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Agent noun polysemy in Celtic: the suffix *‑mon‑ in Old and Middle Irish and its Proto-Indo-European origins


Remmer, Ulla (2011). Agent noun polysemy in Celtic: the suffix *‑mon‑ in Old and Middle Irish and its Proto-Indo-European origins. Language typology and universals, 64(1):65-74.

Abstract

The present paper gives an historical account of agent noun formations in ‑mon‑ in Old and Middle Irish, based on the Proto-Indo-European prehistory of this suffix. The patterning of agent nouns in ‑mon‑ in Irish points to a polysemy already inherited from the originally adjectival Proto-Indo-European derivates denoting affiliation. This is supported also by polysemous nominalizations in Ancient Greek. Formations in ‑mon‑, originally deverbal in Proto-Indo-European, came to be formally enlarged and functionally reinterpreted in Early Celtic, thus leading to the polysemy in Irish, with both deverbal and denominal ‑mon‑formations designating professions, occupations and functions as well as instruments and even animals.n

Abstract

The present paper gives an historical account of agent noun formations in ‑mon‑ in Old and Middle Irish, based on the Proto-Indo-European prehistory of this suffix. The patterning of agent nouns in ‑mon‑ in Irish points to a polysemy already inherited from the originally adjectival Proto-Indo-European derivates denoting affiliation. This is supported also by polysemous nominalizations in Ancient Greek. Formations in ‑mon‑, originally deverbal in Proto-Indo-European, came to be formally enlarged and functionally reinterpreted in Early Celtic, thus leading to the polysemy in Irish, with both deverbal and denominal ‑mon‑formations designating professions, occupations and functions as well as instruments and even animals.n

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:National licences > 142-005
Dewey Decimal Classification:Unspecified
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Language and Linguistics
Social Sciences & Humanities > Linguistics and Language
Language:English
Date:1 January 2011
Deposited On:02 Nov 2018 16:19
Last Modified:26 Jan 2022 17:51
Publisher:De Gruyter
ISSN:1867-8319
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1524/stuf.2011.0006

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