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Journal Article

Inheritance, contact and change in the New Guinea Highlands evidentiality area


San Roque,  Lila
Language and Cognition Department, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

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San Roque, L., & Loughnane, R. (2012). Inheritance, contact and change in the New Guinea Highlands evidentiality area. Language and Linguistics in Melanesia: Special Issue 2012 Part II, 397-427. Retrieved from http://www.langlxmelanesia.com/specialissues.htm.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000E-CA07-8
The Highlands of Papuan New Guinea is the location of an evidential Sprachbund that includes at least fourteen languages from six language families with grammaticized evidentiality. As with other linguistic features in New Guinea, evidentiality has spread across genealogical boundaries through repeated language contact. In this paper, we examine likely paths of development of the various subsystems and the spread of evidentiality as a whole. The evidence presented here points toward the Engan language family as the most likely source for at least some of the evidential markers and distinctions found in the region, supporting previous suggestions by other researchers.