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zompist bboard • View topic - Diachronics of demonstratives

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 5:10 pm 
Sanci
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:50 pm 
Lebom
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I can't think of any attested examples off-hand, but I'm pretty sure that they can come from verbs of motion.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:06 pm 
Sanno
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Or verbs of perception. One could imagine a demonstrative coming from a verb meaning "behold!" (q.v. the Romance demonstratives from L. ecce "behold". Not a verb, admittedly, but it's in the same ballpark.)


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 3:26 am 
Lebom
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Swedish has innovated den här and den där, which literally mean "the here" and "the there" (den originally itself meant "that", but it's been weakened to a definite article used when an element precedes the noun within the DP, such as an adjective). The equivalents den her and den der are not used in (formal) Norwegian or Danish, AFAIK.

Gaelic has done the same thing, except I get the impression this is older.

an "the"
seo "here"
sin "there"
an X seo "this X"
an Y sin "that Y"
anseo "this" (standalone)
ansin "that" (standalone)

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:04 am 
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:38 am 
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:57 pm 
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:17 pm 
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Last edited by Travis B. on Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:43 pm 
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 12:58 am 
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 6:36 am 
Smeric
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Demonstratives may also, very conceivably, arise from third-person pronouns. Though my sole example is limited, it seems plausible since the reverse direction (demonstratives becoming third person pronouns) is a common diachronic path.

My one limited example is from English, in which "them" can be used as a demonstrative. A very folksy-sounding one, but it does pop up in places:
- How do you like them apples?
- Them bones, them bones, them dry bones
- There's gold in them thar hills.


All idioms, but it can be productive, despite sounding extremely rural. "Them crows done 'et up my corn!"


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 7:26 am 
Avisaru
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كان يا ما كان / يا صمت العشية / قمري هاجر في الصبح بعيدا / في العيون العسلية

tà yi póbo tsùtsùr ciivà dè!





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