Re: [tied] Re: o-grade thoughts

From: Piotr Gasiorowski
Message: 45919
Date: 2006-08-30

On 2006-08-30 21:21, tgpedersen wrote:

> We agree that reduplication means plurality, iteration or
> intensity.


> In the classical theory, the perfect is reduplicated.


> Where is the sense in that? No plurality, iteration or
> intensity here.

Oettinger, for one, derives the prefect from what he calls the
"proto-intensive", pointing to formally parallel Anatolian verbs with
iterative meanings, cf. Hitt. wek-zi 'wishes' (mi-conj.) vs. we-wakk-i
'keeps wishing' (hi-conjugation). According to him, the functions of the
perfect as known from Greek or Vedic are an extra-Anatolian innovation.
The perfect has endings virtually identical with those of the archaic
stage of the PIE middle (i.e. the "low activity" voice) -- a natural
choice for a category conveying stative meanings. If a stem like
*me(n)-món- originally meant 'think (of sth.) all the time', the shift
to 'remember, keep in mind' is not difficult.

Middle endings normally cause a shift of accent and vowel reduction in
ablauting stems. The fact that the perfect retains an accented full root
vowel in the singular is therefore a little surprising. Thematic
reduplicated aorists, which are probably old middles of their athematic
counterparts (with reshaped endings), have the structure represented by
*wé-ukW-e/o- (from pre-reduction **we(kW)-wokW-é). For some reason the
"proto-perfect" has resisted the accent shift and preserved the vocalism
of active-voice intensives. One possible explanation of that is that the
middle endings were substituted for active ones relatively late, when
accent-based ablaut rules were no longer fully productive. The purpose
of the operation was to turn intensives into verbs describing the effect
of an action thoroughly carried out. So something like *gWH(e)n-gWHón-t
'he kept striking, again and again' (pl. gWHén-gWHn-n.t) was converted
into *gWHe-gWHón-e 'he has killed (as a result of striking hard)' (pl.