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Approaching Language Variation through Corpora

A Festschrift in Honour of Toshio Saito


Edited By Shunji Yamazaki and Robert Sigley

This book is a collection of papers using samples of real language data (corpora) to explore variation in the use of English. This collection celebrates the achievements of Toshio Saito, a pioneer in corpus linguistics within Japan and founder of the Japan Association for English Corpus Studies (JAECS).
The main aims throughout the collection are to present practical solutions for methodological and interpretational problems common in such research, and to make the research methods and issues as accessible as possible, to educate and inspire future researchers. Together, the papers represent many different dimensions of variation, including: differences in (frequency of) use under different linguistic conditions; differences between styles or registers of use; change over time; differences between regional varieties; differences between social groups; and differences in use by one individual on different occasions. The papers are grouped into four sections: studies considering methodological problems in the use of real language samples; studies describing features of language usage in different linguistic environments in modern English; studies following change over time; and case studies illustrating variation in usage for different purposes, or by different groups or individuals, in society.


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MATTI RISSANEN On the Occurrence and Variation of the Adverbia lSubordination Markers Þe and Þæt in Old English texts - 221


MATTI RISSANEN On the Occurrence and Variation of the Adverbial Subordination Markers Þe and Þæt in Old English Texts 1. Introduction1 The rise and development of adverbial subordinators is related to one of the basic questions in English historical syntax or morpho-syntax: how to connect the elements of the sentence. These questions relate to even more general aspects of text and discourse: how to indicate relations between ideas, propositions and utterances in a logical and coherent way. The topic of this paper represents a very minor part in the de- velopment of adverbial subordinate linking, i.e. the use of overt mark- ers of adverbial subordination, þæt and þe, in the Old English period. It is obvious, however, that the appearance and increasing frequency of these two grammatical words, especially þe, play an important role in the history of the earliest stages of the development of subordination in English. Furthermore, the early use and later loss of these markers are of interest in tracing the steps of the grammaticalisation of English adverbial subordinators. As the term suggests, adverbial subordinators mark the relation between the main clause and an adverbial subordinate clause. This relation can be local, temporal, causal, conditional, concessive, final, consecutive or comparative (for Old English, see e.g. Mitchell 1985; Kortmann 1997, 1998). This survey focuses mainly on the variation in the use of þæt and þe with adverbial subordinators, although attention will also be given to the variation of these two particles with zero 1 The research reported here...

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