taking support verb constructions *only* as a way to make language learning easier is too simplistic.
It may work in some cases. George Broderick has argued 'do'-periphrasis in Manx to be a sign of language death, often used by semi-speakers to avoid memorizing paradigms. 'Do' periphrasis is particular prone to being used instead of verbal inflection, more than other support verbs, because the meaning of the verb is most general.
But many native speakers of languages are also creative (the Old Irish scribes definitely knew what they were doing with their language) and use support verb constructions to make their language more accurate and give it extra nuances. Some Indo-Europeanists, general linguists, too, have argued that they are a way to make language more specific. In many cases they do not oust the simple verb after all, but offer additional possibilities of expressing things.
-------- Original-Nachricht --------
> Datum: Wed, 31 Aug 2011 12:12:52 +0100
> Von: "Gearóid Ó Néill" <[log in to unmask]>
> An: [log in to unmask]
> Betreff: Re: [OLD-IRISH-L] AUG question - descriptors
> I suspect it makes it easier to learn. You don't have a new unfamiliar
> to learn and all that it implies - pronunciation, orthography ( if you are
> new to the language or the spelling-sound relationship is irregular - not
> mention dialectic variations), usage, semantics, etymology. Superficially
> is more appealing if you have one word one meaning but I think that would
> overload the neurons. I just thought of an experiment we could try.
> 30 names to 10 addresses (in differing amounts) 20 addr and 30 addr and
> which is easiest to recall.
> On 31 August 2011 03:53, Helen McKay <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > Richard wrote:
> > >As an example, here is the end of the description of the
> > >hag: "lethantrosdán lomdeilecha lúbméracha laobgloithnecha
> > >lebarsálgorma liathgormingnecha ladharbrénfliucha lanntrusgacha."
> > Thanks Richard for that extraordinary piece of verbosity! As noone has
> > risen to their feet for August, may I ask a question? What is it about
> > Irish (and to an extent English too in comparison to other languages)
> > that it has so many descriptors (adjectives, adverbs)? and what does it
> > say about the Irish psyche that they delight in using them?
> > And, I'm not sure if this is a related question or not, but why does
> > modern Irish (and English again) delight in reducing verbs down to a
> > handful of common verbs in idiomatic or phrasal form? I'm beginning to
> > think that if Irish could get away with expressing every verb using
> > within some expression, then that's what it would do! This tendency in
> > both Irish and English certainly makes them a lot harder for adult
> > learners to come to grips with. I remember one day (when I was much
> > younger) we were counting the different verbal meanings of 'come'
> > expressions and we stopped in exhaustion when we were over 600.
> > But, I suspect Irish 'cur' could outdo that any day :--)
> > Helen
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