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date: 27 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

A number of languages indigenous to Northern California display structural similarities which raise interesting questions about possible contact effects on features of polysynthesis. In particular, the coding of grammatical relations and patterns of verbal compounding and lexical affixation reveal an undeniable areal distribution. The presence of these same features also defines the languages examined in this chapter (Chimariko, Shastan, Karuk, Yana, Atsugewi, Achumawi, and Pomoan) as polysynthetic. While other chapters in this volume are based on a single language family, the present chapter covers a hypothetical genetic grouping of languages spoken in a geographically contiguous area where structural similarities stem from language contact rather than from genetic affiliation.

Keywords: language contact, lexical affixes, genetic affiliation, areal distribution, hypothetic genetic grouping

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