Actional sentences in the Khanty and Nenets languages: Semantics and metaphorization ways

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The semantic core of actional sentences is the relationship of purposeful influence on the object by the active, controlling subject. The impact is carried out in the physical sphere and represents the causation of the existence or non-existence of the object, as well as the causation of the transition from one state to another. Hence, there are two semantic types of actional sentences creative and destructive action, on the one hand, and the transformation of the object, on the other. The complex of causal-aspectual relations is superimposed on the elementary meanings of existence and state. The following lines of metaphorical transfers are identified, with the physical sphere being the starting point: 1) figurative values, resulting in a system of polysemants - elementary simple sentences with semantics derived from the original one - based on actional typical syntactic structure:  sentences of possession; the transfer direction: physical sphere → social sphere (only for the Khanty language); the figurative meaning is determined by the semantics of the predicate tăjti ‘to have’, in which the active role of the agent is reduced, possession does not imply a direct impact on the object;  characterization sentences with the verb tăjti ‘to have’; the transfer direction: impact in the physical sphere → characterization in the physical sphere; in partitive subject-object relations, there is one more obligatory component - an adjective accompanying the object position; such sentences are expressive syntactic synonyms of characterization sentences with an adjectival predicate; 2) the transfer of meaning from the physical sphere to the mental and intellectual ones, with syntactic homonyms being formed - non-elementary simple and polypredicative constructions with modus-dictum relations (constructions with sentential predicates). The position of the object is replaced either by the names of abstract semantics, or by words representing the reduced propositions, or by predicative actants. The criterion for classifying these sentences as homonyms is their non-elementary semantics
Translated title of the contributionАкциональные предложения в хантыйском и ненецком языках: семантика и пути метафоризации
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-280
Number of pages14
JournalSibirskii Filologicheskii Zhurnal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


  • Actional sentences
  • Elementary simple sentence
  • Homonymy
  • Khanty language
  • Nenets language
  • Polysemy
  • Synonymy
  • Syntactic metaphor
  • Syntax of the model structure
  • The subject-object relationship



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