Article published in:Impersonal Constructions: A cross-linguistic perspective
Edited by Andrej L. Malchukov and Anna Siewierska
[Studies in Language Companion Series 124] 2011
► pp. 439–458
Impersonal constructions in Ket
Agreement in Ket involves multiple techniques of verb-internal subject-object marking with intransitive subject (S) markers aligning in various ways with the transitive subject (A) or transitive object (P) markers. This article examines verbs where the S appears in slots normally reserved for P marking, while the slot normally reserved for A marking contains the invariant prefix da-. Many impersonal verbs with this da- prefix turn out to be versions of regular transitives that allow for substitution of da- by other personal subject markers. Interestingly, some intransitive verbs previously recorded as lacking da- in fact allow this prefix optionally. This suggests that the range of da- intransitives was originally broader, and that more, if not all, verbs in this class derive historically from regular transitives, Accordingly, this Ket pattern is analyzable as a ‘transimpersonal construction’, whereby a transitive verb takes an indefinite subject and experiencer object, although the transimpersonal in ket has not spread consistently across the lexicon. Keywords: subject-object marking; transimpersonal construction
Published online: 20 July 2011
Cited by 3 other publications
Malchukov, Andrej L.
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