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Grammatical change in progress: the Anejom conditionals

Lynch, John D. (2000) Grammatical change in progress: the Anejom conditionals. Australian Journal of Linguistics, 20 (2). pp. 141-155. ISSN 0726-8602

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Anejom is the sole indigenous language of Aneityum, the southernmost inhabited island in Vanuatu. Possibly due at least in part to drastic depopulation in the nineteenth century, as a result of introduced diseases and natural calamities, various aspects of Anejom lexicon and grammar have undergone fairly rapid change, often involving simplification. Interestingly, however, these changes seem to have been 'selective', as other areas of grammar remain unchanged and as complex as they ever were. One such area in which change still seems to be in progress is the marking of conditional clauses. An original conditional conjunction seems to have been lost, first undergoing reanalysis and paradigm reduction; and original conditional constructions were first replaced by temporal constructions and more recently by constructions based on a temporal clause, the quotative verb and a complement clause. This paper documents those changes and tries to explain why they have occurred.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Law and Education (FALE) > Pacific Languages Unit
Depositing User: Ms Shalni Sanjana
Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2000 22:27
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2012 22:27

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