Summary and Info
The comparative analysis of historical linguistics focuses on reconstructing ancient patterns based on diachronic records and typological data from several languages or dialects in a language group. The ultimate aim of the comparative reconstruction which requires significant cross-linguistic observation and theoretical reasoning is to demonstrate the historical process of language changes. This book considers the diachronic development of both the Chinese language and the Naxi language, focusing particularly upon six contentious linguistic issues that are associated with various linguistic changes in most areas of the grammar of these languages, including phonological changes, semantic changes, syntactic changes, and contact-induced changes. These linguistic issues are: tonal splits in proto-checked syllables and subgrouping of Loloish; the semantic development of RETURN in Chinese; the semantic development of Take in Chinese; the development of agentive passive markers in certain dialects of Chinese; definiteness and nominalization, relativization, and genitivization in Chinese; and the development of nominalization, relativization, and genitivization in Naxi. This volume provides new methods and perspectives through which these issues can be analyzed and resolved on the basis of typological and diachronic evidence. It uses cross-linguistic data from Chinese and the Tibeto-Burman languages in order to reconstruct various diachronic developments in Chinese and Naxi.