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  • 1. Barddal, Johanna
    et al.
    Smitherman, Thomas
    Bjarnadottir, Valgerdur
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German.
    Danesi, Serena
    Jenset, Gard B.
    McGillivray, Barbara
    Reconstructing constructional semantics: The dative subject construction in Old Norse-Icelandic, Latin, Ancient Greek, Old Russian and Old Lithuanian2012In: Studies in Language, ISSN 0378-4177, E-ISSN 1569-9978, Vol. 36, no 3, p. 511-547Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    As the historical linguistic community is well aware, reconstructing semantics is a notoriously difficult undertaking. Such reconstruction has so far mostly been carried out on lexical items, like words and morphemes, and has not been conducted for larger and more complex linguistic units, which intuitively seems to be a more intricate task, especially given the lack of methodological criteria and guidelines within the field. This follows directly from the fact that most current theoretical frameworks are not construction-based, that is, they do not assume that constructions are form-meaning correspondences. In order to meet this challenge, we present an attempt at reconstructing constructional semantics, and more precisely the semantics of the Dative Subject Construction for an earlier stage of Indo-European. For this purpose we employ lexical semantic verb classes in combination with the semantic map model (Bar partial derivative dal 2007, Bar partial derivative dal, Kristoffersen & Sveen 2011), showing how incredibly stable semantic fields may remain across long time spans, and how reconstructing such semantic fields may be accomplished

  • 2.
    Bjarnadottir, Valgerdur
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German.
    Dialectal and Diachronic Distribution of Case Variation in Lithuanian Pain Verb ConstructionIn: Baltic Linguistics, ISSN 2081-7533Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 3.
    Bjarnadottir, Valgerdur
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German.
    Emergence and spread of accusative marking of body parts in Lithuanian: Construction Grammar accountIn: Baltu Filoloģija, ISSN 1691-0036Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 4.
    Bjarnadottir, Valgerdur
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German.
    Oblique anticausative in Lithuanian: A comparative approachIn: Baltistica, ISSN 0132-6503, E-ISSN 2345-0045Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 5.
    Bjarnadóttir, Valgerður
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German.
    Non-canonical case-marking on core arguments in Lithuanian: A historical and contrastive perspective2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis presents a description and analysis of non-canonical case-marking of core arguments in Lithuanian. It consists of an introduction and six articles, providing historical and/or contrastive perspective to this issue. More specifically, using data from Lithuanian dialects, Old Lithuanian and other languages such as Icelandic, Latin and Finnic for comparison, the thesis examines the development and current state of non-canonical case-marking of core arguments in Lithuanian The present work draws on empirical findings and theoretical considerations to investigate non-canonical case-marking, language variation and historical linguistics.

    Special attention is paid to the variation in the case-marking of body parts in pain verb constructions, where an accusative-marked body part is used in Standard Lithuanian, and alongside, a nominative-marked body part in Lithuanian dialects. A common objective of the first three articles is to clarify and to seek a better understanding for the reasons for this case variation. The research provides evidence that nominative is the original case-marking of body parts in pain specific construction, i.e. with verbs, with the original meaning of pain, like skaudėti and sopėti ‘hurt, feel pain’. On the contrary, in derived pain constructions, i.e. with verbs like gelti with the original meaning of ‘sting, bite’ and diegti with the original meaning ‘plant’, accusative is the original case-marking of body parts. This accusative is explained by means of an oblique anticausative and it is argued furthermore that it is extended into the pain specific construction. The three last articles focus on the comparative and contrastive perspective. Their main results include the following: Lithuanian and Icelandic differ considerably in the frequency of using accusative vs. dative marking on the highest ranked argument. Accusative is more frequently used in Lithuanian while dative is dominant in Icelandic. The semantic fields of the dative subject construction have remained very stable, suggesting that the dative subject construction is inherited. It has, however, become productive in the history of Germanic, Baltic and Slavic. The similarities in Finnic and Baltic partiality-based object and subject-marking systems are due to Baltic influence.

  • 6. Wiemer, Björn
    et al.
    Bjarnadottir, Valgerdur
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Baltic Languages, Finnish and German. Vilnius University, Lithuania.
    On the non-canonical marking of the highest-ranking argument in Lithuanian and Icelandic: Step towards a database2014In: Grammatical Relations and their Non-Canonical Encoding in Baltic / [ed] Axel Holvoet, Nicole Nau, John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2014, p. 301-361Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper is a first report on an ongoing project aiming at building up a database of non-canonical argument marking in Lithuanian in contrast to other languages with relatively rich systems of morphological cases. The language with which we begin the comparison is Icelandic. The overarching aim consists not only in a unified inventorisation of relevant units, but in disclosing (i) regularities in the alternation of coding patterns and (ii) the factors underlying such variation. We will concentrate on case marking; this however implies agreement patterns as well, insofar as in these two languages only nominatival NPs trigger agreement on the finite verb (= predicate of the clause). We further concentrate on verbs with non-canonical marking of their highest-ranking argument (HRA); the notion of HRA is defined on the basis of the Actor-Undergoer Hierarchy as developed in Role & Reference Grammar (see 2.1). What we present here is not yet a comprehensive description of the whole body of data, but rather a problem paper which details some conceptual issues and highlights some prominent types of argument coding and their relation to lexical groups.

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