Yaghnobi: an example of a language in contact
- Číslo 2 
PublisherUniverzita Karlova, Filozofická fakulta
SourceChatreššar, 2018, 2, 26-50
Yaghnobi, Sogdian, language contact, Tajik, Tajikistan, contact linguistics
Yaghnobi, an Eastern Iranian language spoken in northern Tajikistan, shares many important features with Sogdian and is generally believed to be descended from a nonliterary dialect of Sogdian. The language has historically been in intensive contact with Tajik and more recently with Russian; in addition, some features connecting Yaghnobi with the Pamir language area may be identified. Contact with Tajik has introduced thousands of lexical items, many of which have become an integral part of the Yaghnobi lexicon. There are also examples of Tajik grammatical loans: some of these features, such as the izafet construction or past participles in -gí, have become part of the Yaghnobi grammatical system, while other features, such as the direct object marker -ro or verbal imperfective prefix me-, are usually used in Tajik-dominated mixed speech communities. The intensity of language contact nowadays differs in the various areas inhabited by the Yaghnobis; the present article is based on material recorded in the Yaghnobi-speaking community in the Lower Varzob area, north of the Tajik capital Dushanbe.