Grammaticalisation from side to side

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The purpose of my paper is to describe the development and grammaticalization of the preposition and conjunct <i>beside(s)</i> in English. This linking word probably goes back to the uncommon Old English construction <i>be</i> + <i>sidan</i>. In Middle English, the grammaticalization of the preposition and conjunct takes place rapidly. This process involves the development of more abstract senses. Subjectification probably played a role in this development. Two Old and Early Middle English syntactic constructions, i.e., dat. + prep. phrase (<i>him on hype</i> &#8216;him on hip&#8217;, &#8216;by his side&#8217;) and <i>&#254;&#230;r</i> &#8216;there&#8217; + adverb/preposition, (<i>&#254;&#230;rin(ne)</i> &#8216;therein&#8217;; <i>&#254;&#230;rfore</i> therefore&#8217;), probably contributed to the development. The discussion is illustrated by evidence derived from available computerized corpora and historical dictionaries.


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