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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Outline of Classical Chinese Grammar

Outline of Classical Chinese Grammar is a comprehensive introduction to the syntactical analysis of classical Chinese. Focusing on the language of the high classical period, which ranges from the time of Confucius to the unification of the empire by Qin in 221, the book pays particular attention to the Mencius, the Lúnyu, and, to a lesser extent, the Zuõzhuàn texts.

Outline of Classical Chinese Grammar starts with a brief historical overview and a discussion of the relation between the writing system and the phonology. This is followed by an outline of overall principles of word order and sentence structure. The next sections deal with the main sentence types – nominal predicates, verbal predicates, and numberical expressions, which constitute a special type of quasiverbal predication. The final sections cover such topics as subordinate constitutents of sentences, nondeclarative sentence types, and complex sentences.

208 pages

Table of Contents



I. Introduction

II. Some Basic Principles of Classical Chinese Syntax

III. Noun Predication IV. Verbal Predicates

V. Compound Verbal Predicates

VI. Numerical Expressions

VII. Noun Phrases and Nominalization

VIII. Topicalization and Exposure

IX. Pronouns and Related Words

X. Adverbs

XI. Negation

XII. Aspect, Time, and Mood

XIII. Adnominal and Adverbial Words of Inclusion and Restriction

XIV. Imperative, Interrogative and Exclamatory Sentences

XV. Complex Sentences


Sources of Examples


Index of Chinese Vocabulary


General Index

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