The Syntactic Role Of The Category Of Transience-Transience In The Avar Language


The article deals with the interrelation of the category of transitivity, nontransition and structural types of proposals in the Avar language. The verb in the Avar language is the most complex grammatical category, characterized by a variety of forms and grammatical categories. Syntactic organization of the sentence depends directly on the category of transience-transience. Although the category of transience-non-transience in the Avar language has attracted the attention of many researchers, a number of issues related to it cannot be considered as finally resolved, and this applies primarily to the category of transience and non-transience. The transient-non-transitivity category is one of the main properties of the Avar verb that defines its syntactic relationship. Permeating the entire system of the verb, the category of transience and non-transience is the most important and vivid grammatical category of this part of speech. In the Avaric language, the division of verbs into transient and non-transient is complicated by the fact that many verbs can be used equally as transient and non-transient verbs. In a certain context, transient verbs can be non-transient and non-transient verbs can be transient, otherwise they are called "diffuse", "labial" or "ambivalent" verbs. Transient verbs in the Avar language usually correspond to dynamic verbs that express the process of action. Non-transient verbs do not correspond to both dynamic and statistical verbs, which express the state, the result of the action.

Keywords: Transition-non-transition categoryverbobjectsubject


This or that verb belongs to the category of transitivity or non-transitivity, which is defined both by semantics (i.e. by its meaning) and by the expression of syntactic connection with class indices. Not all Avar verbs are comparable in terms of transience and non-transience in morphological terms. For example, the verbs "run" and "buy" are not morphologically different from each other. However, they differ in their lexical meanings and ability to fit into the corresponding constructions. Categories of transitivity and nontransitivity syntactically differ in the presence or absence of the object of action. In addition, the subject of action in the case of transitive verbs is formed by the form of an ergonomic case, and in the case of non-transient verbs by the form of a nominative verb. For example: 1) Insuzabosana sagIat "Father bought a watch"; 2) Vas vectorana "Boy ran". As we can see from the examples, the category of transience-transience is reflected in the class change of the verb. In nonclass verbs and verbal forms, the morphological expression of transience and non-transience is difficult.

Problem Statement

It is generally accepted that the semantic-synthactic classification of verbs in ergonomic languages is based on the opposition between transitive and non-transient verbs. The division of verbs into "transient" and "nontransient" is the main grouping of verbs in the Caucasian languages (Haspelmath, 1993). Taking into account the category of transience-non-transience is important for determining the structural types of word combinations in the Avar language: infinite forms of transient semantics create word combinations of an ergonomic structure: and infinite forms of nontransient semantics – word combinations of a nominal structure. "Among the problems of syntax, writes Abdullaev (1969), the category of transience-transience of the verb occupies one of the important places. No question of syntax can be solved to any extent without directly or indirectly touching the category of transience-transience" (Abdullaev, 1969).

Transient/non-transient verbs, however, differ in that they create constructs that are characteristic of both transient and non-transient verbs. For example: 1) Vas quanana "Boy ate", 2) Wasaskwananased "Boy ate bread". As you can see from the examples, the grammar of the verb is the same in both cases. In the first example, the verb of the quanana has a non-transient value, and in the second example, a transient value. The first sentence is based on the model of the nominal structure, while the second sentence is based on the model of the ergonomic structure. The correlation between the ergonomic and nominal constructions of the sentence is one of the main features of the syntactic order of not only the Avar but also other NakhDagestani languages (Bechert, 1971).

The transitivity/non-transitivity category is closely related to subject-object categories. Thus, the transient verbs that have class indices in their composition are coordinated in the class with the object of action, while the non-transient verbs are coordinated with the subject of action. This provision also applies to verbal forms. For example: 1) Vatsasbekiarabhur "brother sown field"; 2) Vachiaravachi "come man". In the first phrase, the categories of number and class in the object of action of the hoorus and in the transient sacrament of the Beckharab coincide, which are expressed by means of prefixed and suffixed class and number indices. In the second sentence, the non-transient participle of the wachsIarav with its prefix and suffixed class number indices is coordinated with the subject of the chi action, indicating that the latter is related to the I class of a singular. In these sentences, the coordinating properties of class indices play the role of differentiators of transitive and non-transient participles. On the relationship between the transitive verb and the object of action Bokarev (1949) wrote that

the presence of a class index at the heart of the transitive verb, and therefore the coordination of the verb with the object of the transitive verb in terms of class and number, is only an external expression of the internal semantic connection of the transitive verb with the object to which the action expressed by the verb passes. The presence of the class index makes this semantic relation of the transitive verb to the object clear and therefore easily detectable, but does not create this relation. (p. 56)

Thus, depending on their semantic and syntactic peculiarities, the class and number of the object or subject are expressed in infinite forms of the verb.

Research Questions

It should be noted that the category of transience-non-transience is not reflected in the verb modification. For example: 1) Tchitelasdabihyana tsIaldohanashbarabkarabqaat "The teacher saw the letter written by the student", where tsIaldohanas is the subject in the ergativa, tsIaldohanas is the subject in the ergativa, ghwarab is the participle of the transitive semantics, and kaghat is the object in the nominative; 2) Didavihihihanagyobolljukhvachirav you "I saw a boy who came to visit", where vachIarav is a nontransition communion, you are the subject in the nomination.

Infinite forms of transitional semantics designate action which directly passes on the object issued by a nominee and forms an ergonomic design. At infinite forms of transition semantics subjects are issued by an ergativist, nominative, dativist, and from local cases – by a local locativist of I series. For example: 1) kIodotza – subject in the ergative, bitsarab – transitive communion, hubar – object in the nominative; 2) kagatkhvar – object in the nominative; 2) kagatkhvar – "boy who wrote the letter", where kagiat – object in the nominative, boasting – transitive communion, you – subject in the nominative; 3) TsIaldohabazevokhulev teacher "teacher, loved by students", where tsIaldohabaze is the subject in the dative, vokhulev is the transitive communion, and the teacher is the object in the nominative; 4) below DaragIarab kecI is "the song we heard", where below is the subject in the first series of the locale, ragIarab is the transitive communion, and kecI is the object in the nominative (Magomedov & Magomedtagirova, 2015).

Thus, in constructions of this type the class and the number of the object actant are always reflected in the class-numeric indices of the infinite verb forms. However, the subject actant does not find reflection in the infinite forms. Besides, it is necessary to keep in mind that in the subject-object forms themselves their class attribution is not formally expressed in any way.

Infinite forms of nontransition semantics express an action that does not imply an object to which this action would be directed. Infinite forms of nontransition semantics are coordinated with the actant decorated with the nominative case and form a nominal structure. For example: 1) kijarab baziarab bazi I "sleeping wolf", where kijarab baziarab is a non-transition communion, baziarab is an actant in the nominative; 2) vectoruing you "running boy", where vectoruing is a non-transition semantics communion, you are an actant in the nominative. In these constructions, verbal actions are related only to the subjects themselves and do not transfer to any objects (Charachidzé, 1981).

As we can see from the examples, the syntactic connection between the infinite form of nontransition semantics and the subject of action is mutual: the infinite form of nontransition semantics requires the registration of the subject of action by the nominee, while the subject of action, in turn, is combined only with the infinite form of nontransition semantics.

With a change in the class and number of the subject of action, the corresponding class-numerical indicators of infinite forms of intransitive semantics also change. For example: 1) вачIарав вас “a boy who has come” (I group class, the singular);; 2) йачIараййас “a girl who has come” (II group class, the singular); 3) бачIараб чу “a horse that has come” (III group class, the singular); 4) рачIараллъимал “children who have come” (plural).

Masdars ending in the suffixes -li, -heen, -di, -day, – are not transient: 1) Hercules – herringbone – "old age – to grow old", ginky – ginky – ginky – "deafness – to deafen"; 2) csidahine – csidahine – "anger – to be angry", makihikhin – makihikine – "to be sleepy"; 3) gIody – gIodize "crying – crying", hwadi – hvadize "walking – walking"; 4) ahIdeze – ahIdeze "shouting – shouting", gyardhee – gyardhese "asking" (Dumézil, 1933).

Other non-transient verbs are those that denote natural phenomena: roguine "light", tIegiaise "flower", quachase "freeze, freeze", etc. It should also be noted that in the Avar language causative is a special kind of transition verb. A causative formed by a transitive verb requires the introduction of a second object into the phrase combination (the first object is constantly present in the transitive verb). A causative formed by a non-transition verb requires the introduction of an object into a phrase or sentence that cannot be used in a simple non-transition verb. In other words, causative forms of non-transition verbs are always transient, i.e. by means of the causative form, the non-transition verb becomes a transitional verb.

Infinitives formed with the help of the lize-format, which shows the action that changed the previous state of the object, are not transient. For example: kvesh "bad" – kveshleizye "to become bad"; lykI "good" – lykIlizye "to become good", etc. As we can see, the format -lise is added to the dialects and non-transition verbs are formed. Bokarev (1949) believes that "before Lise became the "verbalizing" suffix, he was a special verb with its clear lexical meaning, and the verbs of the formation of the type of bagIarlize "blush" arose on the basis of the compound predicted as a result of the merger of its parts into a single verb" (p. 68).

In infinite structures, the class indices of the infinite forms reflect the syntactic links between subject-object names and verbal forms of transitive and non-transient semantics. The only indicators of the grammatical class are -- (for I grade), -- (for II grade) and -- (for III grade). The class indices of verbal forms -p- and -l – are coordinated with the subject or object, decorated with the plural. For example: by vectoruing you "running boy" (I grade), yekerulev ash "running girl" (II grade), beckeruleb chu "running horse" (III grade); rectorulellium "running children" (mn. number). Those verbs that have "class characteristics as part of their fundamentals cannot be used without these latter in any of the possible verb forms" (Bokarev, 1949, p. 70).

In the Avar language, the verbs of sensual perception, coordinated with the real subject in the dative case studies, have a real object in the nominative case, as well as the transitive verbs with the real subject in the ergative case. This circumstance (the presence of a real object in the Nominative Case) facilitates the perception of verbasentiendi as a transitive verb. Comparing the verbs of sensual perception in the Avar and Andean languages, Gudawa (1959) notes that these verbs in these languages "are at different stages of development: from non-transition verbs, they are constantly transformed into transition verbs (e.g. in Avar, "love", "hear" are thought of as transition verbs, in Tindinian, as non-transition verbs). Perhaps the current real object of these verbs has historically been a subject, and the current subject an indirect object" (p. 30).

Thus, the infinite forms formed from verbs of sensual perception have a transitional semantics. However, the infinite forms of this type differ from the transient forms in that they are coordinated in the class and number with the actant formed by the dative case or the locale of the I series, rather than with the ergonomic case. For example: 1) Rosurichiarab Rosuric IkIada bugo "the village that he saw is far away"; 2) Rosaseyokyuli alienIuigogyai "is the wife who is loved by her husband. In the first sentence, the actant is annoyed by the I-series locale, and the actant dew is the nominee. In the second sentence, the actant dew is decorated with a dative, and the actant alien – with a nominee.

At some infinite forms of the specified type the action of the subject and object is characterized by compatibility. For example: HIemerrihyaralg'yaralg'yaral'yargal'yal "These are friends who have seen each other many times”.

The main components of the infinite verb constructs are participle, deieprity, masdar and infinitive.

Chikobava (1961) wrote: "Ergative construction is a three-dimensional syntagm: a transitive verb + a real subject in an ergonomic (i.e. "active") case + the nearest (so-called "straight") object in the nominative case: the Avar.Insu-tsa (erg.) Chu (named) bichan's "father sold" (p. 35). As can be seen from the sentence, the subject of the insurant's action is not coordinated with the verb of the Bichan. Syntactic relations between the object of action of the Chu and the verb of the Bichan are grammatically formalized by means of the prefixed class and number index – b. Verbal forms of transitive and non-transient semantics can be both with and without class indexes. For example: 1) VachIarav Emen "the Coming Father", 2) TIekhIalise "to read the book". In the first phrase, the nontransition participle of the vachIarav has two class indices – suffix and prefix. In the second phrase, however, the infinitive of the transitional semantics of the cIalysis does not have a grammatical class index in its composition. The advantage of the infinite forms of the verb with the indices of the grammatical class is that the grammatical classes of the infinite forms allow to trace more clearly the syntactic links between the components of the word combination and sentence.

An ergonomic sentence structure can easily be turned into a nominal one. Let's consider the proposal of an ergonomic design of Ditsabosarab tIehbugogyab "This book is bought by me". In this sentence, the subject of the Ditsa action is decorated with an ergonomic case. The transitional participle of the bossarab is coordinated by both prefixed and suffixed class number indicator with the object of action tIekh, designed by the nominee. Let us transform the abovementioned sentence structure into a nominal one: Giab tIekhjbosaravdunwoo. "I bought this book. Here, the transitional communion of the bossav with his prefixed class parameter b-coordinates with the subject of action dun. The Bosarabi Bosarab's participles have different relationships with the subject and object of action.

The specific feature of the so-called "transient/non-transition" verbs is that they are able to organize either an ergonomic or an absolute sentence structure depending on the communicative task, so they are constructed both morphologically transient and intrusively.

It should be noted that depending on the category of transitivity and non-transition, subject-object relations in the proposals change. The component that is the subject of the sentence with the verbal forms of nontransition semantics may be the object of the transient use of these verbal forms. At the same time, the subject of nontransition and the object of transition infinite forms have the form of a nominee. For example: 1) GIurutsaarav vasvihjananizheda "We saw a boy carried away by the river"; 2) TsIalizearav you vugogue "This boy has gone to study". In the first phrase, the subject of the action is GIurutz, and the object of your action. In the second phrase, the component of you is the subject of action.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this article is to define the syntactic role of the category of transience-transience in the Avar language. Transient and non-transient verbs cannot be defined without taking into account their compatibility in word combinations and sentences. Therefore, the polysemy is most directly related to the categories of transience and non-transience. The same verbal form can be used as both transient and non-transient depending on the context. For example: 1) Qebedasbiarab of fucking letters. "lead melted by blacksmith"; 2) gIazu biarab "melted snow". In the first phrase, the sacrament of Biarab has a transient semantics, and in the second phrase, the same sacrament is not transient. As can be seen from the examples, the semantic difference of such phrases is revealed in the context. The very fact of such close interaction of these forms proves that transient and non-transient verbal forms should be considered in parallel. Analyzing the transitive and non-transient verbs of the Avar language, Bokarev (1949) wrote:

The coincidence of two different meanings in the same sound form makes it possible to suppose that older relations overlapping with the dominant division of verbs into transitive and non-transient ones look through the modern duality of verbs. The historical basis of this ambiguity is obviously the indifference between transience and non-transience. Some verbs were later fixed as non-transition verbs, but the possibility of their transient use indicates their former indifference to transience and non-transience. Other verbs have been fixed as predominantly transient, but their use as non-transient indicates the same indifference. (p. 73)

It should be noted that the division of verbs into transient and non-transient should be considered as conditional, since we can only talk about the predominant non-transient use of some and the predominant transient use of others.

Thus, the boundary between transient and non-transient verbs is very unstable. However, most of the verbs have been freed from the ambiguity of transience and non-transience and have been anchored in one of these categories (Haspelmath, 1993). For example, the Bose infinitives "to buy", the Ciese "to give" in any combination are only transient: TIehbosize "to buy a book", RagI and Ciese "to give a word", etc.

Research Methods

The object of this article is the syntactic role of the category of transience-transience in the Avar language. The nature of this study implies the use of general scientific methods of analysis and linguistic observation, which allow to differentiate the syntactic role of the category of transience-transience in the formation of various structural types of sentence in the Avar language.


On the basis of the above, we can conclude that the category of transience-transience is one of the main properties of the Avar verb, which defines its syntactic links. The category of transience and non-transience is the most important and vivid grammatical category that can only be understood by comparing the first category with the second. The category of transience and non-transience is also closely related to the causative category of transience and non-transience, which is formed from both transient and non-transient verbs by adding the latter to the auxiliary verb of the gyabise "do".

The syntactic relationship between the object and the subject of the action and the transitivity and non-transitivity of the verb in the Avaric language has its own peculiarities, which directly affect the structure of the corresponding sentences.


Thus, the functioning of syntactic constructs depends on the categorical structure of verbal forms and subject-object names. Transient and non-transient forms are able to simultaneously stipulate two word combinations – ergonomic and nominative.

The analysis of the language material shows that one can reveal potentially possible subject-object actants, with which these infinite forms can be combined, by their class and number indices of infinite forms. Just as the infinite forms of transient or non-transient semantics are coordinated with the subject of action, so vice versa, thanks to transient or non-transient infinite forms the syntactic functions of the subject and object of action are recognized in word combinations and sentences.


Copyright information

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

About this article

Publication Date

31 October 2020

eBook ISBN



European Publisher



Print ISBN (optional)


Edition Number

1st Edition




Sociolinguistics, linguistics, semantics, discourse analysis, translation, interpretation

Cite this article as:

Magomedov, D. M., & Magomedov, M. I. (2020). The Syntactic Role Of The Category Of Transience-Transience In The Avar Language. In & D. K. Bataev (Ed.), Social and Cultural Transformations in the Context of Modern Globalism» Dedicated to the 80th Anniversary of Turkayev Hassan Vakhitovich, vol 92. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 650-657). European Publisher.