Absolutive Antipassive Voice ( Concept )

      |_ Abstract
            |_ Linguistic Property
                  |_ Morphosyntactic Property
                        |_ Voice Property
                              |_ Absolutive Antipassive Voice


A term used by some Mayanists to refer to an antipassive in which the patient or logical object is supressed or overtly absent. [Klaiman 1991: 232] Dayley states that the absolutive antipassive is used when the patient is unknown or irrelevant, or when the speaker does not wish to mention the patient, or to describe a transitive activity typically performed by some agent. The absolutive antipassive requires a non-specific implied patient, and no specific patient is ever semantically recoverable from the speech context. Only the absolutive antipassive has (as the name implies) absolutive function such that a transitive activity may be discussed without mention of the patient. [Dayley 1985: 345-350] This type of antipassive with an obligatorily unidentified object is also found in Mam, another Mayan language. [Cooreman 1994: 52-53]

Usage Notes

Language Code: tzj Examples in Tzutujil
2010-07-08 16:39:03

Two Absolutive Antipassive examples:

Ja d’oktoor ja zuuli quz utz nq’omaani
the doctor who arrived-here very well B3-cures
‘The doctor who arrived here cures very well.’ (B3 = Absolutive 3rd Person Singular)

Inin xinch’apooni jatoq xinchajpi
I B1-pinched when B1-was-grabbed
‘I pinched when I was grabbed.’ (B1 = Absolutive 1st Person Singular)

Dayley 1985: 346

Language Code: mam Example in Mam
2010-07-08 16:56:41

Ergative Construction:
ma Ø- - w - aq’na -ʔn - a
ASP ABS.3SG- ERG.1SG - work – DS – 1SG
‘I worked in.’ (something)

Absolutive Antipassive Construction:
ma chin aq’naa - n - a
ASP ABS.1SG work – AP – 1SG
‘I worked.” (no implication of what was worked)

England 1988: 533


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