Chapter published in:Reorganising Grammatical Variation: Diachronic studies in the retention, redistribution and refunctionalisation of linguistic variants
Edited by Antje Dammel, Matthias Eitelmann and Mirjam Schmuck
[Studies in Language Companion Series 203] 2018
► pp. 93–118
The history of the mixed inflection of German masculine and neuter nouns
Sound shapes, dialectal variation, typology
This paper provides an investigation of the dialectal spread of the “mixed” inflection (i.e. the combination of a “strong” singular with a “weak” plural) to non-feminine German nouns from the 14th to the 19th century, thereby revealing three different lines of development: Mixed inflection is well attested in Upper German, but poorly so in Low German and East Central German, whereas the standard language combined both traditions in the 18th century, depending on the sound shape of the respective nouns. It is only at the transition from the 19th to the 20th century that “mixed” inflection was almost lost entirely with non-feminine nouns, thus becoming a signal of feminine gender. A typological explanation relying on syntactic framing in German is proposed.
Keywords: German morphology, mixed inflection, German framing, German dialects, gender in German
Published online: 24 October 2018
Anderson, Robert R. (originator), Goebel, Ulrich, Lobenstein-Reichmann, Anja & Reichmann, Oskar
Grimm, Jacob & Grimm, Wilhelm
Hartweg, Frédéric & Wegera, Klaus-Peter
2016 -(e)n als das ideale deutsche Pluralsuffix? Widerstreitende typologische Tendenzen in der frühneuhochdeutschen Entwicklung der gemischten Flexion. In Perspektivwechsel oder die Wiederentdeckung der Philologie, Vol. 1: Sprachdaten und Grundlagenforschung in der Historischen Linguistik , Sarah Kwekkeboom & Sandra Waldenberger (eds), 251–271. Berlin: Erich Schmidt.
Walch, Maria & Häckel, Susanne
Cited by other publications
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