At 7:18 pm +0200 12/6/00, Lars Henrik Mathiesen wrote:
>> Date:         Mon, 12 Jun 2000 06:38:25 +0100
>> From: Raymond Brown <[log in to unmask]>
>> By the classical period we find them used as:
>> - prepositions (with pitch accent on second syllable of bisyllabic
>> prepositions);
>> - or postpositions (with pitch accent on first syllable if bissyllabic);
>> - prefixes to verbs.
>On first reading I thought you meant that the verb-prefix function was
>an innovation as well.

I meant it hadn't settled into that function in Homeric Greek, but had by
the Classical period.  But it wasn't an innovation, in the strict sense,
since the _tendency_ was there in Homer, but it wasn't fixed and these
adverbial particles could keep their distance from the verb.

>But as far as I know, that function is ancient
>in IE, shared by at least Indo-Aryan, Germanic, Celtic, and Italic.

Yep - but the details are not the same in all languages; cf. German:   Er
nimmt es weg ~ Ich weiß, daß er es wegnimmt.

It seems to me that at the time of IE dispersion there was a tendency to
prefix these particles to verbs, but that the different groups developed
this tendency in their own (similar) ways.


A mind which thinks at its own expense
will always interfere with language.
                   [J.G. Hamann 1760]