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In this collective volume edited by Klaas Bentein, Mark Janse, and Jorie Soltic, some of the leading experts in the field explore variation and change in one of the core areas of Ancient Greek grammar: tense, aspect, and modality. The contributors investigate key aspects such as the existence of and competition between linguistic variants, the value of modern linguistic theory for the study of linguistic variation, and the interplay between various dimensions of variation. They focus on various stages of the Greek language (Archaic, Classical, Post-classical, and Byzantine), taking both qualitative and quantitative approaches. By doing so, they offer valuable insights in the multi-faced nature of the Greek verbal system, providing an incentive towards the further study of linguistic variation and change.
Author: David Goldstein
In Classical Greek Syntax: Wackernagel's Law in Herodotus, David Goldstein offers the first theoretically-informed study of second-position clitics in Ancient Greek and challenges the long-standing belief that Greek word order is ‟free” or beyond the reach of systematic analysis. On the basis of Herodotus’ Histories, he demonstrates that there are in fact systematic correspondences between clause structure and meaning. Crucial to this new model of the Greek clause is Wackernagel’s Law, the generalization that enclitics and postpositives occur in ‟second position,” as these classes of words provide a stable anchor for analyzing sentence structure. The results of this work not only restore word order as an interpretive dimension of Greek texts, but also provide a framework for the investigation of other areas of syntax in Greek, as well as archaic Indo-European more broadly.
Author: Olga Spevak
The internal ordering of Latin noun phrases is very flexible in comparison with modern European languages. Whereas there are a number of studies devoted to the variable placement of modifiers, The Noun Phrase in Classical Latin Prose proposes an entirely new approach: a discussion of the semantic and syntactic properties of both nouns and modifiers. Using recent insights in general linguistics, it argues that not only pragmatic factors but also semantic factors (whether we are dealing with an inherent property, the author’s assessment, or a further specification of a referent) are responsible for the internal ordering of Latin noun phrases. Additionally, this book discusses prepositional phrases functioning as modifiers, and appositions, which have received little attention in the literature.