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The Usage of the Directionals Shang and Xia from Early Ancient to Middle Chinese
This article discusses the usage of the two directionals shang 上and xia 下from Early Ancient to Middle Chinese with reference to Talmy's conceptual structure. It is considered that the usage of these terms in Early Ancient Chinese was formed by a merging of the semantic components of Motion and Path, and that Manner was expressed either implicitly or explicitly by the use of additional characters. Shang and xia retained these early usages in Middle Chinese, and by complementing them with the deictic directionals lai 來and qu 去, added another way to indicate Path. This produced verbs expressing manner which included semantic components of both Motion and Manner, and which used directional complements to express Path.From the basic expression of high and low displacements in concrete, physical space, the motion-related path model can be extended through cognitive psychology to express displacement in linear spaces, and metaphors used to express abstract vertical displacement. Furthermore, autonomous, caused, and causative types of motion will influence perceptions of an object's volition and non-volition.
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