Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics

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The use of the notion of disyllabification as a development in the history of the Chinese language implies that there must have been a time in which the language was monosyllabic (Kennedy 1951; Chao 1968; Duanmu 2000). Whether earlier stages of the language were purely monosyllabic or not, recent studies show that Archaic (or Proto-) Chinese had a prosodic structure that differed from that of Medieval Chinese (100 BCE–100 CE) (Pulleyblank 1962, 1977–1978; Pan 2000; Zhèngzhāng 2003) (Medieval Chinese, Old Chinese Phonology, Old Chinese Morphology, and Old Chinese Syntax). For examp…

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Shengli FENG, “Disyllabification”, in: Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics, General Editor Rint Sybesma. Consulted online on 21 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2210-7363_ecll_COM_00000136>
First published online: 2015

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