Georgian/Adpositions

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Georgian by and large does not have prepositions but rather postpositions. Most of the most common of these are attached to the ends of nouns. They might be written separately or together with the noun. There do exist a few prepositions, but they are very few in number, and tend to be calques from Russian that entered the language during the Soviet period.

Each postposition governs (requires) a specific case of the noun, akin to the usage of prepositions in German or Latin. Only one postposition governs the nominative case (-vit "like"), and there are no postpositions that govern the ergative or the vocative cases. Here are some examples of postpositions:

Postposition English meaning Case
-vit ¹ like nominative
-ze on dative
-tan at, near dative
-tan ertad together with dative
-shi ² in, to dative
-dan 4 from (a place) instrumental
-gan from (a person, a thing) genitive
gamo because of genitive
garda except genitive
gareshe without genitive
-tvis for genitive
mier by genitive
magivrad instead of genitive
miuxedavad in spite of genitive
-ts'in before, in front of genitive
-mde ³ up to, as far as adverbial

¹ The postposition -vit could also take the dative case in its elongated form (with an insertion of -a- in between the case suffix and the postposition).

² In the usage of postposition -shi the dative case suffix -s is dropped.

³ In the usage of postposition -mde the adverbial case suffix -d is dropped.

4 In the usage of postposition -dan the instrumental case suffix -t is dropped.

Examples[edit]

The Georgian nominal has a series of morpheme slots that must be filled in a specific order:

noun root + plural suffix + case suffix (+ postposition)
Some nouns with all morpheme slots filled
noun root (meaning) plural suffix case suffix (case) postposition full word English meaning
megobar- (friend) -eb -is (genitive) -tvis megobrebistvis for friends
deda- (mother) - -s (dative) -tan ertad dedastan ertad (together) with (my) mother
mshobl- (parent) -eb -is (genitive) gareshe mshoblebis gareshe without (my) parents
shen- (you) - -s (genitive) gamo shens gamo because of you
bavshv- (child) - -i (nominative) -vit bavshvivit like (a) child
bavshv- (child) -eb -sa (dative) -vit bavshvebsavit like children
Sakartvelo- (Georgia) - -s (dative) -shi (drops case suffix) Sakartveloshi to Georgia, in Georgia
xval- (tomorrow) - -ad (adverbial) -mde (drops d) xvalamde up to (until) tomorrow


Georgian/TOC