What could 'them' have that 'they' does not?
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In this thesis I will claim that the use of the Dutch third person plural dative pronominal hun in subject position is caused by two factors that are both necessary and insufficient without the other. The first factor is the underspecification of case on the pronominal hun. This factor explains why the third person plural accusative pronominal hen cannot be used in subject position. The second factor is the animacy restriction posed by the pronominal hun. This factor explains why the third person singular dative pronominal haar cannot be used in subject position. The combination of the two factors is unique for hun and therefore explains its unique distribution. I will substantiate my claim with data of spoken Dutch which I have drawn from the Corpus Gesproken Nederlands.