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In A Grammar of Lopit, Jonathan Moodie and Rosey Billington provide the first detailed description of Lopit, an Eastern Nilotic language traditionally spoken in the Lopit Mountains in South Sudan. Drawing on extensive primary data, the authors describe the phonology, morphology, and syntax of the Lopit language. Their analyses offer new insights into phenomena characteristic of Nilo-Saharan languages, such as ‘Advanced Tongue Root’ vowel distinctions, tripartitite number marking, and marked-nominative case systems, and they uncover patterns which are previously unattested within the Eastern Nilotic family, such as a three-way contrast in aspect, number marking with the ‘greater singular’, and two kinds of inclusory constructions. This book offers a significant contribution to the descriptive and typological literature on African languages.
Editors: David Rood and John Boyle
Robert L. Rankin was a seminal figure in late 20th and early 21st centuries in the field of Siouan linguistics. His knowledge, like the papers he produced, was voluminous. We have gathered here a representation of his work that spans over thirty years. The papers presented here focus on both the languages Rankin studied in depth (Quapaw, Kansa, Biloxi, Ofo, and Tutelo) and comparative historical work on the Siouan language family in general. While many of the papers included have been previously published, one third of them have never before been made public including a grammatical sketch and dictionary of Ofo and his final paper on the place of Mandan in the larger Siouan family.
Author: Selin Grollmann
A grammar of Bjokapakha by Selin Grollmann constitutes the first description of Bjokapakha, an endangered language spoken in central Bhutan belonging to the Tshangla branch of Trans-Himalayan. This grammar comprises a description of the phonology, lexicon, nominal morphology, predicate structures and syntax. In addition to the descriptive parts, this book encompasses a historical-comparative account of Bjokapakha. The introductory chapter provides a comparison with the standard variety of Tshangla and corroborates the internal diversity of the Tshangla branch. The present-day structure of Bjokapakha verbal morphology is illuminated by means of an internal reconstruction. Moreover, this book contains a glossary and a text collection.
In A Grammar of Murui (Bue), Katarzyna Wojtylak provides the first complete description of Murui, an endangered Witotoan language, spoken by the Murui-Muina (Witoto) people from Colombia and Peru. The grammar is written from a functional and typological perspective, using natural language data gathered during several fieldtrips to the Caquetá-Putumayo region between 2013 and 2017. The many remarkable characteristics of Murui include a complex system of classifiers, differential subject and object marking, person-marking verb morphology, evidential and epistemic marking, head-tail linkage, and a system of numerals, including the fraternal (brother-based) forms for ‘three’ and ‘four’. The grammar represents an important contribution to the study of Witotoan languages, linguistic typology of Northwest Amazonia, and language contact in the area.
In The Hittite Middle Voice Guglielmo Inglese offers a new treatment of the middle voice in Hittite. The book features two main parts. In the first part, the author provides an updated synchronic description of the Hittite middle based on the existing typology of voice systems and valency changing operations. Moreover, based on a careful analysis of a chronologically ordered corpus of original Hittite texts, the book offers the first ever diachronic account of the Hittite middle. As Inglese argues, the findings of this book greatly enrich our general knowledge of the diachronic typology of middle voice systems. The second part of the book features a thorough description of more than 100 Hittite verbs in original texts.
Editor: Peter Hallman
Interactions of Degree and Quantification is a collection of chapters edited by Peter Hallman that deal with superlative, equative and differential constructions cross-linguistically, interactions of the comparative with both individual quantifiers and event structure, the use of the individual quantifier ‘some’ as a numeral, and the question of whether the very notion of ‘degree’ is reducible to a relation between individuals. These issues all represent semantic parallels and interactions between individual quantifiers ( every, some, etc.) and degree quantifiers ( more, most, numerals, etc.) in the expression of quantity and measurement. The contributions presented here advance the analytical depth and cross-linguistic breadth of the state of the art in semantics and its interface with syntax in human language.
During several decades, syntactic reconstruction has been more or less regarded as a bootless and an unsuccessful venture, not least due to the heavy criticism in the 1970s from scholars like Watkins, Jeffers, Lightfoot, etc. This fallacious view culminated in Lightfoot’s (2002: 625) conclusion: “[i]f somebody thinks that they can reconstruct grammars more successfully and in more widespread fashion, let them tell us their methods and show us their results. Then we’ll eat the pudding.” This volume provides methods for the identification of i) cognates in syntax, and ii) the directionality of syntactic change, showcasing the results in the introduction and eight articles. These examples are offered as both tastier and also more nourishing than the pudding Lightfoot had in mind when discarding the viability of reconstructing syntax.
Ibn Mujāhid and the Founding of the Seven Readings
Author: Shady Nasser
In The Second Canonization of the Qurʾān, Nasser studies the transmission and reception of the Qurʾānic text and its variant readings through the work of Ibn Mujāhid (d. 324/936), the founder of the system of the Seven Eponymous Readings of the Qurʾān. The overarching project aims to track and study the scrupulous revisions the Qurʾān underwent, in its recited, oral form, through the 1,400-year journey towards a final, static, and systematized text.
For the very first time, the book offers a complete and detailed documentation of all the variant readings of the Qurʾān as recorded by Ibn Mujāhid. A comprehensive audio recording accompanies the book, with more than 3,500 audio files of Qurʾānic recitations of variant readings.
Missionary Linguistic Studies from Mesoamerica to Patagonia presents the results of in-depth studies of grammars, vocabularies and religious texts, dating from the sixteenth – nineteenth century. The researches involve twenty (extinct) indigenous Mesoamerican and South American languages: Matlatzinca, Mixtec, Nahuatl, Purépecha, Zapotec (Mexico); K’iche, Kaqchikel (Guatemala); Amage, Aymara, Cholón, Huarpe, Kunza, Mochica, Mapudungun, Proto-Tacanan, Pukina, Quechua, Uru-Chipaya (Peru); Tehuelche (Patagonia); (Tupi-)Guarani (Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay).
The results of the studies include: a) a digital model of a good, conveniently arranged vocabulary, applicable to all indigenous Amerindian languages; b) disclosure of intertextual relationships, language contacts, circulation of knowledge; c) insights in grammatical structures; d) phone analyses; e) transcriptions, so that the texts remain accessible for further research. f) the architecture of grammars; g) conceptual evolutions and innovations in grammaticography.
A Critical Edition and Linguistic Analysis of the pre-19th-Century Karaim Interpretations of Hebrew piyyutim
Author: Michał Németh
This volume offers the first comprehensive study on the history of Middle Western Karaim dialects. The author provides a systematic description of sound changes dating from the 17th–19th-centuries and reconstructs their absolute- and relative chronologies. In addition, the main morphological peculiarities are presented in juxtaposition to Modern Western Karaim data.
The textual basis for this historical-linguistic investigation is a critical edition of pre-1800 Western Karaim interpretations of Hebrew religious songs called piyyutim (149 texts altogether). The reason behind this choice is that some of these texts are among the oldest known Western Karaim texts in general, and that until now no study has brought the Karaim translation tradition in this genre closer to the reader.