The Grammaticalization of Verbs. Verbs as Sources of Grammatical Change

Melanie Bobik

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Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik / Englische Sprachwissenschaft / Literaturwissenschaft


Research Paper (undergraduate) from the year 2004 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Linguistics, grade: 1,3, Free University of Berlin (Anglistik), language: English, abstract: The famous dictum, “grammars code best what speakers do most” coined by Du Bois, is a central postulate of all discourse-based approaches to grammaticalization (also known as grammaticization, grammatization). It points to the assumption that frequent repetition in discourse plays a crucial role in the development of grammatical forms, and that basicness is an inherent characteristics of most source concepts. There is only a limited number of lexical items likely to be sources for grammaticalization. Since verbs form the core element of every sentence, expressing different conditions such as states, changes and activities, they provide a rich source for grammatical targets. So how do verbs serve as a source of grammatical change? This academic paper gives answers to this question, discussing the grammaticalization of verbs, and how verbs typically evolve into prepositions, aspectual as well as quotative markers, and complementizers. Evidence is taken not only from English, but also from, i.a., Chinese, German, Spanish, French and African languages.

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Futuro, english linguistics, linguistik, Deutsch, degrammaticalization, Syntaktisierung, phonological, Haspelmath, semantic, Verben, Desemantisierung, Morphologisierung, grammar, König, im Deutschen, grammaticalization, used to, auxiliaries, deverbal, Zukunft, grammatikalisierung, Ewe, complementizers, Grammatik, Hilfsverben, Meillet, erosion, metaphor, Französisch, anglistik, morphological, vergleichende sprachwissenschaften, Semantik, Grammatikalisation, semantics, aspect, verbs, grammaticalication, metonymy, Präpositionen, diachronic, Chinesisch, obligation futures, quotative marker, European, synchronic, african languages, im Englischen, Aspekt, TAM, future, Metapher, Schwund, coalescence, tense, Sprachtypologie, diachron, Spanisch, Englisch, reanalysis, extension, prepositions, comparative linguistics, synchron