Evidentiality and double tense in Matses

  • Fleck D
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Abstract

The Matses language of the Panoan family, spoken in Amazonian Peru and Brazil, has one of the most intricate evidential systems ever described, requiring speakers to precisely and explicitly code their source of information every time they report a past event. In a typologically unique inflectional configuration that I call DOUBLE TENSE the speakers specify both (i) how long ago an inferred event happened and (ii) how long ago the evidence upon which the inference was made was encountered. This article explores in detail the Matses evidential system, focusing on several novel patterns relevant to the typological study of evidentiality and providing social and historical perspectives.

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Authors

  • David W. Fleck

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