The problem of word identification in Modern Greek dialects: Evidence from Lefkada documented data

Elizabeth Mela-Athanasopoulou


This study investigates the issue of word identification, focusing on the morphophonological description of cliticization phenomena, such as auxiliary verbs, weak object pronouns, genitive possessives, negative markers, etc., as observed in dialectal data bearing on the analysis. The research is entirely based on a huge corpus of fieldwork recordings of speakers from the Greek islands of the Ionian Sea, and in particular, from Lefkada. The primary data (Himmelmann 2006) collected, are spontaneous dialogues, or tales and songs, among native speakers of five distinct age groups. The paper is organized as follows: First, morpho-syntactic issues of clitics in English and Modern Greek are thoroughly discussed. Second, according to my findings, a phonological analysis of the dialectal data is attempted. Phenomena such as palatalization, syncope, elision, synaliphe, etc, regarding the dialect, are argued. Next, it is shown that the indications of affixal status clitics seem stronger in the dialects than in the standard language.


word form, cliticization, documented data, pronominal marking, case

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