[Lingtyp] query: 'give' and 'do'/'make'

E. Bashir ebashir at yahoo.com
Mon Feb 16 16:03:30 UTC 2015


In (colloquial) Panjabi, one often says/hears:
edhar  karhither do(IMP.sg.)'Give it to me.' (lit. 'Give it here.')

Elena Bashir
      From: Seino van Breugel <seinobreugel at gmail.com>
 To: Siva Kalyan <sivakalyan.princeton at gmail.com> 
Cc: "LINGTYP at LISTSERV.LINGUISTLIST.ORG" <LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org> 
 Sent: Monday, February 16, 2015 4:28 AM
 Subject: Re: [Lingtyp] query: 'give' and 'do'/'make'
   
In some varieties of English people say things like: "do me a hamburger", where "do" means 'give/make'.Seino
Dr. Seino van Breugel
Lecturer in LinguisticsThammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand
On Mon, Feb 16, 2015 at 2:31 PM, Siva Kalyan <sivakalyan.princeton at gmail.com> wrote:



Japanese yaru comes to mind: http://dictionary.goo.ne.jp/leaf/je2/76657/m1u/やる/.

Siva

On 16 Feb 2015, at 5:14 pm, David Gil <gil at eva.mpg.de> wrote:
  Dear all,
 
 Does anybody know of languages in which 'give' and 'do'/'make' are expressed with the same or related words?  Or of cases in which forms expressing one of these two meanings are historically derived from forms expressing the other meaning? 
 
 Thanks,
 
 David 
 
 
 Further details:  
 
 My interest in this question stems from current field work on Roon (South Halmahera West New Guinea, Austronesian).  In Roon there is a single form be expressing both 'give' and 'do'/'make'.  (In fact, the same form be is associated with a wide range of grammatical and semantic functions, most or all of which seem to be derivable diachronically and possibly also synchronically from either 'give' or 'do'/'make'.)  A cognate form be meaning both 'give' and 'do'/'make' is also present in closely related Biak and Dusner.
 
 Identical words for 'give' and 'do'/'make' (but unrelated to be) also occur in at least two nearby non-Austronesian languages, Meyah and Hatam, and in the geographically proximate Austronesian language Wooi.  However, I have not yet been able to find any other examples of 'give'-'do'/'make' identity in other languages of the region, Austronesian or otherwise.  Thus, 'give'-'do'/'make' identity seems to be an areal characteristic of a small region of the eastern Bird's Head and western Cenderawasih Bay, in which it presumably spread from the original non-Austronesian to the intrusive Austronesian languages, through metatypy, relexification, or some such process.
 
 In order to gauge the significance of 'give'-'do'/'make' identity as a diagnostic feature of language contact, I am thus interested in getting a feel for how widespread this feature is across the world's languages.  For what it's worth, I can't think of any examples from other parts of the world — can you?
 
 I am also interested in any ideas you might have about what the semantic basis of the connection between 'give' and 'do'/'make', and possible mechanisms of semantic generalization.  In the Roon/Biak/Dusner case, at least, the form be is clearly cognate with the proto-Malayo-Polynesian word for 'give', suggesting that the direction of semantic  spread was from 'give' to 'do'/'make'.  But I have no information on the other known cases (Meyah, Hatam, Wooi).
 
 
 
 
 -- 
David Gil

Department of Linguistics
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Deutscher Platz 6, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany

Telephone: 49-341-3550321 Fax: 49-341-3550333
Email: gil at eva.mpg.de
Webpage:  http://www.eva.mpg.de/~gil/

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