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The metalanguage and the terminologies for syntactical description in the Portuguese grammars of the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th centuries: a historiographic scrutiny

Grant number: 19/21156-5
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2020
Effective date (End): December 31, 2022
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Linguistics
Principal researcher:Olga Ferreira Coelho Sansone
Grantee:Rogério Augusto Monteiro Cardoso
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


This project aims to scrutinize, by means of Linguistic Historiography, the metalanguage and the terminologies for syntactic description of grammars dedicated to Portuguese from the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, to verify the influence of methods, assumptions, theoretical approaches and climate of opinion on the authors' choices and, in the end, to sketch a periodization of the Portuguese syntactic thought. The object of the study is therefore the explanatory language and technical terms with which the ancient grammarians described and normalized Portuguese Syntax (e.g. subject, copulation, attribute, predicate, etc.). The main hypothesis here is that ideas, metalanguage, and syntactic terminology varied greatly from the prevailing theories of Portuguese grammaticography, in clear contrast to morphological terminologies, which have remained stable over the centuries. The historiographic method with which the research is intended to be carried out is based on the so-called four layers proposed by Swiggers (2004), with which one is intended to verify the theoretical-methodological continuities and the discontinuities within each and the cynosure (i.e., the dominant approaches or theories), to further point out which internal or external factors internal to the works would have influenced the choice of certain linguistic ideas and terminologies over others. The selection of grammarians includes Fernão de Oliveira (1536), João of Barros (1540), Amaro de Roboredo (1619), António Franco (1699), Jerônimo Argote (1725), Bernardo Bacelar (1783), Jerônimo Soares Barbosa (1822), Joaquim Macedo (1865), Adolfo Coelho (1874) and others. (AU)

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