The Zurich
atabase of
Agreement in
University of Zurich


| Home | Team | Agnone | Altamura | LurasPantelleria | RipatransoneUrbino | Verbicaro | Events |


Pantelleria is an island (ca 7500 inhabitants) located 95 km off the coast of Sicily, and 67 km from that of Tunisia, belonging administratively to the western Sicilian province of Trapani.


Pantiscu exhibits a progressive construction involving pronominal subject clitics. For instance, (1) shows two pronominal forms, both exhibiting gender inflection: the first one is a strong pronoun, which is doubled by a clitic one occurring adjacent to the inflected verb. To the best of our knowledge, this is the only attestation of subject clitics in a dialect spoken south of Florence and Pantiscu is the only Romance language in which subject clitics convey progressive meaning. Furthermore, the pattern of grammaticalisation yielding an agreeing clitic with a progressive interpretation has never been reported in the typological literature on (the emergence of) progressive marking.

(1)    ɪɖɖʐ-a     ɖɖʐ-a                   mantʃ-a
        3-F.SG   PROG.3-F.SG=     eat.PRS-3SG
        ‘she’s eating’

For a more detailed description of Pantiscu and its relevance to the study of agreement, please refer to the overview written by Alice Idone.

  • Brincat, G. 1977. 'Malta e Pantelleria: Alla ricerca di un sostrato comune.' Journal of Maltese Studies 11: 42-54 [= Across Currents. Festschrift for Joseph Aquilina].
  • Lüdtke, H. 1978. 'Sur la morphosyntaxe mélangée de trois parlers insulaires de la Méditerranée (maltais, arabe de Chypre, pantellerien)' in M. Galley (ed.), Actes du deuxième Congrès international d’étude des cultures de la Méditerranée occidentale, vol. 2, Alger: 214-219.
  • Pellegrini, G.B. 1989. Ricerche sugli arabismi italiani con particolare riguardo alla Sicilia, Palermo: CSFLS.
  • Tropea, G. 1975. 'Per una monografia sul dialetto dell’isola di Pantelleria' in M. Cortelazzo (ed.), La Ricerca Dialettale, vol. 1, Pisa: Pacini, 223-277.
  • Tropea, G. 1988. Lessico del dialetto di Pantelleria, Palermo: CSFLS.
  • Idone, A. In preparation. Morfosintassi dell’accordo nelle varietà calabresi meridionali. PhD thesis.
  • Loporcaro, M. 2012. 'A new strategy for progressive marking and its implications for grammaticalization theory: the subject clitic construction of Pantiscu' Studies in Language, 36(4): 747-784.
  • Loporcaro, M, A. R. D'Ancona & P. Fatini. 2010. 'Clitici soggetto nel dialetto di Pantelleria' Vox Romanica, 69: 75-110.