Cappadocian word order from a historical and typological perspective

Start - End 
2023 - 2023 (ongoing)



Cappadocian is a mixed language which is diachronically descended from Greek but has borrowed heavily from Turkish with which it has been in contact for eight centuries. From a typological perspective, Turkish is an SOV language: the unmarked word order is Subject- Object-Verb and as a typological corrollary it has prenominal modifiers (adjectives, pronominal determiners and relative clauses) and verbal and nominal suffixes. Turkish word order is, however, relatively free and determined by information-structural considerations, particularly new versus background information. Greek word orded is determined by the same principles, but in the case of Cappadocian there is an apparent conflict between inherited Greek and borrowed Turkish structures. Much research has been carried out on Turkish pattern replication in Cappadocian but word order has not been studied in any depth.

Greek word order is notoriously difficult to understand and only recently has it been studied from a modern linguistic perspective. The study of a variety of Greek which is both archaic in its inherited and innovative in its borrowed grammatical features is both fascinating to the layman with a knowledge of Greek and/or Turkish and to the specialist interested in Greek, Turkish, historical and contact linguistics.