Grammaticalization in Nigerian Pidgin


  • Eyo Offiong Mensah University of Calabar, Nigeria



grammaticalization, Nigerian Pidgin, contact linguistics, morphology and syntax


Nigerian Pidgin (hereafter NP) has assumed elaborated roles and functions, gaining new grounds in different sociolinguistic domains as a result of its sustained social expansion process. One of the consequences of this increased dynamism of NP is the development of lexical items into grammatical markers which is an expected natural process. In this paper, we examine language-internal mechanisms that transform lexical items into morphosyntactic items either for semantic value, creativity, expressivity or routinization. Our basic argument is that grammaticalization in NP is not contact-induced but a language-internal phenomenon, which reveals that NP has both a synchronic and diachronic existence that are imperative in evolving its unique grammar.

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Author Biography

Eyo Offiong Mensah, University of Calabar, Nigeria

holds a Ph.D in Linguistics from University of Calabar, Nigeria where he is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Communication Studie.


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How to Cite

Mensah, E. O. (2012). Grammaticalization in Nigerian Pidgin. Íkala, Revista De Lenguaje Y Cultura, 17(2), 167–179.



Research papers