Nicole Dehé & Katerina Stathi 
Grammaticalization and prosody: the case of English sort/kind/type of constructions
Language 92(4), Dec 2016 

This paper studies the relationship between prosody and desemanticization in grammaticalization processes by means of a well described phenomenon, the grammaticalization of ‘type’ nouns (type, kind, sort) in present-day English. To this end, 1,155 tokens of the three nouns, retrieved from the ICE-GB corpus, were semantically classified and prosodically analysed. Our main result is that different synchronically co-existing prosodic patterns correspond to different degrees of grammaticalization. This result provides evidence that desemanticization and erosion proceed hand in hand. Their parallel development is attributed to the demands of iconicity rather than to frequency effects.


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