Article

The grammaticalization of definite articles

Walter De Mulder and Anne Carlier

in The Oxford Handbook of Grammaticalization

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199586783
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199586783.013.0042

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Linguistics

 The grammaticalization of definite articles

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  • Linguistics
  • Historical and Diachronic Linguistics
  • Grammar, Syntax and Morphology

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This article explores the grammaticalisation of the grammar category of definite articles. It explains that the grammaticalisation process that leads to the development of articles which exhibits cross-linguistic regularities. In most cases, the definite article originates from a weakened demonstrative, while the indefinite article derives from the unity numeral ‘one’. This article also discusses the morphosyntactic role of noun marker or noun phrase marker in the grammaticalisation of definite articles.

Keywords: definite articles; grammaticalisation; cross-linguistic regularities; weakened demonstrative; morphosyntactic role; noun marker; noun phrase marker

Article.  5186 words. 

Subjects: Linguistics ; Historical and Diachronic Linguistics ; Grammar, Syntax and Morphology

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