Word order of relative clauses (Northern Mansi)

RelN: The relative clause always or usually precedes the noun head.

NRel: The relative clause always or usually follows the noun head.

(1) χort­-ne kuťuw at purχati.
bark-ptcp.prs dog not bite.prs.3sg
‘The barking dog does not bite.’ (S. D.)

(2) ta kuťuw χotjut χorti at purχati.
the dog that bark.prs.3sg not bite.prs.3sg
‘The dog, which is barking, does not bite.’ (S. D.)

In Northern Mansi, the primary way of subordination is the participle construction (1), where the relative participle precedes its head noun. Relative pronoun constructions can also be used, but they are less frequent in the language (2) (Rombandeeva 1979: 135). In the latter construction, the relative clause follows the head noun. The usage of the two constructions shows systematic differences: the latter is used mainly with concrete subjects, while the first one is also used for expressing generic statements (S. D.).


Szilvia Németh