In a message dated 02/06/03 16:55:08 GMT Daylight Time, mcv@... writes:

>>> More is kown about the Etruscan noun.  According to Beekes '91, the
>>> following forms are found:
>>>          a-stems   e-stems   i-stems   u-stems   C-stems
>>> ...
>> This presentation is unnecessarily complicated.
>> ...
>> There is no need to invoke different stems,
>> ...
> Yes, there is a need: to show the umlaut of the a-stems and u-stems
> in the s-ablative -es (*-a-(s)is), -uis (*u-(s)is).

But you do agree that many words which end in a consonant
in the unmarked form of the noun in late Etruscan derive
from words that ended in a vowel in early Etruscan, which
simplifies the paradigm enormously, and which we can
understand by internally reconstructing Etruscan, and do
not need to link this with any phenomenon in IE in order
to explain it, no?

Beekes' scheme is mostly taken from from Helmut Rix's,
including his proposal of a supposed "ablative (2)" form.
This proposal, however, is not generally accepted. The
example Rix gives for the ending -uis is /veluis/ which is
a hapax legomen, appearing only in TLE 323, an inscription
of a fairly late date, compared with over 90 attestations
altogether for /velus/ and /veluS/. I would say that the
evidence for their suggestion is therefore a bit shaky.
The Etruscans did not have spelling checkers, and the
possibility that /veluis/ is simply an alloform of
/velus/ or /veluS/ is much more likely.  

>>> There are two genitives, one in -s', the other  in -l.
>>> ...
>>> The genitive in *-si can be equated with the IE genitive in *-Vs(i),
>>> and with the Luwian adjectival suffix -assi-, which is used instead of
>>> the genitive in Luwian.
>>> The genitive in *-la is reminiscent of the Hittite pronominal genitive
>>> in -e:l (amme:l "mine", tue:l "your", ke:l "of this", kue:l "whose?").
>> Except that we can't reconstruct these two genitives as having
>> had this role in Etruscan in an earlier period. Why would
>> anybody want to have two genitives, unless, at least originally,
>> there was a functional difference between them?
> The Etruscan genitives look like being of adjectival origin.
> English has mannish (with -s') and manly (with -l-), hasn't it?

The words 'reminiscent' and 'look like' are the operative
ones. Yes, they do look like endings which occur in IE
languages. But to attribute a genetic relationship with IE
for them would fly in the face of the fact that an ergative
or agentive role for *-(V)si would be indicated in an
earlier stage of Etruscan by internal reconstruction, and
dative for *-al(V), and not genitive roles, so there is not
necessarily a connection at all. The adjectival role of -na
is further evidence that earlier Etruscan had genitive -n
(and not -s or -l). Also, Etruscan does not give the
impression of being rich in adjectives or adjectivalising
morphology, except for the relatively late use of -s and -l
in proper names. So if that's what you mean by adjectival
origin, then o.k., but that doesn't link their roles in
early Etruscan with anything, and if it doesn't do that
then the link cannot be genetic and must be due to
chance or borrowing, whatever the similarities there
might appear to be between the roles of these endings
in later Etruscan and anything else that looks like them
in IE. By contrast, ergative -s and genitive -n fit in well
with a possible relationship with Hurro-Urartian.


Ed Robertson