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Classifiers, Quantifiers and Class Nouns in Hmong

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Four operations of nominal concretization are crucial for presenting a typology of classifier languages: individualization, classification, relationalization (possession), and referentialization. The first three of these operations are at work in the Hmong classifier system. The development of classifiers is described in connection with the degree of grammaticalization which will be measured by the three parameters of [± exact], [± entity], and cohesion. These parameters will be arranged in a three-dimensional continuum (cf. Fig. II.) which leads to the following evolutional steps of increasing grammaticalization: nouns, class nouns, quantifiers, intrinsic quantifiers (to be defined in the present article), and classifiers.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 1993

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