb-First similarly expresses something that appears to be the case, without it being actually the case:

Example 5

It wie as hie de man gjin erch mear yn my
it was as had the man no notice anymore in me
It was as if the man did not take any notice of me anymore