"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.
Empirical Approaches to Language Typology [EALT] 43
This book is intended to contribute to the clarification of the linguistic research area covered by the terms "modal", "evidential" and "epistemic". It sets out to demonstrate that on cross-linguistic grounds a hitherto overlooked "epistemic meaning domain" must be given due recognition in linguistic theory, on a par with domains such as time and number. The relevant domain is coherent, but at the same time complex in that it consists of two subdomains: one which comprises degree-of-certainty meanings, and one which comprises information-source meanings.
The book offers three arguments for giving recognition to such a meaning domain. The first argument concerns the clustering of linguistic expressions with epistemic meaning into morphosyntactically delimited systems of elements. The second argument has to do with the variation pertaining to the coding of epistemic meanings, as highlighted in a semantic map of epistemic expressions. The third argument turns upon the scope properties of epistemic meanings and the morphosyntactic reflections of these properties.
Finally, the book proposes a unified cognitive analysis of epistemic meaning in terms of which it attempts to account for the properties of the epistemic meaning domain as well as of individual epistemic meanings.