Wolfgang Schulze W.Schulze at LRZ.UNI-MUENCHEN.DE
Wed Jun 12 09:58:46 UTC 2002

Dear Frans,

if I understand your query correctly, Udi (a South East Caucasian
language) is full of such constructions (just as it is true for a number of
other South East Caucasian (Lezgian) languages). In Udi, the verb
_pesun_ (masdar, stem is _p-_) basically means 'to say'. It is used
with all kinds of nominal and adjectival/adverbial concepts to derive
low transitive and intransitive verbs. The (metaphorical) use of the
concept <to say> as a light verb is a common feature in the areal.
Maybe that this use has started with speech act vers and the like, but
that is not sure. Likewise we could assume that we have to deal with
some kind of 'indirect' speech act constructions that originally meant:
'(S)he says that X is/has to be (in relation to another Y)'. Today,
_pesun_ is nearly completely 'desemantisized': the invariant
component of the source domain is hardly ever restituted by native
speakers except for verbs related to the domain of speech and

Udi _pesun_ can occur both with concepts related to the domain of
speech acts and other domains (that re difficult to classify). In sum,
there are about 200 or more pesun-verbs in Udi. Below, I give some
examples. I have added the semantics of the incorporated element as
long as it can be safely identified):  [# = hachek, / = middle sibilant, ' =
glottalized, % = pharyngealized]:

g&ac#'pesun	'to bind' (g#ac#' = 'binding')
q'ac#'pesun	'to kill'
xas#pesun	'to give light' (xas# = 'light')
bo%g#a%pesun	'to find'
ma%g#pesun		'to sing' (ma%g# = 'song')
bap'esun	'to enter'	(preverb ba- 'in')
tarapesun	'to turn around' (preverb tara-)
t'ap'pesun	'to hit'
zap'pesun	'to sigh'
o%nepesun	'to weep' (o%ne  = 'tear')
afrepesun	'to pray' (af(u)re = 'praise')
qaipesun	'to return' (preverb qai- 'back')
k'alpesun	'to call'; 'to read' (k'al ~ Late Latin cala:re)
elpesun		'to coew' (el = 'crowing')
s/ampesun	'to slaughter'
axs/umpesun	'to laugh' (axs//um = 'laughter')
c'umpesun	'to suck'
xoxopesun	'to say yes' (xo = 'yes')
tetepesun		'to say 'no' (te = 'no')
fu%q'pesun	'to rob'
barpesun	'to divede' (bar = 'part')
farpesun	'to sing' (far = 'song')
karpesun	'to live' (kar = Persian 'work')
c#urpesun	'to stand'; 'to want'
purpesun	'to fly' (sic!) (base *pr- !)
elaspesun	'to sware' (elas = 'oath')
äitpesun	'to talk' (äit = Azeri yait 'word')
c/upesun	'to spit' (c/u = spittle')
fupesun		'to blow' (fu = 'blow')

Does this help?

Best wishes,


12.6.2002 10:58:42, Frans Plank <Frans.Plank at UNI-

>Dear colleagues knowledgable about languages other than Germanic
and Romance,
>do you know of instances of delocutive morphology in any language
you are
>knowledgable about?  -- that is, of bound morphology of whatever
kind being
>used to form verbs which mean, basically, 'to say "X" (to someone)',
>"X" can be
>(a)  a pronoun of (formal/informal) address,
>(b)  a term of (possibly abusive) address,
>(c)  an interjection,
>(d)  something else (please specify).
>Examples from German (where -en is the infinitival suffix, -z the
>delocutive one):
>(a)  jemanden du-z-en  'to say "thou" to s.o.'
>(b)  jemanden verhunzen (< ver-hund-z-en)  'to say "dog" to s.o'
>(c)  aech-z-en  'to say "ach!"'  (a deep sigh)
>(d)  ---
>If there is such delocutive morphology in "your" language, is it
>to just this one function, or does it have other, and perhaps primary,
>functions too (e.g., aspect/aktionsart ones such as iterative;
>intensification;  derivation of verbs of sound/noise production or of
>semantic domains)?  Whether dedicated or shared, would you know
>about the historical source of such delocutive morphology?
>You may know the famous paper on delocutives by Benveniste.
But I wonder
>whether anything seriously crosslinguistic has been done since.  Any
>Frans Plank
>Frans Plank
>Universitaet Konstanz
>D-78457 Konstanz
>E-mail:  frans.plank at
>Tel:   +49-(0)7531-88 2656, home +49-(0)7531-57450
>Fax:   +49-(0)7531-88 4190
Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schulze
Institute for General Linguistics and Language Typology
[Institut fuer Allgemeine und Typologische Sprachwissenschaft]
Departement II (Kommunikation und Sprachen [communication and
languages] F 13/14
Universitaet München - Geschwister-Scholl-Platz 1 - D-80539
Tel.: ++49-(0)89-2180 2486 (Secretary) // ++49-(0)89-2180 5343
Fax:  ++49-(0)89-2180 5345
Email: 	W.Schulze at

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