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UNIT THIRTEEN (CV Manual, Grammar)

    Converbs: Subordinate, coordinate, past, antecedent.
    One of the unique features of Chuvash grammar is the use of a grammatical form which we shall call converbs. These are formations which are like verbs, because they derive from verb stems, but do not refer to any person, number or tense. They serve to denote that the action referred to stands in a certain relationship to the action of the main or finite verb. Thus, they function like English gerunds or present participles. The thought is held in abeyance by use of a converb until the concluding verb. Hence, we may call them verb forms of a suspensory nature denoting secondary action coordinate to or complementary to the main action. They may not end a statement. In English, we would say “He went downtown, bought a suit, drank some coffee and returned home.“ In Chuvash, this idea would be rendered approximately as “Having gone downtown, bought a suit and having drunk some coffee, he returned home.“
    Subordinate Converb
    The subordinate converb in -a/-e denotes an action completely subordinated to the main action. It is frequently best translated into English by a form in -ing. Sometimes the form is reduplicated to show continuation.
	tăra			standing
	vĕşe			flying
	vula-vula		reading and reading
	tytta			holding

    Examples of usage are the following.
	ulmisem şĕrelle usăna		its apples were (lit. "lay‘) hanging and hanging 
	usăna larnă			towards the ground (hanging way down to the ground

	epĕ kunĕpe ulma şije		I shall go about eating 
	şije şürĕp			and eating apples all the day

	starik vara pit hujhăra		the old man then began crying greatly

	pirĕn Ivan pichchĕ jurla	our brother John continued to sing on and on
	jurla julchĕ

	shyra puşlană			began searching

	chup tăva puşlană		began kissing

    Coordinate Converb
     The coordinate converb is of extremely frequent occurrence in Chuvash; in fact, it may be found in nearly every Chuvash sentence. It denotes the first of two (or more) actions of equal value. Some of the more common combinations have become stylized into equivalents of single verbs, rather like English phrases such as “Go and get them,“ “he went and did it,“ “they sat and told us about it,“ instead of simply “Bring them, he did it, they told us about it.“
    The ending of this form is -sa/-se.
	vulasa larat			reading he sits = he sits reading, he sits and reads
	un patne pyrsa kalană		going to him, he said; he went up to him and said
	hăvarsa larnă			he climbed up and sat (‘climbing up he sat‘)
	shyva vyrtsa păhnă		he lay and watched the water, he lay watching the water
	esĕ ulma tatsa il te		you pick and take an apple

	şak teksta şyrsa ilĕr		take and write this text

	tultah hujhărsa larnă		he sat outside and wept

	ku hăvăn upăshku sana		this is your own husband who 
	kilse chup tăvat		comes and kisses you

    In the case of stems ending in ş or sh‚ there is assimilation to that phoneme, thus, vĕşse [vĕşşe] ‘flying.‘ For the subordinate and the coordinate converb, the negative employs the suffix -masăr/ -mesĕr, which is identical in formation with the verbal noun in -ma plus the privative morpheme -săr.
	vaskamasăr	without, the fact of not hurrying, while not hurrying

     Some of the fixed combinations of verbs employing the coordinate converb in company with another verb are the following.
    The student may collect many more examples by himself.
	kĕrse kaj-	to go in, enter (to go entering)
	tuhsa kaj-	to go out, leave (to go emerging)
	ilse kil-	to take and come, to bring
	pyrsa kala-	to go and say, to tell
	tărsa jul-	to remain standing, to remain, stop
	ilse pyr-	to bring hither, to go taking
	husa jar-	to send and dispatch = to send

    In some Chuvash dialects, this form may function as a finite tense, viz.‚ epĕ şyrsa - I have written. No examples occur in our material.
    Past Gerund
     The past gerund has the form -san/-sen or -sassăn/-sĕssen. It is used when there is a time difference between the two actions involved, so that the general pattern of translation into English is “when... happened, then so and so happened,“ or “after doing so and so, another thing occurred.“ With stems in /ş/ and /sh/, there is assimilation to that consonant phoneme. Take care not to confuse this morpheme with the purposive case -shăn ‘for‘
	vulasan				having read, after reading (then something else happened)

	kalamasan			when he didn‘t say

	kahal kajnăne kursassăn		when they saw Lazybones coming, they

	ĕş hushan văl itlemen		when she ordered him to work, he did not obey

	sakăr şula şiltsen		after he had arrived at the age of eight

	hire tuhsan lashine kalană	when he came out onto the field, he said to the horse 

	şüle Tură patne kajsan		when we go towards God on high, it will be better

	avantarah pulĕ	 		(it would be better if we went to God on high) 

	ansan sana tytaşşĕ		when you descend, they will seize you

	şavna iltsen			when they heard that, they…

	tesen				when you say > “if“

	manran pulashu yjtas tesen	“when you say there is to be the asking of help 
					from me“ = if you ask me for help

    This form may also be reduplicated.
	süresen süresen pĕr		they rode and rode (for a long time) and came to an oak
	juman patne şitnĕ	 
	purănsan purănsan vutti 	after they lived that way a very long time, their 
	pĕtnĕ				firewood ran out
	purănsan purănsan Tură		after he had lived there a long time, God said  
	kĕrüshne kalană			to his son-in-law:

    Antecedent Converb
     This converb has the general meaning of “before,“ and employs the ending -ichchen. Note that vowel stern verbs employ their stem alternant without vowel before this morpheme. It also has the meanings of “rather than, instead of.“
	vula- > vulichchen		before reading, until reading
	kilichchen 			until he comes, until the arrival, before he comes
	epĕ kilichchen 			until I came
	namăslanichchen 		rather than becoming ashamed
	şynsem pĕlichchen 		before people learn of it

    Other Forms
     The Chuvash grammarians consider still other forms to be gerunds (as they usually call them), but most of these are of relatively infrequent occurrence. Some of them are –masseren “every time that ...‚“ -năranpa “from the time that ‚“ and -uşăn or -atshăn “while.“
     There is an infinitive-like form in -măshkan/-mĕshken, which is rather similar to the nomen concretum in -ma.

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Last edited by: Chavash, 2006-03-17 20:59:48. Views 6341. This page has not been reviewed by administrators. The editing will be checked and corrected.



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