Chapter 7: An Analysis of the Preverb for-
| 151 →
An Analysis of the Preverb for-
This chapter presents an analysis of the verbal prefix for-. Hardly any previous research has been carried out on this preverb, except for a rather obsolete monograph on Germanic for/ver by Leopold (1907) and a very short article by Fraser (1975). For- is usually mentioned as one of the seven inseparable prefixes by De la Cruz (1975), Hiltunen (1983) and Brinton (1988), having received considerably less elaboration than the other prefixes such as ge-.
Its meanings and etymology are examined first, followed by a discussion of corpus examples which mostly show the prefix for- grammaticalized as a perfectivizer. There are also many cases of lexicalization in which the lexical meaning of the root is modified once the prefix for- is attached.
Table 31 shows the most frequent types of a-prefixed verbs.
Table 31 The most frequent for- types in Old English
The only verbs that survived into Modern English with this prefix are the verbs forgyfan and forbeodan. The verb forleosan survived in the past participle form forlorn, now used as an adjective. Verbs like forweorðan, forgyldan and forniman have died out together with the prefix, whereas the simplex version of forlætan, forseon, forberan and forbærnan have been preserved as Modern English let, see, bear and burn. ← 151 | 152 →
7.2 The meanings and etymology of for-
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.