A Pārsīg Grammar/ abar-uzvān ī pārsīg Pārsīg grammar is the body of rules describing the properties of the Pārsīg language. Pārsīg had become more analytical, having no grammatical gender and few case markings. The Perso-Aryan languages are part of the Aryan family of languages, to which the Indic (or Indo-Aryan) and Gulic (or the so-called Nuristani) belong. The two languages belonging to the middle west branch of the Perso-Aryan languages are Pārsīg ‘Persic’ (called also “Pahlavi”, “Middle Persian”) in the south and Pahlawānīg ‘Parthian’ in the north.
The phonetic list of Pārsīg may be given first –the Pahlawānīg special sounds are between brackets: a, ā, e, ē, o, ō, i, ī, u, ū, h, (γ), x, g, k, ž, š, y, j, c, r, l, n, d, t, z, s, (δ), xv, f, v, b, p, m, (β).
The Pārsīg preserved the old vowel phonemes a, ā, i, ī, u, ū; and four other vowels appeared in its early period, that is, ē, ō, e, and o. The old diphthongs ai and au were monophthongized to ē and ō. The Pārsīg vowels can be identified as follows:
Front Central Back Rounded ________________________________________________________
ShortLong Short Long ShortLong
High iī u ū Mide ē o ō Low a ā
All vowels should be pronounced properly. The long vowels ā, ē, ī, ō, ū are pronounced like the short ones, only longer.
Letter As in
ī Eng. beat
eGerm. Bett, Fr. été, Eng. set
ē Fr. paix, Germ. See
aGerm. Wasser, Eng. but
ā Hindi rāt
uGerm. Mutter, Eng. put
ūFr. rouge, Eng. food, Germ. gut
o Fr. beau, Germ. Sonne
ōEng. so, Fr. or, Germ. Sohn
We may posit the following classification of consonant phonemes for Pārsīg. The numbers 1-9 stand for bilabial (1), labio-dental (2), lamino-dental (3), alveolar (4), palato-alveolar (5), palatal (6), velar (7), rounded-velar (8), laryngeal (9). The letter to the right represents a voiced consonant.
§ There is no distinction of genders. There remain, however, quite numerous traces of the older variation in a few Pārsīg substantives on account of gender. Appropriate words or suffixes can be added to indicate the gender of some words, especially of proper names.
§ The Pārsīg noun evolved into a two-number and no-case system: there are two numbers, singular and plural, the dual number of the Old Persic has entirely disappeared; the cases of the nouns are not expressed by any endings, the Middle Persic two cases, direct and oblique, have been almost completely abolished. Old Persic language was called, by its speakers, pārsa ‘Persic’ and airya ‘Aryan’ (cf. DB par.70), and (Middle) Persic language pārsīg (cf. HKR 50). Old Persic language has six cases, nominative, vocative, accusative, genitive-dative, instrumental-ablative, and locative. The inscriptions from Artaxerxes on indicate new phonetic and morphological peculiarities. The Persic inscriptions of the Sasanian times are written in what is clearly a Persic stage of the language; however, we find a few archaisms in them, and even in the early Manichaean texts and the Persic Psalter. Between these two stages, old and new, a quite different stage of language with its own “grammar” existed for a number of centuries: the Middle Persic stage.
§ We may give the following paradigm for Post-OPers. Xa-/ Pers. X:
Post-OPers. Mid.-Pers. Pers.
Xa nom./1 X direct, singular X
Xahyā gen./1 Xeh/ Xē oblique, singular X
Xā nom./3 X direct, plural X
Xānām gen./3 Xān oblique, plural Xān
This paradigm does not reflect the real change of the Persic nominal morphology.
§ If the plurality of a noun is “clear”, it does not take any termination. To emphasize the plurality or to clarify a substantive phrase, the ending °ān is attached to a noun, and sometimes in the later writings the ending °īhā –this later ending is never used as modifying noun. – When a word goes back to the nominative case. – When a word goes back to the old accusative case. – When both forms exist side by side, i.e. one goes back to the old nominative case, and the other to the accusative case. – The kinship nouns which go back to the old r-stems have three separate forms:
singular, directX direct < *Xā nom./1
singular, oblique Xar or Xār< *Xaram, *Xāram acc./1
plural, direct Xar or Xār direct < *Xarah, Xārāh nom./3
plural, oblique Xarān< « artificial » gen./3 of *Xara-/ *Xāra-
§ There are two series of personal pronouns, detached and suffixed. For the first and second singular persons there originally existed two forms, direct and oblique. The suffixed personal pronouns are only used as oblique. (V: linking vowel; dir.: direct/ rectus; obl.: oblique/ obliquus; s.: singular; pl.: plural)
s.1an dir. (Parth. az), man obl. -Vm
2 tū dir., tō obl. -Vt
3 ō, ōy/ avē, (hō)-Vš
pl. 1 amā/ amāh-Vmān, -Vn
2 ašmā/ ašmāh-Vtān
3 avēšān, (havīn) -Všān
§ The old demonstrative pronoun ava- (avā- f.) tended to be used in the noun functions, and as such it became the third person personal pronoun: ōy s./ avēšān pl. Moreover, it has its demonstrative, emphatic function, or simply indicates definiteness. We also find the form avīn pl. (Parth. havīn). § hān or ān ‘that’ (Parth. hō). It is also a third person personal pronoun. The plural form hānēšān rarely occurs (Parth. havīn).§ ēn ‘this’. The plural form ēnēšān rarely occurs.
§ im ‘this’. The plural form is imēšān (Parth. imīn). The pronoun im mostly occurs in a series of compounds (im-rōz ‘today’, im-šab ‘tonight’).
§ ēd ‘this’. The form ē is identical with ēd; it may, however, continue the old demonstrative pronoun *a-, *ahyā.
§ ī relative pronoun, also īg. Besides its role as relative pronoun, ī often functions as a relative particle. § kē relative pronoun ‘who, which’, interrogative pronoun ‘who?’. The plural form keyān is rarely used.
§ cē relative pron. ‘what, which’, interrogative pron. ‘what?’. It also functions as a conjunction, with the meaning ‘for, because’. In Parthian cē is used as a relative particle.
§ xvad reflexive and emphatic pronoun ‘self’ (Parth. vxad). It is sometimes used as a possessive pronoun. The combination xvad … did indicates reciprocation.
§ cand indefinite, interrogative pronoun ‘some; how much, many?’ (Parth. cvand, cvend); ē-cand ‘some, a few’. and adjective ‘many, several; a few; so much’ (Parth. avend), and … cand ‘as much/ many as’.
§ vahmān, avahmān ‘so-and-so, a certain one’ adjective, indefinite pronoun.
§ A cardinal number can take the plural oblique ending -nān, and sometimes -nīn (/ -rīn).
§ Compound numerals are expressed in two forms: 1) the larger numbers come first; the conjunctions u(d) being optionally inserted, or omitted; 2) the smaller numbers are put before.§ The indefiniteness can be expressed by means of the numeral ēv/ ē which follows the noun.
The grammatical categories that are distinguished in Pārsīg verb morphology are person (first, second, and third), number (singular and plural), tense and mood.
Verbal Stem Formation
§ The Pārsīg verbal system is based upon two stems: the present stem and the past stems (in the following indicated by present: past). A primary past stem ends in -t (°f-t, °x-t, °š-t, °s-t) or -d (°V-d, °n-d, °r-d). A secondary past stem is formed by adding -īd (Parth. -ād), or -ist to the present stem. When the present stem of a verb is transitive or causative, the past stem is with active sense; when the present stem is intransitive or passive, the past stem is with passive sense.
Subjunctive: barān ‘let me carry’, gōbā, šavād, kunām, dānād, dahānd.
Optative: barēm ‘I should carry’, šavēš, gōbē, kunēm, dānēd, dahēnd.
Imperative: bar! ‘carry!’, dahed! ‘give!’
• From the past stems
In the past tense, intransitive and transitive verbs are construed differently.
§ Past stem & h – present ending: preterit
intransitive: šud ham ‘I went’, šud hē, šud, šud hem, šud hed, šud (hend).
transitive: i. agential. It is of ergative type. The agent is in oblique case and the patient (sometimes omitted) in oblique case. The patient determines verbal concord: an nēk būd ham, u-t nēktar bē kird ham ‘I was beautiful, and you made me more beautiful’; tū murvān bē burd hē ‘the birds carried you off’; dēn (P) īg man (A) vizīd ‘the religion that I have chosen’.
ii. non-agential. It is of passive type. ped hangām ō frahangestān dād ham ‘in due time I was given to the school’; burd hed ‘you were carried’.
intransitive: šud hān ‘I may/ would have gone’.
transitive: dēvān rāz bē dānist hād ‘the Daēva would have known the secret’; nēkīh dād hād ‘goodness wouls have been given’.
intransitive: šud hē ‘(would that) he had gone’
transitive: bēzumān agar dānist hē ‘but if we had known’; kāc nēkīh dād hē ‘would that goodness had ben given’.
§ Past stem & present of b-/ bav-: periphrastic passive I
Indicative:guft baved ‘it is said’; ka hān mān kird baved ‘when that house will be built’.
Subjunctive: kird bavād ‘let it be done’.
Optative: āfrīd bēh yazd ‘blessed be God’.
§ Past stem & preterit of b-/ bav-: past anterior
intransitive: šud būd ham ‘I had gone’.
transitive: i. agential: ka-š hān guft būd ‘when he said that’.
ii. non-agential: nēkīh dād būd ‘goodness had been done’.
intransitive: šud būd hān.
transitive: u-š āfrīd būd hām.
intransitive: šud būd hē.
transitive: kāc ōy amāh burd būd hēm.
§ Past stem & anād/ anānd: past imperfect
u-š az nas īg dēvān ud az rīm ī druxšān kird anād ēn nasāh ‘and from the nasal mucus of the demons and from the dirt of the she-demons she had made this corpse’; u-šā, xvēš zahag ud hannām ō ōy dād anānd ‘and they had given their own progeny and limbs to it’.
§ Past stem & present of est-/ ēst-: perfect
intransitive: šud estam ‘I have gone’.
transitive: i. agential: dānāgān guft ēsted ‘the wise said (it)’.
ii. non-agential: guft ēsted ‘it has been said’.
§ Past stem & preterit of est-/ ēst-: pluperfect
intransitive: šud estād ham ‘I had gone’.
transitive: i. agential: ped harv ēvēnag peristišn ī ardavān būd hān kenīzag kird estād ‘any kind of service which was (necessary) to Ardavān, that maid had performed’.
ii. non-agential: kird estād ‘it had been done’
§ Past stem & past anterior of est-/ ēst-: perfect anterior
intransitive: šud estād būd ham ‘I had gone’.
transitive: i. agential: u-m guft estād būd ‘and I had said (it)’.
ii. non-agential: nēkīh dād estād būd ‘goodness had been given’.
§ Past stem& estād & present of b-/ bav-: periphrastic passive II
mardōm andar kāmag-zīvišnīh dāšt estād bavend ‘people shall have been stood in a happy life.’