Ferenc Kiefer Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Research Institute for Linguistics Benczúr utca 33. H--1068 Budapest Hungary

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László Honti Universitá di Udine Dipartimento di Glottologia e Filologia Classica Via Mazzini 3 I-33100 Udine Italy

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The paper sets out with an overview of preverbs and prefixes in the Uralic languages. It will be shown that most Uralic languages have separable preverbs and only a few have verbal prefixes. These verbal prefixes have been borrowed from Slavic. This means that preverbs never get morphologized in Uralic. We will informally call 'cohesion' the various positions of the preverb relative to the verb. The highest degree of cohesion is the case when the preverb is a genuine prefix; the next degree is represented by adverbial-like preverbs, which  obligatorily occupy a preverbal position, and which form a kind of compound with the verb; a yet lower degree is shown by preverbs which can occupy both a preverbal and a postverbal position and some other elements can intervene between the preverb and the base verb; cohesion is greater if only clitical elements can occur between the preverb and the verb. The next stage is represented by the language in which in addition to clitics also some complements can occur in this position. Finally, cohesion is least strong in cases when practically any element can occur between the preverb and the verb. Cohesion should not be confounded with grammaticalization which plays an important role in the development of aspectual and aktionsart-meanings. In this case it can be shown for Hungarian that the development goes through the stages 'adverbial meaning ≯ adverbial meaning and aspectual meaning ≯ aspectual meaning ≯ aspectual meaning and aktionsart-meaning' for the old layer of preverbs and through the stages 'adverbial meaning ≯ adverbial meaning and aspectual meaning ≯ aspectual meaning and aktionsart-meaning' for more recent preverbs. In other words, preverbs may end up by having an aspectual and an aktionsart-meaning' but, as Hungarian shows, not all preverbs have reached this stage.

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Editor(s)-in-Chief: Katalin É. Kiss,
Ferenc Kiefer

Editor: Éva Dékány

Technical Editor: Zoltán G. Kiss

Review Editor: Beáta Gyuris

Editorial Board

  • Anne Abeillé
  • Željko Bošković
  • Marcel den Dikken
  • Hans-Martin Gärtner
  • Elly van Gelderen
  • Anders Holmberg
  • Katarzyna Jaszczolt
  • István Kenesei
  • Anikó Lipták
  • Katalin Mády
  • Gereon Müller
  • Csaba Pléh
  • Giampaolo Salvi
  • Irina Sekerina
  • Péter Siptár
  • Gregory Stump
  • Peter Svenonius
  • Anne Tamm
  • Akira Watanabe
  • Jeroen van de Weijer

Acta Linguistica Academica
Address: Benczúr u. 33. HU–1068 Budapest, Hungary
Phone: (+36 1) 351 0413; (+36 1) 321 4830 ext. 154
Fax: (36 1) 322 9297

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Acta Linguistica Hungarica
Language English
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Founder Magyar Tudományos Akadémia  
H-1051 Budapest, Hungary, Széchenyi István tér 9.
Publisher Akadémiai Kiadó
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Chief Executive Officer, Akadémiai Kiadó
ISSN 1216-8076 (Print)
ISSN 1588-2624 (Online)