agreement in definiteness

Edith A Moravcsik edith at CSD.UWM.EDU
Wed Nov 17 20:42:25 UTC 1999

Lindsay Whaley, on page 166 of his typology textbook (Introduction to
typology, 1997. Sage), cites Abkhaz as a language which "uses an agreement
system that is sensitive to the definitenes of direct objects"
and gives a pair of examples - for 'Kassa took the wallet.' and
'Kassa took a wallet.' - where the verb carries a marker when it has
a definite object and is unmarked when the object is indefinite.
He cites Givo'n's l976 paper on topic, pronouns, and grammatical agreement
in the Subject and Topic volume edited by Charles Li as the source of
his information but I could not find these examples in the Givo'n paper. I
have no direct access to descriptions of Abkhaz to check and see how
exactly the system works.

Edith M.

			 Edith A. Moravcsik
			 Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics
			 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
		         Milwaukee, WI 53201-0413

			 E-mail: edith at
		         Telephone: (414) 229-6794 /office/
				    (414) 332-0141 /home/
		         Fax: (414) 229-2741


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