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Abstract

This paper presents a critical edition of Mordecai Qazaz's poem Adam oglu 'Man's son' written in Crimean Karaim probably at the end of the 18th century. It was published in 1841 under another title by Jacob Firkovich who did not provide the name of its author. This publication has not yet been examined. It is only now that we can identify it with Adam oglu. In the present edition, the text is edited on the basis of four manuscripts and the printed edition. Attempt was made to established the basic form of the poem and discuss language features.

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The aim of this paper is to examine the language of Karaite literature, mostly translations from Hebrew, developing in the 18th–19th centuries in the Crimea. Linguistic features of most works of this literature are typical of Crimean Turkish with many North-western Turkic or Kipchak properties. Among the most important authors and translators there were such distinguished intellectuals and spiritual leaders as Abraham Firkovich, Joseph Solomon Łucki, Abraham Łucki, Mordecai Qazaz, and Eliyahu Qazaz. Because of the mixed character of this language and the lack of strict standards, its definition and attribution is still debated. Until all works will be examined, it seems reasonable to speak of the individual language preferences of some leaders who created and practised it, rather than of the literary language of Crimean Karaites in general.

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