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Prof. ZHANG Meilan

B.A. (Nanjing Normal University, China), M.A. East China Normal University, China), Ph.D. (Nanjing University, China)

Professor, Department of Chinese Language and Literature


  • Start-up Grant Tier 2 (2018/19) - RC-SGT2/18-19/ARTS/001


  • Conditional category refers to the conditional relationship in realistic events or the semantic relation between sentences in a language, but the origins and manifestations of formal markers of conditional category are diverse in a language. 
    In Chinese, the conditional category markers originated mainly from the follow:
    negative category      (bulun,buwen,buguan,buju,bujian,buji,etc), 
    causative Category    (shi,ling,ren,ping,jin,rang,sui,kan,ting,etc), 
    conjectural Category  (qi,yi,gou,huo,hu,pa,tuo,etc), 
    temporal category         (xiang,shi,zheng,dang,shi,qie,nai,ji,bian,etc) 
    comparative category  (ruo,ru,etc),etc. 
    Most of the conditional markers` grammar function were completed in archaic Chinese. The evolution of conditional markers as the core research mainly refers to the historical transfer from negative category, causative category, conjectural category, temporal category and comparative category to conditional semantics in Chinese. Meanwhile, in comparison with other languages, the research attempts to explore the evolution of conditional sentences and their markers, then picture a model of semantic map of conditional category`s evolution, strengthening the motivation of the evolution between relevant semantic categories.