Abstract and Keywords
Tlapanec is a head-marking language, in which case relations are marked by verbal suffixes. Four types of relations are marked in this way. Three of these bear many resemblances to cross-linguistically well-known cases: the ergative, absolutive, and the dative. The fourth, however, is a novel type of relation and called pegative. This encodes an actor involved in an event which also involves a dative-like undergoer. Tlapanec exhibits a VAO basic word order with the possibility of fronting A or O in a topicalisation construction. Predicates inflect for aspect, polarity, and person, while nouns may inflect for person of possessor. This article presents the Tlapanec system with special attention to the three following features: the markers attach to the predicate, the ergative case is morphologically unmarked, and the inventory includes the pegative relation. It also discusses the morphology of case marking, the morphosyntax of the Tlapanec case markers and their semantics, the mechanisms of case assignment, monopersonal verbs, and similarities between verbal suffixes and canonical case marking.
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