Votian/Main Cases

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Main cases [1][edit]

 

Singular

Plural

Partitive marker

-ta -ita

Nominative marker

-t

Genitive marker

-n -iten

Morphophonology[edit]

  • Nominative case has no marker.
    • Plural nominative has only a plural marker -t [2]. It may take only a vowel stem.
    • Thus singular nominative is usually in a grade opposite to plural nominative, caused by consonant gradation in stems e.g. seppä ('a blacksmith') vs. sepäD ('blacksmiths'), ammaz ('a tooth') vs. ampāD ('teeth') .
  • The singular partitive suffix takes a consonant stem if available e.g. r-ta ('younger' singular partitive ) vs. nōre̮-t ( plural nominative ), päivüt-tä ('sun' singular partitive ) vs. päivǖ ( singular genitive ).
    • Thus a singular partitive is usually in a grade opposite to plural nominative, caused by consonant gradation in stems e.g. seppǟ ('a blacksmith' singular partitive ) vs. sepäD ('blacksmiths'), ammassa ('a tooth' singular partitive) vs. ampāD ('teeth') .
    • Plural partitive is always in the strong grade if available e.g. rataz ('wheel' singular nominative) vs. rattaita ( plural partitive ), linnuD ('bird' plural nominative) vs. lintuita ( plural partitive ) .
  • All the genitive suffixes take a vowel stem e.g. rataz ('wheel' singular nominative) vs. rattā ( singular genitive ), rattajē ( plural genitive ).
    • Thus a singular genitive is usually in a grade opposite to singular nominative, caused by consonant gradation in stems e.g. kotti ('bag' singular nominative) vs. kotī ( singular genitive ), uhsi ('door' singular nominative) vs. uhzē̮ ( singular genitive ), ammaz (' tooth' singular nominative) vs. ampā (singular genitive) .
    • Plural genitive is always in the strong grade e.g. rataz ('wheel' singular nominative) vs. rattajē ( plural genitive ), linnuD ('bird' plural nominative) vs. lintujē ( plural genitive ) .


Usage[edit]

Baltic Finnic languages oppose

  1. partial subject to total subject and
  2. partial object to total object and
  3. partial predicative to total predicative

I.e.

  1. Partitive marks a partial subject while nominative marks a total subject of a sentence.
  2. Partitive marks a partial object while nominative or genitive mark a total object of a sentence.
  3. Partitive marks a partial predicative while nominative marks a total predicative of a sentence.
  • See the details below.


  1. Partitive marks a matter which is measured. In such a case it's preceded by a quantity unit or a number e.g. kahs pihua sūrimoi ("Two handfuls of pearl-barley.").
    1. Countable nouns will be in singular e.g. kahs pihua ("Two handfuls.").
    2. Uncountable nouns will be in plural e.g. pihu sūrimoi ("A handful of pearl-barley.").
      1. Partitive, which expresses partiality, is opposed to nominative , which marks the whole e.g. ühs pihu sūrimoi ("A handful of pearl-barley." Here the word pihu is in singular nominative.), koko pihu ("A whole handful." ), kõikk sūrimaD ("All the pearl-barley." Here the word sūrimaD is in plural nominative.).
  2. Partitive marks a partial subject while nominative marks a total subject of a sentence e.g. mā-mune̮ita lēB ("There will be some potatoes (for you)." - plural partitive), māmunaD om pe̮lloll [3] ("(All the) potatoes (what we are talking about) are on the field." - plural nominative)
    1. Negative constructions may have partial subjects e.g. be̮лe̮   kaлoi (" There is no fish." - plural partitive ), mā pǟllä tiлā eb lē (" There will be no place (for it) on the earth." - plural partitive ).
  3. Partitive marks a partial object while nominative or genitive mark a total object of a sentence e.g. tōn süvvä lihā i ve̮ita ("I'll bring (you) some meat and butter to eat." - singular partitive ) vs. tōn lihā i ve̮i ("I'll bring all the meat and butter." - singular genitive ), avān silmäd ̮ avē ("I open my eyes." - plural nominative ), mahzan ke̮ik̄   sūrē̮   mahzō ("I am paying all the big tax." - singular genitive ).
    1. A total object is in nominative , if
      1. the object is in plural e.g. avān silmäd ̮ avē ("I open my eyes." - plural nominative ).
      2. the verb is in imperative mood e.g. näütä miллe̮   merkki ("Show me a sign." - singular nominative ).
      3. the verb is in indefinite voice e.g. siллe̮   tuvvas̄   mokoma kirstu ("They will bring you such a chest." - singular nominative ).
    2. Negative constructions have always partial objects. (The examples below are bare constructions for this course.)
      1. en tō ve̮ita ("I shall not bring (you) any butter." - singular partitive ).
      2. the object is in plural e.g. en tō mā-mune̮ita ("I shall not bring (you) any potatoes." - plural partitive ).
      3. the verb is in imperative mood e.g. elä tō ve̮ita ("Do not bring any butter." - singular partitive ).
      4. the verb is in indefinite voice e.g. ep tuvva ve̮ita ("Nobody will bring (you) any butter." - singular partitive ).
  4. Partitive marks a partial predicative while nominative marks a total predicative of a sentence.
    1. Partial predicative expresses partiality.
      1. E.g. tämä naizikko on tōž soikkoлaisī ('This woman also is a one of Soikkola Ingrians.' i.e. We emphasize, that she belongs to a group of certain quality - is part of that group. )
      2. sika on üvǟ sukua ('The pig is of a good breed.') .
      3. tütär e̮li ke̮rke̮at kazvua ("The daughter was tall.") Lempola dialect. [4]
    2. Total predicative
      1. E.g. se on sūr ja varma (Rajo dialect "This (man) is big and strong." i.e. We don't tell you, if there is a group of men of that quality (big and strong), where he might belong to. He qualifies as a big and strong one himself. ) [5]
      2. tämä on soikkuлaine̮ (Liivtšülä dialect 'This one is a Soikkola Ingrian.' i.e. We don't emphasize, that she belongs to that group. ) [6]
      3. tšen tämä e̮li ? (Luuditsa dialect "Who was he?") [7]
  5. Partitive marks time.
    1. If the time unit has an attribute, then the attribute only will be in adessive , but the time unit itself is in partitive case - e.g. senel̄   päivǟ ('on that day'), ühel̄   ke̮rtā tuli sūr tūli ('Once there was a big wind')
  6. Partitive marks origin e.g. tütär e̮li ke̮rke̮at kazvua ('The daughter was tall.') Lempola dialect, tämä naizikko on tōž soikkoлaisī ('This woman also is a one of Soikkola Ingrians.') , sika on üvǟ sukua ('The pig is of a good breed.') .
  7. Partitive marks cause e.g. lezzellä e̮li itšävä mēs ('The widow longed for her husband.') .
  8. Partitive marks direction e.g. tämä taitšinākā viskazi īr ('She threw dough towards the mouse.') .
  9. Partitive is used with comparison e.g. ke̮ikke̮a sūre̮p pojo ('a boy bigger than all the others = the biggest boy') , miä e̮лe̮n paĺĺo vanapi teitä ('I'm much older than you.') , ke̮rke̮apaлt lidnā ('higher than the town') .
  10. Partitive is used with certain postpositions and prepositions e.g. enne se̮tā ('before the war') .


  1. Genitive serves as an attribute of a (following) noun e.g. poigā tširja ('a letter from (my) son'), se on sigā suku ("They are pig's relatives" = immoral folks), tševǟllä on lintui лauлu iлoza ("In spring the singing of birds is beautiful.").
    1. In lyrics an attribute should not necessarily precede the noun, what it is qualifying e.g. pilvi e̮лi tuллu taivā (" A cloud of the sky had came .").
  2. Genitive may serve as an independent possessive noun e.g. se e̮лi minū (" It was mine ."), štop ̮ se e̮лe̮is̄   tämǟ (" It should be his .") vs. minūn ̮ e̮ma ("mine"), лahzē̮n ̮ e̮ma ("something belonging to a child").
  3. Genitive marks the agent (in an ergative construction) e.g. f j o k л a   on karū revittü ("Fyokla has been ripped by a bear ."), izǟ tuллe̮za kotōsē̮ ("The time, when father comes home .").
  4. Genitive may have dative functions (like in Finnish ) e.g. ke̮ikkī piti e̮ллa (" Everybody had to be (there)."), kumpa sinū näüttīp ̮ pare̮p ke̮ikkia ("Which one (of those two) looks the best for you ."), ohto sinū on savve̮a se̮tkua ("It's enough for you to knead the clay !"), minū be̮лe̮ kuhe̮ mennä (" I have nowhere to go .").
  5. Genitive marks a total object of a clause e.g. sōje̮tin ("I warmed up the water ").


See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 21-26
  2. Laanest, Arvo: Sissejuhatus läänemeresoome keeltesse, Tallinn 1975. p. 93
  3. Словарь водского языка - Vadja keele sõnaraamat. v.3. p.233
  4. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 25
  5. Ariste, Paul: Vadja muistendeid. Emakeele Seltsi toimetised 12. Tallinn, 1977. p.8
  6. Словарь водского языка - Vadja keele sõnaraamat. v.5 p.260
  7. Ariste, Paul: Vadja muistendeid. Emakeele Seltsi toimetised 12. Tallinn, 1977. p.7
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