Cross-linguistic patterns in the lexicalisation of bring and take

Anna Margetts, Katharina Haude, Nikolaus Himmelmann, Dagmar Jung, Sonja Riesberg, Stefan Schnell, Frank Seifart, Harriet Sheppard, Claudia Wegener

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigates the linguistic expression of bring and take events and more generally of the semantic domain of directed caused accompanied motion ('directed CAM') across a sample of eight languages of the Pacific and the Americas. Unlike English, the majority of languages in our sample do not lexicalise directed CAM events by simple verbs, but rather encode the defining meaning components - caused motion, accompaniment, and directedness - in morphosyntactically complex constructions. The study shows a high degree of crosslinguistic diversity, even among closely related languages. Meaning components are contributed to directed CAM expressions by a mix of lexical semantics, morphosyntax, and pragmatic means. The study proposes a text-based, semantic typology of directed CAM events by drawing on corpus data from endangered languages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)934-993
Number of pages60
JournalStudies in Language
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2022


  • accompanied motion
  • caused motion
  • event representation
  • semantic typology
  • text-based typology

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