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The Evolution of Auxiliary Verbs Yu(欲) in Old and Middle Chinese

  • JOURNAL OF CHINESE STUDIES
  • 2020, (69), pp.1-26
  • DOI : 10.26585/chlab.2020..69.001
  • Publisher : CHINESE STUDIES INSTITUTE
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature
  • Received : July 31, 2020
  • Accepted : August 28, 2020
  • Published : September 30, 2020

Yoon Soonil 1

1경상대학교 국제지역연구원

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This paper analyzed the use of the multi-functional word ‘yu(欲)’ used as verb, auxiliary verb, future tense marker, etc., and discussed the path of meaning development and its mechanism. First, the verb ‘yu(欲)’ in Pre-Chin Period was used in ‘NP1+V欲+NP2’, indicating the meaning of ‘desire’. The verb ‘yu(欲)’ has expanded its function to take the object of complex structures such as abstract nouns, verb phrases, and subject-predicate structures. Second, when VP of ‘NP+Vyu(欲)+VP’ is [+control], the structure of ‘NP+Vyu(欲)+VP’ is re-analyzed as ‘NP+Auxyu(欲)+VP’. At this time, the verb ‘yu(欲)’ in the meaning of ‘desire’ is changed to ‘volition’ type auxiliary verb. Third, the verb ‘yu(欲)’ in the meaning of ‘desire’ appears in the topic-comment sentence can infer the ‘necessity’ of VP. These ‘yu(欲)’ develop into auxiliary verbs that represent [necessity] during the period of The Six Dynasties. Fourth, if the VP of ‘NP+Auxyu(欲)+VP’ is [-control], the [+ intention] feature of ‘yu(欲)’ is suppressed, and the meaning of ‘yu(欲)’ is developed into ‘prediction’ type future tense with [-intention], [+prediction], and ‘schedule’ type future tense with [-intention], [-prediction].

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