Luobbal Sámmol Sámmol Ánte (Ante Aikio), Sámi allaskuvla (Saami University College) [ante.aikiooulu.fi]
The Uralic-Yukaghir lexical correspondences: genetic inheritance, language contact or chance resemblance?
The Uralic language family has often been hypothesized to be related to Yukaghir, even though no widely accepted evidence for this theory has been presented so far. The study of Uralic-Yukaghir relations has in part been held back by the scarcity of basic documentary and comparative work on the Yukaghir languages. The publication of A Historical Dictionary of Yukaghir (2006) by Irina Nikolaeva, however, has raised Yukaghir lexicology and historical phonology to a level that allows systematic comparison of Proto-Yukaghir and (Proto-)Uralic to be easily carried out. This paper discusses the lexical correspondences between Uralic and Yukaghir languages, and examines to what extent they can be explained as evidence of genetic relationship, products of language contact, or mere chance resemblances. It is argued that there is no clear lexical evidence supporting a genetic connection between the two families, and that no regular sound correspondences between the two proto-languages can be established. A majority of the Uralic-Yukaghir lexical comparisons suggested in earlier references seem to be chance resemblances, but a smaller corpus of probable loanwords supporting contacts between (Pre-)Proto-Samoyed and Proto-Yukaghir can be established.
Cornelius Hasselblatt, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen [corneliushasselblatt.com]
Wilhelm Schott als Wegbereiter der deutschen Finnougristik
The article deals with the German scholar Wilhelm Schott (1802–1889), who is widely known for his Altaic, Chinese and other Asian language studies but whose significance for Uralic studies in Germany is underestimated. The article shows, however, that Schott actually paved the way for Finno-Ugric studies in Germany by conveying the works of August Ahlqvist (1826–1889), Mathias Alexander Castrén (1813–1852), Pál Hunfalvy (1810–1891) and others to a German public. Schott abundantly published on numerous Uralic languages, using mostly two widespread periodicals of the 19th century: the Magazin für die Literatur des Auslandes (1832–1880) and the Archiv für wissenschaftliche Kunde von Russland (1841–1867). In the article, a systematic account of his more than 200 contributions concerning Uralic languages or cultures, forming about a third of his entire production, is given.
Florian Siegl, University of Helsinki [florian.sieglhelsinki.fi]
The counterfactive mood in Forest Enets and its origin
The description of the counterfactive mood (Siegl 2013: 298) reported that this mood has fallen out of use in the speech of the last generation of fully fluent speakers. Although it is remembered and some examples from elicitation are attested, it could no longer be found in transcribed narratives representing the language of the last fully fluent speakers recorded between 2006 and 2011. By contrast, the counterfactive mood is very frequent in narratives from the parental generation on which this study is based. Apart from a functional description and an analysis, the article discusses the history of this mood. The article ends with a collection of thoughts concerning the history of the Proto-Samoyedic tense system, as this mood is historically closely connected to the Proto-Samoyedic aorist marker *-ŋå.
Lotta Jalava, University of Helsinki [lotta.jalavahelsinki.fi]
Indirectivity and resultativity in Tundra Nenets
This article deals with indirective and resultative predicates in Tundra Nenets. The focus is on two different categories of verbal inflection marked with the suffix -we, the resultative past participle and the narrative mood. The article discusses the functions, syntactic properties and common origin of these two predicate structures. It will be argued that the narrative mood developed from the past participle predicate in an earlier stage of the Nenets languages through reanalysis of the resultative predicate as a perfect/evidential form and transition of the non-finite predicate into a finite conjugation.
Rigina Ajanki, University of Helsinki [rigina.ajankihelsinki.fi]
The grown-up siblings: history and functions of Western Uralic *kse
In this paper, it is claimed that the case suffix *kse, known as translative, dates back to the Finnic-Mordvin proto language, where it functioned as a functive. It is illustrated using synchronic data from Finnic-Mordvin languages that the functions of *kse do not display an inherent feature of directionality 'into', or in other terms, lative. It is even possible that the suffix was neutral with respect to time stability, as it is in contemporary Erzya. Further, it is assumed that since the Northern Finnic languages have acquired a new stative case, the functive labelled essive *nA, formerly applied as an intralocal case, the functions of *kse have changed in these languages: *kse has become mainly the marker of a transformative, with an inherent feature of dynamicity.
Ilona Rauhala, University of Helsinki [ilona.rauhalahelsinki.fi]
Adaptation of loanwords of the suffix type *-eTA in Finnish and Saami
This article concerns loanwords that have been adapted to the adjective suffix type *-eTA in Finnish (-eA) and North Saami (-at). The questions to answer are: From which languages the loanwords have been borrowed and adapted to this adjective type? Which processes have been used to adapt loanwords to the suffix type *-eTA? Can we say something about the productivity of a suffix by studying the loanwords it has adapted? According to the data, the loanwords have been gained especially from Germanic and Scandinavian languages. Also, the North Saami and Finnish do not have common loanwords. They have borrowed words from same source but separately, i. e. they cannot be recontstructed to common Finno-Saamic form. However, both languages have used the same methods in adapting loanwords to the suffix type *-eTA. Both Finnish and North Saami has also young loanwords in suffix type *-eTA which indicates that the suffix has been productive enough to adapt loanwords perhaps longer than thought. It is likely that the Finnish -eA adjectives would be even now adapted to -at in North Saami.
Pauli Rahkonen [pauli.rahkonengmail.com]
The Western Spread of Permic Hydronyms
The present study describes ancient Permian settlement history in the light of onomastics. The principal aim of this onomastic survey is to determine the westernmost boundary of Permic hydronyms. A secondary aim is to distinguish different ancient Permian groups from one another, since the hydronyms suggest that there have possibly been four different kinds of Permian groups during the Middle Ages: Udmurt, Komi, north-western (?Komi dialect) and Meščёra. To some extent, folklore, historical data and the history of different linguistic contacts have also been taken into account. The onomastic exploration has concentrated on the most usual Permic stems and Udmurt formants. In addition, the generic form -jug(a) has been examined.
Svetlana Edygarova, University of Helsinki [svetlana.jedygarovahelsinki.fi]
The varieties of the modern Udmurt language
The present paper classifies and describes the main linguistic varieties of the modern Udmurt language across the community of speakers and gives some examples of their linguistic specificities. The study takes a particular look at the vernacular and standard language varieties. The first section defines the main terms and notions that are employed in the article. In the second part, the sources of the study including the empirical data are briefly described. The third section is devoted to the description of the linguistic features of the main varieties. The last part consists of a conclusion.
Konstantin Zamyatin, University of Helsinki [konstazamhotmail.com]
Deficiencies of Official Bilingualism in the Finno-Ugric Republics of Post-Soviet Russia: A Legal Perspective
As a part of the "parade of sovereignties" during the disintegration of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, the national republics of Russia designated both Russian and local languages as their state languages. The co-official status of the dominant Russian language by default prevented full-fledged official bilingualism, and serious steps were needed to promote non-dominant local languages in the public sphere. Beyond a mere formal recognition of their official status, the republican authorities passed regulations in order to provide institutional support for the local languages, the amount of which varied across republics. However, the extent of such regulations remains understudied and the best way to evaluate it would be a comparative analysis. What was the level of institutionalization of the official status in the case of titular languages in Russia's republics? This study examines various solutions for framing the official status of titular languages in regional language legislations in order to understand the patterns of institutionalization. The republics titled after the Finno-Ugric peoples were chosen as case studies for the comparison. The study reveals that language legislation contains serious deficiencies in institutionalization of the official status of titular languages, which impede possibilities for their practical use in office.