"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
A Typology of Verbal Derivation in Ethiopian Afro-Asiatic Languages
The general objective of this thesis is to determine a typology of verbal
derivation in Ethiopian Afro-Asiatic languages. As a starting point I
analyse the major verbal derivations of causative, middle and passive of
Oromo, Amharic and Shakkinoono. These three languages serve as
representatives of respectively the Cushitic, Semitic and Omotic
Afroasiatic subfamilies that are present in Ethiopia. These languages have
been chosen because the author has deeper knowledge of them, as a speaker
and a researcher. The analysis of the syntax and semantics of the causative
in Oromo and Amharic reveals interesting issues such as intransitive
causatives and impersonal causatives. Oromo is particularly rich in
multiple causative structures and these are analysed in depth. Shakkinoono
(and closely related Kafinoonoo) pose some challenges to a descriptive
analysis in that thematic stem final vowels have to be distinguished from
formely identical causative and middle/passive suffixes. The middle and
passive are separate morphemes in Oromo, and Cushitic languages in general,
but indistinguishable in Amharic (and Semitic) and Shakkinoono (and Omotic).
The meaning ranges of the middle are considered in the three languages.
Passives can be made of both patient and agent oriented intransitive verbs
which is cross-linguistically rare. The semantics of such impersonal
passives are discussed.
This study should be of interest to linguists working on Afro-Asiatic
languages, to typologists and to syntacticians particularly those working
on argument structure.