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A Manual of Sumerian Grammar and Texts (Aids and Research by John L. Hayes

By John L. Hayes

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Extra resources for A Manual of Sumerian Grammar and Texts (Aids and Research Tools in Ancient Near Eastern Studies, No 5)

Example text

Kalaga. nitab is one of several S umerian words meaning approx­ imately "man". , representing Ikalaga/, is an adjective meaning "mighty". a. a has many uses: formation of adjectives from verbal roots; nominalization of verbal phrases; marking of certain kinds of subordinate clauses; etc. It is sometimes called a "nominalizer" or "nominalizing particle" (although such terms do not cover all its uses). For convenience sake, the term "nominalizer" will be used here. In this particular case, the adjective Ikalagal is formed from the verbal root Ikalag/, by the addition of the nominalizer I al.

Kramer is obviously irked by this inconsistency, but feels that there is nothing he can do about it. Although he wrote this passage almost fourty-five years ago, some editors of Sumerian texts still follow such customary usage. , kala(g). However, if the short and long forms have different indices, this can create confusion; some scholars transliterate Phonology 23 as ti(1), others as ti(1). In this book, all word-final consonants have been consistently transliterated (and transcribed) . Other features There were undoubtedly other features in the spoken language, which the writing system only hints at.

This is a rather aesthetically satisfying system; as will be seen later, however, things often do not hang together so neatly. Second, let us look at the word order: BENEFACTIVE - AGENT - PATIENT - VERB ( 4) (2) (3) (1) This particular order is actually somewhat different from standard Sumerian syntax. In more standard Sumerian, the word order is: AGENT - PATIENT - COMPLEMENTS - VERB (2) (4) (3) (1) AGENT - COMPLEMENTS - PATIENT - VERB (3) ( 4) (1) (2) or: The difference in word order between standard Sumerian prose and that of the royal inscriptions is in the position of the benefactive.

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