Volume 21, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1566-5852
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9854
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In Italian, the adjective (‘right’) has performed the discourse function of response marker since at least 1613 (DELI 2008: 671). In this paper, I argue that the adjective has recently undertaken a new process of discoursivization, defined as the diachronic process that ends in discourse (Ocampo 2006: 317). In particular, I maintain that may also serve the function of invariant tag (Andersen 2001), a linguistic item appended to a statement for the purpose of seeking mutual agreement, verification or corroboration of a claim (Millar and Brown 1979). Through diachronic lexicographic, quantitative and qualitative analyses carried out over a range of historical and contemporary dictionaries and language corpora of different varieties, the results will show that, although the use of as invariant tag is currently undocumented, records of such a use are in fact found since 1990. I explore whether there are positive correlations between the use of ? in English and the use of ? in real use Italian and AV dialogues.


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