This investigation focuses on the subtle features of the Syntax-Semantics and Syntax-Discourse Interfaces as they are manifested in the comprehension and production of typically developing children acquiring Greek as a native language. Many studies have concluded that aspectual semantics is acquired at any early age in children. The results of the present study are consistent with this observation. Moreover, it offers proof that the integration of pragmatics and compositional properties of telicity, which are necessary in order to overcome the lexical aspect of manner-of-motion verbs in non-locative contexts (due to lack of coercion, which does not occur with motion verbs), leads to processing load and results in a delay of acquisition after a child reaches 10 years old.
Anthony D. Yates
This paper adduces evidence for and attempts to phonologically motivate a pattern of descriptive “retraction” of surface word accent in the Anatolian languages. It is proposed that the innovative accentual peak ( ictus ) in the relevant forms is due to Anatolian Default Accentuation , which applies when no constituent morpheme in a prosodic word is lexically specified as accented and assigns ictus to its leftmost syllable. Diachronic prosodic change is shown to result from the interaction of various morphophonological developments and the stable operation of this default accentual principle, whose effects in Hittite, Palaic, and Luwian require its reconstruction for Proto-Anatolian. Furthermore, the Anatolian evidence is argued to support Kiparsky and Halle’s (1977) reconstruction of the same default principle for Proto-Indo-European on the basis of Vedic Sanskrit and Balto-Slavic evidence.
Christina Michelle Skelton
Phylogenetic systematics is an increasingly popular tool in historical linguistics for reconstructing the evolutionary histories of groups of languages. One problem in applying phylogenetic methods to languages is that phylogenetic methods assume evolution takes place strictly by descent with modification, whereas borrowing between languages is common. This paper tests two different methods for addressing borrowing in phylogenetic analysis of language on a dataset representing the dialects of ancient Greek: character weighting and preliminary cluster analysis. Both methods show promise; they correctly recovered the subgrouping of the Greek dialects and were able to improve the resolution of the tree compared to the preliminary analysis. However, they recovered conflicting subgroupings of the West Greek dialects. This result is most likely due to a circular dialect continuum within West Greek. Using phylogenetic methods in situations which match their assumptions is crucial; for the West Greek dialects, phylogenetic network methods would be more appropriate.
Loukia Taxitari, Maria Kambanaros and Kleanthes K. Grohmann
The MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (CDI) has been widely used to study children’s word production in both monolingual and bilingual contexts, in typical and atypical populations, and for the study of different aspects of language development, such as the use of mutual exclusivity. In this study, an adaptation of the CDI in Cypriot Greek is used to collect production data for post-vocabulary spurt children growing up in a bilectal community, where two different varieties of a language are used. Parents report that their children use translation equivalents for a single concept, and these increase as their total word production increases. Also girls seem to produce more translation equivalents than boys overall. This suggests that lexical development in bilectal communities might be more similar to bilingual rather than monolingual development, and that mutual exclusivity does not constrain word usage in such populations even during early word production.
The Root *√k̑u̯el ‘Dark, Black’
The assumption of a root *√k̑u̯el ‘dark, black’ offers new possible etymologies for Arm. šaɫax, Gk. πηλός, Toch. B kwele, Hitt. kuu̯aliu-, Gk. κύλα, Lat. culex, and Lat. color, whose derivational background will be dealt with in the course of this paper.
Joanne Vera Stolk
Semantic analysis of the prenominal first person singular genitive pronoun (μου) in the Greek of the documentary papyri shows that the pronoun is typically found in the position between a verbal form and an alienable possessum which functions as the patient of the predicate. When the event expressed by the predicate is patient-affecting, the possessor is indirectly also affected. Hence the semantic role of this affected alienable possessor might be interpreted as a benefactive or malefactive in genitive possession constructions. By semantic extension the meaning of the genitive case in this position is extended into goal-oriented roles, such as addressee and recipient, which are commonly denoted by the dative case in Ancient Greek. The semantic similarity of the genitive and dative cases in these constructions might have provided the basis for the merger of the cases in the Greek language.