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Typological Change in Chinese Syntax - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Typological Change in Chinese Syntax

Dan Xu


This new interpretation of the early history of Chinese argues that Old Chinese was typologically a ‘mixed’ language. It shows that, though its dominant word order was subject-verb-object, this coexisted with subject-object-verb. This book demonstrates that Old Chinese was not the analytic language it has usually been assumed to be, and that it employed morphological and lexical devices as well as syntactic means. The book describes the typological changes that have taken place since the Han period and shows how Chinese evolved into a more analytic language, supporting this exposition with abu ... More

Keywords: Old Chinese, subject-verb-object, subject-object-verb, Han period, analytic language, syntax, typology, word order, verbs, language evolution

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2006 Print ISBN-13: 9780199297566
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199297566.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Dan Xu, author
Institute of Oriental Languages and Civilizations, Paris (INALCO)