On the structure and variation of ‘hace’ as a temporal expression

Antonio Fábregas


The goal of this article is to analyse a case of variation in Spanish. In most varieties, constructions of the form Hace dos días que (“it has been two days since”) reject nominal expressions like todo el día (“all the day”), hence *Hace todo el día que (lit. “it has been all the day that”). However, a particular variety of Argentinean Spanish allows it. This article proposes that in the non-Argentinean varieties, hace (“make”) is the spell out of a temporal relator placed in the extended projection of the verb; the nominal expression that accompanies it is a measure phrase providing the length of the vector it projects. These varieties build hace dos días que-constructions through movement of the temporal relator to the CP area. However, the Argentinean variety builds hace dos días que-constructions without movement, as a temporal verb that takes a durative argument. This explains the different range of nominal expressions allowed in each variety.


temporal expressions; aspect; tense; prepositions; variation

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5774/45-0-201


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