[Lingtyp] Verbs of success with dative subject

Jussi Ylikoski jussi.ylikoski at oulu.fi
Wed Jan 2 22:32:56 UTC 2019

Dear all,

Here is a non-IE example from North Saami (Uralic), disregarding the probable influence from its Scandinavian neighbors. ILL stands for the illative, the case for Direction and Recipient, which could be (and earlier has been) labeled "dative" as well:

Midjiide/Johanii   lihkostuvai     buot.

1PL.ILL/Johan.ILL  succeed.PST.3SG all

'We/Johan succeeded in everything.'

(cf. Norwegian Alt lykkes for oss/Johan.)

Unlike in Scandinavian, a dummy subject usually does not occur:

Midjiide/Johanii   ii      lihkostuvvan     oažžut  oktavuođa   duinna.

1PL.ILL/Johan.ILL  NEG.3SG succeed.PST.PTCP get.INF contact.ACC 2SG.ACC

'We/Johan didn't succeed in contacting you.'

(cf. Norwegian Det lyktes ikke for oss/Johan å ta kontakt med deg.)

Best regards,


Fra: Lingtyp <lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org> på vegne av E. Bashir <ebashir at yahoo.com>
Sendt: onsdag 2. januar 2019 22.11
Til: Ludwig Paul; lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
Emne: Re: [Lingtyp] Verbs of success with dative subject

ِIn Urdu, for a person to be successful in doing something can be expressed as:

X-ko                  Y-me~        kaamyaabii huii
X (person)-DAT Y(effort)-in success      became
Y was successful in (doing) Y.

With best wishes,
Elena Bashir, Senior Lecturer in Urdu
The University of Chicago

From: Ludwig Paul <ludwig.paul at uni-hamburg.de>
To: lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
Sent: Wednesday, January 2, 2019 1:46 PM
Subject: Re: [Lingtyp] Verbs of success with dative subject

Dear Spike,

I could not find the discussion or the answers to your question in the
list, maybe this is a repetition: there is the German verbal
expression "mir (Dat.) gelingt etwas", i.e. I am successful in (doing)


Zitat von Spike Gildea <spike at uoregon.edu<mailto:spike at uoregon.edu>>:

> Dear colleagues,
> I forward a query from my colleague, Jóhanna Barðdal, who is looking
> for examples of predicates of "success” with non canonical subject
> marking, in particular those that take a dative subject.
> We are working on Indo-European verbs/predicates with the meanings
> 'succeed', 'be successful', 'make progress', 'turn out well', 'go
> well'. The last one in the sense "he is doing well in his dance
> class" or even "he is doing well in life”.
> Thank you in advance for indications of other places in the world
> where we might find such predicates taking a dative subject!
> Best,
> Spike

Lingtyp mailing list
Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org<mailto:Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org>

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/lingtyp/attachments/20190102/fa47f71e/attachment.htm>

More information about the Lingtyp mailing list