Proto-Turkic/Optatives, necessitatives and questions

Welcome to the nineth lesson of Proto-Turkic!

Optatives edit

Optative is a controversial subject in Proto-Turkic, as they only exists in some languages.

*-gA (Shaz) edit

The optative meaning is used by the suffix -gA. In some languages including Old Uyghur and Tuvan, this suffix were further compounded by the archaic demonstrative pronoun *I (follows vowel harmony) to form -gAy (it originally inflected for numbers and persons, but later become an uninflected tense).[1] In Old Turkic, this suffix was repurposed as the future tense suffix. The optative suffixes only exist in some Turkic languages, including Turkish, Khorasani Turkic, and Tuvan.

  • *seb- (“to love, like”) → *sebge(y) (“may (s/he) love, like”)
  • *bar- (“to go”) → *barga(y) (“may (s/he) go”)

*-gIttI (Lir) edit

Attested as -ӗччӗ in Chuvash, this optative suffix is reconstructed through regular sound changes (note with the sporadic geminates).

Necessitatives edit

The meaning of necessity is provided by *-lig and *-me, which we mentioned in the last two lessons.

*-mAlIg[2] edit

This suffix somehow lives only in Oghuz and Oghur languages.

  • *seb- (“to love, like”) → *sebmelig (“(s/he) should love, like”)
  • *bar- (“to go”) → *barmalïg (“(s/he) should go”)

It is a noun clause for Turkmen and Chuvash languages. Therefore, it takes the suffixes that make the noun clause negative.

  • *sebmelig (“(s/he) should love, like”) → *sebmelig ermeŕ (“(s/he) should not love, like”)
  • *barmalïg (“(s/he) should go”) → *barmalïg ermeŕ (“(s/he) should not go”)
Modern usage
Azerbaijani - Azərbaycan türkcəsi Turkmen - Türkmençe Chuvash - Чӑвашла[3]
Original Bu oyunu qazanmalıyam. Öý işimi ertire çenli tamamlamaly. Пире мӗнле питӗ кирлӗ ӗҫ хушнӑ тата ҫак ӗҫ ҫине пирӗн мӗнле пӑх-малла?
Transcription (the text is already written in latin script) (the text is already written in latin script) Pire mӗnle pitӗ kirlӗ ӗç xuşnӑ tata çak ӗç pirӗn mӗnle pӑx-malla?
English translation I have to win this game. I should finish my homework by tomorrow. What important assignment has Jesus given us, and how should we view it?

*kẹr- edit

You can give the same meaning with this root. *kẹr-lig for Lir, *kẹr-ge-k for Shaz.

  • I need a bow and sword. - Benke kïlï̄č bi(r)le yā(y) kẹrgek.
Modern usage
Uzbek - Oʻzbek tili[4] Khakassian - Хакас тілі or Тадар тілі[5] Chuvash - Чӑвашла[6]
Original Menimcha, sutga ortichqa maza tam qo'shish kerak emas. Чоох тоосчатсаң, кізілерні хайдағ-да киректі идерге кӧӧктірчеткен, кӧп нимес, килістіре сӧстер таллап ал. Эпир хамӑр пуҫҫапнинче тӳрӗ чунлӑ тата хытӑ тӑрӑшатпӑр пулсан, ку питех кирлӗ мар тесе шутлаҫҫӗ хӑшпӗрисем.
Transcription (the text is already written in latin script) Çoox toosçatsañ, kizilerni xaydağ-da kirekti iderge kööktirçetken, köp nimes, kilistire söster tallap al. Epir xamӑr puççapninçe türӗ çunlӑ tata xıtӑ tӑrӑşatpӑr pulsan, ku pitex kirlӗ mar tese şutlaççӗ xӑşpӗrisem.
English translation In my opinion, there is no need to add flavoring to the milk. For a stimulating and effective closing, don't stretch your words too long more than enough(needed). Some say that as long as we are sincere and zealous in our worship, there is no need to worry.

Questions edit

*-mI[7] edit

Where interrogative pronouns are absent, questions are provided with *-mI interrogative suffix. This appendix asks questions that can be answered with yes or no and asks for the item before it.

A: Do you have a younger sister? - A: Seniŋ siŋiliŋ bār ? (Literally is there any younger sister belongs to you?)

B: Yes, I have/No, I don't. - B: Bār/yōk. (Literally there is/there is not)

A: Is what you have younger sister? - A: Seniŋ siŋiliŋ mi bār?

B: Yes, it is/no, it's not. - B: Ide/yōk.

A: Are you nine years old? - A: Sẹ tokuŕ yāĺta ?

B: Yes, I am/No, I am not. - B: Ide/yōk.

A: Are you the one who is nine years old? - A: Sẹ mi tokuŕ yāĺta?

B: Yes, I am/No, I am not. - B: Ide, bẹ/Yōk, bẹ ermeŕ.

When there is a negative interrogative sentence, the answer is different than in English.

A: Aren't you nine years old? - A: Sẹ tokuŕ yāĺta ermeŕ mi?

B: Yes, I am nine years old. - B: Yōk, tokuŕ yāĺta bẹ. (literally no, i am nine years old).

Since it is a preposition, it is written separately in some Turkic languages, but not in others. Prepositions such as with, for, until... are written separately in most of the Turkic languages ​​if they do not have a sound change. However, since the preposition 'mi' has a sound change, there are differences between languages. (i.e. Turkmen barmy?, Kazakh bar ma?)

Questions: Interrogative Pronouns edit

  1. what - *nē(me)
  2. who - *kem
  3. why - *nē(me) üčün (Literally for what?)
  4. how much, how many, how old - *nēnče, *kanča

*nē(me) edit

It is put in the blank part whose answer is expected in the sentence.

A: What is your name? - A: Seniŋ ātïŋ nē(me)?

B: My name is Tou-man. - B: Beniŋ ātïm Tou-man.

A: What did you do? - A: Nē(me) ēttiŋ?

B: I did sit and waited - B: Olturtum, kǖtdüm.

Modern usage
Kumyk - Къумукъ тили Uyghur - ئۇيغۇرچە Chuvash - Чӑвашла
Original Не этип турасан? توم دائىم شۇ دەرىجە پەس سۆزلەيدۇكى ئۇنىڭ نېمە دېگىنىنى ناھايىتى تەستە چۈشۈنەلەيمەن. Том сана Машукпа мӗн пулнӑ пирки каламарӗ вӗт, ҫапла и?
Transcription Ne etip turasan? Tom da'im shu derije pes sözleyduki uning nëme dëginini nahayiti teste cüshüneleymen. Tom sana Maşukpa mӗn pulnă pirki kalamarӗ vӗt, çapla i?
English translation What are you doing? Tom always speaks in such a low voice that I can barely understand what he is saying. Tom didn't tell you what happened to Mary, did he?

*kem edit

It is put in the blank part whose answer is expected in the sentence.

A: Who are you? - A: Sẹ kem?

B: I am Tou-man. - B: Bẹ Tou-man.

A: Who did this? - A: Bunï kem ētti?

B: I did (this). - B: (Bunï) bẹ ētti(m).

Modern usage
Shor - Шор тили or Тадар тили[8] Yakut - Саха тыла[9] Chuvash - Чӑвашла[10]
Original Кем чöрча? Эртен тöрт азақтығ, кӱндӱс ийги, иирде ӱш. Өлбутүн кэппэ туох буоларын ама ким билиэҕэй? Пулӑшу пирки тархасласа ыйтакансене кам хӑтарӗ?
Transcription Kem çörça? Erten tört azaqtığ, kündüs iygi, iirde üş. Ölbütün keppe tuox buoların ama kim bilieğey? Pulӑşu pirki tarxaslasa ıytakansene kam xӑtarӗ?
English translation Who walks? With four feet(legs) in the morning, with two in the daytime, with three in the evening. (Answer: boys) Who knows the truth about what we become after we die? Who will save those who cry out for help?

*nē(me) üčün edit

It is put in the blank part whose answer is expected in the sentence.

A: Why are you there? - A: Sẹ nē(me) üčün anda?

B: Because I am Tou-man. - B: Tou-man bolganïm üčün anda. (*-gan may not have been used in this sense in Proto-Turkic. In Old Turkic inscriptions there is only -duk.)

A: Why did you do this? - A: Bunï nē(me) üčün ēttiŋ?

B: To feel joy. - B: (Bunï) bẹ̄kenmek üčün ēttim.

Modern usage
Turkish - Anadolu Türkçesi Turkmen - Türkmençe Chuvash - Чӑвашла[11]
Original Tom onun niçin Fransızca öğrenmek istediğini anlayamadı. Diňleýji aýatlaryň manysyna düşüner ýaly näme etmeli we näme üçin? Мӗнле сӑлтавсене пула хӑшӗ-пӗрисем шыва кӗме шутлаҫҫӗ тата мӗншӗн ҫав сӑлтавсем тӗрӗс мар?
Transcription (the text is already written in latin script) (the text is already written in latin script) Mӗnle sӑltavsene pula xӑşӗ-pӗrisem şıva kӗme şutlaççӗ tata mӗnşӗn çav sӑltavsem tӗrӗs mar?
English translation Tom couldn't understand why s/he wanted to learn French. What should we do to help our listeners understand the meaning of the verses and why? Why are some baptized and why are these reasons not enough?

*nēnče, *kanča edit

We have already mentioned this pronoun in our lesson 1: Pronouns and numbers, and we even gave an example. So we won't be doing this again. The remaining details about it will be in lesson 11: Equative and instrumental.

Other interrogative pronouns that you can create with suffixes edit

You can turn case suffixes into interrogative pronouns by adding them to question roots. (for example: *nēnte/*kanta, *nēnten/*kantan, *nēnke/*kanka, *nēni/*kanï, *nēniŋ/kanïŋ, *nēnče/*kanča...). To add endings to them, add -n- into the case endings except in accusative and genitive cases (*nēnte; but *nēni, the case suffix itself already contain -n-). In many of modern Turkic languages, the -n- allomorph is now removed from those.

Next lesson: Vocabulary 2

References edit