Existential Constructions in Classical Arabic and the Reduction of Deicticity in Modern Standard Arabic:

Author: khalid SAID

Keywords: Existential Constructions, Existentials, Classical/Modern Standard Arabic, Syntax, Historical Linguistics


The present paper focuses on an empirically well-established fact about human languages: the ability to assert or deny the existence of something or someone. Existential constructions (also, Existentials) assume this function. Languages lexicalize the existential propositions differently. Some languages use existential preforms, prepositions, negative particles, or word order. Aspects of the meaning of existentials in Classical Arabic (CA, henceforth) and Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) henceforth) can only be found if we straddle the historical, syntactic and the pragmatics borders.