Prototype theory as an instrument for diachronic lexical studies: The case of Spanish motion verbs

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Abstract

The present paper shows that Prototype Theory has a great potential for the diachronic semantic analysis of Spanish because it meets the needs of the study of language in use. The object of study we have chosen for this purpose is the verb salir. We fi rst analysed the meanings of the Latin verb SALIRE, and, subsequently, approximately 300 testimonies of salir from early Romance until the 13th century from the Corpus del Nuevo Diccionario Histórico. The analysis of the data brings to light a prototypical change which proves to be crucial for the further development of salir. The case study provides evidence for both the advantages and the limitations of Prototype Theory for the diachronic semantic investigation of polysemic words.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1194-1223
JournalRILCE
Volume33
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

Keywords

  • Cognitive semantics
  • History of the lexicon
  • Verbs of motion

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