Chapter published in:Historical Linguistics 2015: Selected papers from the 22nd International Conference on Historical Linguistics, Naples, 27-31 July 2015
Edited by Michela Cennamo and Claudia Fabrizio
[Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 348] 2019
► pp. 502–517
Towards diachronic word classes universals
In this paper we examine the correlation of variables that influence the process of grammaticalization or lexicalization of a word class. Word classes change when all members change in a coordinated way. From the study of 24 word classes originating from representative languages in the world, we derive three universal tendencies. The strongest of these tendencies correlates the word class size and the new acquired meanings: The greater the size of the target word class, the lower the number of new acquired meanings.
Keywords: reanalysis, historical linguistics, typology, universal tendency
Published online: 10 September 2019
Bresnan, Joan & Sam A. Mchombo
Gerner, Matthias & Walter Bisang
Greenberg, Joseph. H.
Hopper, Paul & Elisabeth Traugott
Hubbard, Philip, Leonard Newmark & Peter Prifti
Joseph, Brian & Richard Janda
Rankin, Robert L.