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Early Chinese Morphology And HY

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Chapter Summary

The reconstructions of early morphology essentially depend on reconstructions of Middle Chinese and Old Chinese phonology as we have no other means of approaching the segmental shape of Chinese words written by characters of a basically syllabographic nature. The sound system of what is supposed to be Middle Chinese is well explored and reconstructed in a more or less satisfactory way, although many controversial points are still present, some of which are of fundamental importance. The type of morphology potentially relevant for HY is represented by mediaeval pòdú. Opinions on the authenticity and nature of the pòdú have always differed widely and have been a source of a long and far-reaching controversy. The situation in the 20th century in this field of Chinese linguistics is chaotic; the whole range of variation between the two extremes was preserved, while new arguments, methods and a large amount of new material were introduced.

Keywords: Chinese linguistics; Chinese morphology; HY; pòdú

10.1163/ej.9789004206311.i-256.14
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