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The participial construction of Dolakhā Newar: Syntactic implications of an Asian converb

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The terms “(clause) chaining” and “converbal constructions” are used for the classification of similar types of clause linkage. Chaining is generally used for constructions which do not entail subordination, while converbs are defined as subordinate. In Dolakhā Newar adverbial and “participial” clauses are not syntactically distinct, but neither are they subordinate. I propose that the term “converb” be redefined as a clause-linkage strategy that subsumes adverbial clauses and clauses akin to the Dolakhāe “participial”, and that there be no requirement that converbs be either subordinate or adverbial. I provide an analysis of “case prolepsis”, the casemarking of an argument by a verb in a non-adjacent clause, and argue that this results from the participial construction applying at a distinct level of clause structure.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of california, Santa Barbara

Publication date: January 1, 2005

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  • International Journal sponsored by the Foundation "Foundations of Language"

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