Published online by Cambridge University Press: 24 December 2009
In an earlier issue of BSOAS I published some notes on an interesting feature of the Socotri language, namely that certain imperfect forms lack the t-prefix which marks 2nd and certain 3rd person forms in Semitic languages.
The J(ibbāli), or Śherí, language of Dhofar also exhibits this negative feature, and in much the same series of forms; principally the indicative, subjunctive, and conditional forms of causative verbs, intensive-conative verbs, quadriliteral verbs and passive verbs.
1 XXXI, 3, 1968, 515–25. In the system of transcription used here ṭ, ḏ, ṣ, ṩ, and ḳ are glottalized consonants; ǵ is a palatized variant of g; ś, Ź, and ź are lateṙals; ṩ and ṩ are pronounced with protrusion of the lips, and ź with more friction than ź. Ź is an allophone of 1, ṩ an allophone of k and an independent phoneme (both are g in Eastern Jibbāli), and ṩ (Eastern ṣ) is an allophone of k and perhaps an independent phoneme, b and m are elided in intervocalic position, the latter with residual nasalization: thus emƏ-> ī, etc.
2 The subjunctive in J has the function of both subjunctive and jussive in C(lassical) A(rabic) and, with the particle ḥ- or ḥa-, forms a future tense. The conditional, which corresponds formally (viz. in its n suffix) to the CA modus energicus, occurs mostly in hypothetical conditional sentences.
3 ǝt- or t-, usually it- after the preformative d-.
4 The n- is strictly speaking incorrect, but many such forms are double-marked.
5 The e- in such forms can alternatively be considered to be part of the pre-formative d-, dǝ-: thus de-ḥōrkun, etc. In general the vowel quality of anaptyctics is subject to variation.
6 The 1- in subj. forms occurs only where there is no pers. pronoun suffix, or where this suffix is vocalic (thus 1 e.s.ə-, but not 3 m.s. y-/i-).
7 Or effət/efflət: on this gemination cf. ‘Gemination of the Jibbāli language of Dhofar’, ZAL, IV, 1980, 62–71Google Scholar .
8 Pattern usually ytεCCəC, etc.
9 The examples given here are all in Central Jibbāli. It is interesting that there is fluctuation in usage with intensive-conative verbs also in Eastern Jibbāli.
10 Quadriliteral verbs of this pattern all have an ən-prefix. Compare also the conspectus of verbal forms given above. This ən-prefix occurs otherwise only with one or two triliteral verbs as, e.g., anḥérək, to move (intr.).
11 However, the speaker, Sālim Bakhīt, was doubtful of the indicative forms.