Possessive nouns

Many languages that allow the head­marked possessive inflection exclude a set of nouns from this phenomenon, termed non­possessible nouns. This closed class constitutes a limited set of nouns. In order to express the possession of such nouns, they must appear next to a specialized possessive noun. With an abstract or generic meaning, these specialized possessive nouns are marked for possession in place of the non­possessible noun. In some cases, they may be obligatorily marked for possession. In the majority of languages with such possessive nouns, this set constitutes a closed class, chosen based on the eaning of the non-possessible noun. These possessive nouns, therefore, function as possessive classifiers. In some languages, possessive (classifier) nouns have multiple paradigms to express pragmatic and semantic distinctions.


NoPx: The language does not have possessive marking.

NoNonpossN: Possessive marking exists, but non­possessible nouns do not exist.

NonpossN: Possessive marking exists, along with both non­possessible and possessive (classifier) nouns.[1]


[1] The commentary should include how many such nouns exist, along with a description of their grammatical behavior.