Effects of constituent orders on functional extension patterns of the verbs for 'give': A contrastive study of Thai and mandarin Chinese

Kingkarn Thepkanjana, Satoshi Uehara

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

It is generally known that Thai and Mandarin Chinese are typologically different in that Thai has the head-modifier constituent order whereas Mandarin Chinese has the modifier-head one. This paper aims to investigate how different constituent orders of the head vis-a-vis the modifier and vis-a-vis the complement in Thai and Mandarin Chinese bear on patterns of functional extension of the verbs meaning 'give' in the two languages, namely, hây in Thai and gěi in Mandarin Chinese. Some observations can be made regarding the functional extension patterns of hây and gě i as follows: (a) the clause connector use is possible for hây but lacking for gěi; (b) the passive-marking use is possible for gě i but lacking for hây; (c) the gěi-marked dative PP can occur both preverbally and postverbally, whereas the hây-marked one can occur only postverbally; (d) only the preverbal gěi-marked dative PPs are attested in a Beijing Mandarin speech corpus; (e) the gěi - marked benefactive PP can occur only preverbally; (f) the structural schemas of the causative and the passive gěi are identical; and (g) the causative use of hây is productive but that of gě i is not. It is argued that the head-modifier order in Thai seems to correspond with postverbal functionally extended morphemes prevalent in the language. On the other hand, the modifier-head order in Mandarin Chinese seems to correspond with preverbal functionally extended ones prevalent in the language.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-68
Number of pages26
JournalLanguage and Linguistics
Volume16
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan 1

Keywords

  • Chinese
  • Grammaticalization
  • Thai
  • Verb 'to give'
  • Word order

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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