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Old Armenian Nasal Verbs: Archaisms and Innovations

On May 2nd, Petr Kocharov succesfully defended his doctoral thesis and graduated. The Leiden University Centre for Linguistics congratulates Petr on this great result.

Petr Kocharov
02 May 2019
Leiden University Repository


The prehistory of Old Armenian reveals a strong impact of language contact and internal drift resulting in an intricate combination of Indo-European archaisms and inner-Armenian innovations. The dissertation contributes to the study of such phenomena by examining a set of Old Armenian verbal classes that can be securely connected to their Indo-European prototypes, namely, the so-called nasal classes with a dental nasal phoneme in the affixes marking the imperfective stem of their paradigms. Traditionally, the comparative historical grammar of Old Armenian has been concerned mainly with formal morphological correspondences, whereas the lexico-syntactic categories behind the morphological changes have been largely neglected. In the present dissertation, the evolution of the verbal classes from Proto-Indo-European to Old Armenian is examined according to a set of formal and semantic parameters including the morphological structure of the verbal paradigm, the argument structure, and the aspectual features. In particular, the dissertation describes Proto-Armenian changes of transitivity marking, analogical spread of the verbal suffixes based on aspectual meanings, the direction of root levelling over the verbal paradigm, and paradigmatic types of verbal classes that can be postulated for Proto-Armenian and dialectal Proto-Indo-European.

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