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Query Details

Query Subject:   thematic vowels in Latin verbs
Author:   Bruno Maroneze
Submitter Email:  click here to access email
Subject Language(s):  Latin

Language Family:  Indo-European

Query:   Dear linguists,
I have a question on the meaning of the thematic vowels in Latin verbs. I was always thaught that the only function of thematic vowels was to indicate the inflection class of the verb (first, second, third of fourth conjugation). But I think it is very strange that there exists a morpheme which has only a grammatical function and doesn't have meaning. My hypothesis is: in earlier stages, the thematic vowel was a ''full morpheme'', (maybe even unbound), which had a meaning possibly related to the Aktionsart or the valency of the verb. Later, this morpheme suffered a grammaticalization process and lost its meaning. I wish to know if this problem was already studied; could someone point me some bibliographical references on this matter?
I will post a summary if there are enough responses.
Best regards,
Bruno O. Maroneze
University of Sao Paulo - Brazil
LL Issue: 15.391
Date posted: 28-Jan-2004


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