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Spelling out the Obvious: Latin quidem and the Expression of Presuppositional Polarity

Abstract : In Danckaert (2013), the Latin particle quidem was analysed as a marker of emphatic affirmative polarity. Building on this proposal, the present paper elaborates on the pragmatic properties of this element. It is argued that quidem is not a neutral but a so-called 'presuppositional' polarity marker, which confirms a proposition which (i) is already part of the common ground but (ii) was not overtly spelled out in the (immediately) preceding context. In more formal terms, I propose that quidem gives rise to the conventional implicature that the speaker assumes that the content of his message might already by known to the addressee, or that it conveys information that the latter expects to hear or read. As such, quidem can be considered a "lexical marker of common ground", in the sense of Fetzer and Fischer (2007).
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Lieven Danckaert. Spelling out the Obvious: Latin quidem and the Expression of Presuppositional Polarity. Journal of Historical Pragmatics, John Benjamins Publishing, 2015, 16 (1), pp.109-141. ⟨10.1075/jhp.16.1.05dan⟩. ⟨halshs-01526869⟩

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