Reina, Javier Caro ORCID: 0000-0001-6990-337X and Nowak, Jessica (2019). Diachronic development of gender in city names in Spanish. STUF-Language Typology and Universals, 72 (4). pp. 505-538. Berlin: De Gruyter. ISSN 2196-7148

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This paper examines the gender assignment rules that apply to citynames in the history of Spanish, relying for the first time on extensive corpus-based material. The empirical data show that gender assignment changed from areferential principle that consistently assigned city names to the feminine (due to the feminine basic level noun for ‘city’) to a phonologically driven assignment rule, with city names ending in -a generally being assigned to the feminine(e.g.Barcelona)and those ending in -oor-C to the masculine (e.g. Toledo, Madrid). However, the overall picture is much more complicated than previously suggested in the literature since there is still a high degree of gender variation in Modern Spanish. The use of the feminine is still possible in city names ending in -o or- C. Interestingly, the change from referential to phonological gender assignment occurs first within the NP (mainly with quantifiers such as tod- o/-a ‘all -M/-F’). It is in this morphosyntactic context that city names with final -amost commonly shift from the feminine to the masculine gender. This case of “evasive gender” will be discussed from a typological perspective.

Item Type: Journal Article
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Reina, Javier
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-468910
DOI: 10.1515/stuf-2019-0020
Journal or Publication Title: STUF-Language Typology and Universals
Volume: 72
Number: 4
Page Range: pp. 505-538
Date: 2019
Publisher: De Gruyter
Place of Publication: Berlin
ISSN: 2196-7148
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 5: Moderne Sprachen und Kulturen > Romanisches Seminar
Subjects: Language, Linguistics
Refereed: Yes


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