Valency Increasing in South Ethio-Semitic





Work Unit:

Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia


Vol.10 No.1 (Serial No.16) 2022






The present paper focuses on a descriptive method of valency-increasing devices in five South Ethio-Semitic languages (Amharic, Harari, Kɨstane, Məsqan, and Endəgaɲ). The five languages were selected for two reasons. The first reason is that conducting a valency study on all South Ethio-Semitic languages would have been impossible. With limited resources and time, it will prove difficult to cover all languages. The second reason is that, except for Amharic, these languages are known for being the least studied. Most of them even lack sufficient recording and description. So this research needs to choose the representative language in each branch. As a result, no explicit theoretical framework is followed; data analysis is guided solely by a descriptive perspective. The study’s data was gathered by consulting native speakers via elicitation. Valency has been considered as both a semantic and syntactic notion. As a semantic notion, it is used to refer to the participants in an event; as a syntactic notion, it is used to indicate the number of arguments in a construction. There are different types of transitivity classes of verbs in the South Ethio-Semitic Language, which is spoken in Ethiopia: intransitive, transitive, and ditransitive. Apart from these, there are verbs that can be used both intransitively and transitively. The facts that provide clear evidence for grammatical relations in South Ethio-Semitic languages are crucial to the study of the concept of valency-increasing devices. As is the case in many languages, South Ethio-Semitic languages possess morphosyntactic means through which the valency of verbs can be adjusted. The application of these morphosyntactic processes decreases or increases the valency of verbs. This article looks at valency-increasing devices in Causative and Applicative South Ethio-Semitic languages.

Key Words:

applicative, causative, intransitive, SESL, transitive, valency


doi: 10.26478/ja2022.10.16.5


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