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Thoughts On The Origin Of The Latin And Indo-European Nominal Declension

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Chapter Summary

This chapter proposes for the Proto-Indo-European language and the observed phonological and morphological developments in the history of the Baltic languages. The replacement of a dative by an accusative is merely an example of a more or less semantic case becoming a more or less automatic syntactic case. One notes, e.g., in contemporary Lithuanian a tendency for the dative case to be replaced by the accusative, thus, e.g., the verb atstovaut 'to represent', according to the normative grammars, requires the dative case. On the other hand, there is a tendency for the accusative case to replace the dative in popular writing. The interesting fact here is that the new Baltic illative case in -n which seems to have originally primarily denoted object of motion has come to have meanings which are now commonly associated with the accusative, instrumental and locative cases.

Keywords: atstovaut; Baltic languages; Lithuanian; Proto-Indo-European language



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