[b-hebrew] We and us

Peter Kirk peter at qaya.org
Thu Nov 16 09:04:43 EST 2006


On 15/11/2006 23:03, David Kummerow wrote:
> Sure the grammaticalisation of "you" is irreversible. ... Your statement betrays an 
> ignorance of these things which further reading could help to alleviate 
> (again, I can supply you with the references if you don't personally 
> have access to such things).
>
>   
Your statement betrays a failure to read what I wrote. I wasn't 
referring to English "you", but to for example French "vous" and German 
"Sie". The time may come when these are no longer used as polite 
alternatives to "tu" and "du" respectively, but revert to being second 
and third person respectively plural pronouns. This process is already 
in progress. It is more advanced in Azerbaijani, where the plural used 
to be used for the singular as in French but is becoming quite rare. 
Would the loss of such usage, if it happened, be reversal of 
grammaticalisation and so falsify anyone's theory?

-- 
Peter Kirk
E-mail:  peter at qaya.org
Blog:    http://speakertruth.blogspot.com/
Website: http://www.qaya.org/




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