History and grammaticalisation of "doch"/"toch"

  • The paper investigates the origins of the German/Dutch particle toch/doch) in the hope of shedding light on a puzzle with respect to doch/toch and to shed some light on two theoretical issues. The puzzle is the nearly opposite meaning of the stressed and unstressed versions of the particle which cannot be accounted for in standard theories of the meaning of stress. One theoretical issue concerns the meaning of stress: whether it is possible to reduce the semantic contribution of a stressed item to the meaning of the item and the meaning of stress. The second issue is whether the complex use of a particle like doch/toch can be seen as an instance of spread or whether it has to be seen as having a core meaning which is differentiated by pragmatics operating in different contexts. We use the etymology of doch and doch as to+u+h (that+ question marker+ emphatic marker) to argue for an origin as a question tag checking a hearer opinion. Stress on the tag indicates an opposite opinion (of the common ground or the speaker) and this sets apart two groups of uses spreading in different directions. This solves the puzzle, indicates that the assumption of spread is useful and offers a subtle correction of the interpretation of stress. While stress always means contrast with a contrasting item, if the particle use is due to spread, it is not guaranteed that the unstressed particle has a corresponding use (or inversely).

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Author:Henk Zeevat, Elena Karagjosova
Parent Title (English):Papers on pragmasemantics / Anton Benz & Reinhard Blutner (ed.)
Publisher:Zentrum für Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft
Place of publication:Berlin
Document Type:Part of a Book
Year of Completion:2009
Year of first Publication:2009
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2013/11/14
GND Keyword:Kontrastive Pragmatik; Präsupposition; Sprechaktklassifikation; Illokutiver Akt; Sprachwandel; Grammatikalisation; Etymologie; Lexikologie; Modalpartikel; Deutsch; Niederländisch
Page Number:18
First Page:135
Last Page:152
Dewey Decimal Classification:4 Sprache / 41 Linguistik / 410 Linguistik
Linguistik-Klassifikation:Linguistik-Klassifikation: Sprachgeschichte / History of language
Linguistik-Klassifikation: Pragmalinguistik/Kommunikationsforschung / Pragmalinguistics/Communication research
Linguistik-Klassifikation: Lexikologie/Etymologie / Lexicology/Etymology
Zeitschriften / Jahresberichte:ZAS papers in linguistics : ZASPiL / ZASPiL 51 = Papers on pragmasemantics
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht