Nu thenke, wannan thaz geschehan si : een diachrone analyse van denken
Faculty of Arts. Linguistics and Literature
Nederlandse taalkunde. - Groningen, 1996, currens
, p. 311-348
University of Antwerp
This paper presents a diachronic corpus investigation into the semantic and the grammatical development of the Dutch mental state predicate denken think, from Old Dutch onwards. The discussion focuses specifically on the implications for our understanding of the processes of grammaticalization and subjectification, and their correlation. The verb shows clear signs of a process of semantic subjectification, involving a continuous strengthening of the epistemic use, and the emergence of a pure subjectivity use. But it is highly questionable whether it also involves structural grammaticalization. In particular, the investigation throws an entirely new light on the emergence of the parenthetical use: it suggests a developmental path quite different from what is commonly assumed in the literature. But this path does not involve any processes of grammaticalization. As such, this study also suggests that the processes of grammaticalization and subjectification are less intimately intertwined than is often assumed in the literature.