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Open Access The Genitive-Accusative of the Personal Pronouns in Old Church Slavonic

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The Genitive-Accusative of the Personal Pronouns in Old Church Slavonic

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In those Slavic languages that retain both a case system and clitic pronominal forms two case-related phenomena partially overlap: (1) Masculine animate nouns and gendered pronouns display differential object marking with sensitivity to the animacy hierarchy. Some subset of these forms with the highest score on the animacy hierarchy show the original genitive form instead of the expected accusative in contexts that otherwise call for that case, the so-called genitive-accusative. (2) Personal pronouns also show instances of the genitive for the accusative but with important differences. In languages with a clitic~stressed contrast for oblique pronominals the accusative forms generally are continued as clitics and the genitive forms as stressed. It is unlikely that the nominal and personal-pronominal gen.-acc. are unrelated. On the other hand, the case choice for nouns and gendered pronouns is sensitive to the animacy hierarchy, but for the personal pronouns the choice between genitive and accusative is phono-semantic. Whatever semantic structure evokes the stressed forms leads to the production of the gen.-acc. I suggest that gen.-acc. began with o-stem masculine personal names, the most prototypical expression of the semantic class [+human, +male, +free, +definite] and was extended to the interrogative pronoun (gen.-acc. kogo). The interrogative pronoun had just those properties that allowed the remapping of an animacy hierarchy into a tonicity distinction.

Affiliations: 1: Cornell University, Ithaca, NY mlweiss36@gmail.com

10.1163/22125892-00301005
/content/journals/10.1163/22125892-00301005
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
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In those Slavic languages that retain both a case system and clitic pronominal forms two case-related phenomena partially overlap: (1) Masculine animate nouns and gendered pronouns display differential object marking with sensitivity to the animacy hierarchy. Some subset of these forms with the highest score on the animacy hierarchy show the original genitive form instead of the expected accusative in contexts that otherwise call for that case, the so-called genitive-accusative. (2) Personal pronouns also show instances of the genitive for the accusative but with important differences. In languages with a clitic~stressed contrast for oblique pronominals the accusative forms generally are continued as clitics and the genitive forms as stressed. It is unlikely that the nominal and personal-pronominal gen.-acc. are unrelated. On the other hand, the case choice for nouns and gendered pronouns is sensitive to the animacy hierarchy, but for the personal pronouns the choice between genitive and accusative is phono-semantic. Whatever semantic structure evokes the stressed forms leads to the production of the gen.-acc. I suggest that gen.-acc. began with o-stem masculine personal names, the most prototypical expression of the semantic class [+human, +male, +free, +definite] and was extended to the interrogative pronoun (gen.-acc. kogo). The interrogative pronoun had just those properties that allowed the remapping of an animacy hierarchy into a tonicity distinction.

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/content/journals/10.1163/22125892-00301005
2015-01-01
2017-11-23

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