Germanic Languages

ISBN-10: 0521015111

ISBN-13: 9780521015110

Edition: 2007

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Description:

Germanic - one of the largest sub-groups of the Indo-European language family - comprises 37 languages with an estimated 470 million speakers worldwide. This book presents a comparative linguistic survey of the full range of Germanic languages, both ancient and modern, including major world languages such as English and German (West Germanic), the Scandinavian (North Germanic) languages, and the extinct East Germanic languages. Unlike previous studies, it does not take a chronological or a language-by-language approach, organized instead around linguistic constructions and subsystems. Considering dialects alongside standard varieties, it provides a detailed account of topics such as case, word formation, sound systems, vowel length, syllable structure, the noun phrase, the verb phrase, the expression of tense and mood, and the syntax of the clause. Authoritative and comprehensive, this much-needed survey will be welcomed by scholars and students of the Germanic languages, as well as linguists across the many branches of the field.
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Book details

Copyright year: 2007
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 12/21/2006
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 522
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.826
Language: English

List of tables
List of language abbreviations
Acknowledgments
Introduction
Some remarks on the organization of this volume
Divergence and convergence in the Germanic languages
Germanic languages and Standard Average European
Typological classification
A survey of the Germanic languages
East Germanic
West Germanic
The North Sea Coast languages
North Germanic
The Germanic lexicon
Loanwords
Derivation
Compounding
Discourse particles
Phrasal verbs
The sound systems of Germanic: inventories, alternations and structures
Segmental inventories and alternations
The obstruents: place and manner of articulation
The sonorants
The vowels
The suprasegmental phonology of the Germanic languages
Syllable structure and sonority
Length
Lexical stress and the fool in Germanic phonology
Word tone in Germanic
The Germanic nominal system: paradigmatic and syntagmatic variation
Nominal inflection
Historical prelude: Indo-European heritage and Germanic innovation
Inflectional categories of the noun
The internal structure of the nominal phrase
Nominal phrases without nominal heads
Nominal phrases with pronoun heads
Nominal phrases headed by lexical nouns
Determiners
Weak quantifiers
Definite articles
Genitive phrases
Genitive phrases and determiners
Proper name possessors and pronominal possessors
The English 'double genitive' construction
The prenominal periphrastic possessive (Jan se boek) construction
Special developments of the genitive in possessive constructions
Meronymic constructions
Predeterminers
Discontinuous nominal phrases
Adjective phrases
Comparison
Pronouns in the Germanic languages
Personal pronouns
The referential properties of pronouns
The external syntax of noun phrases: subjects
Subject agreement
The typology and distribution of "expletive" arguments
Subjects in imperative clauses
Derived subjects and the syntax of voice
Raising constructions
The verbal systems of Germanic: paradigmatic and syntagmatic comparison
Historical prelude: the Indo-European heritage and Germanic innovations
Types of verbal inflection
Categories of verbal inflection: the Germanic tense/mood system and its Indo-European antecedents
Modal auxiliaries
Developments in the expression of tense in Germanic
Identifying periphrastic tense/aspect constructions
Future
Perfect tenses and past tenses
The meaning of the (present) perfect and the past
Progressive
Voice inflections and voice auxiliaries
Passive
Middle voice
The Scandinavian s-passive
Nonfinite verbal forms
The infinitive
The present principle and the English gerund
The past participle and the supine
Verbal valency
Head, complement and adjunct placement in the verb phrase
The relative order of the verb and its complements within the VP
The order of objects
Phrasal verbs
The syntax of the clause
Sentence adverbs
The syntax of negation
Some definitions: negation, scope and polarity
Scope, polarity and syntactic position
Polarity items, negative concord and multiple negation
Negative complementizers and pleonastic negation
Constituent negation with sentential scope
On formal differences between sentential negators and constituent negators
On the typology of sentential negation in Germanic
The syntax of the left periphery: topics, verb-second and subject/verb inversion
Main-clause/subordinate clause asymmetries in verb position
The triggers of verb-second order and the typology of V-2
Complementizers
That-clauses
Infinitive complements
Relative clauses, questions and other fronting constructions
A typology of Germanic relative constructions
Questions
Topic constructions and left dislocation constructions
References
Index
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