Chapter published in:Evidence for Evidentiality
Edited by Ad Foolen, Helen de Hoop and Gijs Mulder
[Human Cognitive Processing 61] 2018
► pp. 227–256
Evidence for the development of ‘evidentiality’ as a grammatical category in the Tibetic languages
The coding of evidentiality and/or the speaker’s attitude grammaticalized in most Modern Tibetic languages, whereas Classical Tibetan lacks a fully developed evidential system. The source for marking sensory perception is the hedging use of the verb ḥdug. Its lexical meaning of limited stay was extended to the notion of limited truth: ‘it seems’. This was further applied to situations merely perceived. ḥdug spread first into West Tibetan as an inferential marker; later it was re-borrowed as an experiential maker. This scenario allows reconstructing the timeline and the semantic path, and explaining the flexible use of ‘evidential’ markers in Tibetic languages.
Keywords: Tibetic languages, ḥdug , inferential marker, experiential marker
Published online: 19 July 2018
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