On Sun, 29 Sep 2002 16:35:31 +0200 (MET DST), Jens Elmegaard Rasmussen
<jer@...> wrote:

>On Sun, 29 Sep 2002, Miguel Carrasquer wrote:
>> In connection with this, a question: why is the acc.pl. in Lithuanian
>> subject to
>> Saussure's law?  Where does the acute intonation come from... the
>> a:-stems?
>It was restored: o-stems had IE *-o:ns, so a-stems got *-a:ns, both having
>acute, in Lith. as well as in Greek.

Let's go a bit slower, because I don't quite follow. OK, there is a tendency in
Greek o- and a:-stems for the casu:s recti to have acute (mikrós, mikrón;
mikroí, mikroús;; mikrá, mikrán; mikraí, mikrás), and the oblique cases
circumflex (mikroû, mikrôi; mikrôn, mikroîs; mikrâs, mikrâi; mikrôn, mikraîs).
But that is because the oblique cases are mostly contractions (*-o-syo > *-oio,
*-o-ei, *-o-om, [dat.pl. *-o:is]; *-a:-os, *-a:-ei, *-a:-om [dat.pl.
analogical]), and the nom/acc/voc. forms are not (*-o-s, *-o-m, *-o-i, *-o-ns;
*-a:, *-a:-m, [nom.pl. analogical], *-a:-ns).

Can the Greek acute be equated just like that with the Lithuanian acute? One
might say they are almost each other's opposites: in Greek, one has acute unless
there are reasons for a circumflex (contractions, lengthened long vowels,
etc.)... In Lithuanian, one has a circumflex, unless there are reasons to have
an acute (laryngeals, Winter-lengthening, etc.)...

So *how* exactly is it relevant that Greek has an acute in the nom. and acc.
plural? I'll admit right away that the match is indeed remarkable (not so in
the singular, however), especially if as I remember the Lith. adjective, unlike
the noun in -a~i, is subject to Saussure's law in the nom.pl. -ì as well...

>The IE acc.pl af *aH2-stems appears
>to have had no nasal, cf. Sanskrit -a:s, Goth. -o:s and even Latvian -as
>for both nom.pl and acc.pl. This must reflect some peculiar development of
>the underlying *-eH2-m-s, perhaps akin to the treatment of -V:ms as in
>Sanskrit ma:s 'meat' (stem ma:ms-) and the m-stem nom.sg seen in Skt.
>ks.a:s (Av. zå) 'earth' and Av. ziiå 'winter'. The phenomenon goes under
>the name of Stang's Law, but Stang actually did not express any strong
>faith in the idea (Kurylowicz Festschrift of 1965). The merger or
>near-merger of the nom.pl and the acc.pl in the a-stems had the funny
>effect in Slavic that the restored accusative moved into the nom.pl, and
>from there also into the homophonous (or near-homophonous) gen.sg, which
>also both became -y with a-stems and -(j)eN with ja-stems.

But in Slavic the acc.pl. is not acute, judging by golová, gólovy.

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal