Tuesday, 18 October, 4.00-5 pm: Heleen Smits

Derived locative verbs in Lumun (Kordofanian), Heleen Smits

Lumun is a Kordofanian language spoken in the Nuba Mountains of (North-)Sudan by an estimated 7.000 speakers. Lumun verb stems end in a vowel: ɔ, a or ɛ, or in ɔt, at or ɛt. Many verbs occur both with and without a final t, but there are also verbs that cannot get a final t and there are verbs that are not attested without it.
Our question is: what is this final t about?
Example sentences will be presented, contrasting vowel-final verbs with t-final verbs. It is observed that, in many cases, the presence of the t makes the action place-oriented. Pragmatic factors play a role, e.g., if the place represents no new information, the t can or even must be left out. In certain verbs there are transitivity effects: where the vowel-final verb combines with a preposition + noun, the t-final counterpart takes the noun without preposition.