Anomalous use of definiteness and gender in some types of noun phrases in Bulgarian Cover Image

Anomalous use of definiteness and gender in some types of noun phrases in Bulgarian
Anomalous use of definiteness and gender in some types of noun phrases in Bulgarian

Author(s): Valentin Gešev
Subject(s): Theoretical Linguistics, Morphology, Syntax, Semantics, Pragmatics, Comparative Linguistics, South Slavic Languages
Published by: Filozofski fakultet, Sveučilište Josipa Jurja Strossmayera, Osijek
Keywords: definiteness; gender; Modern Bulgarian; hypocoristic names; pragmatic choice; grammar rules; Balkan linguistic features;

Summary/Abstract: The paper considers the anomalous use of definiteness and gender in Bulgarian noun phrases containing hypocoristic names, nicknames or sometimes even legal personal names. Proper names of people, being semantically definite, usually do not take the definite article in Bulgarian. But in the cases considered it is just the opposite – in informal conversation, in fiction or in ironic statements the use of a definite article is either obligatory or facultative depending on the formal and semantic features of the names. The factors to trigger the anomalous use described may be the female sex of the designee, the less typical ending of the noun, its being grammatically neuter or its inclusion in an attributive phrase. Thus the female legal personal names (e.g. Marija, Elena) may take a definite article on some special occasions (Marijata, Elenata) but male legal personal names (e.g. Boris) cannot. Male legal or hypocoristic names ending in -o (Stojko, Borko

  • Issue Year: 17/2016
  • Issue No: 1-2
  • Page Range: 65-87
  • Page Count: 23
  • Language: English