LINGUIST List 14.3388

Tue Dec 9 2003

Books: Language Description: Gruzdeva

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  1. lincom.europa, Nivkh: Gruzdeva

Message 1: Nivkh: Gruzdeva

Date: Thu, 4 Dec 2003 15:51:56 -0500 (EST)
From: lincom.europa <>
Subject: Nivkh: Gruzdeva

Title: Nivkh
Series Title: Languages of the World/Materials 111

Publication Year: 2003
Publisher: Lincom GmbH

Author: Ekaterina Gruzdeva, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg 
Paperback: ISBN: 3895860395, Pages: 60, Price: EUR 29.20


Nivkh (otherwise known as Gilyak) is considered genetically isolated,
though is traditionally classified as Paleasiberian. Typologically,
Nivkh is an agglutinative synthetic nominative language with elements
of morphological fusion and some analytical features. It is the
language of a small nationality (4,700 people) presently residing
mainly at the lower reaches of the Amur River in the far east on the
Asian continent and on Sakhalin Island (Russia). Four dialects of
Nivkh are distinguished: Amur, East-Sakhalin, North-Sakhalin and
South-Sakhalin. The description is based primarily on the materials of
Amur and East-Sakhalin diaelcts of Nivkh, the last not well described
yet. The sketch contains five sections, two folklore texts (in both
examined dialects of Nivkh) with interlinear translation and an ample
bibliography.The first section describes socio- and geolinguistic
data, different hypothesis of Nivkh genesis and principal stages of
its studying. The phonology and morphology section deals with the
phoneme inventory, prosody, syllable structure and morphological
alternations. It pays particlar attention to the system of initial
consonant alternations in noun and verb phrases. Principal models of
word-formation are discussed in the third section. The fourth section
is devoted to the analysis of nominal and verbal morphology,
pronominal system, numerals, adverbs, graphic words, connective words
and interjections. Special emphasis is laid to the unique system of
cardinals consisting of 26 sub-systems, each of those is used for
counting objects of special types. The section also focuses on finite
verbal forms and their categories, as well as on non-finite verbal
forms. Nivkh is well-known for its nu= merous converbs, which number
is about 30. The last section examines syntax of noun and verb
phrases, word order, clause structure and clause chainin with special
reference to a polypredicative construction. The last is usually
represented as a predicate complex whose verbal forms are interlinked
by different semantic relations, namely tense, cause, condition,

2nd printing. (visit our webshop:

Lingfield(s): Language Description

Subject Language(s): Nivkh (Language Code: NIV )

Written In: English (Language Code: ENG)

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