THE DIACHRONIC SUBSTITUTION AND CAUSES OF "SHU" AND “MU"
Keywords:MU, SHU, Semantic Systems, Diachronic
This paper investigated the meaning origin of the diachronic substitution words "MU" and "SHU" in detail from the perspective of the development and adjustment of linguistic system based on the previous studies. On the basis of combing the semantic system of "MU" and "SHU" as well as exploring the extended ways and reasons for the development and evolution of the meaning involved. This paper described the diachronic process of their mutual substitution and the possible reasons for their substitution.
It is believed that the trend of substitution should first appear in the cooperated structure of "SHU" and "MU", which is premised on the emergence of the noun meaning of "SHU". Verb meaning "SHU MU" and noun meaning "SHU MU", one is verb object structure and the other is combined structure； The semantic expression is totally different, but they have coexisted in language for a period of time. After the emergence of the noun meaning of "SHU", it continues to expand in function. The most important thing is the emergence of "X+SHU" format. When the noun meaning of "SHU" takes over the role of "MU", more and more " X+SHU " are generated.
This paper agrees that "SHU" has replaced "MU" in spoken language at the latest between Xi Han and Dong Han Dynasty, and basically replaced "MU" in written language in the Wei, Jin and the Nan Bei dynasties. The reason for its replacement is the result of the adjustment of lexical semantic system and the separate responsibilities in the various language forms of style. The adjustment of lexical semantic system is that "MU" mainly takes a series of meanings related to "MU BEN", while "SHU" mainly takes the original meaning of trees. As a general name of trees, it was classified all the kinds of trees into the different proper names. The separate responsibilities of language form is that "MU" mainly plays a role as a morpheme, which has strong productivity as well as forms a large number of compound words with written language; As a general term, "SHU" maintains a monosyllabic form and has a high frequency of oral use; As a disyllable proper name, "X+SHU" has a strong stylistic standard.
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