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Hittite and the Indo-European Verb$
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Jay H. Jasanoff

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199249053

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199249053.001.0001

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Aorists of the h2e-conjugation: Part II

Aorists of the h2e-conjugation: Part II

(p.174) 7 Aorists of the h2e-conjugation: Part II
Hittite and the Indo-European Verb

Jay H. Jasonoff

Oxford University Press

This chapter investigates the second major group of h2e-conjugation aorists, those associated with the PIE sigmatic aorist (‘s-aorist’). The s-aorist is historically a composite category, partly sigmatic and partly non-sigmatic. The original distribution of the sigmatic and non-sigmatic forms is still transparent in Hittite and Tocharian, where the s-less stem points to a type of transitive h2e-conjugation aorist with *o : *e ablaut — the ‘presigmatic aorist’. It is argued that the pre-PIE ancestor of the presigmatic aorist was an intransitive protomiddle that split into a h2e-conjugation active and a renewed ‘true’ middle. A suppletive sigmatic form was introduced into the 3 sg. active to heighten the contrast between the transitive active and the intransitive middle. Complete sigmatization of the paradigm followed the separation of Anatolian and Tocharian from the rest of the family.

Keywords:   protomiddle, e-conjugation aorist, sigmatic aorist, s-aorist, presigmatic aorist, Tocharian, sigmatization

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