Page:Compendious Syriac Grammar.djvu/86

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§ 70.
— 48 —

and the possessive suffixes (§ 65); ܕܺܝܠܝ "my"; ܕܺܝܠܴܟ݂ "thy" m.; ܕܺܝܠܟ݂ܝ "thy" f.; ܕܺܝܠܷܗ "his"; ܕܺܝܠܴܗܿ "her"—ܕܺܝܠܱܢ "our"; ܕܺܝܠܟ݂ܘܿܢ "your" m.; ܕܺܝܠܟ݂݂ܘܿܢ "your" f.; ܕܺܝܠܗܘܿܢ "their" m., ܕܺܝܠܗܶܝܢ "their" f.

 
2. Nouns in the stricter sense. (Substantives and adjectives.) A. Gender, Number, State. General statement: paradigm of the simplest forms.

2. NOUNS IN THE STRICTER SENSE.

(SUBSTANTIVES AND ADJECTIVES.)

A. GENDER, NUMBER, STATE.

§ 70. Every Syriac substantive or adjective has a gender, a number, and a state. The indications of all three conditions are very closely associated together, and almost interpenetrate one another. We shall therefore deal here with the three, at one and the same time.

Syriac has two genders, Masculine and Feminine, two numbers, Singular and Plural[1], and three states, Absolute, Construct, and Emphatic. The Emphatic State is formed by appending an ā (originally hā?) which possessed the significance of the Article (the Determination), but this meaning has for the most part been lost. The Construct State is the form of the noun immediately before a Genitive. A noun, which has neither of the States named, stands in the Absolute State. The Emphatic state is of by far the most frequent occurrence in Syriac substantives. Many are no longer met with in either of the other two states, or only in quite isolated cases: accordingly substantives at least are presented here throughout, in the Emphatic state, as being the form lying next to hand, even if not the most original. The other two stages have no special ending for the singular of Masculines, nor for that of Feminines without the feminine sign. The termination of the Emphatic state (ā) combines with the masculine plural-ending to form aiyā, which again is generally farther blended into ē. The usual feminine ending in the Singular, was at, which has maintained itself as ath in the Construct state, but has become ā in the Absolute state. The plural-ending for Masculines in the Absolute state
  1. Various traces of the Dual are still met with, but this Number has no longer a life of its own.