The complexity and history of verb-stem ablauting patterns in Siyuewu Khroskyabs

  • 1 Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Kahlaische Straße 10, Jena, Germany
Yunfan LaiORCID iD:


This paper describes the ablauting patterns in Siyuewu Khroskyabs, an understudied Gyalrongic language. Ablaut is only found in verbs containing closed syllables, and ablaut patterns in Siyuewu preserve Proto-Khroskyabs patterns relatively well. After providing a synchronic description of verb-stem functions and ablauting patterns, implicative entropy is used to model Siyuewu’s ablauting status. Entropy measurements reveal Siyuewu to have relatively low ablaut predictability, which may be suggestive of a historically conservative ablauting system. On the basis of this quantitative analysis, the current paper proposes an internal reconstruction of ablauting patterns, and postulates a series of velarised vowels for Proto-Siyuewu. Analogical changes are identified through comparison with other Gyalrongic languages. The reconstructed verb forms and patterns are then compared with neighbouring Gyalrongic languages and the directionality of analogy is discussed.

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