The grammaticalization of <i>nomə</i> in the Eastern Abruzzese dialect Ortese
This paper draws attention to the distribution and referential functions <i>nomÉ™</i> in Ortonese, an Eastern Abruzzese dialect that, overall, remains relatively understudied. The analysis of original written and spoken data shows that in this dialect <i>nomÉ™</i> appears to have reached a more advanced stage of grammaticalization compared to other Eastern Abruzzese dialects (such as Ariellese), given that this element (which has been characterized as an indefinite pronoun), can carry definite referential value and can co-occur with an explicit subject. In Ortonese, then, <i>nomÉ™</i> appears to function as a third person plural verbal marker rather than as an (indefinite) pronominal element. With respect to the distribution and range of referential values of <i>nomÉ™</i>, Ortonese seems to differ considerably from the neighboring dialect Ariellese (D’Alessandro & Alexiadou 2006; D’Alessandro 2010) and, rather, it patterns with the Abruzzese dialects discussed in Manzini and Savoia (2005: 520ff.).