Associate 1997-98

Jerome L. Packard

East Asian Language & Cultures

Characters and Affixes in Old Chinese

The goal of the proposed study is to investigate the theory that Old Chinese (1200 BC-220 AD) words had sub-syllabic affixes (i.e., prefixes, infixes and suffixes) that were represented in writing using Chinese character orthography. Such a finding would suggest a stronger linguistic relationship between Chinese and other languages than previously has been thought to exist, and would challenge the common belief that individual Chinese characters invariably represent single-syllable morphemes.