A diachronic typological study of valency-changing categories

Author : Leonid Kulikov

Publication date : 2010

Questionnaire URL : http://hdl.handle.net/1854/LU-1940282

Bibliographical references :

Kulikov, Leonid. 2010. “Bridging Typology and Diachrony: a Preliminary Questionnaire for a Diachronic Typological Study of Voice and Valency-changing Categories.” In Problemy Grammatiki i Tipologii : Sbornik Statej Pamjati V. P. Nedjalkova = Issues in Grammar and Typology : a Memorial Volume for Vladimir Nedjalkov, ed. Valentin Vydrin, Sergej Dmitrenko, Natalja Zaika, Sergej Saj, Nina Sumbatova, and Viktor Xrakovskij, 139–163. Moscow, Russia: Znak.


This questionnaire, intended for the linguist, focuses on valency-changing categories from a diachronic perspective.

"At first glance, transposing a synchronic questionnaire into its diachronic version may appear an almost trivial operation: we simply have to reformulate each synchronic question in the form: What happens to the given synchronic feature in the history? It is true, every synchronic phenomenon has some history, some past and future. Yet, a mechanical transposition would probably result in a mere conglomeration of facts extracted from historical grammars. It makes sense to concentrate on some features and to disregard some others. Apparently, we have to focus on the most important features which determine the basic trends in the evolution of the linguistic system." (Kulikov, 2010: 1)

Protocol summary

''Most questions include (i) a synchronic part, which addresses the feature under study in the attested languages (usually, in the most ancient language L0 which opens the documented history of a genetic group) and (ii) a diachronic part (which I mark with “D”). In some cases, it is appropriate (iii) to put questions about the hypothetical origin of the linguistic phenomenon under study (e.g. etymology of a marker); this part of the question is marked with “R”. Most questions are supplied with illustrative material taken from historical linguistic studies. '' (Kulikov, 2010: 1)

Development context

"The suggested questionnaire by no means claims to be exhaustive and can easily be supplemented with both new questions and illustrative material." (Kulikov, 2010: 1) All suggestions, criticisms and comments on this questionnaire will be greatly appreciated.

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