Grammaticalization and Semantics of Complex Predicates in Kalmyk
The paper describes Kalmyk complex predicates, based on the empirical data of linguistic fieldwork. The focus of this investigation is on the semantics and morphosyntactic properties of the complex predicates in Kalmyk. In Kalmyk, several auxiliaries (bää‑ ‘to be’, jov‑ ‘to go’, kevt‑ ‘to lie’ and suu‑ ‘to sit’) belong to the imperfective domain. Perfective semantics is the basis for complex predicates with the primary verbs ork‑ ‘to put’ and od‑ ‘to go away’, whereas the verbs av‑ ‘to take’ and ög‑ ‘to give’ express reflexive benefactive and benefactive meanings. The verb xaj‑ ‘to throw’ expresses intensivity and pluractionality. The study shows that the Kalmyk aspectual system arose as a result of grammaticalization.
Progressive periphrases in German are analyzed in a quantitative and qualitative way. The subject of the analysis is progressive constructions in the XVII–XIX centuries. It is stated that the process of their formation was not homogeneous, as there were two forms of progressive periphrases during the IX–XV centuries that were existing concurrently and were interchanging. It is determined that in any period the most frequent periphrases are im-construction and am-construction, moreover, the frequency of the latter is increasing. It is confi rmed that the process of grammaticalization mostly referred to contraction of locative prepositions and defi nite articles, which lost their lexical meaning in the development of progressive periphrases.
Grammaticalization is often considered to reflect frequent co-occurrence of certain elements in certain positions. This paper tests the frequency-based account of the grammaticalization of person agreement, comparing the grammaticalization of person agreement in Tabasaran, a Lezgic language, with the syntax of free pronouns in closely related Agul. Our assumption is that the situation in Agul, where person marking is not grammaticalized, approximately reflects a diachronic stage prior to the grammaticalization of person marking in closely related Tabasaran. We find little evidence in support of a frequency-based approach, at least when frequency is treated in terms of global frequencies. We do, however, identify a highly frequent verb that already in Agul appears to regularly associate with the pattern that has generalized to become person agreement in Tabasaran. We suggest specific information structural configurations associated with this verb, which have provided the impetus for the development. More generally, we show that while global measures of frequency may not yield the correct predictions, investigating the syntactic constructions associated with individual lexical items may be more revealing, and provide a more realistic model for reconstructing the paths of syntactic change involving the generalization of existing and quite local patterns.
The article focuses on the aspectual verbal form of performative verbs 'swear' and 'promise' in the proposition of commissive utterances. The author emphasises the aspectual verbal forms relating to three temporal perspectives: present, future and past. The author also highlights the frequency and features of temporal perspectives in the proposition of verbs 'swear' and 'promise'.
Bilingual education including, on the one hand, access to dominating language, and, on the other, - teaching in minority languages or teaching only languages themselves at school is an important part of language politics of a state. In many regions we observe a paradoxical situation: school education does not promote acquisition of a disappearing language, though it is highly valued by members of community. The article considers features of teaching minority languages at school in the Russian Federation on two examples - Nivkh and Kalmyk. Interviews with parents, pupils, former pupils and teachers allow to describe teaching native language at school as a procedure of maintaining identity of community.
Semantic roles have continued to intrigue the linguists for more than four decades now, starting with determining their kind and number, with their morphological expression, and with their interaction with argument structure and syntax. The focus in this volume is on typological and historical issues. The papers focus on the cross-linguistic identification of semantic-role equivalents, on the regularity of, and exceptions concerning change and grammaticalization in semantic roles, the variation in encoding the roles of direction and experiencer in specific languages, presenting evidence for identifying a new semantic role of speech addressee in Caucasian languages, on semantic roles in word formation, and finally a cross-linguistic comparison of the functions and the grammaticalization of the ethical dative in some Indo-European languages. The book will be of interest to anyone involved with case and semantic roles, with the syntax semantic interface, and with semantic change an grammaticalization.