query: grammaticalization go/be.in > negation
s.hewitt at UNESCO.ORG
Thu Jan 31 11:53:33 UTC 2013
In Breton, yes.
Aed eo toud
Gone is3sg all
"it's all gone"
With the same meaning as in English. In French you have to use the verb "partir" = leave, not "aller" = go.
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s.hewitt at unesco.org
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From: Discussion List for ALT [mailto:LINGTYP at LISTSERV.LINGUISTLIST.ORG] On Behalf Of David Gil
Sent: 31 January 2013 05:30
To: LINGTYP at LISTSERV.LINGUISTLIST.ORG
Subject: query: grammaticalization go/be.in > negation
In English motherese, the expression 'allgone' is often used to express a negative concept involving the disappearance or absence of an entity previously present.
I am interested in ascertaining how common or rare it is, cross-linguistically, for a verb of motion (eg. 'go') or location (eg.
'be in') to undergo extension of meaning, or grammaticalization, to express various negative concepts, as in the above 'allgone' example.
The reason behind this query is as follows. In Roon (an Austronesian language of West Papua), the same verb has a range of meanings which includes 'be in' and 'disappear'. (The logic behind this would seem to be that if something goes or is located somewhere else, then it is no
longer here.) In addition, the stem on which this verb is based is
also used to form negative imperatives. I am currently trying to figure out whether to analyze this in terms of macrofunctionality, polysemy, or accidental homophony, so whether similar patterns are attested cross-linguistically would be of relevance to the choice of analysis.
Looking forward to any responses,
Department of Linguistics
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology Deutscher Platz 6, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany
Telephone: 49-341-3550321 Fax: 49-341-3550119
Email: gil at eva.mpg.de
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