A closer look at the post-nominal genitive in Asian Creole Portuguese

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The chapter discusses the post-nominal genitive present in many varieties of Asian Creole Portuguese and derived from a Portuguese prenominal possessive. The text builds on Clements’ Malabar Pidgin Portuguese hypothesis, and Dalgado’s vision of an easterly spread of Indo-Portuguese features. The role of Dravidian substrate in genitive restructuring is stressed. Possessives in 6 varieties of Asian Creole Portuguese are compared and a grammaticalization path for the post-nominal genitive is proposed. The extension of post-nominal genitives to further inter-NP functions is discussed, focusing on the creoles of Korlai and Malacca. Some extended post-nominal genitive functions may represent early Indo-Portuguese Pidgin/Creole use. Quantitative analysis of post-nominal genitive in Malacca Creole reveals a preference for + hum possessors, and traits of a 3rd person prenominal possessive typical of 16th-century Portuguese. This suggests early consolidation of the structure.


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