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Language Change, Variation, and Universals$
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Peter W. Culicover

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780198865391

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198865391.001.0001

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Constructional change in Germanic

Constructional change in Germanic

(p.197) 8 Constructional change in Germanic
Language Change, Variation, and Universals

Peter W. Culicover

Oxford University Press

This chapter tracks several of the major changes in English and German word order and accounts for them in terms of constructional change as formulated in Chapter 3. It argues that the changes are relatively simple in constructional terms, although the superficial results are quite dramatic. Topics include clause-initial position, V2, VP-initial and VP-final verb position, the loss of V2 and case marking in English, and verb clusters in Continental West Germanic.

Keywords:   grammatical change, history of Germanic, history of English, history of German, verb second (V2), loss of case marking, topicalization, Continental West Germanic verb clusters

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