Re: preverbs

> Let me add to the subjective judgment (someday we'll have to assemble 
> some facts!): already in classical Attic a clear distinction between 
> poetic and prose usage exists regarding compounded verbs, which are 
> commonly used in prose (and, presumably, on the street) and the simplex, 
> or uncompounded forms which are properly used in poetry--precisely 
> because they have an ARCHAIC flavor. The same is true of Latin poetry and 
> prose, and it is certainly a fact of later Latin that compound verbs 
> multiply and replace in common usage the simplex forms (just as 
> frequentatives formed from the passive participial stem become standard 
> in the first conjugation and replace old second, third, and fourth 
> conjugation verbs (viso for video, canto for cano, etc.).

I think one question to ask is whether this is true of vernacular
language in general, or simply reflection of a more general
historical development.  I believe the latter to be, true, from what I
know about the development of auxiliaries from compound verbs and
'light' verbs in other languages.

Mari Broman Olsen
Northwestern University
Department of Linguistics
2016 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208