Evidential Perfect in Shughni

2023. №6, 120-137

Maksim G. Melenchenko
HSE Unviersity, Moscow, Russia; maksmerben@gmail.com


This paper describes the semantics of one of the verb forms in Shughni, traditionally called Perfect. This form displays many areally-motivated typological similarities with perfects in other languages of Western and Central Asia. In particular, Shughni has developed an evidential opposition between the Preterite and the Perfect, in which the Perfect is used for non-witnessed events. It is also used to express experiential and irreal semantics. A small class of “stative-perfect” verbs is distinguished, for which the Perfect form expresses a state in the present. In addition, the article analyzes so-called “mirative” uses of the Perfect of the copula, as well as the use of Perfect forms in narratives.

For citation:

Melenchenko M. G. Evidential Perfect in Shughni. Voprosy Jazykoznanija, 2023, 6: 120–137.


The paper was prepared in the course of research (Project No. 22-00-034) under the Research Foundation Program of the National Research University Higher School of Economics (HSE) in 2023. The author is indebted to Silvia Luraghi, Stepan Mikhailov, Vladimir Plungian, Konstantin Filatov, and Daria Chistiakova for their invaluable comments and advice, as well as to all Shughni consultants, especially Madina Ardabaeva and Amrigul Shonazarova.