Auxiliary verbs and complex predicates

Gregory D S Anderson: Language and Linguistics Compass

This paper presents an overview of a typology of auxiliary verb constructions (AVCs) and other complex predicate types. A brief semantic, inflectional and diachronic or developmental typology of AVCs is proposed. This includes an overview and exemplification of the basic functional semantic contrasts expressed by AVCs, as well as how inflectional categories are distributed throughout the sub-types of constructions attested. How AVCs differ from other common sub-types of complex predicate such as serial verb constructions or light verb constructions is exemplified, and more minor or tradition-specific terms are also discussed in brief. The varied sources for the development of AVCs are cursorily introduced and how such constructions further develop into complex verb forms once grammaticalized is briefly discussed. Thus, the study discusses the full grammaticalization path that such structures follow, from lexical verb construction to AVC to verb plus affix forms. An extensive bibliography is also included.