Marks of Fuzzy Time Concept in Yuexi Dialect
Journal of Chaohu University
2022, 24 (2):
Yuexi county is located in the southeast of the Dabie Mountains, and it忆s under the jurisdiction of Anqing. The Huaiyue Gan Dialect is widely used in this county. In Yuexi Dialect, there is a category of words, such as xie （some）, gen（behind）, ban（half）, bianxia/bianshang（about）, and wangli（inward）. They can be placed behind temporal nouns, to change their semantic values and attach optional negative emotions, like xu（about）, qianhou（before or behind） and zuoyou（or so） in Mandarin Chinese, which are called marks of fuzzy time concept in this paper. Based on verified dialectal example sentences, grammatical and semantic features of such marks of fuzzy time concept in Yuexi Dialect were described, classified and then compared with similar vocabulary in Mandarin Chinese. From the perspective of origin, it can be seen that such marks of fuzzy time concept are all derived from functionalized verbs or abstraction from spatial fuzziness or from quantity approximation. Moreover, they are more or less grammaticalized. From a typological perspective, it may be universal in human language to denote fuzzy time with numerical approximations, spatial fuzziness and functionalized verbs, so the study can be furthered in the future.
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