Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Stellenbosch Papers in Linguistics Plus (SPiL Plus)]]> vol. 65 num. lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>The rise and fall of Serial Verb Constructions: Preamble</b>]]> This is a brief introduction to the special issue of Stellenbosch Papers in Linguistics Plus. We present the concept of serial verb constructions (SVCs) conventionally understood as monoclausal sequences of verbs without any overt marker of coordination, subordination, or syntactic dependency. We then focus on the mechanisms at work in the evolution of serial verb constructions, and the investigations of their origin and demise. We introduce the prototype approach to the category of SVCs as the basis of the study of verb serialization throughout the volume and discuss the research strategies applicable to the development of serial verbs in individual languages. The concluding section offers an overview of the volume. <![CDATA[<b>The rise and fall of Serial Verb Constructions: Finale</b>]]> This article concludes the special issue of Stellenbosch Papers in Linguistics Plus dedicated to the diachrony of Serial Verb Constructions. The authors of the ten contributions included in the volume discuss the most important results of their studies and suggest the possible lines for future research. <![CDATA[<b>The rise of the <i>WZIAC </i>(TAKE) Serial Verb Construction in Polish</b>]]> The present study is dedicated to the emergence of an asymmetrical serial verb construction (SVC) with the verb wziqc in Polish. By making use of a dynamic prototype-driven approach to linguistic categorization and by reviewing the historical corpora that range from the first Old Polish texts in the 14th c. until the end of the New Polish period in 1939, the authors conclude that the wziqc SVC has resulted from the fusion of the original conjunctively coordinated (CC) clauses. Although two types of clause-fusion mechanisms have operated during the grammaticalization of the wziqc SVCs, their contribution to this process has been dissimilar. The evolution from the syndetic CC with the coordinator i to the wziqc SVC via a pseudo-coordinated (PC) stage (i.e., the wziqc-i PC) has constituted a faster and stronger drift, while the more direct evolution originating in the asyndetic CC with wziqc has been slower and less pervasive. <![CDATA[<b>Russian constructions with 'take' expressing an unexpected event: Their historical origin and development in the 19th century</b>]]> This study aims at elucidating the rise and expansion of four competing Russian constructions expressing the unexpectedness of an event. Three of them are built according to the pseudo-coordinative model 'take and do' and one follows the serial model 'take do'. The historical data stemming from the Russian national corpus and covering the whole 19th century reveals striking differences between these constructions in terms of frequency and grammaticalisation, the most peripheral being the serial model. Evidence for ongoing grammaticalisation is mainly based on the rise of non-canonical second verbs denoting an uncontrollable event and inanimate subjects. Special attention will be given to the meanings of the imperative and contextually bound pragmatic effects. <![CDATA[<b>Constructions with 'take' in Latgalian: The limits of diachrony</b>]]> A collection of Latgalian oral folktales published in 1895 shows a great frequency of multi-verb constructions with a modifying verb 'take', including Serial Verb Constructions. These constructions are not found in Old Latgalian written texts, while in modern writing, only one type is attested: pseudo-coordination. Although the documentation of Latgalian spans almost three centuries, it is not possible to show grammaticalization paths of multi-verb constructions, as these are register-specific. <![CDATA[<b>Serial Verb Constructions in North-West Semitic languages: From a synchronic radiation back to the 'Big Bang'</b>]]> The present article argues that Serial Verb Constructions (SVCs) in North-West Semitic (NWS) languages have emerged from clause fusion. The analysis of the synchronic profiles of SVCs in four of the oldest attested languages of this branch, i.e., Canaano-Akkadian, Ugaritic, Biblical Hebrew, and Biblical Aramaic, reveals an evolutionary path from less cohesive non-canonical serializing patterns of a pseudo-coordinated character to increasingly more cohesive and canonical serializing patterns. The ultimate source of this path and verbal serialization is reconstructed as conjunctive coordination with two clauses being linked by the predecessor of a coordinator that surfaces as u/w in the four analyzed languages. <![CDATA[<b>The earliest Serial Verb Constructions in Aramaic? Verb-verb constructions with <i>hlk </i>'go' and <i>?th </i>'come' in Old Aramaic</b>]]> This paper presents examples in which hlk 'walk, go' and ?th 'come' appear in multi-verb constructions conforming to the definition of asymmetrical serial verb constructions (SVCs). In these constructions, hlk and ?th do not appear to be used with their concrete lexical senses as verbs constituting the predicate of a separate clause. Rather, they are found in the V1 position and appear to be used as minor verbs contributing an aspectual nuance of immediacy to the major verb in the V2 position. Broader usage of these verbal forms in Old Aramaic and cognate languages is consistent with a source of such SVCs from the fusion of bi-clausal constructions. <![CDATA[<b>Do prior motion serial verbs (go) morphologize? Insights into diachrony from typology</b>]]> Associated motion is a grammatical category which modifies a verbal predicate by adding a motion component such as indicating that motion took place prior to the event predicated by the verb. Many languages express prior associated motion ('go and V') in the form of a serial verb construction, while in other languages the same meaning is expressed morphologically. This suggests a possible diachronic link between serial verbs and affixes, but a comparison of the synchronic distributions of prior associated motion in serial verb constructions and verbal morphology reveal that such a path of grammaticalization is remarkably rare. This can be at least partially explained by temporal iconicity and a cross-linguistic suffixing bias. We conclude that prior motion serial verb constructions are relatively stable diachronically. The source of prior motion morphology is more likely other multiverb constructions, especially those with non-finite verbs where an overt morpheme marking dependency is lost to allow for a more efficient expression of this grammatical category, ultimately leading to univerbation. <![CDATA[<b>Juncture-Verb Constructions in Northeastern Kalahari Khoe: A comparative perspective</b>]]> Multiverbal predicates constitute a defining feature of the Kalahari Basin linguistic area of southern Africa encompassing the Kx'a, Tuu, and Khoe-Kwadi language families. Here, we focus on a complex predicate type restricted to the Khoe-Kwadi family's Khoe branch which involves a linker morpheme and is thus referred to as Juncture-Verb Construction (JVC). While JVCs have synchronically been interpreted as Serial Verb Constructions (SVC), their origin and relationship with SVCs in the narrower sense as found in the Kx'a and Tuu families remain debated. The Kalahari Khoe languages Ts'ixa, Shua and Northern Tshwa spoken along the northeastern Kalahari Basin fringe present a convenient case study to expand the descriptive corpus on Khoe JVCs while addressing the limits of areal spread and contact influence. We show that all languages under consideration present JVCs with formal and functional properties corresponding to those found in other Kalahari Khoe languages, while also sharing features with SVCs as attested in the Kx'a and Tuu families. Both JVCs and SVCs contrast with conjoined predicates and are defined by single-eventhood. JVCs cover the same semantic domains found among SVCs of the Kx'a and Tuu families, can be subdivided into symmetrical and asymmetrical constructions, and show the same potential for lexicalization and grammaticalization, respectively. <![CDATA[<b>When verbs 'stay (and) go' together: Pseudo-coordination in Jul'hoan and !Xun</b>]]> Multi-verb constructions are an areal feature of Kalahari Basin Area languages ("Khoisan"), a Sprachbund comprising the Kx'a, Tuu, and Khoe-Kwadi families. Presently, these languages are characterised by two distinct multi-verb constructions with specific distributions: strictly contiguous serial verb constructions in Kx'a and Tuu correspond to multi-verb constructions involving a morphophonological linker, or "juncture", in Khoe-Kwadi. This paper describes an additional multi-verb construction, namely pseudo-coordination. Drawing on a corpus of spontaneous discourse data, this paper demonstrates the rise of pseudo-coordination from a biclausal construction in Jul'hoan and !Xun (Ju, Kx'a). The comparative analysis highlights the verbs that typically arise the context of pseudo-coordination and the resulting functions. This paper describes the polygrammaticalisation resulting from pseudo-coordination, including other multi-verb constructions. <![CDATA[<b>On the rise: The expansion of Serial Verb Constructions in Tariana</b>]]> The emergence and the expansion of serial verbs can be affected by language contact. This paper focuses on a case study from Tariana, a highly endangered Arawak language spoken in the multilingual Vaupés River Basin Linguistic Area in Brazilian Amazonia. Tariana has numerous types of asymmetrical and symmetrical serial verbs highly frequent in discourse of all genres. Two kinds of serial verbs are on the rise. A construction involving a prefixed form -siwa with an emphatic, reciprocal, sociative, and reflexive meaning is developing into a serial verb construction. The motivation for this development lies in intensive language contact with the unrelated Tukano, now the major language in use by the extant speakers of Tariana, where reflexive and reciprocal meanings are expressed through serial verbs. The integration of recapitulating verb sequences with the verb -ni 'do, make' into the system of serial verbs is indirectly linked to the impact of Tucano where the verb meaning 'do, make' is used as a recapitulating device in bridging linkage. The development of recapitulating serial verbs in Tariana can be partly seen as an independent innovation, and as an outcome of language-internal pressure to create further serial verbs, expanding and extending the productive and much-deployed mechanism in the language. <![CDATA[<b>Secondary concepts and internal dynamics of Emai Serial Verb Constructions</b>]]> We examine verbs in series as they relate to Dixon's (1991, 2010) notion of secondary concepts. Our verb samples and their structures derive from an Edoid language of southern Nigeria. Emai shows asymmetrical and symmetrical serial verb constructions. However, our analytic concern is the differential realization of secondary concepts according to form class. Most verbs that realize secondary concepts appear in A-SVCs as a minor component. Some verbs that code secondary concepts shun serialization and generally take complements that are clausal, truncated, or obliquely marked gerundives. Other form classes expressing secondary concepts are preverb and particle. Members reveal a verb heritage that is either lexical or phrasal. Even a few nouns convey secondary concepts. Auxiliaries, while referencing secondary concepts, do not disclose a verb heritage. Secondary concepts in A-SVCs reveal an asymmetry as occupants of positions V1 or V2 in series. V1 manifests event and participant qualifiers, whereas V2 exhibits primarily event qualifiers. Both positions also evidence serial-within-serial structures. Overall, secondary concepts only partially align with Emai verbs in series. Since a significant number of preverbs and particles actualize secondary concepts and have a verb heritage, we assume they have grammaticalized from earlier verb-in-series structures. Furthermore, we hypothesize that the pre-verbstem position in the canonical simplex clause of Emai has had a privileged role in the emergence of secondary concepts as preverbs from verbs in series and in the continual development of serialization as an expressive means for event and participant qualifiers.