Zimmerling A.V. Pluperfect Auxiliaries in the Russian Language of the 14 th – 16 th Centuries

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu2.2019.4.4

Anton V. Zimmerling

Doctor of Sciences (Philology), Leading Researcher, Institute of Linguistics of the Russian Academy of Sciences

Bolshoy Kislovskiy Lane, 1, Bld. 1, 125009 Moscow, Russia

Chief Researcher, Pushkin State Russian Language Institute

Volgina St., 6, 117485 Moscow, Russia

Professor, Department of Contrastive Linguistics, Moscow Pedagogical State University

Malaya Pirogovskaya St., 1, Bld. 1, 119991 Moscow, Russia

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https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5996-2648


Abstract. This paper discusses the syntax of the past tense auxiliaries in the vernacular Old Russian plusperfect construction of the type дал был, дал есми был. I prove that the past tense auxiliaries behaved as enclitics both with the order дал есми был and with the order дал был есми. The order of the pluperfect auxiliaries reflects different types of a clitic template characteristic of late Old Russian dialects. In the 15 th century, the order <дал> есми был was characteristic for the official style of the Moscow charters, while Polotsk charters from the same period generalized the reversed order <дал> был есми. In the 16 th century, the order <дал> был есми has established in the Moscow official tradition as well. The pluperfect auxiliaries were excluded from the clause-initial position and other non-enclitic positions, sentences of the type *#был есмь дал ~ #был дал есмь are not attested. In the clause-internal position, both groups of the Old Russian dialects grammaticalized the fixed contact order of the auxiliaries #...был есми... дал ~ #дал был есми irrespective of the position of the verb. This distribution proves that the pluperfect auxiliaries in the Old Russian texts from the 14 th –16 th centuries have the features typical of the clustering enclitics in the world's languages with Wackernagel's law.

Key words: pluperfect, perfect, enclitics, clitic templates, word order, Wackernagel's law, grammaticalization, historical text corpora.

Citation. Zimmerling A.V. Pluperfect Auxiliaries in the Russian Language of the 14 th – 16 th Centuries. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 2. Yazykoznanie [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. Linguistics], 2019, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 41-57. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu2.2019.4.4 

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Pluperfect Auxiliaries in the Russian Language of the 14 th – 16 th Centuries by Zimmerling A.V. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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