Abstract

This paper tabulates a number of specimens of affective usage noted by Sībawayhi, that is, language in which the emotional content leads to morphological and syntactical anomalies. They are grouped into five categories: (A) fully grammaticalized constructions which will not be discussed in detail because they have been incorporated into what we know as Classical Arabic, (B) oaths, exhortations and other exclamations which are syntactically obscure, (C) morphological categories such as diminutives, intensives and vocatives, which are intrinsically affective, (D) inconsistencies in the nominal cases and verbal moods which suggest an incomplete process of syntactical standardization (here supplemented by material from the dialects which was not incorporated into Classical Arabic), and (E) morphological items showing the range of alternative forms from which the standard patterns were selected (also supplemented by dialect material). The paper concludes with some speculations about the exclamatory nature of the dependent case inflection, though this is not in any way a new idea.

The Foundations of Arabic Linguistics II

Kitāb Sībawayhi: Interpretation and transmission

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