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Hsiu-fang YANG

This paper studies the history of Amoy kiŋ6 in terms of its phonological and semantic developments by using the comparative method. It first identifies the word 楗, which means ‘a standing pole used to support a door bolt’ in Archaic Chinese, to be the etymon of kiŋ6. The paper then argues that the word has undergone extensions of meaning from the original nominal sense to a cluster of verbal senses, such as ‘to prop up a door or something else’, ‘to sustain an unfurling state’, ‘to exert strength to resist a force’, and ‘to support, physically or non-physically’. With comparative data from Min, it also discusses the phonological strata manifested in the pronunciations of the word in several Southern Min varieties.

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Hsiu-Fang Yang

Based on the study of the word family "door" (門), this article suggests that the word "to hold" (捫) had the original meaning "to hold the door open/closed". This word developed extended meanings in two opposite directions. The phrases "to hold the tongue" (捫舌) seen in Shijing (詩經), meaning meaning "to not talk", or "to hold the foot" (捫足), meaning "to cover the foot", both derive from "to hold closed"; in contrast, "to hold tears" (捫淚), meaning "to let tears go, to wipe tears away", derives from "to hold open".

This article also reveals the crucial role of word families in the study of lexical development. For instance, once the etymological relationship among "door" (門), "to ask" (問) "to hear" (聞), "to muffle" (悶), and "to hold" (捫) is clear, the explanation underlying the grammatical characteristics of these words becomes clearer. This approach has general application to our understanding of the history of the Chinese lexicon as a whole.

Free access

Hsiu-fang Yang

There are quite a number of differences between the unearthed Bamboo-Silk texts of Lao-Zi and the transmitted or received ones. in Bamboo texts, for example, is written as HENG 恆and JI 極 in Silk texts, and as 常 and 極 respectively in received versions. The fact that in the Silk texts 恆 is used as a modifier while 極 is not suggests a functional complementarity between the two. Furthermore, in reconstructed Archaic Chinese, 極 and 恆 share the same initial *g-, and their finals are in rhyme categories which are phonologically parallel and relatable to each other. 恆, which means long duration through time, and 極, which means overall spatial duration, are characterized exclusively by the core meaning of going through from a starting point to the end. Based on the evidence cited above, we propose that HENG 恆and JI 極 are derived from one and the same word family. While the Silk texts represent the period when HENG 恆and JI 極 were separately derived, the Bamboo texts represent a stage earlier than that derivation.

Open Access

Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics


NEW! NOW PUBLISHED IN OPEN ACCESS. For the years 2018-2020 all articles in Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics are published as full open access articles. There are no submission charges and no Article Processing Charges as these are fully funded by institutions through Knowledge Unlatched, resulting in no direct charge to authors. Also, as of Volume 10, issue 2, BCL authors retain copyright.

The Li Fang-Kuei Society for Chinese Linguistics 紀念李方桂先生中國語言學研究學會, named in honor of a consummate scholar who made monumental contributions in Chinese, Tibetan, Tai and American Indian linguistics, was established in Seattle on October 1, 2003 by a group including Prof. Li Fang-Kuei’s family members, former students, friends, colleagues, and admirers. The goal of the Society is to further Prof. Li’s legacy by supporting and encouraging the highest standards of research and scholarship in the academic discipline of Chinese linguistics throughout the world. Professor Li’s contribution to linguistics is global and many-faceted. His keen insight, great intellect, and profound knowledge as conveyed through his writings have influenced directly or indirectly all subsequent generations of scholars working in the areas in which he excelled. In appreciation of his contribution to the academic community worldwide, the Society launched its flagship journal, Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics 中國語言學集刊, in May 2006 as a permanent tribute to him.

The Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics has been published by the Center for Chinese Linguistics of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, with the exception of Volumes 3 and 4, which were published by the Zhonghua Book Company. Beginning in 2015, publication has shifted to Brill under the editorial direction of the Society and with ongoing support from the Center for Chinese Linguistics.

The Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics plays a vital role in the Society’s mission to foster high-quality research in Chinese linguistics and related fields. Published biannually, the journal provides a global forum for scholarly exchanges to continue the great tradition embodied and fostered by Professor Li, and to shed new light and explore new horizons in historical-comparative linguistics and dialectology. All articles are peer-reviewed and are published in either English or Chinese.

「紀念李方桂先生中國語言學研究學會」,由李方桂先生的家屬以及門生故舊共同捐資,於2003年10月1日在美國西雅圖設立,以紀念這位對於漢語、藏語、台語和美洲印第安語有著劃時代貢獻的語言學大師。學會的宗旨,在贊助國際間最高水準的中國語言學研究,藉此發揚李先生的學術精神。李先生在語言學上的貢獻是多方面的。他著作中所深蘊的高瞻遠矚與精深博大,直接間接地影響了後世學者。為表彰他世界性的學術貢獻,學會於2006年5月創辦了代表刊物《中國語言學集刊》( Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics),作為對李先生的永久紀念。



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