Lähivõrdlusi (May 2010)

Muutustest eesti keele grammatiliste käänete kasutamisel

  • Pille Eslon

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 19
pp. 38 – 60


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Th e paper compares the frequency of some Estonian grammatical cases (nominative-genitive-partitive), as well as morphological preferences, in standard Estonian and in Estonian learner language. Th e aim is to report on certain typological changes in Estonian, which may have been triggered by various factors (e.g. verbs losing their aspectual characteristics, aspect marked by object case alternation, certain grammatical cases expressing no signifi cant meaning distinctions from the perspective of pragmatics) but are nevertheless formed by analogy in the general process of grammaticalization. In Estonian, these changes, especially the observation that certain alternating grammatical cases are losing their (semantic) contrasts either partially or totally, and that the preferred form of the nominal in the position of the direct object (or rhema) is the nominative case, cannot be explained by language contact unlike, for example, in Karelian dialects in which one grammatical case, i.e. the accusative, is taking over the functions of other cases.