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Grammaticalization from a Typological Perspective$
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Heiko Narrog and Bernd Heine

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198795841

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198795841.001.0001

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Grammaticalization in the languages of Europe

Grammaticalization in the languages of Europe

(p.79) 5 Grammaticalization in the languages of Europe
Grammaticalization from a Typological Perspective

Östen Dahl

Oxford University Press

The Eurocentric bias in most linguistic research makes it difficult to determine what is peculiar to grammaticalization in Europe. Typological profiles can be established, if not for Europe as a whole, at least for parts of it, in particular for what have been referred to as the ‘Standard Average European’ (SAE) languages. A small set of spreading grammaticalization processes have contributed significantly to the SAE profile. The chapter looks more closely at one of those processes—the rise of so-called ‘possessive perfects’, a development which has few close parallels outside Europe. As has been argued recently by other scholars, the link to possessive constructions is more problematic than has been assumed earlier. In connection with claims about the special nature of grammaticalization in East and Mainland Southeast Asia, some comparisons are made between that area and Europe, in support of the argument that the differences may be less radical than has been claimed.

Keywords:   grammaticalization, typological profile, Standard Average European, possessive perfects, areal linguistics, inflectionalization rate

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