Votian/Potential

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Potential mood [1][edit]

Person

Singular

Plural

1. -ne-n -ne-mmak
2. -ne-t -ne-ttak
3. -ne-p -ne-vat

Negative potential:

Person

Singular

Plural

1. eni -ne emmak -ne
2. eti -ne ettak -ne
3. epi -ne evat -ne


At Ariste's time potential could be found almost nowhere but in runic songs . Even though Ahlqvist described it in his grammar as an ordinary feature [2] and gave us a full inflectional paradigm [3].

The inflectional paradigm above is constructed following the example of modern Finnish.

Please fix it if it does not match the one of Ahlqvist.


Morphophonology[edit]

  • The morpheme -ne takes a consonant stem if possible e.g. tuлne̮n ('Perhaps I shall come.') vs. tuл ('Come!').

Ahlqvist does not mark the alternation of -ne-, -ne̮-   ( depending in vowel harmony ) e.g. sȫ-nen ('Perhaps I shall eat.'), jōnen ('Perhaps I shall drink.'), wõttanen ('Perhaps I shall take.'), wajeltanen ('Perhaps I shall change.')


In Votic runic songs the potential marker may be even doubled -nene- .


Phonological history [4][edit]

The potential marker -ne- is represented in other Finno-Ugric languages , but in other branches of this language group it may be used for conditional mood. It's out of active use in most of Baltic Finnic languages - except Finnish , South Estonian and some Karelian dialects .


Usage[edit]

Potential may express

  • (future or present) expectations - e.g. nen ('Perhaps I shall drink.')


Votic potential is already substituted by constructions of ehtši / Kukkuzi (and Luuditsa ): ehki ("perhaps"): [5] e.g. johzamma ehki sinne ("Perhaps we should run there." Kukkuzi ), miä arvān, ehtši tämä tue̮b ōme̮n̄   ("I suppose she will probably come tomorrow." Luuditsa ), ehtši jumal lähetep läsivelle tervüs̄   ("May be God will send health to the sick one." Jõgõperä ).



Other Finnic dialects [6][edit]

The first person of singular

The first person of plural

The second person of singular

The second person of plural

The third person of singular

The third person of plural


Finnish potential may be substituted by constructions of ehkä ~ kai ("perhaps"): [7] e.g. Tietänet, että hän on jo kotona. ~ Tiedät kai, että hän on jo kotona. ("You probably know, that he is at home already."), Muistanette, mikä hänen nimensä on. ~ Ehkä muistatte, mikä hänen nimensä on. ("You probably remember, what's her name.").


Indefinite potential [8][edit]

Mood

Negation verb

Main verb ending

Potential -ttane's'
Potential negation epi -ttane's'


At Ariste's time indefinite potential could be found nowhere but in runic songs . Even though Ahlqvist described it in his grammar as an ordinary feature [9] e.g. (Ahlqvist's) kōrittanes ('Perhaps somebody will peel.'), ihottanes ('Perhaps somebody will grind.'), ujuttanes ('Perhaps somebody will swim.').


Future tense [10][edit]

Person

Singular

Plural

1. lee-ne-n lee-ne-mmak
2. lee-ne-t lee-ne-ttak
3. lee-ne-p lee-ne-vat

Negative future:

Person

Singular

Plural

1. eni lee-ne emmak lee-ne
2. eti lee-ne ettak lee-ne
3. epi lee-ne evat lee-ne


The category of grammatical tense in Baltic Finnic languages is rather disputable as the whole grammar of those languages is created under influence of Indo-European linguists and then taught at every school, which has unrecoverably ruined the original linguistic intincts of the native speakers.

Actually the so called present tense is just an unmarked verbal paradigm, which may represent an action happening in present, future or even past time as well as a condition , proposal or order .

Thus processes taking place in future are usually expressed by present tense e.g. kui tämä tuлe̮p  ̮ kotōse̮, eittäp  ̮ ke̮haллā makāmāsē̮   ('When he'll come home, he will go to sleep immediately.'), nätilpǟn tuлe̮mma teilē ('We shall come to visit you on Sunday.').


Nevertheless Dmitri Tsvetkov, the first native ( Jõgõperä ) Votic speaker to write a Votic grammar [11], denying Russian and German influences claims to a sovereign right of future tense for both Votic and Estonian languages opposing Estonian writer Ernst Peterson [12], who calls barbarisms constructions like mina saan küpsma ("I shall mature." ~ German Ich werde reifen. ), while an Estonian would say "Ma küpsen", "küll ma küpsen" or "eks ma küpse".


Yet the simple future of Tsvetkov's grammar coincides with present tense [13] again, but he describes also a composed future , composed of future forms of e̮лe̮ma auxiliary verb + an infinitive of a main verb.

  1. I did not find any examples of such a construction in his book. Instead of that he uses another auxiliary verb ne̮ise̮ma + ma infinitive of a main verb e.g. ne̮ise̮mm' лauлo ('We shall sing.' composed future) [14] , emm' ne̮ise̮iz лauлo ('We should not sing.' conditional future) [15] .
  2. Still there exist future forms of e̮лe̮ma auxiliary verb + past participle of a main verb [16] e.g. mm tšüzüttü ('We shall be asked.' passive future).
  3. And there exist future forms of e̮лe̮ma auxiliary verb + ta infinitive of a main verb in Votic grammar of Ariste [17] e.g. sinū tavākā liep  ̮ tauge̮ta ('One of your habits should die.' future obligation), lieb  ̮ men mettsǟ obahkā ('We should go to forest to pick mushrooms.' future proposal Lempola ).


  1. Ariste in his grammar describes those future forms of e̮лe̮ma auxiliary verb as forms of a future auxiliary verb lid́d́ä [18] e.g. i siл̄   väd  ̮ лahze̮D ('You too will have children.' future expectation), m a t́ ō   ku kazvab, B  ̮ mokoma niku emä ('When Matyo will grow up, she will be like her mother.' future expectation).
    1. Ariste interpretes the future forms of e̮лe̮ma (~ lid́d́ä ) auxiliary verb + past participle of a main verb as futurum exactum e.g. kui miä n tšüzünnü, sis siä anna ("If I shall ask, then you give me!"), siллē̮  ke̮ik̄   p   ̮ prostittu ("Everything will be forgiven you!" indefinite voice ), leiväd  ̮ vät  ̮ senelē лavvaлē̮  pantu ("Bread will be layed on this table." indefinite voice ).
  2. He also notes constructions of auxiliary verb ne̮isa + ma infinitive of a main verb e.g. miä nē̮n patoi tetše ('I shall make pottery.' future expectation). kui mēt  ̮ kotōsē̮   , sinua isä tunte̮ eb ne̮ize̮ ('When you shall go home, your father will not recognize you.' future expectation) [19] .
  3. Moreover he describes constructions of auxiliary verb ve̮ttā + ta infinitive of a main verb e.g. miä ävitin se̮rmuhsē̮  ; tšen ve̮tab  ̮ leü ? ('I lost my ring; who could find it?' future expectation) [20] .
  • And future may be expressed by total object with present tense e.g. лe̮ikkān si ('I shall slaughter a pig.' genitive object, future confirmation) vs. лe̮ikkān si ('I am slaughtering a pig.' partitive object, present continuous); tšünnättä pe̮ллō ('You will plough the field.' genitive object, future confirmation) vs. tšünnättä pe̮лtua ('You are ploughing.' partitive object, present continuous); e̮samma ope̮zē̮   ('We shall buy a horse.' genitive object, future confirmation) vs. e̮samma ove̮ssa ('We are buying a horse.' partitive object, present continuous) [21] .


Usage [22][edit]

lee-tak may express also

  1. obligation - e.g. Lempola dialect lieb minū manaχann  ̮ e̮ллa ke̮ik̄   itšä ("I must be a monk all my lifetime.")
  2. indefinite relative pronouns - e.g. siä ku b lie tahod mennä tšäümǟ enellēz nuorikke̮ata ("You probably want to go wooing.") [23], Savvokkala dialect tšel   ̮ p tuli   n a r v a s̄   ("Somebody came from Narva.")


Dialectal alternatives [24][edit]

Both of these auxiliary verbs may be contracted.

  1. ne̮ise̮ma / ne̮isa (nòis-tak) : ne̮ise̮vaD / nē̮vaD , ne̮ize̮B / nē̮B etc. [25]
  2. e̮лe̮ma / lid́d́ä (lee-tak) : lēneväD / lēväD , lēneD / lēD etc. [26]


  • Votic of Ingria
    • Eastern Votic dialect
      • lee-tak auxiliary verb is pronounced lēäG e.g. eb k kuhe̮p pannaG ("There will be no place to put it to."), miä tänä vōna läz̆zī, a tuлavōna tah̆hō e̮ллaG tervēnä, äG tervēnä ("This year I'm sick, but the next year I want to be well.")
      • A metanalytic morpheme -k has been added to the potential-future negation ettak lee-ne > ettak lee-k e.g. ettäg  ̮ lēG ('You won't be.'). The suffix -k is probably borrowed from the present tense negation here, where it was a present tense marker [27].
    • Western Votic dialects
      • Hill dialect:
        • Kattila dialect
          • d läsivä terve vōsi ("You will be sick the whole year long.")
        • Lempola dialect
          • lieneb raute̮ne̮   , a taivaz lieb vahtšine̮   ("The earth becomes iron and the sky becomes copper.")
      • Valley dialect:
        • Mati dialect
          • lee-tak auxiliary verb is pronounced lid́d́ä e.g. mill lehmä nellättä vazikkā B ("My cow will have a calf for the fourth time.")
        • Savvokkala dialect
          • tšel  ̮ p tuli   n a r v a s̄   ("Somebody came from Narva.")
      • Vaipooli
        • Luuditsa dialect
          • lee-tak auxiliary verb is pronounced lēvvä e.g. d läsivä terve vōsi ("You will be sick the whole year long."), kassin piäB vvä üvä sarka, üvä koto ("Here should be a good field, a good household.")
        • Jõgõperä dialect
          • kase pāri jo on tšihle̮Z, tšīre vvä pulme̮D ("This pair is engaged already, there will be weddings soon.")
        • Liivtšülä dialect
          • elä märnä, b ohto märnǟ ("Don't shriek, you have shouted enough.")
  • Kukkuzi dialect
    • kai tahot t́śītǟ, ni kīrē vana D ("If you want to know everything, then you'll olden quickly.")


Other Finnic dialects [28][edit]

The first person of singular


The first person of plural


The second person of singular


The second person of plural


The third person of singular


The third person of plural


In Finnish grammar such constructions are interpreted as potential of auxiliary verb olla ~ Votic: e̮ллa even though they may express future expectations as well e.g. Hän palannee huomenna.   ("He'll probably come tomorrow." ), Suutuneeko isäsi tästä?   ("Will your father get angry of this?" ~ Tuleeko isäsi ehkä suuttumaan tästä?).

Finnish potential marker -ne- may be omitted exactly like the Votic one:

  • lienevät / lievät , lienet / liet etc.

Finnish does have even more regular potential of auxiliary verb olla , but it's seldom used:

  • lienevät / ollevat , lienet / ollet etc.


See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 82
  2. Ahlqvist A. Wotisk grammatik jemte språkprof och ordförteckning. — Helsinki, 1856. p.
  3. Laanest, Arvo: Sissejuhatus läänemeresoome keeltesse, Tallinn 1975. p.155
  4. Laanest, Arvo: Sissejuhatus läänemeresoome keeltesse, Tallinn 1975. p.155
  5. Словарь водского языка - Vadja keele sõnaraamat. v.1. p.184
  6. Laanest, Arvo: Sissejuhatus läänemeresoome keeltesse, Tallinn 1975. p.149, 163-181
  7. Alvre, Paul: Soome keeleõpetuse reeglid, Valgus, 1969. p.129-130
  8. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 84
  9. Ahlqvist A. Wotisk grammatik jemte språkprof och ordförteckning. — Helsinki, 1856. p.
  10. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 76
  11. Tsvetkov, Dmitri: Vadja keele grammatika. Tallinn, 2008. p.72
  12. Peterson , Ernst : "Algharjutused Eesti keele õigekirjutuse ja kirjaseadmise õppimiseks. Kaheksas trükk." Tallinn, 1921. p.93
  13. Tsvetkov, Dmitri: Vadja keele grammatika. Tallinn, 2008. p.72
  14. Tsvetkov, Dmitri: Vadja keele grammatika. Tallinn, 2008. p.66
  15. Tsvetkov, Dmitri: Vadja keele grammatika. Tallinn, 2008. p.74
  16. Tsvetkov, Dmitri: Vadja keele grammatika. Tallinn, 2008. p.88
  17. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 79
  18. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 75, 78-80
  19. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 79
  20. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 79
  21. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 79
  22. Словарь водского языка - Vadja keele sõnaraamat. v.3. p.76-77
  23. Alava V. Vatjalaisia häätapoja. Häälauluja ja itkuja. — Helsinki, 1909. (Suomi IV) p.10
  24. Словарь водского языка - Vadja keele sõnaraamat. v.3. p.76-77
  25. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 79
  26. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 76
  27. Ariste, Paul Vadja keele grammatika. Tartu, 1948. p. 89
  28. Alvre, Paul: Soome keeleõpetuse reeglid, Valgus, 1969. p.129-130
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