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Auxiliary Verb Constructions$
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Gregory D.S. Anderson

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199280315

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199280315.001.0001

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The Origins of Patterns of Inflection in Auxiliary Verb Constructions

The Origins of Patterns of Inflection in Auxiliary Verb Constructions

(p.302) 7 The Origins of Patterns of Inflection in Auxiliary Verb Constructions
Auxiliary Verb Constructions

Gregory D. S. Anderson

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the historical syntax, morphosyntax, and semantics of the developments of auxiliary verb constructions. It begins with an overview of the original structures that gave rise to the patterns themselves, specifically the constructions that give rise to the various inflectional subtypes of auxiliary verb constructions from the perspective of their diachronic relation to serial verb constructions, verb plus clausal complement structures, and clause-chaining formations. Thus, the five inflectional macro-patterns of auxiliary verb constructions attested across the languages of the world are to be explained by their diverse heterogeneous constructional source pool. The particular configurations of combinations of source verbs of differing valence and morphosyntactic properties yield the diverse set of functional constructions attested. This chapter also discusses in brief the historical semantic processes of grammaticalization reflected in the development of auxiliary verb constructions, classifying different typical paths of lexical to functional semantic specialization. It is shown that the semantic-pragmatic paths of development of the specific sub-types of lexical classes of predicates into indexes of functional categories follow particular and relatively straightforward shifts and specializations with respect to individual classes of auxiliaries in the process of their grammaticalization.

Keywords:   morphosyntax, semantics, serial verb construction, verbal complements, clause-chaining, clause combining, syntax, grammaticalization

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