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Bortone notes
Chapter 1- background to Greek prepositions
Pg. 4
Linguists highlight the fact that the functions of cases are logically independent of whether their surface
realization is by means of independent lexical items (pre-/ post-positions), of word order or of endings.
Adposition= pre-position or post-position.
Pg. 5, he mentions that post positions were used only in the early stages of the language.
Pg. 6
Adpositions mark the function of a noun. Therefore, the category they are closest to is case forms. Linguists of
recent decades have recognized that adpositions and cases are similar in function. Interesting fact from Estonian,
pg. 7.
Katus-e pea-le= onto the head of the roof (pea=head)
Katuse-le = to the roof (Greek does this with the verb)
Pg. 9: distinguishing prepositions from cases in Russian, Latin or German is easy, indicating the following as key
distinguishing features:
Case affixes follow the head noun of an NP while prepositions precede it
Prepositions, unlike cases, occur only once at the beginning of an NP and may not be repeated
Cases express subject- object relations, while prepositions do not
There are extra comments regarding affixes vs. prepositions, from what he says (pp10).
1. The ones that have case markers that appear only once but actually cover all nouns of the NP, such as
Turkish, or sometimes English (Mary and Johns house)
2. There are languages which repeat case markers on each noun for some cases but not for others.
3. There are languages which repeat prepositions
4. There are languages where the preposition operates as a marker for an object (Hebrew)/ Syriac
Pg. 15 he sets the question: is there not a general tendency for cases to indicate syntactic meanings and for
prepositions to express concrete ones? Yes. Concrete and grammatical relations may be expressed by:
1. Word order
2. Bound morphs
3. Adpositions
However, concrete meanings are more likely to be expressed by inflections than by word order, and most likely by
Pg. 15. Cases represent the relation of action, whereas Ps talk about the relations of space. Inflectional
morphemes express relations that constitute a small set, whereas large ranges are realized by free morphemes.

Pg. 18. He mentions that there is a chance that a preposition combines with a particular case just owing to
structural leveling. Some trait prevalent in the overall case-marking system may cause adpositions to take a case
that can appear semantically unjustified. In the history of Greek, there has been a shift from semantically-
motivated case government to syntactically- motivated case government, resulting in all prepositions governing
the accusative in MG.
He proceeds to present the three basic options of a language:
i. It may use plain case endings or suffixes with spatial meanings, as in Turkish
ii. It may combine adpositions with various cases, a particular meaning being expressed by a particular
combination, as in Latin
iii. It may combine all its adpositions with one case, whose selection is syntactic rather than semantic, as
in Hindi
Greek has all three systems in its history. Pg. 19. Greek also does prepositional compounding, e.g. mazi me.
When adverbs are added to prepositions, the aim is semantic strengthening or disambiguation. In Dutch they
compound prepositions with adverbs, and call them reinforced form.
Pg. 20 he creates a schema to present semantic equivalents to adposition + case:
a. [preposition] or [postposition]
b. [(noun) + case]
c. [preposition] + [(noun) + case] or [(noun) + case] + [postposition]
Pg. 21. As per Matthews (1974), the analysis of a preposition and case as a single discontinuous element is
rejected because it rejects word-boundaries. However, a conceptual unit is not necessarily like that on the
In Classical Greek there are instances of combinatory case marking, equivalent to case marking by means of
inflection alone in other declensions. ?????
Pg. 23, regarding Greek syntagms, [preposition+ case], the two elements are relatively independent, and other
constituents can be freely inserted.
Pg. 24. Ancient Greek, Latin or German combinations of preposition + case may also convey different
specifications, such as location and direction. (para+ genitive= from near/ para +dative = at near/ para +
accusative= to near)
Prepositions in Ancient Greek were added to an inflected noun in order to add to the meaning of the case form.
This gave rise to combinations in which the original individual senses of the preposition and the case were still
clear. Gradually the syntagm developed unpredictable combinatory meanings which the initial components did
not have, so at that point we can only accept a synsemantic (and monomorphemic) description. That means that
the meaning of the preposition can only be determined by taking it together with the case.
Pg. 25 he mentions Kurylovitz, who says that when the meaning of two P+C combinations is completely different
despite the same P, we have two different prepositions. It doesnt mean that because some prepositions take
different cases, that the case form is semantically autonomous.

Also there are languages where only the case can incorporate locative and directional morphemes, the same way
that ps and cases can.
Pg. 26 he discusses compound prepositions. Brondal and also others before him do not believe that combinations
of two prepositions are indeed prepositions. Sigurd says that there are multi word prepositions, and uses in spite
of as a counter example, because it is similar to despite and just as invariable.
How do we decide? One criterion is semantics. E.g. as to, where the meaning cannot derive from as and to. When
a syntagm develops a new combinatory meaning, we can talk about a single, synsemantic unit. Similar
considerations will be made for Modern Greek. E.g. kato apo which literally means to under (hothike kato apo to
Pg. 27 he discusses forms of PPs. In MG there is a kind of unity between prepositions and adverbs, based on their
morphological identity and syntactic similarity. Pg. 29, the combination of a primarily intransitive and an
obligatorily transitive preposition (pano se) is a compound preposition, another possible expansion of a PP. the
superficially linear sequences of prepositions are not always independent ps in succession. So, we dont rule them
out in Greek, since they do the job of simplex Classical language Ps. Also (pg. 30) Greek adverbs do not do the job
of English ones, which also act as prepositions, so they need to be compounded in order for them to be transitive.
Jackendoff enables us to distinguish compound Ps from accidental sequences of Ps. (I gata ine mesa sti dulapa
[inside]/ [indoors, in a]). Interjections operate as diagnostics here.
Chapter 2- On the meaning of prepositions
Pg. 34. Cases appear to be unpredictable, so they were assumed to be per se semantically empty. He gives an
example of Latvian Ps which take genitive with singular nouns and dative with plural. The counterexample is
Russian, where the case changes the interpretation from directional to locative (pg. 35). The same happens with
Ancient Greek.
Pg. 35. In the same way as cases, also prepositions seem to have minimal semantic load. Some Ps in English are
even optional, for this particular reason. This is also the case with some compound prepositions. E.g. Italian,
dentro da, dentro di, dentro a & dentro. This is proven over pgs. 36- 37 with examples from different languages,
the main one being the tak + PP example, which is a totally different and unrelated preposition in each of the
languages attested. Pg. 37, he mentions Brondal, the main propounder of the purely formal and abstract
definition of ps as lexemes indicating relationships. He claimed that a P (pg. 38) is sufficiently defined as the
expression of relation in general. He claims that in every lexical item, one or two of four fundamental semantic
qualities appear: Relatum, Descriptum, relator, descriptor. Based on these distinctions, he claims that
prepositions are r, pure relators. His theory is not very clear, so it has been attacked. Saying that prepositions only
express a generic relation between items transfers the semantic load to the context. Horrocks says that perhaps
the choice of p is intrinsic to an individual nominal, and should be listed in the lexicon as it is not predictable from
context. Crisari says that prepositions are like a + sign, they solely link two lexical items. Again this highlights the
importance of the context.
Pg. 40, he uses the example in Greek (ALTHOUGH I DISAGREE WITH THAT) to prove how the choice of
preposition gets unpredictable when the meaning that needs to be expressed is more abstract. This happens also
in Classical Greek, where Ps of opposite concrete spatial sense having the same meaning in non-local expressions

and governing the same case can express the same notion of distribution according to a standard of measure. But
they wouldnt have identical meaning in spatial expressions.
Pg. 42, some linguists argue that p meaning is a combination of an inherent meaning with a specification supplied
by the context, and others seem to think that the different meanings of a preposition share a connection.
Pg. 43 he says that Jackendoff supports that the different meanings of a preposition are arrived at by reapplying
the semantic structure of its basic meaning on the basis of the context.
There have been a lot of scholars who suggest that the primary meaning of prepositions is spatial (Scaliger 1540,
Becker 1841, Leibniz 1765 to name a few).
Pg. 51, Hjelmslev (1935) discusses localism and analyzes all cases in terms of variables. The most important ones
are the ones that follow:
i. Directionality, or lack of it
ii. Coherence, the degree d intimate distinguishing, for example, the Finnish exterior and interior cases
iii. Objectivity or subjectivity, whether the choice of a given case does or doesnt vary according to the
viewpoint of the speaker
He made a daring suggestion by which he claimed that even nominative and accusative, which bear a
semantic and not local load, can be analyzed in essentially the same terms.
pg. 52, Anderson (1977) suggests there are only four case relations, resulting from the combination of two binary
Absolute Locative Ergative Ablative
- Place - Place
- - Source source

He mentions that he will focus on the diachronic validity of the suggestion that local meanings are the starting
point of non-local ones. But the synchronic validity is also supported by many sources.
Pg. 61, an interesting note that most other case endings can also be used on verbs in Finnish!
Pg. 67, he mentions that Italian and MG have this construction of perfect formant exw parkarismeno to amaksi
ekei, exw to amaksi parkarismeno ekei, and to amaksi to xw parkarismeno ekei. The perfect formant in all these
examples needs to agree in gender with the noun, which proves that it is an apposition of the object of the verb.
This is important to his investigation because some languages in which possession is expressed with a locative
prepositional construction (rather than with a to have verb) use the same possessive-locative construction even in
sentences that correspond to the use of the English to have, not as a possessive verb, but a mere auxiliary for
the perfect. The perfect tense entails a locative predication. That means that a local notion is the origin of an
expression of tense.

Pg. 70, in Swahili existential and possessive constructions are locative. In Chadic languages, the evolution of
prepositions into copula has been proven, and some semantic analyses of English also accept that the use of the
verb to be indicates a quality or status which should be classified as locative. Also Finnish has a distinct essive case
for that which has local origin, and still has locative uses.
Pg. 78 he says that in the expression of a concrete spatial relation, the choice of adposition (or case, or a
combination of both) is linked to certain characteristics of the referent object, such as relative position, direction,
and dimensions. Other influential physical aspects may be
a. Orientation, horizontal or vertical
b. Contact, as in the contrast between English on and above
c. Singularity, duality, plurability, which distinguish between and among
d. Part/ whole, opposing corresponding cases
e. Animacy, which decides on genitive next to adverbs in Greek
f. Definiteness, in the use of Spanish and Turkish accusative
We also need to bear sth else in mind regarding adpositional meaning. Apart from the location and physical
characteristics, it is also the pragmatics and more subjective factors that may decide which preposition is
Pg. 80 he uses examples of the English language to prove that the use of prepositions can be both arbitrary and
sometimes also conceptual depending on the human body and its subjective perception.
Pg. 86 he says VERY IMPORTANT cases develop from adpositions. He uses an example from Estonian, where the
comitative ending can be used with two nouns, either as an ending in both, or as an ending in the second one,
governing both.
Pg. 89 he discusses the origin of adpositions. He mentions Svorou (1994), who says that there are two routes
leading from verbs to local adpositions: co-verbs and participles. She uses Thai as an example of co-verbs (caak =
to leave, but after verb of motion it means from). Participles are common in Indo-European languages.
Pg. 91, in Greek, verbs are not a very fruitful source of prepositions. Participles were inflected in Classical Greek,
so it was difficult to use them as prepositions. When inflected languages use verbs as adpositions, they tend to
stop adding onto them the markers that are customary for verbal forms.
Pg. 110, he discusses the case system of Classical Greek
The five possible cases are:
Nominative (pg. 111) the case of subject and its predicates. It has essive and translative sense. He claims that
even the role of nominative could have been spatial in origin.
Accusative (pg. 112) the most common case. The other meanings of accusative, apart from marking direct objects
and elements coreferential to it, were the following:
1. Spatial extension:
2. Temporal extension:
3. Limitation:

4. Quantity or mode: , ()
Genitive (pg. 111) historically, it continues two different Indo-European cases. Genitive and ablative. In the so-
called proper genitive (Luraghi 1996, Chantraine 1948) the sense is partitive, singling out a portion of the referent,
as opposed to the spatial extension and total affectedness indicated by the accusative. (
). Also ablative use is discernible (
). Other meanings include:
1. Possession:
2. Reference:
3. Material:
4. Individuation:
5. Quality:
6. Comparison:
Dative (pg. 113). He claims it continued many IE cases, having arisen from the old dative, locative and
instrumental. Its main function was that of marking indirect objects. It also expressed:
1. Motion towards:
2. Location at:
3. Location in time:
4. Means:
5. Interest:
6. Possession:
7. Association:
8. Agency:
9. Cause:
He argues that vocative does not qualify for case, and nominative is also questionable when compared to
accusative, genitive and dative.
Pg. 111, each case form had a multiplicity of semantic functions, due either to internal semantic developments or
to formal mergers of once separate case forms.
Pg. 113, footnote 11, the ancient Greek endings of the dative plural of the second declension ois and oisi- are
those of the old instrumental and locative respectively. The Indo-European dative is an offshoot of the locative
forms. Locative and allative senses came to coincide again in post- Classical Greek, with also being used
instead of .
Footnote 15, Stefanski (1983) argued that there is a link between accusative and dative. Their contrastive use
with ps seems to suggest that the dative emphasizes more the contact with the goal, while the accusative
highlights the movement itself more. There is an allative sense in both, though.

Pg. 114, he goes on to study the remnants of oblique cases of Attic, i.e. Locative. , . Normally, a less
archaic was used, with a P ( , ). By the classical age, the locative endings, although
morphologically different, were perceived as Dative.
He continues with a few endings with case-like meanings which were occasionally used.
a. . Semantically ablative

b. semantically allative (used only in accusative stems)
c. semantically locative ()
d. semantically lative ( = to many places)
He goes on to the hard-core stuff:
Pg. 116. The Classical Greek prepositional inventory is traditionally divided into two groups. The first comprises
the Ps that also occur as prefixes, e.g. :
preposition on both sides of the river
verb prefix throw around
noun prefix attack on both sides
adjective prefix thrown around
adverb prefix in an equivocal manner

The ps of this type are termed proper. He makes a table of proper ps, pg. 117.
Ps with ONLY accusative
+ accusative into a place, towards a time, up to a number, for a purpose
+ accusative
Up (along), all over, in groups of

Ps with ONLY genitive
+ genitive instead of
+ genitive away from, from a time, due to
+ genitive out of, after, on thehand side, because of
+ genitive in front of, before a time, in defense of

Ps with ONLY dative
+ dative in a place, at/in a time, amongst
+ dative with, with the help of

Ps with alternation between accusative and genitive
On both sides, around, about the time of
+ genitive On both sides, around, concerning, for the sake of
+ accusative all over, on account of
+ genitive crossing, through, each time, after
+ accusative downwards, sparsely in, in pursuit of, according to, in
+ genitive down from, down on(to), in(to), against, concerning
+ accusative going above/ over/ beyond, (mtph) all over

Luraghi says ana combines with all three cases, Bortone says ana only combines with Accusative
Luraghi says amfi combines with all three cases, Bortone only gives two possible combinations

+ genitive above, in favour/ defense of, replacing

+ accusative After a time
+ genitive Together with, in accordance with, in a manner

Ps with all three cases combination
+ accusative Going onto/over, against, for time, in quest of, depending on
+ genitive Down from, down on(to)/ in(to), against, concerning
+ dative Staying onto (part of)/upon, in charge of, at the time of
+ accusative To the side/ to the presence of, beyond
+ genitive From the side/ from the presence of, by an agent
+ dative At the side/ next to/ chez
+ accusative All round/ all over, pertaining, approximately
+ genitive About a topic, being worth, concerning
+ dative Placed around, for the sake of
+ accusative Going facing/ towards, towards a time, with a view to
+genitive Placed facing/ towards, from the direction of, swear by
+dative Being facing/ near, in addition to
+ accusative To under, near the time of
+ genitive Under, by (cause or agent)
+ dative (at) under, through the power of

There is a second group of prepositions (pg. 118), which could not be used as prefixes, and are classified
separately, as untrue, improper, or misused. The improper ones are usually followed by one case only, and
tend to be polysyllabic, or polymorphemic.
Improper ps with dative
+ dative = with
Improper ps with genitive
close to
in front of
opposite; against
because of
/ / within
() above
as far as

Luraghi says it combines with all three cases, Bortone says only two

far from
/ / / as far as; until
-/- behind
() beyond, across
far inside
for the sake of
/ away from, without

There is only one preposition which combines with all three cases, with no difference in meaning, and that is
= all around.
Pg. 120, he says that proper Ps in Greek are thought to be the same category as prefixes. The main argument has
a morphological base, as in most instances a preposition has an identical looking counterpart amongst the
Arguments against this view:
1. There are some prefixes which do not operate as Ps (-, -).
2. The semantics of the same form used as a prefix may differ. E.g., :
Gulp down
Bore through
Shrink back
Beget anew
Have a fever recurrently
Begin to play
Paint completely
Examine closely
Teach otherwise

In Ancient Greek (pg. 121), there are also syntactic differences between Ps and prefixes. Prefixes cannot case-
mark their attached nouns. vs. .
Pg. 124, Case usage in Homer:
1. Accusative:
a. The accusative is used to mark spatial direction. It is visible in both transitive and intransitive verbs (
, , ). It is also used to express temporal
extension, which is not of interest to us, and more generally- it indicates the extent to which a predicate

applies. When Homer (pg. 125) replaces this kind of accusative with P constructions, he resorts to allative
ps (, ). ( ).
2. Genitive: in Homer it has partitive spatial sense, indicating location within a limited space (pg. 125). (
, he wasnt within Argos, ). When combined with
a motion verb, it can denote movement within a limited space. ( ). Genitive also
had ablative use in Homer (pg. 126) ( , (he chased from his house),
). The ablative use was not only limited to DPs, but also occurred with Ps,
(he came down from the tops of Olympus). However, ablative genitives become a rarity in
Classical age writers (pg. 127).
3. Dative: pg. 128. It can denote spatial position (including comitation or direction) on its own. Again, in
classical Greek these uses are rarer. , (put into the bonnet).
Pg. 128, he mentions the adverbial cases. The most common ones are the locative (-) and the ablative (-).
Sometimes we find a third form, namely , with lative sense. '= to elsewhere.
The endings were also added to non-nominal forms. (pg. 129). He doubts whether they should be classified as
case inflections, and proposes adverbial derivation instead (BUT BASED ON THE LITTLE V TALK THAT I HEARD,
Nonetheless, he suggests that they had the status of case forms at some stage. (at troy in front of).
There was also an allative morpheme , which is debatable between an ending or a postposition. It only
appears with accusative endings, which supports the idea of it being a postposition. , . It also
appears often on agreeing possessives, , to his house with the two des, which supports its suffix
Pg. 130, he mentions the ending, which was not used in Classical Greek. He claims that it is indeed a case
form, the relic of the instrumental plural IE *-bhis. It is used in Mycenaean as instrumental or locative plural of the
a and the athematic declension. What is well attested is the instrumental and the comitative:
a. Instrumental: = by dint of force
b. Comitative: = with chariots
It also appears instead of several other cases, and is found conjoined with them. It is used in all numbers, in
athematic and thematic nouns, also on adjectives, participles and adverbs. It also appears governed by most
available Ps. It appears with Ps which required different cases, but he stipulates that it is so due to metric
requirements. Or, it could have become a semantically void government marker that linked a P with its object.
(pg. 131).
Pg. 131. The inventory of prepositions in Homer is the same as in classical Greek. There are only some
phonological doublets which are not of our interest. However, there are differences in the cases which are
associated with adpositions, as Homer makes use of a wider range of cases.
, , can take all three cases in Homer, whereas in Attic they only take genitive or accusative. Also,
Homer uses cases where the Attic would require a PP. in Homer you can find compounding of Ps (
, ). Intransitive use of compound ps was also possible. There are also three ps , ,
which appear either as Ps, or with a P, in all cases the P being ( , ,
, ).

Pg. 133, syntax of Greek adpositions
In Homeric Greek there is not much distinction between categories. There are words that function, as Lehmann
says (1983) local relators. Since the relator and the N could modify each other, there was no fixed order
between the two of them. Hewson and Bubenic (2006>>>MUST SEE) argued that the lack of inflection or
agreement marker on the mobile preverb-cum-adverbial particle is what caused the development of
adpositional phrases in post-Homeric Greek, and that is what changed the typology of Greek altogether. He goes
on to describe the steps of P evolution.
a. (GEN=ablative, even with the particle did not have semantic value, the case did all the
b. (the particle after the noun, anastrophe)
d. (the particle precedes the V but it is obvious that it is a particle, from morphs that come
in between )
In Homer (pg. 134) we see the classical Ps in their autonomous use ( = inside, = around
earth but xthon is nom, so not governed). In Homer it is sometimes hard to distinguish them between
intransitive, free-standing adverbial forms and adpositions, or verbal prefixes. In many verses, the roles are
semantically equally conceivable. ( ). Pg. 135, According to Horrocks(1981) in Homer
there are adverbs that
i. can be loosely linked to a noun, and
ii. adverbs loosely placed before a verb but still linked to a noun.
iii. Horrocks (1981:45) says that there are also intimately fused particle + verb sequences (one sem.
Unit+ restricted choice of prefix),
iv. Fully- fledged phrasal verbs with particles not modifying case-inflected N
v. Compound verbs but with inseparable prefix
Interestingly enough, when the prefix becomes fused with the verb, the identical P is added before the noun. (
> ). Pg. 136, this fluidity is similar in German and Dutch. He discusses the
separable vs. inseparable feature of prefixal verbs, and says that the only reason why the inseparable are
characterized as prefixal is because the prefix itself also exists. There are also prefixed verbs which behave both as
separable and inseparable. When the verb is separable, the preverb is characterized as a self-standing particle.
Pg. 139. Prepositions in Greek were well established simce Mycenean times, and postpositions were therefore
obsolete and stylistically marked. Pgs 140-142 he presents Hittite, older than Greek, as evidence of the nominal
features of what later moved on to become Ps. Pg. 143 very interesting: , NOUN[CASE]+ NOUN
Pg. 143. Main synchronic characteristics of the Ancient Greek system
Choice of case depending on the semantics of case. Maximos Planudes work, there is correspondence between
spatial notions and Greek oblique cases:
ACC= goal motion (allative)
GEN= source motion (ablative)

DAT= state/ rest (locative)
He continues with the reasoning that when we have and , they only govern one case, GEN, as they have
ablative or partitive use.
The DAT was also locative (pg. 144), and used with the locative P , and in its comitative sense it was used with
, , and .
The ACC is used with the allative Ps and .
He uses the complex example of Ps that govern multiple cases to prove that case bears its own semantics. EG,
. +GEN= ablative ( ) +DAT= locative ( ), +ACC=
63. ANOTHER SOS FOOTNOTE PG 144: not much credence can be given to the claim made that the occurrence of
and with the genitive is real government. Phrases like or are cases of
ellipsis of another noun (and retention of its adnominal genitive) and not a government of a (partitive) genitive.
There are parallel constructions in Modern Greek and in English although in the Greek of today all prepositions
can only govern the accusative .
Pg. 145, he claims that the original version of the PP was just an NP with the P operating as a specifier. It was
(Hewson and Bubenik, 2006:12) the N that governed the P and not the other way round.
He argues that Ps were used in conjunction with Ns either to reinforce or disambiguate the case function, or to
add to meaning, e.g. dimensionality. E.g. (pg. 146) +ACC= allative/ extensive ( /
), +DAT= locative ( ).
In general, with Ps that took more than one case, it was as follows:
+GEN = from under
+DAT = at under
+ACC = to under
Pg. 147, he presents the use of with cases, to show that dimensionality is expressed by Ps, and directionality
by cases, which is a universal tendency. Kilby, (1981: 210) says that languages that combine adpositions and case
forms usually express directionality with the bound morphemes and dimensionality with the independent
+ DAT = locative ( ), lative ( )
+ GEN= ablative ( ), partitive ( )
+ ACC = allative ( )
Pg. 149 he presents a series of examples of Ps combining with cases and NPs with diferent cases to prove that
there are two key points on synonymous P constructions:

i. There can be neutralization of semantic distinctions contextual synonymy reached by different
routes. In the case of Greek, considering the diachrony, some Ps became superfluous and could be
ii. When a new construction appears, it does not oust the older equivalents at once. New and older
constructions co-exist for a while, even in the same language variety.
There are also Ps which appears with a [P+case] syntagm, e.g. and +GEN.
Pg. 153, he presents the main diachronic trends of the Ancient Greek system.
a. From prehistoric times, cases show a tendency to merge. Ancient Greek cuts the inventory of 5 oblique
cases to 3 and then 2 in MG: genitive+ ablative= genitive, dative+ locative+ instrumental = dative.
b. Dative is beginning to lose its spatial sense after Homer, with the exception of poetry or fixed phrases. It
also begins to fade out in PPs after Homer, where it is substituted by ACC (pg. 154)
c. The use of plain oblique cases for spatial relations decreases
d. The use of plain oblique cases decreases in VPs (complements)
e. The semantic differences of cases after Ps are lost. Pg. 159, cases did not become meaningless, they just
coalesced with the P into one semantic unit.
f. More adverbs develop prepositional use
g. Fine semantic differences between many pairs of spatial Ps fade (e.g. + /
+/+/+!!!!!/ +/ +) vs. = they derive from the same form (, )
but they governed different cases originally, hence the difference. EN+ DAT= inessive (no motion (pg. 162-
163)), whereas + ACC= illative. Attic blurs the distinction very rarely. Pg. 162, ft. 81: Greek invented eis
from ens (Wackernagel, 1928). The latter was en+s, related to en in trhe way ej is related to ek. Thus, eis
has an IE and yet is a Greek innovation. Most other IE languages (Latin, Germanic, Balto-slavic, Armenian,
Irish) and many Ancient Greek dialects (Arcadian, Cyprian, Beotian, Thessalian, Phocian, Locrian) left the
task of marking the distinction rest/ motion-to to the case ending. They used tehir equivalents of Classical
Attic Greek en+DAT for static location, and of en+ACC for movement. But Attic-Ionic marked formally the
semantic distinction by assigning each of the two senses to separate forms of the same preposition. While
en retained the locative sense, ens came to specialize as illative. The Greek development of a distinct
illative preposition is peculiar- quite so also within Greek itself, for it is the contrary of what Greek did
post-clasiscally. It extended the use of the (already innovative) preposition eis, which by regular loss of
the initial unstressed vowel became s supplantin en entirely. In doing so, however, it moved backwards,
to the stage where inessive and illative meanings were conflated into one form, although now it was eis
and not en.
The synonymy was due to three processes (pg. 165):
i. The growing equivalence of pairs of Ps
ii. The semantic convergence of combinations of the same P with different cases
iii. The creation of new prepositional constructions from adverbs ( ,
h. Ablative meanings show particular weakness. A phenomenon attestable in many languages (pg. 165)
Pg. 166, he contrasts the semantics of synonymous proper Ps.

A. / : even in the older texts is receding. is newer, and comitative, or even better-
interessive, and therefore more spatial or concrete in sense. In early Greek it meant between rather than
with, which is also the mycenean counterpart of . blocks the theory of all meanings of a P
connecting> with+GEN vs. after+ACC.
B. /. In ClGr wasnt used with a spatial sense, while had both.
C. / . died before the new testament, and before it dided it wasnt even spatial (pg. 167).
was both.
Pg. 169, he contrasts the spatial vs. non-spatial use of improper Ps, and takes some facts which point to an
original spatial sense in many cases:
a. Only some improper Ps are encountered in a temporal and non-spatial sense (, , , ,
, , , )
b. Many are almost always spatial (, , , , )
c. Some are exclusively spatial (, )
d. Many Homeric Ps were only spatial, and then developed a non-spatial sense (, , ,
, , , )
e. Some had rare spatial instances even in Homer (, )
f. A few were non-spatial even in Homer (, , )
g. Some post-Homeric were only spatial, whereas their ancestors in Homer were often non-spatial (,
h. Even the proper Ps were more spatial in Homer
i. Spatial and non-spatial meanings seem to appear in sequence, as is the case with
Pg. 171, begins the description of Ps and cases in Hellenistic Greek. He argues that this is the period when we can
attest the beginnings of the radical changes taking place in the Greek prepositional system. He claims in the first
three pages that the interference of Hebrew, via the Bible, has affected Greek. Evidence on that is provided on pg.
174, and the combination of Hebrew Ps and their in the Old Testament translation- Greek counterparts. The new
testament operated as a type of model, since it was more familiar to uneducated Greeks than any other type of
written passage.
Pg. 178, in Hellenistic period, he mentions the following syntagms, regarding proper Ps, without a semantic
+ accusative ok
+ genitive Only once
+ genitive ok
+ genitive ok
+ genitive Only once
+ dative ok
+ dative ok
+ accusative ok
+ genitive ok
+ accusative ok
+ genitive ok
+ genitive (only two occurences)
+ accusative ok

+ genitive ok
+ accusative ok
+ genitive ok
+ dative ok
+ accusative ok
+ genitive ok
+ dative ok
+ accusative ok
+ genitive ok
+ accusative ok
+dative Only once
+ accusative Three occurences
+ genitive Nine

[what I notice is that the use of dative decreases rapidly, and the general use of oblique cases tends to decrease,
compared to the Classical Greek style]
Pg. 179. He notices that where Attic could have used plain cases, we often see PPs. (e.g. +). This
can also be seen in the objects of many verbs, which did not take Ps before their objects in Classical Greek
( ).
Pg. 180. There is a marked increase in the use of the improper ps. Pg. 181, the spatial sense of the
improper forms was semantically identical to that of the older equivalent simplex Ps. (
, ).
Pg. 181. There is a reduction in the use of dative. Verbs that used to govern a dative object tend to either
take an accusative or a PP. ( used with , probably due to the Hebrew parallel verb). Pg. 182. Ps
which take more than one case are usually with genitive at this stage. The only P constantly used with
dative is , which could not govern any other case.
Pg. 183. The number of cases governed by a P fades. As Ps become unable to take a wide range of cases,
the choice of a particular case loses meaning. The ACC, as it loses its allative sense, comes to be used
more extensively.
Pg. 184. Some Ps are coming out of use. over . over . over . is also (pg.
185) expanding semantically, taking over and the phonologically similar . becomes very
rare, and also . SOS PG 186. The distinction between rest in a place and motion to a place is lost in all
Koine texts written in familiar style, with expressions of motion coming to be used also for rest. The two
constructions co-exist in the Gospels, en + dative being rarer in more vernacular authors. ( ,
). To a lesser extent also took up functions of , , .
Pg. 187. There are a few new improper Ps. (THEY DO NOT FUNCTION AS PREFIXES). , () ,
, , replacing, in a sense, , etc.
Pg. 188, many newer Ps seem to be used only in a local sense. Many of the ones which also appeared in
Classical and Homeric Greek are used in a non-spatial sense, but the newer ones, such as ,
, , /, , , are only spatial. Pg. 189, , , , ,
are used in a non-spatial sense.
Pg. 191, there are improper Ps which are combined with a simplex P, and then followed by plain case.
( )

Pg. 192. Developments seen in the Koine are not always in line with later Greek.
Pg. 194- synopsis of trends in the Koine
1. Cases have a long history of syncretism, and the dative now looks particularly weak
2. At earlier stages, plain cases sufficed to express spatial meanings, but now spatial meanings are expressed
by Ps(added to cases)
3. Cases appear to be losing their individual significance. This is also happening when they are inside a PP
4. There are very many Ps of different date, including many synonyms
5. Ps fall into two groups, and the improper type, which is the newer group, is being used more and more
frequently (at times even compounding the improper ps with a proper one). Their inventory is also
6. proper ps are, to some extent, ousting one another, but are mainly replaced by improper Ps
7. The improper Ps tend to have a spatial sense, while the proper ones that are replaced by improper ones
in spatial uses are increasingly confined to non-spatial uses
Pg. 195, Prepositions and cases in Medieval Greek
Pg. 202. The cases and their recession. The use of plain cases becomes less common, and is replaced by PPs. (
/ ). In this example it is just the plain genitive that is
avoided, but in general there is a tendency to substitute the genitive with the accusative. This construction (pg.
203) is more modern than standard Modern Greek usage. It shows (he says) the natural direction of development
that the language would have followed if it had not been tampered with. So, in MG he says that e.g.
governs a GEN NP, and if we use ACC instead, it would be . Dative is systematically avoided.
Pg. 203, the revolution in case government
All Ps are constructed with the accusative case (Browning 1983;82). Pg. 205, the use of one case led to the rise of
compound Ps.
The proper ps found in De administrando imperio (Porphyrogenitus) (pg. 205) are the following:
4. /
5. /
7. / /
8. /
9. /
13. /

15. / /
However, the main ps pf the newer set had many forms, and there is only ONE seemingly new proper P, ,
and its dissimilated form , which arose without ousting .
Pg. 208, semantic mergers. It started from Classical Greek, but in medieval Greek it went even further. The
merged Ps are the following:
1. = +ACC= =. acquired a directional sense
2. + GEN= +GEN= +GEN= +GEN. We can predict that is winning (pg. 211), because it
also takes the ACC, and no longer the achaic genitive, and also because the adjective governed by
is a more noble synonym of , used after , and its accentuation is classical. is treated as a
literary equivalent of .
He also argues that (pg. 212) another reason for the fading of many Classical Ps is the loss of phonological
distinctions. xamples are and , and . He concludes that due to phonological reductions the
following archaic Ps are no longer used in Medieveal Greek. , , , +gen, , , , , ,
. Thus, the ones remaining are the following: /, , , , , . Pg. 214, there are also many
synonymous Ps replaced by a single current P:
, , (), ()= ()
, , , , , , =
The new Ps that appear have the form of compound Ps, which govern an ACC NP, unless they are followed by a
weak pronoun, which is then in GEN. (, , ).
Pg. 215, the diachrony of prepositional usage from Classical Latin to Romance languages has striking parallels with
the evolution of Greek. E.g.:
both classical latin and Greek had both plain cases and P+case syntagms, with Ps being able to govern
different cases. The plurality of cases was gradually lost, though. The cause of loss was ascribed to
phonologal changes, as in Greek, and perhaps the adoption of Latin by foreign-speaking peoples.
Early merger of Latin genitive and dative
Direct case distinctions not necessary due to strict word order
Ps became necessary to express the meaning of oblique cases
Many examples of certain cases lost to a P+case syntagm (ablative= de+ablative/ comitative =
The extended use of de and ad plus the loss of case distinctions called for the creation of more
periphrastic forms.
Adverbs, old P combinations and adv+P combinations were turned into new Ps, to replace the lost items.
In some pairs the semantic distinctions were lost and one of the Ps was discarded.
Pg. 220, medieval Greek shows the first signs of using a second P. this makes it easier for speakers to combine the
same adverb with different Ps. In Medieveal Greek, most improper Ps usually cobined with one simplex P,
exclusively. A later development will be contrastive combinations of the same improper P. e.g. can be made

illative or elative ( , , ) by its
compounding element, like would indicate motion-to, motion-away-from, or no-motion depending on the
following case.
But were the compound Ps the medieval equivalent of the Classical simplex Ps? (pg. 220). He uses examples from
Hungers medieval metaphrase of Anna Comnene to prove just that.
Pg. 221, compounds are the combinations of two Ps when the elements do not independently contribute their
individual meanings to the phrase.
Pg. 223, he mentions all the newer Ps with a spatial sense
c. ()
d. /-
g. ()
h. ()()
i. ()
j. (/)()
l. (-)
n. /-
Pg. 225, regarding the usage of older and newer Ps, the older Ps are losing their spatial sense whereas the newer
ones appear with only a spatial sense at the beginning.
Pg. 227, he goes back to older Greek Ps, trying to work out which ones are used in a spatial sense, and which ones
have been replaced by newer ones and in what sense. The older set of Ps is: , , , , , , , -
, , , , , , , , , . We need to consider two things: a. whether a synonym was
available, b. whether that synonym was also old or new.
He moves on to create four distinct groups:
Group : Old Ps for which there were new replacements
> ()/ (). Pg. 231, used in a distributive non-spatial way.
> (/ -), /-, , . Now meant instead of.
> (), ()()it appears confined to the expression of a topic.
> (/-), /-, , . When used, which is rare, its used as primarily temporal.
> (), (). It presents the topic, the reason, or indicates an addition to some item.
> ()()it indicates being under an abstract object, or agency.

Group : Old Ps replaced spatially by both old Ps and new ones
> // ()/() (). Pg. 232. It had already become a superfluous synonym for in
Classical Greek.
- > // (), (). Just says that the non-spatial uses are attested in Porphyrogennitus.
> / // /-, , (). It became alien to usage due to the fact that it required a Dative
complement. It became totally interchangeable with in medieval Greek, and it did have extensive spatial
> // ()/ (). It indicates the abstract grounds for something, the reason. It also indicates
topic and time duration. The spatial sense is lost to . The same happened to , but denoted a more
horizontal motion.
> // / . It is exclusively restricted to the expression of agency and to the non-spatial sense of
with the exception of. The meaning from is only found with abstract objects.
> // . Pg. 233. Rarer and loftier synonym of . When the dative disappeared, only survived as an
artificial replacement of , and the result is a prevalently spatial sense, in the rare occasions that it is found,

Group : Old Ps replaced spatially by both old and new ones- but not entirely
> /// , , . Pg. 233. We usually find it in the non-spatial sense of against. It appears
with Vs of motion, and it denotes hostility (non-spatial), rather than movement (spatial). The basic sense of
downwards is taken over by , and towards by .
> /// , . Largely but not entirely replaced by , which is why it has the sense of when
used in a spatial sense (terminative motion, reaching the goal). its original spatial sense was locative or allative

Group : Old Ps for which no recent spatial replacement was available at all
, = , = . No analysis for them
There are (pg. 230) two Ps which are not confined to non-spatial uses, and those are / and ,due to the
fact that they had no new synonyms onto which they could unload their spatial meaning. Perhaps they also had
some kind of special status. They are the only simplex Ps that can appear as the second element of compound Ps.
There could be a spatial element detectable in two more old simplex Ps, and , and these two elements are
marginally used as second elements of compounds. They too had no younger replacement.
Pg. 234. Summary
Old Ps with no rivals retain their spatial meaning
Old Ps with new substitutes shed their spatial meanings
Old Ps with bot old and new counterparts shed their spatial meanings as well
Old Ps that has partial replacement lost the spatial menaing that could be replaced
Old Ps kept their non-spatial senses
Ps lose their spatial meanings when their new replacements can bear them
New Ps are predominantly spatial
Pg. 240, the Greek use of the accusative to express the goal of a motion reappears in neighbouring languages, but
it is a construction found in countless languages the orld over. Bulgarian, Slav Macedonian, Romanian, Albanian

merged genitive and dative in the same way that Greek did, and the use of genitive in lieu if dative spread from
Greek dialects of South Italy to the local Italian dialects even when Greek became extinct. Pg. 241, Bulgarian,
Albanian and Romanian also tend to express both possession and indirect object status with the same case or
preposition. The use of accusative as a P case is also common, and the existence of two personal pronouns, the
weak and the strong ones. The use of the improper ps with the genitive of the unstressed pronouns is common in
ither languages as well.
Pg. 245, cases in MG
Typologically, Greek is classified as a fusional and inflected language (Joseph 1992a) with a vast allomorphy. The
nominal inflection system is not the same as in classical language, and there has been case syncretism. IE had
more distinctions, then came Classical Greek, with Modern Greek at the last end. Dative is totally obsolete, and
the other cases coincide now more than they used to. However, there exist the following cases (productive
In MG (pg. 246), basic spatial meanings are expressed by Ps (ablative, locative, allative). There is a limited plain
case forms spatial usage.
ACCUSATIVE: it can be used to denote spatial as well as temporal extension. ( =
). In pg. 247 he mentions examples to support his view of the acc used as a spatial denotation,
but recent literature (I think Lekakou and Gehrke) characterize this as a vacuous P before the acc noun (
, ) and he also uses some examples which I do not find acceptable ( ,
GENITIVE: (pg. 248). Old uses of genitive are expressed quite often by (ablative, partitive, comparative). In
some dialects apo is also used to denote possession, instead of genitive (Thessaly, thrace). The genitive also
operates in the way that dative used to in Classical Greek (pg. 249), and therefore also has some allative
meanings. ( (dative), (ablative), (beneficiary sense)).
Pg. 250, the genitive is more literary than the accusative, which is more colloquial. Some Ps still govern genitive,
but he claims that they stem directly from Katharevousa (, , ).
NOMINATIVE: it appears with ps in an essive sense ( ). But he claims it is a matter
of co-indexing (pg. 251). What is rather interesting is what he points out pg. 252, that in Ancient Greek the P
governed the syntagm ( ).
Pg. 254, list of MG Ps:

Contrary to
/ As far as

Instead of
() Around
() Around
Out of
-/-/ Over
-/-/ On
As far as
Together with
Far from
In front of
In front of
Next to
Next to


Pg 260-261
Theofanopoulou- Kontou makes an analysis of double P constructions as follows:
(1) [adverb + (P+NP)]
Spec P


(2) [(adverb + P) + NP]
Spec P

The difference between the two different sequences of adv+P+NP is due to the different position of the adverb,
that may or may not be in the Head position. In (1) the adverb is a self-standing adverb that can be separated
from the following in ways that cannot. (see ,
vs. , * ;). Thus, is a PP. Similar
objections concern lexical sequences as the following:
(1) [[P
+ N+ P
] + NP
(2) [[P + N] + NP
(3) [[NP
] + NP
] ,
(4) [[P+ N] + NP
] ,
These sequences are often idiomatic and they do not allow all syntactic or morphological variations.
Pg 263, general diachronic observations about the whole inventory:
If the combinable improper Ps are properly taken into account, the system is not at all poor as compared
with the classical one, or with that of modern European languages, although it has often claimed to be.
Without compound Ps, MG would have no equivalent of English Ps such as on, near or under, as it has no
counterparts to along, throughout, across.
At least one new P has been added, . There are others of Medieval origin which have well been
established (, , ).
The inventory is rich despite the fact that the Medieveal has been drastically curbed, with the
result that usually only one form of each P has survived.
Pg 264, compound Ps today
He supports that compound Ps today are the standard ps of Modern Greek. they correspond to the recognized Ps
of English, and to the Classical Greek simplex Ps. Pg 265, the Greek system of simplex Ps has lost the connotation

of dimensionality. Languages can either have nominal inflections and adpositions indistinct as to dimensional
features (e.g. MG generic P , Turkish all-purpose locative case), or cases and adpositions which identify those
features (Ancient Greek , Finnish specific adessive, inessive etc.). Thus, MG has a simplex P that subsumes
several ancient ones, and Turkish has a single case suffix that subsumes the meanings of several Finnish ones.
Non- dimensional expressions of static spatial relation (with no specification of the size and shape of the
reference object) are the most basic. If dimensionality needs to be stated, MG resorts to combined Ps and Turkish
resorts to polymorphemic postpositions which mark transparently the two required features [loc+dimension].
Also, Ancient Greek was able to express fine degrees of proximity in ways that Modern Greek can only express
with compounds.
Pg 267, compound Ps allowing a single combination
Out of
() Behind
Instead of
As far as
Together with
Far from

He goes on about compound Ps consisting of one improper and one proper P, most times or , and then
moves on to improper Ps combining with both. In such cases, the first element takes on the overall semantic
weight (pg 273), and the second element takes on the notion of proximity or distance. = within the region of
typical interaction, = outside the region of typical interaction. Pg 277 he points out that the difference
between items that take both is that the opposition between what is and what is not particularly in focus, readily
perceptible, and available for interaction.
In pg 277 he proceeds to examine the four improper ps that only take , and claims that they all indicate
objects outside the focus area, or far away.
Pg 278, semantic innovations in the compound ps. He poses the question whether the semantic range of the
newer Ps has in any way changed. Pg 282, the once only spatial new Ps have now also become non-spatial.
Pg 284, general semantics of all simplex Ps of MG

1. ablative,

2. perlative
3. partitive
4. material
5. possessive
6. causal
7. agentive
8. distributive

1. locative
2. allative
3. indir.obj.
4. time within
5. time when
6. mode/ style
7. change
8. limitation

1. destination
2. aim
3. beneficiary
4. cause
5. duration
6. reference
7. limitation
8. role
9. exchange
10. price
11. topic ;

1. locative
2. comitative
3. time comit.
4. Manner
5. Cause
6. Description
7. Instrum.
8. Content


1. Conjunction ()
2. Adverb
3. Preposition

1. Mainly a conjunction, comparative /

1. Defective /
1. Terminative /

1. Approx.movem.
2. Approx.locat.
3. Approx. time
4. Time duration
5. Conformity
6. Extent
7. Manner
Pg 289, the semantics of the revived Ps

1. Classical spatial use *+
2. Modern spatial use * *+
3. Real modern translation
4. Classical non-spatial use
5. Modern non-spatial use ,

1. Classical spatial use
2. Modern spatial use * ()
3. Real modern translation ()
4. Classical non-spatial use
5. Modern non-spatial use ()

1. Classical spatial use
2. Modern spatial use
3. Classical temporal use

4. Modern temporal use

1. Classical spatial use
2. No modern spatial use *
3. Real modern translation
4. Classical non-spatial use
5. Not in modern use *
6. Real modern translation
7. Classical non-spatial use
8. Also modern use

1. Spatial direction
2. Time direction
Pg 292, simplex Ps revived less productively

1. Classical spatial use
2. not in Modern Greek *
3. real Modern Greek use
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in Modern Greek *
6. used today as: intermittence

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in Modern Greek *
6. modern equivalent

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in Modern Greek *
6. real modern translation
7. non spatial idioms in MG

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. real modern translation

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use remains

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation /
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. real modern translation
+ genitive
1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. real modern translation
7. also non-spatial use

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. real modern translation
7. also classical non-spatial use ()
1. classical spatial use

2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. real modern translation
7. classical non-spatial use
8. modern (learned) use ( ) ()

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. not in MG *
6. modern non-spatial use

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. no modern use

1. classical spatial use
2. no modern spatial use *
3. real modern translation
4. classical non-spatial use
5. modern non-spatial use *
6. real modern translation