[Lingtyp] Question on reduplication for translative sense

Randy John LaPolla (Prof) RandyLaPolla at ntu.edu.sg
Wed Jun 15 08:53:50 UTC 2016

Hi All,
In the Rawang language (Tibeto-Burman, Northern Myanmar/Burma) I find a type of reduplication where the reduplication of the last syllable of a common noun, proper noun, or other word referring to a location can mark a translative (going through or by, or by way of) sense, as in the following examples:

            a.   Shı̀gùnggùng dı̄ráı̀.

                  shı̀gùng-gùng         dı̄-rá-ı̀

                  mountain-REDUP    go-DIR-I.PAST

                  'He came by way of the mountains.'

            b.   Zı̀dv̀n dv̀n               'by way of Zidan (thatch-growing plain)'

In most other TB languages the translocative sense (along with other locational senses) would be marked by postpositions, so this is unusual.

Has anyone found anything like this particular use of partial reduplication in other languages? If so, could you please send me references?

Thanks very much!

Prof. Randy J. LaPolla, PhD FAHA (羅仁地)| Division of Linguistics and Multilingual Studies | Nanyang Technological University
HSS-03-45, 14 Nanyang Drive, Singapore 637332 | Tel: (65) 6592-1825 GMT+8h | Fax: (65) 6795-6525 | http://randylapolla.net/

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