Universiteit Leiden

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Leonid Kulikov


Dr. L. Kulikov
+31 71 527 2727

Fields of interest

     •     Vedic and classical Sanskrit, Vedic studies 
     •     Syntactic and morphological typology (especially typology of verbal categories) 
     •     Historical linguistics and diachronic typology 
     •     Maldives (language, history, culture)


  • Project “A grammar of the Rgveda”
  • Project “Valence-changing categories in Indo-Aryan: a diachronic typological approach (syntactic database)”
  • Project “Labile verbs in a diachronic typological perspective“
  • Translation and linguistic analysis of Book XIX of the Atharvaveda
  • “Indo-European Case and Argument Structure in a Typological Perspective” (affiliated member of the project supervised by Dr. J. Barðdal, University of Bergen; see  http://org.uib.no/iecastp/IECASTP/)
  • Project “Case Cross-linguistically” (2002-2004; see  http://www.ru.nl/optimalcommunication/projects/case/)
  • Indo-Aryan inherited lexicon (etymological database)

Teaching activities

Courses taught at Leiden University 
Typology of voice and valency-changing categories (with M. Mous) 
Typology (part of the course of M. Klamer) 
Historical Grammar of Sanskrit 
Vedic Sanskrit  
Linguistic Typology (part of the course  Approaches to Diversity

Invited seminars 
Diachronische Typologie (one week), Universität Salzburg (FB Linguistik) (March 2010) 
Historical Typology and Vedic Syntax (one week), University of Palermo/Agrigento (June 2009)  
Elements of the Vedic grammar; Reading of selected Vedic texts (two weeks), Uppsala University (May 2009) 
Introduction to Vedic Sanskrit (two weeks), 3rd Leiden Summer School in Languages and Linguistics (August, 2008) 
Fundamentals of the Vedic grammar. Reading of selected early and middle Vedic texts (two weeks), Russian State University for Humanities (RGGU), Moscow (in Russian) (April 2007) 

Courses taught at Göttingen University 
Lektüre ausgewählter Lieder des Rgvedaund Elemente der Vedischen Grammatik 
Sanskrit-Lektüre (Sanskrit II) 

Course taught at University of Nijmegen 
Inleiding tot de Historische Taalkunde [ Elements of Historical Linguistics] (part of the course  Introduction to Cognitive Linguistics

Courses taught at the Russian State University forHumanities [RGGU] ( Moscow):  
Introduction to the History of the Classical Indian Literature 
Introduction to Linguistic Typology

Curriculum Vitae

post-doc at Leiden University, Dept. of Comparative Indo-European Linguistics / Leiden University Centre of Linguistics, Project “Valence-changing categories in Indo-Aryan: a diachronic typological approach”  

post-doc (Humboldt-Stipendiat) at Göttingen University, Project “A grammar of the Rgveda” 

post-doc at the University of Nijmegen at the PIONIER-Project “Case cross-linguistically” 

post-doctoral project “Editing the Indo-Aryan etymological database” at Leiden University, Dept. of Comparative Linguistics (see http://www.hum.leiden.edu/lucl/research/research-projects/indo-european-etymological-dictionary.html) various post-doctoral projects at Leiden University, Dept. of Comparative Linguistics.   

Teaching/Research Assistant (AIO) at Leiden University (Dept. of Comparative Linguistics), topic of the PhD thesis: “The Vedic  -ya-presents”, supervisor: Prof. A. Lubotsky. PhD defence: 23 May 2001.   

Teaching Sanskrit and Indian Literature at the Russian State University for Humanities [RGGU] (Moscow), Faculty of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics.   

Research Fellow at the Institute of Oriental Studies in Moscow, Department of Languages; Secretary of the same Department.   

post-graduate student at the Institute of Oriental Studies in Moscow, topic of the thesis: “The Causative in Sanskrit”; supervisor: Prof. T.Ja. Elizarenkova. Candidate Degree defence: November 1989.   

student at Moscow State University, Faculty of Arts, Dept. of structural and applied linguistics (OSiPL), M.A. degree obtained in 1986 (M.A. thesis [diploma] topic: “Given/new and definite/indefinite opposition in Russian”; supervisor: Prof. A.E. Kibrik). 

Other academic activities

Associate Editor of  Journal of Historical Linguistics (Benjamins, Amsterdam) 

member of the Editorial Board of  Acta Orientalia Vilnensia (Vilnius, Lithuania)  

editing papers on the historical phonology of classical Armenian by F.H.H. Kortlandt and R.S.P. Beekes (  Armeniaca ; published by Caravan Books, Ann Arbor, 2003)  

organization of the Linguistic Olympics for secondary school students at the Faculty of Arts of Leiden University (I-V Leidse Taalkunde Olympiade, III International Linguistic Olympics)  

member of the Editorial Staff of the “IIAS [International Institute of Asian Studies] Newsletter” (Leiden, IIAS): editor/correspondent for Russia and CIS 

Organization of conferences and workshops

"Subject and transitivity in Indo-European and beyond: A diachronic typological perspective" at the 43rd annual Meeting of Societas Linguistica Europaea Vilnius, 2-3 September 2010 (with Ilya Seržant); see  http://www.flf.vu.lt/sle2010/first_call

Workshop “Typology of labile verbs: Focus on diachrony” (as part of the 19th International Symposium  on  Theoretical & Applied Linguistics), Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (with Nikolaos Lavidas); see  http://www.enl.auth.gr/symposium19/

Workshop “Diachronic typology of voice and valency-changing categories”, University of Turku (Åbo Akademi University, Finland) (with Seppo Kittilä); see  http://www.ling.helsinki.fi/sky/tapahtumat/context/context.shtml and http://www.ling.helsinki.fi/sky/tapahtumat/context/workshop_schedule.pdf  (conference papers, together with some additional materials, will appear at John Benjamins, Amsterdam, in  Studies in language companion series

Workshop “Case, Valency and Transitivity”, University of Nijmegen (with Andrej Malchukov & Peter de Swart) (conference papers are published in 2006 at John Benjamins, Amsterdam, as  Studies in language companion series, vol. 77  

First Conference on theoretical linguistics at the Russian State University for Humanities (RGGU), Moscow (conference materials are published as:  Tezisy pervoj konferencii po teoretičeskoj lingvistike. Moscow: RGGU) 

Field work experience

Maldivian [Indo-Aryan] (individual work with a native speaker in Moscow)  

Summer linguistic expeditions organized by the Moscow State University under the guidance of Prof. A.E. Kibrik:  

Tuvan [Turkic], research topic: “Causatives”;  

Abkhaz [North-West Caucasian], research topic: “Clause union constructions and masdar agreement”;  

Svan [Kartvelian / South Caucasian], research topic: “Causative, voice, and verbal morphology” 

Talysh [Iranian] (individual work with a native speaker in Moscow)  

Summer linguistic expedition organized by the Russian State University for Humanities under the guidance of Prof. E.A. Xelimskij, research topic: “Verbal derivation in Nganasan [Samoyed language family] and Dolgan [Turkic language family]”


Abraham, W. & Kulikov, L. (eds) (1999)  Tense-aspect, transitivity and causativity. Essays in honour of Vladimir Nedjalkov. (Studies in Language Companion Series; 50). Amsterdam: Benjamins

Kulikov, L.I. (2001) Causatives. In: M. Haspelmath et al. (eds)  Language typology and language universalsAn international handbook. Vol. 2. Berlin etc.: Walter de Gruyter, p. 886-898. 

Kulikov, L.I. (2005) Reduplication in the Vedic verb: Indo-European inheritance, analogy and iconicity. In: B. Hurch (ed.)  Studies on reduplication. Berlin: Mouton, p. 431-454. 

Kulikov, L.; Malchukov, A. & Swart, P. de (eds) (2006)  Case, Valency and Transitivity. Amsterdam: Benjamins. ( Studies in Language Companion Series; 77). 

Kulikov, L.I. (2006) The Sanskrit  -yet-optative: A formation not yet recorded in Sanskrit grammars.  Wiener Zeitschrift für die Kunde Südasiens 50: 27-68. 

Kulikov, L.I. (2007) The reflexive pronouns in Vedic: A diachronic and typological perspective.  Lingua 117/8: 1412-1433. 

Kulikov, L.I. (2007) Reciprocal constructions in Vedic. In: V. P. Nedjalkov et al. (eds)  Reciprocal constructions. Vol. 2. Amsterdam: Benjamins, p. 709-738. 

Kulikov, L.I. (2009) Evolution of case systems. In: A. Malchukov & A. Spencer (eds),  The Oxford Handbook of Case. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 439-457. 

Kulikov, L.I. (2010) Voice typology. In: J.J. Song (ed.),  The Oxford Handbook of Linguistic Typology. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 368-398


  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Leiden Univ Centre for Linguistics


  • No relevant ancillary activities
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