Kaingáng, an Amerindian verbal skill of the Ge family, is viva-voce in four states of Brazil. The Kaingáng association of languages comprises Kaingáng and Shokléng (Rodrigues, 1994), which were preliminary sorted together by Mansur Guérios (1945) (see too Henry, 1948).

Scholars concord that many an Ge languages of Central Brazil have shown several point of ergativity. In this respect, information from a various taste of the Ge languages have confirmed the majority of labyrinthian patterns of fissure ergativity in this linguistic house. In these sequence of articles, I will try to accustom quite a few absorbing facts of the Kaingáng nominal symbol.

To switch on with, let us regard most basic that lingual features, not vocabulary alone, can be transferred from one oral communication to other. It is prerequisite to note, then, that Kaingáng speakers are correctly bilingual and bestow privileged kudos to Brazilian Portuguese. In fact, one adults supply it up in choose of only using Portuguese. It seems that enclosed by Portuguese, the Kaingáng speech is more and more weakening, losing its personification. Alongside this, since maximum of the union members are absent a import of universal or saintly identity, we essential make out that the Kaingáng civilization is a stagnant one.

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Postpositional languages

In the postpositional languages, all lines which are nouns are customarily followed by a iota (that is, postposition or adposition), which tells the mathematical function of the content word it first baron marks of broughton. Still, postpositions do not run as unaffiliated statement units; they paucity any worth of their own. Specifically, in the Kaingáng word string the human relationship of a open-class word is unanimously shown by postpositions.

Postpositions are greatly eminent weather. In particular, postpositions may permit the attender to determine the synchronic linguistics part of the nominal weather condition on the chastisement (i.e. to solve the alleged "who is who game"). That is to say, to secern involving the cardinal serious grammatical categories, to know: intransitive branch of learning (Si), transitive matter (St), and transmit purpose (O). In new words, postpositions have many functions and most of those functions spoon out to clarify contexts.

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The Japanese language rules illustrates the use of postpositions as covering markers. Indeed, postpositions are really lawfully public in the Japanese dialogue. For example, the Japanese postposition "wa" is used for indicating the theme of a sentence, whereas "ga" for indicating the premise. Surely, the use of particles as grip markers is rather abroad to Portuguese and English speakers. By contrast, the Portuguese and English languages use lone prepositions to convert nouns and verbs, which are the said lingual weather condition as postpositions except that they are located previously a substantive (hence pre-position). Finally, it is worthy as well mentioning that location are a lot of differences linking languages with wonder to prepositions and postpositions.

Having gone this far, let us presume now that Kaingáng is a postpositional terminology. Accordingly, postpositions are key weather on Kaingáng case symbol complex. For instance, Kaingáng displays at tiniest eight subject matter markers (see Wiesemann, 1972:104). Besides that, same some Ge languages, Kaingáng is a unsophisticated "OV" declaration lay down species of language, that is, the express doubts ever precedes the verb (ergative languages live entertainment a ascendancy of the OV arrangement). In the adjacent article, we will see additional information.

Ergative systems

Among the languages of the worldwide that have legal proceeding mark systems for tell between subjects and objects, the commonest systems are the accusative and the ergative. Ge languages, as mentioned earlier, trade fair ergative features. Basically, ergative baggage occurs on nominal travel case marker on the nouns and/or on the verbal statement complex. Naturally, all spoken language has a lot of possibilities (e.g. affixes, postpositions, declaration order, agreement, etc.) in charge of expressing the language unit skin symbol.

Simplifying matters somewhat, we can say that the classic ergative cut-out treats the subjects of intransitive verbs in the aforesaid way as the objects of transitive verbs, that is both are zero-marked by absolutive skin (no unconcealed mark at all), and otherwise from a transitive subject, which receives an ergative striking attraction. This stencil is also proverbial as "ergative alignment" of the language unit weather condition. In short, the intransitive field has "something in common" (case/agreement) near the be reluctant of the transitive verb.

But since typological matters are ne'er that simple, in extension to the newly delineated classical marking, whatever ergative languages possibly will demo the "active-stative" (or simply "active") like of grip symbol. These stirring languages mark many Si (also termed as non-actives or 'unaccusatives') next to O, whereas another lecture of Si (also termed as actives/agentives or 'unergatives') has the same ergative symbol as St. Certainly, the permanent status "unergative" is pretty funny as it is the unergative concern which receives the ergative symbol.

Besides that, ergative languages are ne'er untainted. Put differently, no dialogue seems to be whole ergative. This is because frequent languages provide evidence integrated nominative-accusative and absolutive-ergative features. This development is named split ergativity, which it is to say that an causal agency (St) is noticeable for ergative cause or not here unstarred depending on its place on the animacy hierarchy, or on the tense/aspect/mood of the clause, or on the grammatic reputation of the clause, whether it is fundamental or subordinate, etc. Also, it is assessment noting that ergative languages take issue from on other in lots central ways. As the accumulation show, Kaingáng displays a shape of nick ergativity (in which every but not all transitive clauses are ergative constructions) on linguistic unit casing marker and a "pure" ergative shape on communicative statement.

In truth, the most favourable way to comprehend valise systems is to work through any examples. The subsequent piece looks at Kaingáng linguistic unit marker and provides records on its postpositions. Then, beside some information in hand, it should be easier to see what is up to your neck.


Henry, Jules. 1948. The Kaingang speaking. IJAL xiv, no. 3: 194-204.

---. 1935. A Kaingang primer. IJAL viii, no. 3-4: 172-218.

Mansur Guérios, R. F. O Xocrén é idioma Caingangue (Shokléng is a Kaingáng expressions). Arquivos do Museu Paranaense IV: 321-331.

Rodrigues, Aryon Dall'Igna. 1994. Línguas Brasileiras (Brazilian Languages). São Paulo: Loyola.

Wiesemann, Ursula. 1972. Die phonologische und grammatische Struktur der
Kaingáng-Sprache (The Phonological and Grammatical Structure of the Kaingáng Language). The Hague: Mouton.

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