ENGLISH LINGUISTICS
Online ISSN : 1884-3107
Print ISSN : 0918-3701
ISSN-L : 0918-3701
Brief Article
ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF GENITIVES IN THE HISTORY OF ENGLISH: WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF -’S
SEISHIROU IBARAKI
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JOURNAL FREE ACCESS

2010 Volume 27 Issue 2 Pages 329-343

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Abstract

This paper aims to clarify the syntactic change of genitives by focusing on the development of -’s in the history of English, arguing that -’s is the descendant of the genitive inflection -(e)s. It is proposed that in the course of the development, the syntactic status of -(e)s/-’s has changed into a D element assigning genitive Case to its specifier, which is shown to be a case of degrammaticalization. It is also demonstrated that the proposed analysis can properly explain the distributional change of genitives obtained from the investigation of historical corpora.

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© 2010 The English Linguistic Society of Japan
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