|Title||Adpositional systems in contact: the case of Cappadocian Greek|
Cappadocian is well-known to have undergone a series of changes under the influence of Turkish on all levels of grammar (Janse 2009). This paper examines contact-induced developments in a domain that has hitherto received little, if no, attention: adpositions.
Cappadocian and Turkish differ greatly with respect to their adpositional systems. Cappadocian has inherited a prepositional system consisting of simple and compound members e.g., se ‘at/to’, me ‘with’; apes se ‘in(side)’, dama me ‘(together) with’. Turkish, in contrast, is exclusively postpositional displaying an array of bare and possessive-marked postpositions; e.g. için ‘for’, beri ‘since’; iç- ‘in(side)’, ön- ‘in front of’ (Göksel & Kerslake 2005).The investigation of a substantial corpus of Cappadocian texts reveals a number of noteworthy instances of both pattern and matter replication in the adpositional system of the language (in the sense of Matras & Sakel 2007):
(A) Replication of head-final order. In non-contact Greek varieties, all adpositions precede their complements. In Cappadocian, only simple adpositions do. Compound adpositions, which consist of an adverb and a simple preposition, have developed into circumpositions (in the sense of Hagège 2010): the original preposition remains preposed to the complement whereas the original adverbial element is postposed as in so nekliʃa ombro lit. ‘at the church front’ (Phloïtá Cappadocian). This clearly models on Turkish postpositional phrases. Compare the corresponding Turkish phrase kilise-nin ön-ün-de lit. ‘church-gen front-3sg.poss-loc’. Circumpositional ordering is, of course, not unknown to other Greek varieties; it is, however, a marked option. It therefore appears that language contact favoured this marginal variant, promoting it to the status of unmarked default by virtue of its similarity to the corresponding Turkish pattern.
(B) Borrowing of postpositions. Certain Cappadocian varieties have incorporated Turkish postpositions wholesale. The relevant cases involve the borrowing of postpositions denoting both peripheral – non-temporal, non-spatial – and central, temporal meanings. For example, ap exter bæri (< Tk beri) lit. ‘from yesterday since’ or ap to sevdusi itʃin (< Tk. için) lit. ‘from the love because of’. When borrowed into Cappadocian, Turkish postpositions assume the role of the adverbial element of circumpositions: (a) they retain their relative positioning after the phrasal complement; but, (b) have to combine with a native, simple preposition to form a circumpositional phrase.
The paper discusses the implications of these findings for the typology of adpositions, both from a synchronic and a diachronic perspective. It focuses on the apparent cross-linguistic rarity of circumpositions and on the predictions that have been made in the language contact literature regarding the borrowability of adpositions in relation to other linguistic elements.
Göksel, A. & C. Kerslake. 2005. Turkish: A Comprehensive Grammar. London: Routledge.
Hagège, C. 2010. Adpositions: Function-Marking in Human Languages. Oxford: OUP.
Janse, M. 2009. Greek-Turkish language contact in Asia Minor. Études Helléniques/Hellenic Studies 17:1, 37–54.
Matras, Y. & J. Sakel. 2007. Investigating the mechanism of pattern replication in language convergence. Studies in Language 31:4, 829–865.
|Conference||11th International Conference on Greek Linguistics|
|Accepted author manuscript|