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Negated Participles in Rgvedic Sanskrit and Proto-Indo-European

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In Rgvedic Sanskrit present participles built to transitive roots regularly follow their corresponding finite forms in relation to argument structure. Of those participles whose argument structure differs from that of the corresponding finite forms (most often because they lack the ability to govern an accusative object), some may have originated as adjectives or may have become adjectivized. A particular group of present participles in the Rgveda which tend to remain intransitive even when formed to transitive roots are negated participles, i.e. participles compounded with the negative prefix á(n)-. This is explained by assuming that the combining of a participle with the negative prefix was originally a process of adjectival derivation. Support for this hypothesis comes from a consideration of the two forms of the negated present participle of the verb √as 'be', namely ásant- and āsant-.

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