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Motion and the English VerbA Diachronic Study$
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Judith Huber

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190657802

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190657802.001.0001

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Talking about MOTION in Middle English

Talking about MOTION in Middle English

(p.145) Chapter 6 Talking about MOTION in Middle English
Motion and the English Verb

Judith Huber

Oxford University Press

Chapter 6 begins with an overview of the language contact situation with (Anglo-) French and Latin, resulting in large-scale borrowing in the Middle English period. The analysis of 465 Middle English verbs used to express intransitive motion shows that there are far more French/Latin loans in the path verbs than in the other motion verbs. The range of (new) manner of motion verbs testifies to the manner salience of Middle English: caused motion verbs are also found in intransitive motion meanings, as are French loans which do not have motion uses in continental French. Their motion uses in Anglo-Norman are discussed in terms of contact influence of Middle English. The analysis of motion expression in different texts yields a picture similar to the situation in Old English, with path typically expressed in satellites, and neutral as well as manner of motion verbs being most frequent, depending on text type.

Keywords:   Middle English, language contact, Anglo-Norman, motion verb, motion expression, manner verb, caused motion, text type, satellite

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