tōu (偷)

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tōu is used mainly as a transitive verb in practically the same way as steal But a pre-verbal PP is often used to indicate the source of stealing. In BEI and BA alternations, tōu often is followed by an optional complement indicating the result or state of affairs. For that reason, tōu can be used ditransitively, as some linguists hold.

Coding frame

Simplex Verb form

Example

(68)
Tā tōu le Lǎo Lǐ de sāntóu niú.
ta
3SG
tou-le
steal-PERF
Lao
Lao
Li
Li
de
POSS
san-tou
three-CL
niu
cow
‘He stole three cows from Lao Li. / He stole Lao Li's three cows.’

Verb meaning , Microroles , Coding sets and Argument types

# STEAL Coding set Argument type
1 stealer Ø A
2 stolen thing Ø P

Alternations

Alternation name Occurs Examples
C
N y
C
N y
C
R y
(203)
‘A thief stole two cows and one horse from his family.’
C
R y
(204)
‘It is easier to steal from average households.’
C
R y
(201)
‘A thief has stolen the document.’
C
N y
C
R y
(202)
‘The document was stolen by a thief.’