Süäüüelläi (alcarilinque) wrote,

Uralic fun for the evening.

Picked up a Hungarian grammar a week ago, and I'm getting into it. It's in Finnish, which definately helps, because there are things that I feel will be more precise when I am given equivalents in Finnish than in English. What a fun way to learn! Also helps with the Finnish. Maybe I could relearn English and French this way? Anyway...

  kő 'stone'; kivi       szó 'word'; sana
 sg. pl.     sg. pl.
'my stone'
'our stone'
     1szavam szavunk
'your stone'
'y'alls stone'
     2szavad szavatok
'his/her stone'
'their stone'
     3szava szavuk

Studying all the Finnic languages and history of them that I have, I can't help but look at these Hungarian paradigms and actually finally see for myself why the languages are related. Yeesh! That just reeks so much of proto-something, I don't know what. I guess one of the things that I'm interested to see is that it looks like Hungarian has undergone some changes that have also supposedly happened throughout the history of Finnish, in which Vowel+Consonant+Vowel alternates with a long vowel, such as /so:/ vs. /sava/. If I remember correctly (maybe wrong context, right idea), Finnish gained some of its mono-syllabic words that end in long vowels and diphthongs (such as syy 'reason'; 'night') from a similar process (syy > *syje). Hungarian, it seems, just happens to preserve both forms in separate stems, whereas Finnish only has one derivational stem. I guess in a way then it's not so surprising to find words that alternate like the Hungarian /köv-.


There's a sentence that gets quoted a lot showing relations between Hungarian and Finnish, as each language retains similar words. It and more such sentences can be found here, along with more of those fancy -v- words. Pretty nifty!

Hun.: Jég alatt télen eleven halak úszkálnak.
Fin.: Jään alla talvella elävät kalat uiskentelevat.
'In wintertime living fish swim under the ice.'

Ki ment mi előttünk?
Ken meni meidän edessämme?
'Who went before us?'

Thus, I must suggest the possibilities for Northern Sámi: jieŋa vuolde dalvet ealli guolli vuodjala, and gii manai min ovddas.
The first sentence (or at least my version) is not so transparent/related. In NS, the equivalent of alla 'under', alde is probably actually related to Finnish yllä 'above, over'; similarly vuodjalit 'to swim (freq.)' might well come from another root (relating to Finnish ajaa?).
Tags: en, finnish, hungarian, language history, sámi, uralic languages
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