Convergence in word structure
Revisiting agglutinative noun inflection in Cappadocian Greek
Cappadocian Greek is reported to display agglutinative inflection in its nominal system, namely, mono-exponential formatives for the marking of case and number, and nom.sg-looking forms as the morphemic units to which inflection applies. Previous scholarship has interpreted these developments as indicating a shift in morphological type from fusion to agglutination, brought about by contact with Turkish. This study takes issue with these conclusions. By casting a wider net over the inflectional system of the language, it shows that, of the two types of agglutinative formations identified, only one evidences a radical departure from the inherited structural properties of Cappadocian noun inflection. The other, on the contrary, represents a typologically more conservative innovation. The study presents evidence that a combination of system-internal and -external motivations triggered the development of both types, it describes the mechanisms through which the innovation was implemented, and discusses the factors that favoured change.
Keywords: Cappadocian Greek, inflectional class shift, language contact, multiple causation, noun inflection, agglutinative, fusional
Published online: 12 May 2016
Cited by 7 other publications
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Bond, Oliver, Helen Sims‐Williams & Matthew Baerman
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