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La reconstitution du verbe en égyptien de tradition 400-30 avant J.-C. -- The reconstitution of the verb in Traditional Egyptian 400-30 B.C.

"Two variants of ancient Egyptian were used for different categories of written communication during the last millennium B.C. The vernacular, known as Demotic, served as the written language for administrative, legal and literary documents. Traditional Egyptian (égyptien de tradition), written in the hieroglyphic script and with linguistic structures that are purported to imitate those of the Classical Egyptian, was still used to compose mainly religious documents.The present work treats the verbal system of Traditional Egyptian using texts dated to the period 400-30 B.C. These documents include royal stelae and priestly decrees, among these the Rosetta Stone, as well as biographical inscriptions. After a general introduction, and a presentation of morphological characteristics, the study takes up the basic verbal patterns. The suffix conjugations, the sDm=fand sDm.n=f , in its various meanings and combinations, affirmative and negative, are dealt with, as is the pseudoparticiple. The infinitive, as it appears in e.g. pseudoverbal constructions and the sDm pw ir.n=f is examined in a separate section, with an additional chapter covering the passive forms of the suffix conjugation.A summary of the conclusions that are reached by this study are presented in the final chapter. Graphic variations show that morphemes formerly used to distinguish verbal classes are largely ignored. Only a few irregular verbs still display, at times, writings that retain the old inflections, often, however, without corresponding to the category that would be expected given the context. These writings are unevenly distributed among the documents, testifying to the existence of local, or perhaps rather individual, grammatical systems. Similarly, the co-existence in Traditional Egyptian of the two forms of the suffix conjugation sDm.n=fand sDm=f, both used to express a completed event, is best understood when each document is studied separately. There is a general avoidance of forms and expressions that parallel those found in Demotic. This appears to have been of greater importance than following the rules of Classical Egyptian. The use of the conjunctive and infinitival constructions, under certain conditions, confirms this observation."

Author(s):  Engsheden, Åke
Format:  Book
Publisher:  Institutionen för arkeologi och antik historia
Publication City:  Uppsala
Date:  2002