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date: 26 July 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Ket and its extinct relatives in the Yeniseian language family of Siberia are typologically unusual for their templatic prefixing verb morphology. Prefixes (actually special clitics) attach to nouns to express the possessor. Otherwise, the nominal morphology is suffixal agglutinative, with Ket resembling the surrounding families in having a developed system of oblique case suffixes and many spatial postpositions. Derivational affixes are comparatively few in number. Root compounding is the most common stem formation pattern. A universal nominalizer derives nouns from other parts of speech and also productively relativizes finite verbs. An action nominal serves as both infinitive and participle and often coincides in form with the base morpheme of the semantically corresponding finite verb. Adjectives and action nominal were originally derived by a suffix that is no longer productive and sometimes has been reanalyzed as a plural marker.

Keywords: templatic verb morphology, possessive clitics, universal nominalizer, action nominal, root compounding, reanalysis

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