Volume 39, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0731-3500
  • E-ISSN: 2214-5907
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Thulung Rai, an endangered Tibeto-Burman language spoken in Eastern Nepal, presents two derivational suffixes associated with reflexivization: - and -. The first, -, is quite productive, found in complete paradigms, and derives reflexives, reciprocals, antipassives and anticausatives from transitive verbs (and occasionally from intransitive verbs). The second marker, -, is more difficult to analyze: it has a limited distribution in verb paradigms, only appearing with 1pi and 3sg forms, and appears in a number of different contexts: it is found with the same types of derivations as - but also — in some cases obligatorily, in others optionally — with verbs that do not have reflexive (or related) functions. It is even found with some transitive verbs. In this presentation, I will propose an analysis of the phenomena above based on elicited and narrative data I have collected in the field. The - in fact has multiple, albeit related, origins: it is a phonological reduction of - in certain circumstances, while in others it appears to be an older reflexivizing suffix which has been integrated, to different degrees, into verb morphology. With transitives, it appears to be a trace reflecting the complex derivational history of verbs which are derived from intransitives.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Kiranti languages; reflexive; Thulung Rai
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