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LINGUIST List 21.1876

Mon Apr 19 2010

Qs: Nonverbal Subject Agreement: Proto-Afroasiatic

Editor for this issue: Danielle St. Jean <daniellelinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Julien Peter Benney, Nonverbal Subject Agreement: Proto-Afroasiatic and/or Proto-Berber

Message 1: Nonverbal Subject Agreement: Proto-Afroasiatic and/or Proto-Berber
Date: 17-Apr-2010
From: Julien Peter Benney <jpbenneygmail.com>
Subject: Nonverbal Subject Agreement: Proto-Afroasiatic and/or Proto-Berber
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In reference to Leon Stassen's excellent book "Intransitive Predication,"
looking at the predicate data for colour adjectives in Kabyl on page
506, I am curious as to whether the suffix -eth given there is really a
relict of a system of nonverbal person agreement markers that were
once more widely present either in Berber languages or possibly in
Afroasiatic languages more generally.

I study linguistics as a hobby (and have done so on and off for a very
long time). The research I am doing is essentially for personal study of
nonverbal subject agreement and it is of considerable interest to
me. I have tried to contact Stassen himself but cannot get through to
his e-mail

When it says "suffixal conjugation occurs only in Kabyl, the
easternmost Berber language in the sample," is this suffixal conjugation
possibly a relictual case of general nonverbal person agreement for
nominal predicates in earlier forms of Berber that have now been
almost completely supplanted by the particle copula d' described in
Chapter 2 of Intransitive Predication?

In other words, did earlier forms of Berber, and possibly Proto-
Afroasiatic, have a predication system:

1.) of type V-V-N-L
2.) whereby verbs and adjectives used one set of person markers
3.) and the nominal strategy involved a different set from those used on
verbal and adjectival predicates (ie. nonverbal subject agreement)?

Thank you very much,
Julien Peter Benney

Linguistic Field(s): Morphology

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