Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.773225
Title: Sentence types and word-order patterns in Old Babylonian Omen texts : an investigation of Akkadian using Arabic grammatical theory
Author: Said-Ghanem, Nadia Ait
ISNI:       0000 0004 7960 6426
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2019
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Abstract:
My thesis is an examination of the sentence structures of Old Babylonian omen protases and apodoses, and of their information-value. I have used Arabic grammatical theory and seven basic grammatical tools that remained theoretical constants throughout the development of the tradition to frame my approach: a system divided into three sentence types, a focus on the first constituent of a sentence, basic sentence structures, reduced or augmented or extended sentences derived from a basic structure, preposing and delaying tactics, strictly nominal and verbal environments, and a functionalist approach to constituents' values. I have chosen to use Arabic grammatical theory instead of the model provided by standard Assyriological grammars because two areas of research, thriving in Arabic studies and modern linguistics, have not yet been brought into Assyriology. The first is the study of sentences structures set within a tripartite model that focuses on the sentence-initial constituent to categorise constructions. The second is the study of the information-value of sentences and of their constituents within a model that anticipates two contrastive sentence types, one that communicates the known or least newsworthy information first, and another that communicates the new or more newsworthy information first. This approach has led me to reassess two current grammatical issues in Assyriology: the identification and function of the 'nominative' casus-pendens, and the frequency and function of the 'accusative' casus pendens. I have raised a third question by addressing the issue of terminology to propose that a class of words be coined frozen nouns. I have used the result of my structural and functional analyses to give a functionalist reading of Old Babylonian sentences. My aim is to show that Arabic grammatical theory can bring fresh perspective to the study of Old Babylonian grammar, and open new grounds to the study of Old Babylonian omen texts.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.773225  DOI:
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