Proto-Turkic/Locative-ablative case and plurality

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Welcome to the third lesson of Proto-Turkic!

Locative-ablative case[edit | edit source]

In Proto-Turkic, two different forms of the same suffix are used for locative and ablative: *-de for locative and *-den for ablative. Or just *-de can be used for both cases.

  • There is no work at home. - Ebde īĺč yōk.
  • I came from home. - Bẹ ebde(n) kẹlti.

Since the personal pronoun is added to the end of the tense in today's Turkic languages, it is not obligatory to use the personal pronoun. But in Proto-Turkic it is a must to use the personal pronoun to indicate who is doing the action. Because in the Proto language there is no suffix denoting the subject. But in the past tense seen, it may be the privilege of this situation. Because in Old Turkic there is am/is/are only for past tense and it matches with Chuvash.

Places in Proto-Turkic[edit | edit source]

  • house - *eb[1]
  • fireplace, tent - *ōtag[2]
  • hut, hovel - *koĺ
  • sea - *teŋiŕ[3]
  • lake - *kȫl[4]
  • mountain - *tāg[5]
  • hill - *tepü[6]
  • forest - *orman[7]
  • swamp - *batgak[8]
  • seashore - *kïdïg

Plurality[edit | edit source]

Indisputable suffixes[edit | edit source]

*-ŕ, *-iŕ, *-ïŕ, *-üŕ, *-uŕ[9][edit | edit source]

Plurality in Proto-Turkic is an imprecise issue. The suffixes used to indicate the plural in the Lir and Shaz group are different from each other. However, there is an attachment that is specific for paired objects. It is used very rarely and although it exists today, its uses are limited.

  • we - *biŕ
  • you (plural) - *siŕ
  • twins - *ẹkiŕ
  • triplets - *üčüŕ
  • tribes - *ok (origin of Oghur and Oghuz)

Disputable suffixes[10][edit | edit source]

*-lar, *-ler[edit | edit source]

The plural suffix in modern Turkic languages ​​can be configured as *-lar, *-ler for Proto-Common-Turkic, but its presence in Proto-Turkic is not clear. The suggested forms for Proto-Turkic differ from Proto-Common-Turkic. Even although, Róna-Tas, András (1998) in his chapter The reconstruction of Proto-Turkic and the genetic question said that these suffixes exist in Proto-Turkic with the Chuvash plural suffix -сем (-sem) being a late replacement.[11]

The suffix -lar in today's Turkic languages may have been placed in Proto-Mongolic as -nar from Common-Turkic. The time between Proto-Turkic and Proto-Mongolic is quite long. While Proto-Turkic dates back to 500 BCE, Proto-Mongolic can go as far as 1000 AD. Therefore, not every word in Proto-Mongolic has to be in Proto-Turkic. While the Mongolic languages lived their Proto times, the Turkic languages were already divided into groups.

*-t, *-ït, *-it, *-ut, *-üt[edit | edit source]

Another suffix whose existence is controversial in Proto-Turkic is *-t. Although some linguists claim to have passed from Mongolic, it is found in old Turkic a lot. It is related to *-/d/ in Proto-Mongolic and *-/ta/, *-/te/ in Proto-Tungusic. If it did not pass through Mongolic, its presence in the Tungusic can be shown as evidence of its existence in Proto-Turkic.

  •   sons - *ogulut

*-n, *-an, *-en[edit | edit source]

Another plural suffix is now dead, except for the stereotyped words. But more examples are needed to prove it.

  • sons - *ogulan
  • flames - *örten
  • people, nation - *bodun
  • Kurykans - *kurïkan (uncertain)
  • cities, places - *orun (uncertain)

Next lesson: Past tenses and vowel harmony

References[edit | edit source]

  11. Johanson, Lars; Csató, Éva, eds. (1998). "The reconstruction of Proto-Turkic and the genetic question". The Turkic Languages. London: Taylor & Francis. pp. 67–80. ISBN 0-415-08200-5.