Guerzoni and Sharvit (Linguistics and Philosophy 30:361-391, 2007) provide an argument that plural, but not singular, wh-phrases may contain a negative polarity item in their restriction, and connect this with the semantic property of exhaustivity. I will show that this claim is factually incorrect, and that the theory of negative polarity licensing does not need to be complicated by taking number distinctions into account. In addition, I will argue that number distinctions do not appear to be relevant for polarity items in the restriction of definite noun phrases either.
- Negative polarity items
- Existential presupposition