Unidades monoverbais e pluriverbais : diacronia e tratamento informático no corpus metalinguístico do português quinhentista

Maria Helena Paiva


When focusing on the linguistic study of the periods when variation affects the word, it is essential to conceptualize this unit. Considering that the subject gains in being re-examined in the scope of a given language (in this case, Portuguese), in the fi rst part of the article I have analysed the criteria that are usually retained or that are considered relevant to defi ne ‘word’: the prosodic level is mentioned as not being discarded but also not being able to provide decisive criteria (1.1); the defi nitions of Bloomfi eld (1.2) and Meillet (1.3) are discussed; the effectiveness of the criteria of impossibility of insertion is evaluated (1.4), the future and the conditional are taken into account (1.4.1) and also the –mente adverbs (1.4.2). Then, the diachrony is questioned (1.5). It is considered that in the relationship between Portuguese and Latin regarding the vocable, three drifts can be observed: the permanence of the lexical vocable (1.5.1) which, at the phonological level, is impervious to context, which certifi es the mobility of the word (; the consolidation of the contextual allomorphy of o, article and pronoun, and of other dependent morphemes (1.5.2), and the lapse of the functional words, partly replaced by multi-word expressions in which grammaticalization frequently occurs and in which different kinds of gradations are noticed. In the second part, it is inquired into the projection of the contents previously defi ned on the texts of the grammarians and the orthographers of the 16th century: after the description of the corpus and the synthesis of the computer processing (2.1), the outline of the path from the graphic word to the word itself is drawn and the methodological principles which have been applied were exposed (2.2). Different kinds of delimitations are reviewed (2.2.1): breaks (; simple unions (; unions with elision and contraction (, followed by the description of the introduction and the use of the apostrophe ( and the hyphen (2.2.15). In the third part, the identities and the differences between the word and the multi-word expressions are defi ned; it includes a critical retrospection (3.1) about the adequacy of the different concepts of ‘word’ to the specifi cations of its graphic representation and the solutions that were tried by grammarians along this period and / or that were fi xed in the writing norm. The multi-word expressions (3.2) are addressed in a fi rst outline in which I study the trajectory of transformation of the multi-word expressions into words and different degrees of cohesion are established (3.2.1); in a second outline, the inverse trajectory, from the word to the multi-word expressions is described, by means of selection of the aspects more closely connected with the computer processing (3.2.2).

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ISSN: 1646-6195