Rise of canonical objecthood with the Lithuanian verbs of pain

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SERŽANT, Ilja A., 2013. Rise of canonical objecthood with the Lithuanian verbs of pain. In: Baltic Linguistics. 4, pp. 187-211. ISSN 2081-7533

@article{Serzant2013canon-45168, title={Rise of canonical objecthood with the Lithuanian verbs of pain}, url={http://www.balticlinguistics.uw.edu.pl/sites/default/files/full_texts/BL4_serzant.pdf}, year={2013}, volume={4}, issn={2081-7533}, journal={Baltic Linguistics}, pages={187--211}, author={Seržant, Ilja A.} }

The present paper aims to uncover the processes governing the rise of canonical case-markings. Experiencer verbs with the ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>Stim</sub> case frame must necessarily first acquire canonical case marking on their second argument in order to enable the acquisition of the nominative by their first argument. The present paper concentrates, thus, on the acquisition of the accusative case by the second argument. Lithuanian verbs of pain are taken under scrutiny. I examine the change that leads to the acquisition of canonical objecthood, namely, the change from the original ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>BodyPart</sub> case frame to the more canonical ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ᴀᴄᴄ<sub>BodyPart</sub> case frame. In the latter, the body-part argument not only acquires the canonical object marking, but also certain syntactic object properties as, for example, the obligatory change into genitive under negation. Strikingly, this change is only found with the verbs of pain skaudėti ‘to ache’ and dial. sopėti ‘to ache’ in Lithuanian, while other ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>Stim</sub> experiencer verbs do not undergo this change. I argue that the rise of the canonical object with ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>BodyPart</sub> verbs of pain in Lithuanian is due to some analogical processes internal to the semantic class of verbs of pain and not to a general drift leading to the acquisition of canonical case assignments. Verbs of pain represent a more complex subclass of experiencer verbs in that they typically take three arguments, namely, experiencer, body-part and stimulus. Those verbs that encode all three participants of the pain event as core arguments typically have the following case frame in Baltic: ɴᴏᴍStim– ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ᴀᴄᴄ<sub>BodyPart</sub>. I argue that the loss of the stimulus position by some of these triadic causal verbs of pain let them conflate semantically with the dyadic stative ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>BodyPart</sub> verbs of pain. This semantic merger results in the redundancy of the morphosyntactic variation between ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>BodyPart</sub> and ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>-ᴀᴄᴄ<sub>BodyPart</sub> which, in turn, leads to a generalization of one particular case frame: ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ᴀᴄᴄ<sub>BodyPart</sub> in the standard language and ᴅᴀᴛ<sub>Exp</sub>–ɴᴏᴍ<sub>BodyPart</sub> in some dialects. Seržant, Ilja A. 2019-02-23T10:57:16Z eng Rise of canonical objecthood with the Lithuanian verbs of pain 2013 Seržant, Ilja A. 2019-02-23T10:57:16Z

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