On Sat, 29 Jan 2005 11:32:08 +0000, squilluncus
>How is this casename composed? Other casenames have Latin ppp stems
>in them from verbs nominare, vocare, accusare, dare, auferre, (col)
>locare, gignere ... But I know of no verb ergare.
>Is it formed from the preposition erga, towards, vis-à-vis?
>Or is it Gr. ergon?
>Does somebody know who coined this term and when?
According to Dixon, "Ergativity", p. 3:
"It seems that the first use of the term 'ergative' (based
upon the Greek <ergon> 'work, deed') was by Dirr (1912) in a
description, written in Russian, of the Dagestanian language
Rutul. However, the term did not come into general
circulation until the publication of Dirr's (1928) survey,
written in German, of thirty-five Caucasian languages(1)
(1) See Seely (1977) for an exemplary historical account of
the use of 'ergative' and related labels."
That would be:
Dirr, A. 1912 'Rutul'skij jazyk', Sbornik materialov dlja
opisanija plemen Kavkaza 42:3, 1-204, Tbilisi.
Dirr, A. 1928 'Einfuehrung in das Studium der kaukasischen
Seely, J. 1977 'An ergative historiography',
Historiographica Linguistica 4, 191-206.
Miguel Carrasquer Vidal