IE *-su and the Nostratic "equational" marker *-n :)

From: Glen Gordon
Message: 4758
Date: 2000-11-16

First, for Mark O, I have the following phonemes in mind.

H1 = /?/
H2 = /x/ or /h./
H3 = /xW/ or /h.W/

I would like to change my mind about *ti-un and *ti-kun for the origin of
the Kartvelian pronouns *c^wen and *tkwen. I notice that I've mixed
pronominal sets (blah!) and it should be revised, with an added plural
ending *-i which I forgot, to *ti-muni and *ti-kuni. Thus preKartvelian
*ti-muni becomes something like Early Kartvelian *t^emeni (> *c^wen). We
then arrive at a suspicious case of Early Kartvelian intervocalic *m
becoming *w.

Another case would be: Early Kartvelian *xamicte "five" (< Sem. *xamis^tu) >
Kartvelian *xwict-. Then we have TWO cases of intervocalic *m > *w. Teehee!

BTW, I think the Nostratic pronominal suffix *-n might have been originally
used in sentences conveying an equation requiring the verb "to be" like:

*An kahuni.
"That's a dog"

As opposed to

*A kahuni.
"That dog"

Anyways, to the subject at hand...

>I realize that this analysis perforce leads to the conclusion that
> *-su likewise comes from *-sw-i (Grk. -si), leading thus to
> *-es < *-esw, explaining Arm. -k`, etc. etc., which you may
>not be prepared to accept.

Oh Miguel, are you not aware of T. Burrow and "The Sanskrit Language"? If I
remember correctly, his analysis of *-su is that it simply derives from the
plural ending *-es plus *-u, a "locative" suffix that arose purely by
analogy from *u-terminating collective inanimates plus the fact that many
adverbs, enclitics and the like, which end in *-u (or for that matter *-i as
in *bhi or *dhi) just happen to have a locative sense attributed to them.
The original locative case was unmarked and therefore identical with the
nominative (except for the added postfix like *bhi or *dhi). Etruscan has
/-thi/ for the locative which corresponds nicely to IE *dhi. External to
IndoTyrrhenian, the locative case is varied in Steppe languages.

So, the IE locative plural would have only ended with *-es like the
nominative plural at first. The suffixes *-i and *-u were tacked on very
late in the development of IE. This is why I think that reconstructing them
for a preIE stage is proposterous. Strangely, you refer to this endingless
locative in the preceding paragraph but are not fully aware of it.

>My analysis of the pronouns brings the two closer together, but I
>realize the whole thing may be hard to follow/swallow. Maybe I should
>try to explain it better.

Your *swesw > *yus- seems to explain it just fine... >:)

- gLeN

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