LINGUIST List 11.2019

Sat Sep 23 2000

Qs: Frequency Dictionary/OE, Causative Construction

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  1. Berg, Frequency Dictionary of Old English
  2. Ruprecht von Waldenfels, causative constructions

Message 1: Frequency Dictionary of Old English

Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2000 16:32:44 +0200
From: Berg <>
Subject: Frequency Dictionary of Old English

Dear Linguist, 
Has anybody heard of a frequency dictionary of Old English? I would 
appreciate the tiniest piece of information that you might share with 

Thomas Berg

Thomas Berg
Universit�t Hamburg
Seminar f�r Englische Sprache und Kultur
Von-Melle-Park 6
20146 Hamburg

New phone number:
phone: 49-40- 4 28 38 -4848
fax: 49-40- 4 38 38 -4856

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Message 2: causative constructions

Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2000 11:49:16 +0200
From: Ruprecht von Waldenfels <>
Subject: causative constructions

Dear List, 

I am working on the german analitycal causative construction involving
the verb "lassen" and its equivalents in Russian. It has been disputed
by Hubert (1980) that certain constructions involving "lassen" are
indeed causative, following the crite ria forwarded by Shibatani
(1976), i.e. that the causing event has to precede the caused
 event, and that the occurence of the caused event has to be dependent
on the occurenc e of the causing event. The construction in question
is best exemplified by the sentence

	"Peter liess den Mantel auf dem Tisch liegen"
	Peter left the coat lying on the table.

Note that in the english translation neither of the analytic causative
auxilliaries "have", "let" or "make" are involved.

 This sentence can be clearly interpreted as construing two events, i.e.
(S1) Peter did something other than taking the coat (what exactly is not expressed) 
(S2) The coat was lying on the table.

In order for the example to meet both of Shibatani's criteria, one
must di vide the situation of the coat lying on the table in two: The
coat lying on the tab le before an potential interference into that
situation, and the same after such a potential intereference. Only
then S2 can be seen as a consequence of S2.

Now I wonder whether there are constructions in other languages that
make use of some kind of broadly used causative marker to express such
an noninterference into an ongoing situation.

I would appreciate any examples from other languages and summarize on the 

 Ruprecht von Waldenfels
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