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5.2.2.3.Extraposition and verb clustering
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The discussion of te-infinitivals in the previous sections was simplified in that it abstracted away from one important issue that would have complicated the exposition considerably. The fact is that Section 5.2.2.1 restricts its attention to obligatory control constructions such as (541a), in which the te-infinitival is in extraposed position as a whole, that is, placed in a position following the verbs in clause-final position. Obligatory control constructions such as (541b), in which the te-infinitivals are discontinuous with the result that the verbs of the matrix and the embedded infinitival clause cluster together, are not discussed. For the reader's convenience, we have italicized the infinitival clauses and underlined the verbs in these examples.

541
a. dat Jan ontkent het huis te kopen.
extraposition
  that  Jan denies the house  to buy
  'that Jan denies buying the house.'
b. dat Jan het huis eindelijk durft te kopen.
verb clustering
  that  Jan the house  finally  dares  to buy
  'that Jan finally dares to buy the house.'

Although the difference between extraposition and verb clustering has been on the research agenda since Bech (1955) and Evers (1975), it is still giving rise to numerous questions and difficulties (both of a descriptive and of a more theoretical nature). This section will focus on the fact that the difference between extraposition and verb clustering is often seen as a difference in transparency of the infinitival clause. Since verb clustering is normally derived by movement of some element from within the infinitival clause to some position in the matrix clause (head movement or adjunction of the te-infinitive to the higher matrix verb in Evers' original proposal, though Chapter 7 will show that alternative proposals involving XP-movement are also available), extraposition can be forced by assuming that infinitival clauses in examples such as (541a) are opaque, that is, they are islands for locally restricted syntactic dependencies like head- and XP-movement. However, this conclusion is at odds with the fact established in Section 5.2.2.1 that examples such as (541a) involve obligatory control, which is likewise a locally restricted syntactic dependency; if te-infinitivals in extraposed position are islands for movement, we wrongly predict that they are also islands for obligatory control. This section should therefore investigate whether it is actually true that extraposed te-infinitivals are islands for movement, and our conclusion will be that they are not. Given the complexity of the topic involved, we will begin the discussion by giving a bird's eye view of the following discussion and by summarizing the main conclusions.

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[+]  I.  A brief outline of the discussion and its conclusions

Subsection II starts by briefly repeating one of the main findings from our discussion of ( om +) te-infinitivals in Sections 5.2.1 and 5.2.2, which we will adopt as our point of departure: while constructions with om + te-infinitival argument clauses such as (542a) are non-obligatory control constructions categorically, constructions with te-infinitival argument clauses like (542b&c) involve either obligatory control or subject raising, depending on whether or not the verb selecting the infinitival clause also selects an external argument.

542
a. Jani probeerde [CP (om) PROi dat boek te lezen].
non-obligatory control
  Jan  tried  comp  that book  to read
  'Jan tried to read that book.'
b. Jani beweert [TP PROi dat boek te lezen].
obligatory control
  Jan  claims  that book  to read
  'Jan claims to be reading that book.'
c. Jani blijkt [TPti dat boek te lezen].
subject raising
  Jan  turns.out  that book  to read
  'Jan turns out to be reading that book.'

Examples like (542a&b) can be distinguished by means of impersonal passivization of the matrix clause, which is possible in the case of non-obligatory control but excluded in the case of obligatory control. Examples like (542b&c) can be distinguished by means of pronominalization, which also affects the nominative subject of the entire construction if we are dealing with subject raising, but not if we are dealing with control; cf. the examples in (543).

543
a. Jan beweert dat
  Jan claims  that
a' * Dat beweert.
  that  claims
b. Dat blijkt.
  that  turns.out
b'. * Jan blijkt dat.
  Jan turns.out  that

      Section III discusses the distinction between extraposition and verb-clustering infinitives like (541a&b). The generalization given above suggests that there are two main syntactic types of infinitival complement clauses: om + te-infinitivals, which are CPs and constitute islands for locally restricted syntactic dependencies like obligatory control and subject raising, and te-infinitivals, which are TPs and are transparent for such dependencies. The examples in (541) have further shown that there are reasons for subdividing the set of te-infinitivals into two subclasses; one type behaving like om + te-infinitivals in that they are in extraposed position and do not trigger the IPP-effect in perfect-tense constructions, and a second type that rather behaves like bare infinitivals in that they require verb clustering and do exhibit the IPP-effect. In more traditional terms, we may conclude from this that the former type is opaque for the movements that derive verb clustering, whereas the latter type is transparent for such movements. For convenience, we have again italicized the infinitival clauses and underlined the verbs in our examples in (544).

544
a. dat Jan heeft ontkend/*ontkennen het huis te kopen.
opaque
  that  Jan has  denied/deny  the house  to buy
  'that Jan has denied buying the house.'
b. dat Jan eindelijk het huis heeft durven/*gedurfd te kopen.
transparent
  that  Jan at.last  the house  has  dare/dared  to buy
  'that Jan finally has dared to buy the house.'

If we also include the distinction between control and subject raising constructions discussed in Section 5.2.2.1 and 5.2.2.2, we arrive at the somewhat unexpected classification in Table (545), in which the split pattern and the IPP-effect are taken as diagnostics for transparency. The problem with this classification is that it does not account for the fact established earlier that control te-infinitivals always involve obligatory control and are therefore expected to be part of the set of transparent infinitival clauses.

545
Transparency of infinitival clauses (version 1)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque
om + te-infinitivals
  control te-infinitivals (type A)
transparent control te-infinitivals (type B) + +
  subject raising te-infinitivals + +
  bare infinitivals + +

It has long been assumed that the distinction between transparent (= verb clustering) and opaque (= extraposition) infinitival clauses is exhaustive, subsection IV will show, however, that there seems to exist a third option: many (but not all) obligatory control constructions involve what we will call semi-transparent te-infinitivals. The label "semi-transparent" is chosen in order to express that such infinitivals seem to constitute a hybrid category in that they do not exhibit the IPP-effect but nevertheless do allow splitting; example (546a) illustrates this for the verb beweren'to claim'.

546
a. dat Jan <%het huis> heeft beweerd <het huis> te kopen.
semi-transparent
  that  Jan     the house  has  claimed  to buy
  'that Jan has claimed to buy the house.'
b. % dat Jan werd beweerd het huis te kopen.
  that  Jan  was  claimed  the house  to buy
  'that Jan was claimed to buy the house.'

Observe that a percentage sign has been added to (546a) to indicate that speakers tend to vary in their judgments on the split version; this observation is important since we will see in Subsection VII that it may provide us with a better understanding of the still unexplained fact noted in Section 5.2.2.2, sub III, that passive subject raising constructions such as (546b) are also considered marked by many speakers.
      The discovery of the third type of semi-transparent te-infinitivals implies that we are not concerned with two but with three subcategories: opaque, transparent and semi-transparent, respectively. This leads to the revised table in (547), which, however, still does not solve the problem of having to postulate a set of opaque te-infinitivals despite the fact that these clearly involve obligatory control.

547
Transparency of infinitival clauses (version 2)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque om + te-infinitivals
  control te-infinitivals (type A)
semi-transparent control te-infinitivals (type B) +
transparent control te-infinitivals (type C) + +
  subject raising te-infinitivals + +
  bare infinitivals + +

Subsection V continues by investigating the split patterns we find with transparent and semi-transparent te-infinitivals—we will show that these differ in a number of respects, from which we conclude that these patterns are not of the same type. In fact, the split patterns we see with semi-transparent te-infinitivals seem to have more in common with extraposed/opaque te-infinitivals. This raises the question as to whether it is really justified to distinguish semi-transparent from opaque te-infinitivals. This issue will be the topic of Subsection VI, where we argue that there is no reason to postulate opaque te-infinitivals: semi-transparent te-infinitivals are arguably derived from the alleged opaque ones by means of optional leftward movement of one or more constituents of the te-infinitival into a position preceding the verbs in clause-final position; this is indicated by the analyses of the two versions of (546a) in (548). In short, the alleged opaque te-infinitivals simply arise when the optional movement does not take place.

548
a. dat Jan heeft beweerd [TP PRO het huis te kopen].
b. dat Jan het huisi heeft beweerd [TP PRO ti te kopen].

We can draw the provisional conclusion from this that we can maintain that the transparency of infinitival clauses is closely related to the independently motivated categorial distinction between CP, TP and VP. It entails that we should replace Table (547) by the simpler one in (549), which is consistent with our earlier conclusion that te-infinitivals are in principle transparent for locally restricted syntactic dependencies; they only differ in that their biclausal structure is still reflected by their ability to be in extraposed position, subsection VII will provide independent evidence in support of the movement analysis in (548) on the basis of a comparison of the examples in (546a&b).

549
Transparency of infinitival clauses (final version)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque (cp) om + te-infinitivals excluded
semi-transparent (tp) control te-infinitivals (type A) optional
transparent(tp or vp) control te-infinitivals (type B) obligatory +
  subject raising te-infinitivals obligatory +
  bare infinitivals obligatory +

The hypothesis in (549) that te-infinitivals are never opaque may seem at odds with the fact that some of them resist the split pattern, subsection VIII addresses this problem and shows that this follows from the independently established fact that (semi-)transparency is not an absolute property of clauses but only arises if a number of additional syntactic conditions are met: for example, they must be internal arguments of the matrix verb and surface as direct objects. This leaves us with one question, which will be briefly addressed in Subsection IX: in what way are control te-infinitivals of type A and type B different? The answer to this question will be somewhat sketchy and certainly needs further elaboration by future research.
      Subsection X will conclude our discussion by pointing out a more general complication for all research on complement clauses, namely, that verbs do not seem to be very particular in the choice of their clausal complement: some verbs may combine with finite or infinitival clauses, om + te-infinitival or te-infinitivals, transparent or semi-transparent te-infinitivals, etc. We will discuss the available options for a small sample of verbs.

[+]  II.  Islandhood: the categorial status of om + te- and te-infinitivals

The discussion of (om +) te-infinitivals in Sections 5.2.1 and 5.2.2 ultimately led to the four hypotheses in (550), in which the notion of syntactic dependency refers to locally restricted phenomena including NP-movement (such as subject raising), binding of anaphors (such as the simplex reflexive zich), and obligatory control; cf. Section 5.2.2.1, sub IV. Together, these hypotheses express that such dependencies can be established across the boundary of a te-infinitival but not across the boundary of an om + te-infinitival.

550
a. Hypothesis I: om + te-infinitivals are CPs.
b. Hypothesis II: te-infinitivals are TPs.
c. Hypothesis III: CPs constitute islands for syntactic dependencies.
d. Hypothesis IV: TPs do not constitute islands for syntactic dependencies.

Although the proper formulation of the restrictions on obligatory control are still under debate, we have assumed that they are as given in (551); failure to meet any of the clauses in (551) is sufficient to conclude that we are dealing with non-obligatory control; we refer the reader to Section 5.2.1.3, sub III, for detailed discussion.

551
Obligatory control requires the antecedent of PRO to:
a. be overtly realized in the sentence containing PRO;
b. be local (a co-argument of the infinitival clause containing PRO);
c. be a c-commanding nominal argument (subject or object);
d. be unique (cannot be "split").

Infinitival clauses in subject raising constructions do not have implied PRO-subjects but involve movement of their subject into the subject position of the matrix clause, where it is realized as a nominative noun phrase. The choice between obligatory control and subject raising seems to depend on the thematic properties of the matrix verb. Transitive verbs like beweren'to claim' in (552a) are only compatible with a control analysis, as subject raising is excluded because the regular subject position of the matrix verb is already occupied by the external argument of this verb. Unaccusative verbs like blijken'to turn out', on the other hand, allow subject raising because the landing site of subject raising is free; PRO is excluded given that there is no suitable controller available for it and the resulting construction would thus violate restriction (551a) on obligatory control.

552
a. Jani beweerde [TP PROi dat boek te lezen].
obligatory control
  Jan  claimed  that book  to read
  'Jan claimed to be reading that book.'
b. Jani bleek [TPti dat boek te lezen].
subject raising
  Jan  turned.out   that book  to read
  'Jan turned out to be reading that book.'

The hypotheses in (550) correctly predict that obligatory control and subject raising constructions cannot be om + te-infinitivals, as is clear from as is clear from the impossibility of adding the complementizer om to the examples in (552). Conversely, they predict that om + te-infinitivals cannot be used in obligatory control or subject raising constructions. That om + te-infinitivals do not involve obligatory control is clear from the acceptability contrast between the impersonal passive constructions in (553): example (553a) is allowed because the PRO-subject of the om + te-infinitival is not obligatorily controlled and, consequently, restriction (551a) is irrelevant; example (553b), on the other hand, is excluded because the PRO-subject of te-infinitival is obligatorily controlled but cannot find an overt antecedent, which results in a violation of (551a). That the contrast is indeed due to control is supported by the fact that obligatory subject control verbs like beweren can normally be passivized in non-control contexts: cf. Dat werd vaak beweerd'That was often claimed'.

553
a. Er werd geprobeerd [CP (om) PROarb dat boek te lezen].
  there  was  tried comp  that book  to read
  'It was tried to read that book.'
b. * Er werd beweerd [TP PROarb dat boek te lezen].
  there  was  claimed  that book  to read

That om + te- and te-infinitivals differ in that only the latter can be used in subject raising constructions is illustrated in (554); example (554a) is excluded because the CP-boundary turns the infinitival clause into an island for movement, and thus blocks subject raising of the noun phrase Jan; example (554b), on the other hand, is acceptable because the TP-boundary is not an island for movement and therefore allows subject raising.

554
a. * Jani werd geprobeerd [CP (om) ti dat boek te lezen].
  Jan  was  tried comp  that book  to read
b. % Jani werd beweerd [TPti dat boek te lezen].
  Jan  was  claimed  that book  to read
  'Jan was claimed to read that book.'

Observe that the four hypotheses in (550) do not yet explain why speakers give varying judgments on an example such as (554b); a possible explanation of this will be given in Subsection VII.

[+]  III.  Transparent versus opaque te-infinitivals

The discussion of (om +) te-infinitivals in Sections 5.2.2.1 was simplified in that it abstracted away from a number of issues. For example, the discussion of control constructions was strictly confined to cases with infinitival clauses in extraposed position, that is, examples in which the full infinitival clause follows the matrix verb in clause-final position. Such constructions are characterized by the fact that they do not allow the infinitivus-pro-participio (IPP) effect in the perfect tense—the matrix verb must be realized as a past participle. This is shown in (555a) for a non-obligatory control construction in which the verb proberen'to try' selects an om + te-infinitival, and in (555b) for an obligatory control construction in which the verb beweren'to claim' selects a te-infinitival; we italicize the infinitival clause and do not indicate the implied PRO-subject for ease of representation.

555
a. Jan heeft geprobeerd/*proberen (om) dat boek te kopen.
extrap. + no IPP
  Jan has  tried/try  comp  that book  to buy
  'Jan has tried to buy that book.'
b. Jan heeft beweerd/*beweren dat boek te kopen.
extraposition + no IPP
  Jan has  claimed/claim  that book  to buy
  'Jan has claimed to buy that book.'

Section 5.2.2.2 has shown that subject raising constructions normally do not allow extraposition, but require that the infinitival clause be split by the matrix verb in clause-final position—they exhibit verb clustering. Furthermore, subject raising constructions normally exhibit the IPP-effect for those speakers that allow subject raising constructions in the perfect tense (which not all speakers do).

556
a. dat Jan dat boek lijkt te kopen.
clause splitting
  that  Jan  that book  appears  to buy
  'that Jan appears to buy that book.'
b. dat Jan dat boek heeft %lijken/*geleken te kopen.
IPP
  that  Jan that book  has    appear/appeared  to buy
  'that Jan has appeared to buy that book.'

Observe that the qualification "normally" in the two sentences preceding (556) is needed because Section 5.2.2.2 has shown that the formal register does allow subject raising constructions with te-infinitivals in extraposed position; such constructions do not exhibit the IPP-effect either. We will return to this issue in Subsection VII.
      The differences between examples like (555b) and (556) show that from a syntactic point of view it is not sufficient to distinguish between (om +) te- and te-infinitivals, but that the latter can be divided into at least the two subtypes in (557).

557
Types of te-infinitivals
a. Opaque: no clause splitting and no IPP
b. Transparent: clause splitting and IPP

This may seem a nice result given that (557) enables us to describe the data discussed so far by means of the two independently motivated binary parameters in Table (558): the distinction between CP and TP can be motivated by the distribution of the complementizer om, and the distinction between transparent and opaque infinitivals by the behavior of te-infinitivals with respect to clause splitting and IPP. The empty cell may follow from the general claim from the earlier theoretical literature that CP-boundaries block the movements required for deriving the split pattern.

558
Subdivision of (om +) te-infinitival clauses (to be rejected):
  transparent opaque
CP (om + te-infinitival) non-obligatory control
TP (te-infinitival) subject raising obligatory control

Unfortunately, however, the hypothesis in Table (558) that obligatory control holds in opaque te-infinitivals only is evidently incorrect. Consider the examples in (559) with the verb durven'to dare'. The (a)-example shows that durven requires clause splitting; the object of the te-infinitival te vertellen must precede the finite verb durft'dares' in clause-final position. The (b)-example shows that durven also triggers the IPP-effect; Evers (1975) and Den Besten & Edmondson (1983) both claim that perfect-tense constructions do not allow the past participle gedurfd, and a Google search (2/6/2013) on the string [ heeft gedurfd te] indeed resulted in relatively few examples. The (c)-example is added to show that we are indeed dealing with a control structure: pronominalization of the te-infinitival does not affect the nominative subject of the construction as a whole, which therefore cannot originate as part of the infinitival clause but must originate as a separate argument of the matrix verb durven. Consequently, the external argument of the verb vertellen'to tell' must be realized as PRO.

559
a. dat Jan <de waarheid> niet durft <*?de waarheid> te vertellen.
  that  Jan   the truth  not  dares  to tell
  'that Jan doesnʼt dare to tell the truth.'
b. dat Jan de waarheid niet heeft durven/*gedurfd te vertellen.
  that  Jan the truth  not  has  dare/dared  to tell
  'that Jan hasnʼt dared to tell the truth.'
c. Jan durft dat niet. / *Dat durft niet.
  Jan dares  that  not   that  dares  not

The examples in (559) thus show that the situation depicted in Table (558) is incorrect in that there are also transparent te-infinitivals involving obligatory control. We therefore get the more complex situation depicted in Table (545), repeated here as (560), in which the split pattern and the IPP-effect are taken as diagnostics for transparency. The problem with this classification is that it does not account for the earlier established fact that control te-infinitivals always involve obligatory control, and are therefore expected to be part of the set of transparent infinitival clauses.

560
Transparency of infinitival clauses (version 1)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque om + te-infinitivals
  control te-infinitivals (type A)
transparent control te-infinitivals (type B) + +
  subject raising te-infinitivals + +
  bare infinitivals + +

The following subsections will try to solve this paradox, but before we get to this, it is important to stress that the conclusion that te-infinitivals in extraposed position involve obligatory control is in full agreement with the four hypotheses in (550). The fact that control constructions with verbs like durven in (559) involve clause splitting and IPP shows that they are TPs, which, in turn, predicts that we are dealing with obligatory control constructions. That this prediction is correct seems supported by the fact that (559a) does not have a passive counterpart; a Google search (2/7/2013) on the (passive strings) [< gedurfd> werd <gedurfd> te] resulted in just a handful of potential cases with intransitive infinitives. In fact, there is reason to dismiss these as irrelevant given that the search strings [< gedurfd> werd <gedurfd> * te] resulted in a small number of cases with an extraposed infinitival clause preceded by the complementizer om; this makes it plausible that the passive cases with intransitive infinitives involve om + te-infinitivals with a phonetically empty complementizer. We therefore provisionally conclude that, as predicted, control constructions of the type in (559a) cannot be passivized.

[+]  IV.  Semi-transparent te-infinitivals: a mixed type

Subsection III has shown that obligatory control te-infinitivals are traditionally divided into two categories: opaque and transparent infinitivals. Opaque infinitival clauses are in extraposed position, that is, follow the verbs in clause-final position, whereas transparent infinitival clauses participate in verb clustering, that is, they are split by the verbs in clause-final position. This is illustrated again by the primeless examples in (561), in which we have italicized the infinitival clause and underlined the relevant verbs; the primed examples illustrate the concomitant (lack of) IPP in the corresponding perfect-tense constructions.

561
a. dat Jan ontkent dat boek te lezen.
no clause splitting
  that  Jan denies  that book  to read
  'that Jan denies reading that book.'
a'. dat Jan heeft ontkend/*ontkennen dat boek te lezen.
no IPP
  that  Jan has  denied/deny  that book  to read
  'that Jan has denied reading that book.'
b. dat Jan dat boek niet durft te lezen.
clause splitting
  that Jan that book  not  dares  to read
  'that Jan doesnʼt dare to read that book.'
b'. dat Jan datboek niet heeft durven/*gedurfd te lezen.
IPP
  that Jan that book  not  has  dare/dared  to read
  'that Jan hasnʼt dared to read that book.'

It has long been assumed that the choice between extraposition and verb clustering is absolute, albeit that a large set of verbs seems to allow both options; see Bech (1955), Evers (1975), and much subsequent work. The primeless examples in (562) show that beweren'to claim' is such a verb: it seems compatible both with extraposition and verb clustering. Later research has shown, however, that (561b) and (562b) cannot be treated on a par, given that the corresponding primed examples show that durven exhibits the IPP-effect in the perfect tense, whereas beweren does not; see Den Besten et al. (1988), Den Besten & Rutten (1989), Rutten (1991), Broekhuis et al. (1995), and references given there—for convenience, we will from now on refer to this collection of works as the Den Besten research group, as much of it was either initiated or supervised by Hans den Besten.

562
a. dat Jan beweert dat boek te lezen.
no clause splitting
  that  Jan claims  that book  to read
  'that Jan claims to read that book.'
a'. dat Jan heeft beweerd/*beweren dat boek te lezen.
no IPP
  that  Jan has  claimed/claim  that book  to read
  'that Jan has claimed to have read that book.'
b. dat Jan dat boek beweert te lezen.
clause splitting
  that  Jan that book  claims  to read
  'that Jan claims to read that book.'
b'. dat Jan dat boek heeft beweerd/*beweren te lezen.
no IPP
  that  Jan that book  has  claimed/claim  to read
  'that Jan has claimed to have read that book.'

      This array of facts led to the conclusion that besides the transparent and opaque te-infinitivals a third type of semi-transparent te-infinitivals must be recognized. The postulation of a more hybrid set of te-infinitivals requires the classification of infinitival clauses given in (560) to be revised as in (563). However, it still does not solve the problem that we have to postulate a set of opaque te-infinitivals despite the fact that these clearly involve obligatory control.

563
Transparency of infinitival clauses (version 2)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque om + te-infinitivals
  control te-infinitivals (type A)
semi-transparent control te-infinitivals (type B) +
transparent control te-infinitivals (type C) + +
  subject raising te-infinitivals + +
  bare infinitivals + +
[+]  V.  Clause splitting of (semi-)transparent te-infinitivals

Subsection IV has shown that according to the traditionally assumed diagnostics of clause splitting and IPP, there are three types of te-infinitivals: opaque, semi-transparent and transparent. It should be pointed out, however, that it not the case that verbs always select one specific type of te-infinitival. The examples in (564), for instance, suggest that the verb proberen'to try' is compatible with all three types.

564
a. dat Jan dat boek heeft proberen te lezen.
transparent
  that  Jan that book  has  try  to read
  'that Jan has tried to read that book.'
b. dat Jan dat boek heeft geprobeerd te lezen.
semi-transparent
  that  Jan   that book  has  tried  to read
c. dat Jan heeft geprobeerd dat boek te lezen.
opaque
  that  Jan   has  tried  that book  to read

At this point we want to make two brief remarks. The first is that it has not been established in the literature so far that the three variants differ in meaning or information-structural properties (but see Subsection IX); the translation given in (564a) seems adequate for all cases. The second is that the preceding subsections analyzed (564c) as an om + te-infinitival given that it seems to allow the addition of the complementizer om; whether this is indeed an option is not directly relevant for the discussion in this subsection, but we return to this issue in Subsection VII.
      At first sight, the examples in (564a&b) seem similar in that clause splitting leads to verb clustering. This similarity may just be apparent, however, given that the infinitival clauses are small in size; they contain just one phonetically realized constituent apart from the te-infinitive, the direct object het boek'the book', and clause splitting therefore inevitably leads to "clustering", that is, adjacency of the verbs. In order to see whether clause splitting leads to verb clustering in the technical sense of an impermeable series of verbs, we should consider te-infinitivals that are larger in size; (565) shows the result of this for infinitival clauses headed by the ditransitive verb geven. The two (a)-examples show that in the case of transparent te-infinitivals, splitting of the te-infinitival inexorably leads to verb clustering: placing the direct object een kus'a kiss' in between the verbs is impossible. The two (b)-examples, which may both be considered slightly marked by some Dutch speakers, show that in the case of semi-transparent te-infinitivals the verbs may group together, but that it is also possible to interrupt the sequence of verbs by placing the direct object left-adjacent to the te-infinitive. The acceptability contrast between the two primed examples thus suggests that transparent and semi-transparent te-infinitivals differ in that only the former involve verb clustering in the technical sense given above.

565
a. dat Jan het meisje een kus heeft proberen te geven.
  that  Jan the girl  a kiss  has  try  to give
  'that Jan has tried to kiss the girl.'
a'. * dat Jan het meisjeheeftprobereneen kus te geven.
b. dat Jan het meisje een kus geprobeerd heeft te geven.
  that  Jan the girl  a kiss  tried has  to give
  'that Jan has tried to kiss the girl.'
b'. dat Jan het meisjegeprobeerdheefteen kus te geven.

The same is demonstrated by the examples in (566), in which the te-infinitivals contain the phrasal expression in ontvangst nemen'to take delivery', in which the PP in ontvangst probably functions as a complementive. The (a)-examples show that this PP must precede the matrix verb proberen in the case of transparent te-infinitivals, while the (b)-examples show that it can be interposed between the verbs in the case of semi-transparent te-infinitivals; the marked status of (566b) in fact shows that placement of the complementive PP in front of the verbs in clause-final position is actually dispreferred in the latter case.

566
a. dat Jan dat boek in ontvangst heeft proberen te nemen.
  that  Jan  that book  in acceptance  has  try  to take
  'that Jan has tried to take delivery of the book.'
a'. * dat Jan dat boekheeftproberenin ontvangst te nemen.
b. ? dat Jan dat boek in ontvangst geprobeerd heeft te nemen.
  that  Jan that book  in acceptance  tried  has  to take
  'that Jan has tried to take delivery of the book.'
b'. dat Jan dat boekgeprobeerdheeftin ontvangst te nemen.

The contrast between the primed examples in (565) and (566) shows that clause splitting of transparent and semi-transparent te-infinitivals cannot be considered the result of the same operation. Given that clause splitting of transparent te-infinitivals invariably leads to verb clusters in the technical sense, the Den Besten research group concluded that in this case clause splitting is the result of a head movement operation traditionally called verb raising. Since clause splitting of semi-transparent te-infinitivals does not necessarily lead to verb clustering, the group concluded that we are dealing with some sort of extraposition.

[+]  VI.  Semi-transparent and opaque te-infinitivals are similar

The Den Besten research group argued that semi-transparent te-infinitivals are just like the opaque ones in that they are in extraposed position, that is, in the position following the clause-final verbs. Semi-infinitival constructions are special, however, in that at least one of the constituents of the te-infinitival is extracted from it and moved into a position preceding the clause-final verbs. The structures in (567) show that on this analysis the only difference between the semi-transparent and opaque te-infinitivals in (564b&c) is whether or not the object dat boek'that book' has been extracted from the extraposed clause and placed into a position preceding the matrix verb geprobeerd.

567
a. dat Jan dat boeki heeft geprobeerd [PRO ti te lezen].
semi-transparent
  that  Jan   that book  has  tried  to read
b. dat Jan heeft geprobeerd [PRO dat boek te lezen].
opaque
  that  Jan   has  tried  that book  to read

It is crucial to note that extraction of the direct object is not obligatory in the case of semi-transparent te-infinitivals, as is clear from the fact illustrated in (565) that verb clustering is not obligatory if the te-infinitive is ditransitive; the analyses of the relevant examples are given in (568a&b). This suggests that the "opaque" te-infinitival in (568c) is essentially the same as the semi-transparent ones, apart from the fact that both objects remain inside the te-infinitival.

568
a. dat Jan het meisjei een kusj geprobeerd heeft [PRO titj te geven].
  that  Jan the girl  a kiss  tried has  to give
b. dat Jan het meisjei geprobeerd heeft [PRO ti een kus te geven].
  that  Jan the girl  tried has  a kiss  to give
c. dat Jan geprobeerd heeft [PRO het meisje een kus te geven].
  that  Jan tried has  the girl a kiss  to give

The same holds for other cases in which the te-infinitival contains a larger number of constituents, as in (566), the analyses of which are given in (569a&b). This suggests again that the "opaque" te-infinitival in (568c) is essentially the same as the semi-transparent ones, apart from the fact that the direct object also remains within the te-infinitival.

569
a. ? dat Jan dat boeki in ontvangstj heeft geprobeerd [PRO titj te nemen].
  that  Jan that book  in acceptance  has  tried  to take
b. dat Jan dat boeki heeft geprobeerd [PRO ti in ontvangst te nemen].
  that  Jan that book  has  tried  in acceptance  to take
c. dat Jan heeft geprobeerd [PRO het boek in ontvangst te nemen].
  that  Jan has  tried  the book  in acceptance  to take

The Den Besten research group suggests that the fact that (569a) is often evaluated as marked compared to (569b&c) can be used to support the movement analysis, given that movement of complementives like in ontvangst is normally only possible if it targets the sentence-initial position, that is, if it undergoes wh-movement or topicalization; see the discussion of (574) for an alternative suggestion.
      The analysis of the Den Besten research group therefore suggests that the distinction between opaque and semi-transparent te-infinitivals can be dismissed in favor of the claim that the alleged opacity of te-infinitivals in extraposed position simply follows from the optionality of the movement that derives the split pattern. This is actually expected on the basis of the hypotheses I-IV, repeated here as (570), as these explicitly state that there are no opaque te-infinitivals; only om + te-infinitivals are of that type.

570
a. Hypothesis I: om + te-infinitivals are CPs.
b. Hypothesis II: te-infinitivals are TPs.
c. Hypothesis III: CPs constitute islands for syntactic dependencies.
d. Hypothesis IV: TPs do not constitute islands for syntactic dependencies.

Later, we will look at some potential counterexamples to the claim that there are no opaque te-infinitivals in Subsection VIII, but for the moment we simply adopt it as an idealization. This makes it possible to replace Table (563) by the simpler one in (571), in which we have also indicated whether the split pattern arises as a result of leftward movement of one or more constituents of the te-infinitival or as a result of whatever operation is responsible for verb clustering.

571
Transparency of infinitival clauses (final version)
  split pattern ipp-effect
opaque (cp) om + te-infinitivals
semi-transparent (tp) control te-infinitivals (type A) leftward movement
transparent(tp or vp) control te-infinitivals (type B) verb cluster +
  subject raising te-infinitivals