On Linguistic Distance between Erzya and Moksha, Morphology

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The purpose of this article is to outline morphological facts about the two literary
languages Erzya and Moksha, which can be used for estimating the distinctive character of
these individual language forms. Whereas earlier morphological evaluations of the linguistic
distance between Erzya and Moksha have placed them in the area of 90% cohesion, this one
does not. This study evaluates the languages on the basis of non-ambiguity, parallel sets of
ambiguity and divergent ambiguity. Non-ambiguity is found in combinatory function to
morphological formant alignment, e.g. молян go+V+Ind+Prs+ScSg1. Parallel sets of
ambiguity is found in combinatory-function set to morphological formant alignment where
both languages share the same sets of ambiguous readings, e.g. саизь v s сявозь
take+V+Ind+ScPl3+OcSg3, ScPl3+OcPl3. Divergent ambiguity is found in forms with non-
symmetric alignments of combinatory functions, e.g. саинек take+V+Ind+Prt1+ScPl1,
+Prt1+ScPl1+OcSg3, +Prt1+ScPl1+OcPl3 vs сявоме take+V+Ind+Prt1+ScPl1, сявоськ
take+V+Ind+Prt1+ScPl1+OcSg3, +Prt1+ScPl1+OcPl3.
This morphological evaluation will establish the preparatory work in syntactic
disambiguation necessary for facilitating Erzya↔Moksha machine translation, whereas
machine translation will enhance the usage of mutual language resources.
Results show that the Erzya and Moksha languages, in the absence of loan words from the
20 th century, share less than 50% of their vocabularies, 63% of their regular nominal
declensions and 48% of their regular finite conjugations.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication90-летию профессора Д. В. Цыганкина
Number of pages20
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2015
MoE publication typeA3 Book chapter

Fields of Science

  • 6121 Languages
  • Erzya language
  • Moksha language
  • Uralic languages
  • Diversity
  • paradigmatic dichotomy
  • Mordovian State University, N.P. Ogariov

    Nadezhda Kabaeva (Other role), , Jack Rueter (Visiting researcher), , Ivan Riabov (Other role), & Maria Levina (Other role)

    3 Dec 20188 Dec 2018

    Activity: Visiting an external institution typesAcademic visit to other institution

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