The main goal of this brief paper is to trace the origin of the so-called “comparative” suffix in Tungusic languages. Although traditionally seen as a Pan-Tungusic element (only lost in Manchuric), there are very good reasons to think that actually we should deal with two different morphemes whose distribution roughly speaking corresponds to the one between the Northern and Southern (Amuric) Tungusic languages. I aim to offer evidences pointing to a possible Mongolic -Northern Tungusic contact situation as well as an independent genesis in Southern Tungusic.
In the second part of this series of papers the author investigates the way how the Khitan Small Script rendered the vowels of the Khitan language. The graphic system was tailored to the contemporary Chinese language, nevertheless, it is possible to make conclusions concerning the system of vowels. Three illabial vowels /a/, /e/ and /i/ can be identified, the back vocalic /ï/ can only be supposed. The vowel /o/ is dominant, for traces of /ö/ no sure data can be given. The phoneme /u/ can be clearly detected, the phoneme /ü/ can be supposed. The former opinion that the Khitan had a front:back vowel harmony can be confirmed. The paper presents a few newly deciphered Khitan words. The system of the Khitan word formation is emerging and a few earlier readings have been corrected.
This paper deals with the structural analysis of the system of kinship and affinity terms in Middle Mongolian based on all known lexicographical and narrative sources. The system of kinship and affinity terms is seen as a separate lexical group which is to be studied by methods of structural semantics, in particular by the method of componential analysis. This method is for the first time applied to the study of Middle Mongolian vocabulary. The meaning of each kinship or affinity term is defined in the meta-language of componential analysis in its two varieties, main structural features of the system are discovered and defined, the dialectal distribution, inter- and intradialectal lexical differences among the terms are described and presented in the form of tables. The morphological classification of the terms is given, the question of the polysemy of some of them is touched upon. The author comes to the conclusion that East Middle Mongolian dialects and their system of kinship and affinity terms could be in a more archaic stage of development than the language of West Middle Mongolian literary monuments. The results of the semantic analysis are compared with some historical and ethnographical data on the Mongolian social structure of the imperial period (in particular on kinship system and marriage rules).
In Mongolic, the words belge and mengge have practically the same meaning, cf. LM belge ‘sign mark, token, symptom, symbol; prognostic, omen’ and LM mengge ‘birthmark, mole; sign’. This paper aims to answer the question of whether these two words are etymologically related with each other or not, and also attempts to shed light on a question put forward by Gerhard Doerfer. In two of his works Doerfer (1992; 1993) suggested that there might be loanwords in Early Turkic taken from different Mongolic languages, but this idea has gone practically unnoticed in the Altaistic literature.
Authors:Ákos Bertalan Apatóczky and András Róna-Tas
2017 . Languages of the Ancient Southern Mongolia and North China. A Historical-Comparative Study of the Serbi or Xianbei Branch of the Serbi-MongolicLanguage Family, with an Analysis of Northeastern Frontier Chinese and