Valency changes in the history of english

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article examines changes in the valency marking in the history of English. I start with a discussion of the typological literature on measuring basic valency and point out the problems with such an approach. A sample of 18 Old English verbs provides no basic valency pattern for Old English; this makes Old English different from the other Germanic languages. I then review the evidence, presented in, for instance, Visser (1963), that there is an increase in transitivity in the history of English and argue that this increase is partly due to verbs ceasing to mark Theme-preserving alternations, between anticausative and causative. I also examine Theme-changing alternations, between intransitive and transitive, and argue that, due to the changes in aspect marking, objects become licensed by a light verb, v. I conclude by suggesting a syntactic structure that accounts for the various stages of English and argue that the main changes are due to an increase in morphological intransparency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-143
Number of pages38
JournalJournal of Historical Linguistics
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011

Fingerprint

valency
history
language
evidence
Valency
History
Alternation
Old English

Keywords

  • Anticausative
  • Causative
  • Germanic
  • Intransitive
  • Old English
  • Transitive
  • Valency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

Cite this

Valency changes in the history of english. / Van Gelderen, Elly.

In: Journal of Historical Linguistics, Vol. 1, No. 1, 01.01.2011, p. 106-143.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{a0963780f2f547be93692638fbf09bc9,
title = "Valency changes in the history of english",
abstract = "This article examines changes in the valency marking in the history of English. I start with a discussion of the typological literature on measuring basic valency and point out the problems with such an approach. A sample of 18 Old English verbs provides no basic valency pattern for Old English; this makes Old English different from the other Germanic languages. I then review the evidence, presented in, for instance, Visser (1963), that there is an increase in transitivity in the history of English and argue that this increase is partly due to verbs ceasing to mark Theme-preserving alternations, between anticausative and causative. I also examine Theme-changing alternations, between intransitive and transitive, and argue that, due to the changes in aspect marking, objects become licensed by a light verb, v. I conclude by suggesting a syntactic structure that accounts for the various stages of English and argue that the main changes are due to an increase in morphological intransparency.",
keywords = "Anticausative, Causative, Germanic, Intransitive, Old English, Transitive, Valency",
author = "{Van Gelderen}, Elly",
year = "2011",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1075/jhl.1.1.05van",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "1",
pages = "106--143",
journal = "Journal of Historical Linguistics",
issn = "2210-2116",
publisher = "John Benjamins Publishing Company",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Valency changes in the history of english

AU - Van Gelderen, Elly

PY - 2011/1/1

Y1 - 2011/1/1

N2 - This article examines changes in the valency marking in the history of English. I start with a discussion of the typological literature on measuring basic valency and point out the problems with such an approach. A sample of 18 Old English verbs provides no basic valency pattern for Old English; this makes Old English different from the other Germanic languages. I then review the evidence, presented in, for instance, Visser (1963), that there is an increase in transitivity in the history of English and argue that this increase is partly due to verbs ceasing to mark Theme-preserving alternations, between anticausative and causative. I also examine Theme-changing alternations, between intransitive and transitive, and argue that, due to the changes in aspect marking, objects become licensed by a light verb, v. I conclude by suggesting a syntactic structure that accounts for the various stages of English and argue that the main changes are due to an increase in morphological intransparency.

AB - This article examines changes in the valency marking in the history of English. I start with a discussion of the typological literature on measuring basic valency and point out the problems with such an approach. A sample of 18 Old English verbs provides no basic valency pattern for Old English; this makes Old English different from the other Germanic languages. I then review the evidence, presented in, for instance, Visser (1963), that there is an increase in transitivity in the history of English and argue that this increase is partly due to verbs ceasing to mark Theme-preserving alternations, between anticausative and causative. I also examine Theme-changing alternations, between intransitive and transitive, and argue that, due to the changes in aspect marking, objects become licensed by a light verb, v. I conclude by suggesting a syntactic structure that accounts for the various stages of English and argue that the main changes are due to an increase in morphological intransparency.

KW - Anticausative

KW - Causative

KW - Germanic

KW - Intransitive

KW - Old English

KW - Transitive

KW - Valency

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84989403430&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84989403430&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1075/jhl.1.1.05van

DO - 10.1075/jhl.1.1.05van

M3 - Article

VL - 1

SP - 106

EP - 143

JO - Journal of Historical Linguistics

JF - Journal of Historical Linguistics

SN - 2210-2116

IS - 1

ER -