On Sinitic influence on Macanese
Focus on indirect causation
Macanese, the near-extinct Portuguese creole of Macao, is an understudied contact language with strong Malayo-Portuguese features. It is also characterised by Sinitic influence, which however has sometimes been downplayed in the literature (see Ansaldo and Matthews 2004). In this paper, I argue that a distinctive element of Macanese vis-à-vis other Asian Portuguese Creoles is the stronger role of Sinitic in its “typological matrix” (Ansaldo 2004, 2009). Sinitic influence on Macanese has already been invoked to account e.g. for reduplication (Ansaldo and Matthews 2004); however, little research on multi-verb constructions has been conducted so far. The main object of my study comprise constructions expressing indirect causation, and I focus on the chomá [call]-NP-VP pattern. I argue that, whereas in other Asian Portuguese Creoles the syntax of indirect causatives appears to be modelled mainly on Malay or on Indian substrate languages, for Macanese the model is clearly Sinitic.
Keywords: multi-verb constructions, Macanese, indirect causation, feature pool, typological matrix, contact-induced grammaticalisation, Asian Portuguese creoles
Published online: 12 January 2018
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