[Lingtyp] Syncretism between forms encoding source and agent

Randy J. LaPolla randy.lapolla at gmail.com
Sat Jul 21 11:31:21 UTC 2018

Dear Ponrawee Prasertsom,
In the Sino-Tibetan languages it is common for the same adposition to be used for ablative (source), instrument, manner adverb, actor, and/or causal clause marker. See the following papers:

LaPolla, Randy J. 1995. On the utility of the concepts of markedness and prototypes in understanding the development of morphological systems. Bulletin of the Institute of History and Philology  66.4:1149-1185.
www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_1995_On_the_Utility_of_the_Concepts_of_Markedness_and_Prototypes_in_Understanding_the_Development_of_Morphological_Systems.pdf <http://www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_1995_On_the_Utility_of_the_Concepts_of_Markedness_and_Prototypes_in_Understanding_the_Development_of_Morphological_Systems.pdf> 

LaPolla, Randy J. 1995. Ergative marking in Tibeto-Burman. In Yoshio Nishi, James A. Matisoff, & Yasuhiko Nagano (eds.), New horizons in Tibeto-Burman morpho-syntax (Senri Ethnological Studies 41), 189-228. Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology.
www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_1995_Ergative_Marking_in_Tibeto-Burman.pdf <http://www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_1995_Ergative_Marking_in_Tibeto-Burman.pdf>

LaPolla, Randy J. 2004. On nominal relational morphology in Tibeto-Burman. In Ying-jin Lin, Fang-min Hsu, Chun-chih Lee, Jackson T.-S. Sun, Hsiu-fang Yang, and Dah-an Ho (eds.),  Studies on Sino-Tibetan languages: Papers in honor of Professor Hwang-cherng Gong on his seventieth birthday, 43-74. Taipei: Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, December 2004.
www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_2004_On_Nominal_Relational_Morphology_in_Tibeto-Burman.pdf <http://www.ntu.edu.sg/home/randylapolla/Papers/LaPolla_2004_On_Nominal_Relational_Morphology_in_Tibeto-Burman.pdf>

These papers mainly talk about Tibeto-Burman, but in Sinitic (Chinese) the same is true of the particle yǒu (由).

All the best,
Randy J. LaPolla, PhD FAHA (羅仁地)
Professor of Linguistics and Chinese, School of Humanities 
Nanyang Technological University
HSS-03-45, 14 Nanyang Drive | Singapore 637332
Most recent book:

> On 21 Jul 2018, at 6:06 AM, Ponrawee Prasertsom <ponrawee.pra at gmail.com> wrote:
> Dear all,
> I am exploring research possibilities on the language of motion events.
> Does anyone know of a language that employs the same form (in any strategy--case, preposition, syntactic roles etc.) that for coding source (the starting point in a motion event, as in: I walked *from* my house to school) and agent? 
> Related references would also be highly appreciated.
> Sincerely,
> Ponrawee Prasertsom
> Graduate Student
> Department of Linguistics
> Chulalongkorn University
> Bangkok, Thailand
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> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
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