The Turkic languages - also called Turkish languages or Turkic languages - form a language family of around 40 relatively closely related languages with around 180 to 200 million speakers that is widespread in Eurasia . They are divided into a southwest (Oghusian), southeastern (Karluk or Uighur), western (Kipchak) and northeastern (Siberian) group, as well as the Arghu and Bolgar-Turkish branches .
With the Mongolian , Tungusian and sometimes also with the Korean and Japanese languages , the Turkic languages are combined to form the group of Altaic languages . Whether "Altai" a genetic or just a areal unit forms, is still unclear. The majority of the researchers assume an areal linguistic union.
The Turkic languages have borrowed many loan words from the Iranian languages , especially Sogdian and Persian . Sogdian was the widespread dominant language in Central Asia and along the Silk Road to China before it was replaced by later invading Turkic languages. Conversely, the Iranian languages, including New Persian, were also influenced by the Turkic languages. Some loan words were also taken from the Chinese languages . The Turkic languages show early language contact with Sinitic (Chinese) languages before the migration to the west began.
About the terminology: Turkic languages - Turkish languages
The Turkic languages are also called Turkic languages and Turkish languages , the individual languages, e.g. B. Uzbek or Azerbaijani also appear with names such as Uzbek or Azerbaijani Turkish . Such terms are particularly common in Turkish Turkology, in which the individual languages are called dialects. This should not be misunderstood to mean that the Turkic languages are identical to the single language Turkish , which is only one - albeit the most speaker-rich - of around 40 languages of this language group, or that the Turkic languages are dialects of Turkish. In fact, with such a naming practice, Turkish is also regularly given a special attribute such as Turkey-Turkish or Ottoman-Turkish . The designation of the individual languages as dialects has historical reasons, because up to the end of the 19th century the Turkic languages (with the exception of distant idioms such as Chuvash or spatially isolated idioms such as Yakut) formed a dialect continuum that, as a rule, formed a dialect continuum , which at some boundary lines more distinct breaks but had smooth transitions. The language of Istanbul (which defines the style of the Turkish language) is clearly different from the language of Baku (which is decisive for the Azerbaijani language), but there is no distinctive language border between them and these languages are just barely understandable among each other. In Central Asia and the Volga region there was a unified literary language called Chagatai , whose own name was turki , above these spoken languages . The development of local standard languages from the local dialects was also a politically influenced development of the 20th century. There were also decisions that were contrary to the system. In 1924 Central Asia was to be structured according to linguistic-ethnic criteria. When the population was asked about their self-identification, the answers were then sometimes given according to other criteria, such as economic geographic criteria, and the line drawn accordingly.
With a total of around 40 languages spoken by 180 million people as their mother tongue (up to 200 million with second speakers), the Turkic language family is by far the largest and most important of the three subgroups of Altaic. It is - according to the number of its speakers - the seventh largest language family in the world (after Indo-European , Sino-Tibetan , Niger-Congo , Afro-Asian , Austronesian and Dravidian ).
Most Turkic languages are very similar in phonology, morphology and syntax, however, Chuvash, Chalaj and the northern Siberian Turkic languages Yakut and Dolgan differ significantly from the others. A partial mutual understanding is possible between the speakers of most of the Turkic languages, especially if they belong to the same subgroup (for classification see the next section). This relatively great similarity of the languages makes it difficult to clearly define language boundaries , especially since there are usually transitional dialects between neighboring languages . (These boundaries are often artificially drawn through political decisions and affiliations.) The internal genetic structure of the Turkic languages is also problematic due to their similarity and intensive mutual influence, which has led to different classification approaches.
The Turkic languages are spread over a huge area in Eastern and Southeastern Europe as well as Western, Central and Northern Asia ( see distribution map). This area extends from the Balkans to China, from Central Persia to the North Sea. One or more Turkic languages are spoken to a noteworthy extent in around thirty Eurasian countries, the high proportion of Turkish speakers in Germany and the rest of Europe due to the migrations of the past decades is remarkable .
Most important Turkic languages
The three largest Turkic languages by far are:
- Turkish : 70 million speakers, with second speakers 80 million: Turkey, Balkan states; also Western and Central Europe (due to recent migration)
- Azerbaijani (Azerbaijan-Turkish): 30 million speakers: Azerbaijan and north-west Iran, also in eastern Turkey and northern Iraq
- Uzbek : 24 million speakers: Uzbekistan, northern Afghanistan, Tajikistan and western China ( Xinjiang )
Other Turkic languages with more than a million speakers:
- Kazakh : 11 million speakers: Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, China, Russia
- Uyghur : 8 million speakers: mainly in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China
- Turkmen : 6.8 million speakers: Turkmenistan, Northern Iran
- Tatar : 5.5 million (2010) speakers: (ethnically 6.6 million) from central Russia to western Siberia
- Kyrgyz : 4.5 million speakers: Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Western China
- Chuvash : 1.8 million speakers: in the European part of Russia
- Bashkir : 1.8 million speakers: in the Russian Autonomous Republic of Bashkiria
- Kashgaish : 1.5 million speakers: in the Iranian provinces of Fars and Khuzestan
The speaker numbers are from March 2006 from various verified sources. 5% to 10% higher values are possible due to the time lag between determination and publication.
Close relationship between the Turkic languages
How closely the Turkic languages are related to each other - apart from Chuvash, Chaladj and the northern Siberian Turkic languages - already shows a look at the following table, which shows some word equations of the basic vocabulary for the languages Old Turkish (the first written Turkic language, which, however, is not a direct ancestor of Turkey-Turkish is), which includes Turkish, Azerbaijani, Turkmen, Tatar, Kazakh, Uzbek, and Uighur.
Comparison of some basic words in important Turkic languages
|mother||ana||anne / ana||ana||ene||ana||ana||ona||ana|
|flesh||et||et||et||et||it||et||goʻsht / eʻt||et / gosh||et|
|grass||ot||ot||ot||үlən / ot||ot||ot / şöp||oʻt||ot / chöp||or|
|horse||at||at||at||at||at||at / zhylqy||ot||ỷạt, at||at|
|Fire||ot||ateş / od||atəş / ot||ot||ut||ot||oʻt / otash||ot||ot|
|water||see below||see below||see below||suw||syw||suw||suv||see below||suw|
|blue / sky||kök||gok||göy||gok||kük||kök||ko'k||kök||gok|
Turkic languages as national and official languages
The Turkic languages Turkish, Azerbaijani, Turkmen, Kazakh, Kyrgyz and Uzbek are national languages in their respective states. The following Turkic languages also have a special status as official regional languages of autonomous republics or provinces: in Russia Chuvash, Kumyk, Karachay-Balkar, Tatar, Bashkir, Yakut, Khakass, Tuva, Altaic; in China Uyghur and in Uzbekistan Karakalpak.
Turkic languages by state
Turkic languages are spoken in around 30 countries in Europe and Asia. The table shows their distribution in the individual states. The languages are arranged according to subfamilies ( see: Classification).
|language||Number of speakers||mainly widespread in the following countries (with number of speakers)|
|Chuvash||1.8 million||Russia ( Chuvashia and others) 1.8 million, Kazakhstan 22,000|
|Karaim||nearly †||Lithuania approx. 300, Ukraine <10, Poland <10|
|Kumyk||280,000||Russia ( Dagestan )|
|Karachay-Balkar||250,000||Russia ( Karachay-Cherkessia , Kabardino-Balkaria )|
|Crimean Tatar||500,000||Ukraine 200,000, Uzbekistan 190,000, Kyrgyzstan 40,000|
Russia 480,000, Uzbekistan 470,000, Kazakhstan 330,000, Kyrgyzstan 70,000,
Tajikistan 80,000, Turkmenistan 50,000, Ukraine 90,000, Azerbaijan 30,000
Ethnic Tatars : 6.6 million
|Bashkir||1.8 million||Russia 1.7 million, Uzbekistan 35,000, Kazakhstan 20,000|
|Nogaisch||70,000||Russia ( North Caucasus )|
|Kazakh||11 million||Kazakhstan 8 million, China 1 million, Uzbekistan 800,000, Russia 650,000, Mongolia 100,000|
|Kyrgyz||4.5 million||Kyrgyzstan 3.8 million, Uzbekistan 400,000, China 200,000|
Turkey 55 million (S2 70 million), Balkans 2.5 million, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus 300,000, CIS 300,000,
Germany 2 million, other Western and Central Europe 700,000
|Gagauz||500,000||Moldova 170,000, Balkans 300,000 (including European Turkey), Ukraine 20,000, Bulgaria 10,000|
Iran 20 million, Azerbaijan 8 million, Turkey 500,000, Iraq 500,000, Russia 350,000,
Georgia 300,000, Armenia 200,000
|Turkmen||6.8 million||Turkmenistan 3.8 million, Iran 2 million, Afghanistan 500,000, Iraq 250,000, Uzbekistan 250,000|
|Khorasan Turkish||400,000||Iran ( Khorasan Province )|
|Kashgai||1.5 million||Iran ( Fars Provinces , Chuzestan )|
|Aynallu||7,000||Iran ( Markazi , Ardabil , Zanjan provinces )|
|Afsharish||300,000||Afghanistan ( Kabul , Herat ), northeast Iran|
|Salarian||55,000||China ( Qinghai Provinces , Gansu )|
Uzbekistan 20 million, Afghanistan 1.5 million, Tajikistan 1 million, Kyrgyzstan 750,000,
Kazakhstan 400,000, Turkmenistan 300,000
|Uighur||8 million||China ( Xinjiang Autonomous Region ) 7.2 million, Kyrgyzstan 500,000, Kazakhstan 300,000|
|Yugur||5,000||China ( Gansu Province )|
|Äynu||7,000||China ( Xinjiang Autonomous Region )|
|Ili Turki||120||China ( Ili Autonomous District )|
|Yakut||450,000||Russia ( AR Yakutia )|
|Dolganic||5,000||Russia ( Taimyr Autonomous County )|
|Tuvinian||265,000||Russia ( Irkutsk Oblast , AR Tuwa ) 235,000, Mongolia 30,000|
|Tofalarian||nearly †||Russia (Southern Irkutsk Oblast )|
|Khakasian||65,000||Russia (AR Khakassia )|
|Altaic||50,000||Russia ( AR Altai , Altai Region )|
|Schorisch||10,000||Russia ( AR Altai )|
|Chulymian||2,500||Russia ( AR Altai , Northern Altai Region)|
|Chalaj||42,000||Iran (Central Province, between Qom and Arak)|
Endangered Turkic languages
The existence of some Turkic languages is seriously endangered because only a few, mostly elderly, people speak them. The South Siberian Tofa or Karagasy, the Karaim in Lithuania, the Judaeo-Crimean Tatar ( Crimean-Tatar ) and the Ili Turki in northwest China (Ili Valley) are directly threatened with extinction in the next few years . The Aynallu in Iran, the Yugur (Gansu Province) and Ainu (near Kashgar), both China, the North Siberian Dolgan and the South Siberian Chulymisch on the Chulym River north of the Altai have only a few thousand speakers . All other Turkic languages are relatively stable, the number of speakers in the major languages is increasing.
Classification of the Turkic languages
The relatively great similarity and intensive mutual influence of the Turkic languages as well as the high mobility of the Turkic peoples makes it difficult to clearly define language boundaries and the internal genetic classification, which has led to different classification approaches. Nevertheless, relatively stable and similar classifications have emerged today, all of which ultimately go back to the Russian linguist Alexander Samoilowitsch (1922). Although classifications should always be genetic, geographical distribution plays a major role in the structure of the Turkic languages. On the question of the relationship between the Turkic languages and the Mongolian and Tungus languages, see Altaic languages .
Special case of Chuvash
The Chuvash forms (together with the extinct Bolgarischen ) has its own "bolgarischen" branch of Turksprachen that faces the rest of the family (Turksprachen i. E. P) with a relatively wide spacing. Some researchers did not even consider Chuvash to be a “real” Turkic language because it differs so greatly from all others. It has not yet been clarified whether this large difference is due to an early separation of the Bolgarian branch from the other Turkic languages or to a longer phase of linguistic and cultural isolation. A feature of this separation is the opposition of the final Chuvash / -r / to the mean Turkish / -z /, for example the final consonants in
- Tschuw. taχar, but Nogaisch toγiz - "nine"
- Tschuw. kör, but Turkish göz - "eye"
Chuvash is mainly spoken by 1 million speakers in the European part of Russia east of Moscow in the autonomous republic of Chuvash in the great Volga arc. There are other Chuvashes in Tatarstan and Bashkiria (1.8 million speakers in total). The Chuvash people are predominantly of the Russian Orthodox faith, use not only the Cyrillic alphabet but also an adapted Latin alphabet in their own print and radio media, and mostly speak Russian as a second language. They consider themselves culturally and historically the successors of the Volga Bolgars, but that is questionable.
Special case of Chalaj
Of the remaining Turksprachen the soaked Chaladsch from most. According to Gerhard Doerfer's view, which is widely accepted today, it is the only remaining representative of the Arghu branch of the Turkic languages, which was also isolated early and then appeared in the central Iranian province in the course of the 13th century - surrounded by speakers of Persian. Today, Khalaj is spoken by around 40,000 people in the Iranian central province between Qom and Akar and is one of the most interesting Turkic languages in Iran from a linguistic point of view. The early isolation from other Turkic languages and the strong influence of Persian have on the one hand received archaic features (e.g. a vowel system with three quantities short-medium-long, retention of the initial / h- / and the Old Turkish dative suffix / -ka /: Chaladsch häv.kä - Turkish ev.e - "for the house" - actually: "the house"), on the other hand led to widespread Iranisms in phonology, morphology, syntax and lexicon (even with some numerals).
Other Turkic languages
The other four groups of the Turkic languages are mainly divided geographically, whereby the current settlement areas do not apply to the classification, but the early phase of the Turkish languages after their first migration and settlement processes. Thus, a distinction Kiptschakisch or West Turkish, Oghusisch or southwest Turkish (the largest according to the number of its speakers group with the Turkish, Azerbaijani, Turkmen, Kaschkai) Karlukisch or Osttürkisch, Northern Turkish, Turkish and North East Bolgar-Turkish. Kipchak / West Turkish is divided into three subgroups: Kipchak-Bulgarian or Ural, Kipchak-Oghuz or Pontic-Caspian and Kipchak-Nogaish or Aralic-Caspian.
The basic vocabulary of Yakut and Dolgan differ greatly from the rest of the languages due to their long isolation. Word order and sentence structure are also different. In this respect, Yakut is more like the Mongolian and Tungus languages. In addition, all foreign words of Persian-Arabic origin that occur in other Turkic languages are missing.
The long Arabic-Persian character of vocabulary and idioms , which most Turkic languages learned through Islam , also contributes to the similarity of the languages . For the Turkic languages on the territory of the former Soviet Union, there are also many common Russian foreign and loan words.
Overall, according to the current literature, the following classification scheme results for the Turkic languages (with the number of speakers as of 2006):
- Southwestern branch (Oghus-Turkic languages)
- Western Egyptian group: Turkish (60 million, S2 70 million), Azerbaijani (30 million, S2 35 million), Gagauz (500,000)
- Ostoghous group: Turkmen (6.8 million), Khorasan Turkish (400,000?)
- South Egyptian group: Kashgai (1.5 million), Afshar (300,000), Aynallu (7,000), Sonqori (?)
- Northwestern branch (Kipchak Turkic languages)
- West Kipchak group: Crimean Tatar (500,000), Kumyk (280,000), Karachay-Balkar (250,000), Karaim (almost †)
- North Kipchak or Volga-Ural group: Tatar (Kazan-Tatar etc .; 1.6 million), Bashkir (2.2 million). Tatar in Western Siberia belongs to the South Kipchak group.
- South Kipchak or Aralo-Caspian group: Kazakh (11 million), Kyrgyz (4.5 million), Karakalpak (400,000), Nogai (70,000)
- Southeastern branch (Uyghur-Turkic languages)
- Western group: Uzbek (24 million)
- Eastern group: Uyghur (8 million), Äynu (»Abdal«; 7,000), Ili Turki (100); Salarian (60,000)
- Northeastern branch (Siberian Turkic languages)
- North Siberian group: Yakut (360,000), Dolgan (5000)
- South Siberian Group (heterogeneous)
- Sayan Turkic languages: Tuvinian (200,000), Tofa (Karagascan; almost †)
- Yenisei Turkic languages: Khakassian (65,000), Shorian (10,000)
- Chulym Turkic languages: Chulym (500)
- Altai Turkic languages: Altaic (50,000; dialects: Oirot; Tuba, Qumanda, Qu; Teleutic, Telengi)
- Chuvash (1.8 million) as well as Bolgarian † and Khazar †
- Khalaj (42,000)
Linguistic criteria of classification
In addition to the geographical, there are some traditional linguistic criteria for the above classification:
- The Chuvash-mean-Turkish opposition / -r / against / -z / separates Oghur from all other Turkic languages.
- The intervowel consonant in the word for “foot” separates the Siberian Turkic languages from the other groups: tuwa adaq, Yakut ataχ versus ayaq in the other groups, but chalaj hadaq .
- The Oghusian languages are separated from the others by the loss of the suffix-introducing G-sound: qalan versus qalγan - "left behind".
- The silence of the suffix-final G-sound separates the south-east from the north-west group: Uighur taγliq versus Tatar tawlı - "mountainous".
Word equations of the Turkic languages
The following table gives an overview of the basic vocabulary in around 60 word equations , as it is realized in several important Turkic languages. The first column shows the developed proto-forms according to Starostin's etymological database. (In many cases you can see how the proto-lingual final and intervocal / r / - here marked / r̩ / - became the mean Turkish / z /, but not in Chuvash. Instead of the IPA code / ɨ /, the Turkish / ı / is used .)
The table clearly shows the different behavior of Chuvash and Yakut and the great similarity of the other Turkic languages. Proto- Turkish refers to the developed proto-form of all Turkic languages, Old Turkish is an early form of the Turkic languages, not specifically Turkey-Turkish. Gaps in the table do not, of course, mean that the corresponding language does not have a word for the term, but only that this term is formed from another root and therefore fails for the etymological comparison in the sense of a word equation.
|son||* ogul||oġul||oğul||oğul||oğul||(o'g) ul||ul||o'g'il||oghul||uol||yva'l||ul|
|girl||* kır̩||qız||kız||qız||gyz||kız||qız||qiz||qiz||ky: s||χe'r||qiz|
|bride||* kalım||kelin||gelin||gəlin||geli: n||kilen||kelin||kelin||kelin||kylyn||kin||gelin|
|parts of the body||Proto-Turk.||Old Turkish.||Turkish||Azerbaid.||Turkmen.||Tartare.||Kazakh.||Uzbek.||Uighur.||Yakut.||Tschuw.||Kumyk.|
|blood||* k (i) on||qan||can||qan||ga: n||can||qan||qon||qan||qa: n||jun||qan|
|head||* ba (l) š||baş||baş||baş||baş||baş||bas||bosh||baş||bas||puş||baş|
|hair||* kıl (k)||qıl||kıl||qıl||qyl||kyl||kyl||kyl||kyl||kyl||χe'le'r|
|ear||* kulkak||qulqaq||kulak||qulaq||gulak||kolak||qulaq||quloq||qulaq||gulka: k||χa'lχa||qulaq|
|hand||* el (ig)||el (ig)||el||əl||el||il||el||äl||ili:||ala '||el|
|knee||*to you||tiz||diz||diz||dy: z||tez||tize||nice||tiz||tüsäχ|
|belly||* karın||qarın||karın||qarın||garyn||qaryn||qarın||qorin||qor (saq)||qaryn||χyra'm||qarin|
|dog||* ıt / * it||ıt||it||it||it||et||iyt||it||it||yt||jyta '||it|
|fish||* balık||balıq||balık||balıq||balyk||balyq||balıq||baliq||beliq||balyk||pula '||baliq|
|Street||* jol||yol||yol||yol||yo: l||yul||jol||yo'l||yol||suol||şul||yol|
|bridge||* body (g)||köprüq||köprü||body||köpri||küpar||köpir||ko'prik||kövrük||hat||ke'per|
|Fire||* o: t||ot||or||or||ot||ut||ot||o't||ot||uot||vuta '||ot|
|ash||* kü: l||cool||cool||cool||cool||Cologne||cool||kul||cool||cool||ke'l|
|water||* sıb||suv||see below||see below||suw||syw||suw||suv||see below||ui||shyv||suw|
|ship||* according to||kemi||according to||gəmi||gämi||kimä||keme||kema||kemä||kim|
|lake||* Cologne||Cologne||göl||göl||Cologne||cool||Cologne||ko'l||Cologne||küöl||küle '|
|Sun / day||* gün (el̩)||küneş||güneş||günəş / gün||green||kojaş||kün||quyosh||kün||kün||kun||green|
|hill||* tepö||töpü||tepe||təpə||depe||tübä||go down||tepa||töpä||töbö||tüp|
|God||* teŋri||tri||tanrı||tanrı||taňry||tänri||taňri||tangre||tängri||tanara||tura '|
|New||* yesŋı||yaŋı||yeni||yeni||yany||yana||janga||yangi||yengi||sana||şe'ne '||yangi|
|full||* do: lu||tolu||dolu||dolu||do: ly||tuly||tolı||to'la||toluq||toloru||tulli||ta'li|
|White||* a: k||aq||ak||ağ||ak||ak||aq||oq||aq||aq|
|red||* kır̩ıl||qızıl||kızıl||qızıl||gyzyl||kyzyl||qızıl||qizil||qizil||kyhyl||χe'rle '||qizil|
|sky blue / sky||* gok||kök||gok||göy||gok||kük||kök||ko'k||kök||küöq||ka'vak||gok|
|1||* bir||bir||bir||bir||bir||ber||bir||bir||bir||bi: r||pe'r (re)||bir|
|2||* ek (k) i||eki||iki||iki||iki||ike||yeki||ikki||ikki||ikki||ik (k) e '||eki|
|4th||* dö: rt||kills||dör||dörd||dör||may||kills||to'rt||kill||fools||ta'vat (t) a '||dör|
|7th||* jeti||yeti||yedi||yedi||yedi||yide||jeti||yetti||yattä||sette||şi (ch) e '||jeti|
|10||* o: n||on||on||on||on||U.N||on||o'n||on||uon||vun (n) a '||on|
|100||* jü: r̩||yüz||yüz||yüz||yüz||yüz||jüz||yuz||yüz||sü: s||şe'r||yüz|
Linguistic characterization of the Turkic languages
Typologically , the Turkic languages are very similar to the other two groups of Altaic languages (Mongolian and Tungusian), so these features are largely common Altaic and can also be found in part in Uralic and Paleo-Siberian languages.
The main typological characteristics of the Turkic languages are:
- There are medium-sized phoneme inventories (20 to 30 consonants, 8 vowels) and simple syllable structures, hardly any consonant clusters. (Example see phoneme inventory of Turkish )
- Some Turkic languages (Turkmen, Yakut, Chalaj) have a quantity differentiation in the vowels that is probably old, but otherwise has been lost. Traces or effects of the old quantity can also be observed in other Turkic languages.
- There is a sound harmony, especially vowel harmony , which is based on different sound oppositions: front-back, rounded-unrounded, high-low.
- An example from Turkish should show this: baba-lar “fathers”, but ders-ler “lessons”. The plural marker is called / lar / or / ler /, depending on the type of vowel that precedes it. (Further details and further examples in the section "Sound harmony".)
- The sound harmony is preserved to varying degrees in almost all Turkic languages, sometimes only in the spoken variants, while it is no longer clear in the typeface (e.g. in Uzbek).
- A consistently agglutinative word formation and inflection, almost exclusively through suffixes (prefixes only appear in word formation). This can lead to very long and complex formations (however, normally more than three to four suffixes are rarely used). Each morpheme has a specific meaning and grammatical function and is - apart from the requirements of the vowel harmony - immutable.
- Adjectives are not inflected, they show no concordance with the defining word they precede.
- When using quantifiers (numerals, quantities) there is no plural marking.
- There are no articles .
- There is no grammatical gender , not even in the pronouns. (Even the oldest forms of the Turkic languages do not show any traces of a grammatical gender, so that one can assume that Proto-Turkish did not have this category either.)
- Relative clauses are replaced by participle constructions . In general, nominalized and adverbialized complex verbal forms are used instead of subordinate clauses. The nominalized forms correspond roughly to infinitive constructions, the adverbial forms are called gerunds or converbs .
- The verb is at the end of a sentence, the normal sentence structure is SOV (subject-object-verb).
Phoneme inventory using the example of Turkish
Turkish shows a phoneme inventory of eight vowels and 20 consonants, which is typical for the Turkic languages.
The vowels can be classified according to their point of articulation (front - back), rounding (rounded - unrounded) and height (high - low). This classification is crucial for vowel harmony.
|Plosive voiceless||p||t||ç [ tʃ ]||k|
|Plosive voiced||b||d||c [ dʒ ]||G|
|Fricative voiceless||f||s||ş [ ʃ ]|
|Fricative voiced||v||z||j [ ʒ ]|
The letters of the Turkish alphabet are used here, the sound values are in square brackets .
Sound harmony using the example of Turkish
The sound harmony widespread among the Turkic languages affects both vowels and some consonants. In Turkish these are k, g, ğ and l.
The vowel harmony, i.e. the alignment of the suffix vowels with the vowels of the stem or the preceding syllable, should be shown using the example of Turkish. There the vowel harmony is based on both an alignment of the articulation point (front-back) and an assimilation in the rounding type (rounded-unrounded) of the vowels in question. Some suffixes are formed according to the so-called small vowel harmony , others according to the large vowel harmony . While the small vowel harmony in the suffix prescribes a / e / after the front vowels (e, i, ö, ü) in the previous syllable and an / a / after the back vowels (a, ı, o, u), the Suffixes that are formed according to the great vowel harmony, a / i / after the front unrounded vowels (e, i), a / ü / after the front rounded vowels (ö, ü), a / ı / after the back unrounded vowels ( a, ı) and a / u / used after the back rounded vowels (o, u).
- (1) elma-lar "apples" but ders-ler "lessons"
- (2) ev-de "in the house", but orman-da "in the forest"
- In (1) and (2) the plural suffix / -ler / or / -lar / and the locative suffix / -de / or / -da / of the stem vowel in the articulation point (front-back) are similar.
- (3a) isçi-lik "craftsmanship"
- (3b) pazar-lık "haggling"
- (3c) çoğun-luk "majority"
- (3d) Ölümsüz-Lük "immortality"
- The suffix / -lik / "-keit" has four variants that adapt to both the articulation of the stem vowel (back-front) and its rounding.
- (4) püskül - ümüz - ün
- Tassel - POSS.1pl - GEN
- "Our tassel (or tassel)"
- (5) püsküler - imiz - in
- Tassel - PL - POSS.1pl - GEN
- "Our tassels"
- In (4) the last vowel of püskül (/ ü /: in front, rounded ) causes corresponding vocalization in the possessive suffix / imiz / (here / ümüz /) and case marker / in / (here / ün /). (For the possessive suffix and case markers see: Morphology )
- In (5) the / ü / of püskül causes the anterior variant of the plural marker / ler /, whose unrounded anterior / e / in turn triggers the unrounded anterior variant / imiz / and / in / of the following markers. The following examples can be explained in the same way.
- (6) torun - umuz - un
- Grandchildren - POSS.1pl - GEN
- "Our grandson"
- (7) torun - lar - ımız - ın
- Grandchildren - PL - POSS.1pl - GEN
- "Our grandchildren"
The distinction between rounded and unrounded vowels is generally valid in Turkish, but not in all Turkic languages. There are also exceptions in Turkish. An example is the word “söylemek” meaning “say, speak”. The present tense stem is mostly "söyl- ü -yor" according to the large vowel harmony presented above . In the future and the present participle, on the other hand, the unrounded forms are more common: “söyl- i -yecek” and “söyl- i -yen”.
Turkish has no different spelling for the light and dark forms of the consonants k, g, ğ and l, although some Turkic languages use the letter q for the dark k. Incidentally, the dark ğ - the letter only comes after and between vowels - is no longer spoken, the light variant is a fleeting j-sound, the dark l is as in the English word “well”. If the vowels a or uk, g or l are to be spoken lightly, the vowel is given a circumflex, e.g. B. "kâr" "profit", but "kar" "snow" or "klâvye" "keyboard".
Morphology of the Turkic languages
Turkic languages usually have six cases : nominative (unmarked), genitive , dative - terminative , accusative , ablative (where from?) And locative (where?). These cases are identified by appended case markers, which can be very different within the individual languages. However, there is a recognizable general structure that goes back to the common proto-language and that is indicated in the marker formula . (V denotes a vowel that follows the vowel harmony, K denotes any consonant). However, this structure leaves a relatively large scope for the concrete implementation of the cases in the individual languages. The following table shows the case marker formulas and their implementation in three example languages Kyrgyzstan, Bashkir and Turkish, which implement some - but not all - variants of the formula.
The case marker formulas and their implementation in some Turkic languages
|Nominative||-O||köz "eye"||bala "child"||ev "house"|
|Genitive||- (d / t / n) V n||köz-thin||bala-nın||ev-in|
|dative||- (k / g) V||köz-gö||bala-ga||ev-e|
|accusative||- (d / n) V||köz-dü||bala-nı||ev-i|
|ablative||-d / t / n V n||köz-dön||bala-nan||ev-den|
|locative||-d / t / l V||köz-dö||bala-la||ev-de|
The personal pronouns are very similar in all Turkic languages. In Turkish they are:
The possessive suffixes, which replace the possessive pronoun in the Turkic languages, but are also used in similar forms in verbal morphology, are particularly important:
|1||-(in the||- (i) miz|
|2||-(in||- (i) niz|
|3||- (s) i||-leri / ları|
Using the example of Turkish, the construction of noun phrases is shown. The order of the constituents is fixed. The main items are as follows:
1 attribute - 2 nouns - 3 derivative suffix - 4 plural markers - 5 nominalization - 6 possessive suffixes - 7 case markers
- araba-lar-ımız-a >> 2 Auto - 4 PL - 6 POSS.1pl - 7 DAT
- "To our cars"
- çocuk-lar-ınız-ı >> 2 child - 4 PL - 6 POSS.2pl - 7 AKK
- "Their (pl.) Children" (acc.)
- gül-üş-ler-iniz-i >> 2 laughs - 3 NOMINAL - 4 PL - 6 POSS.2pl - 7 AKK
- "Their laughter" (acc. Pl.)
- yaşlı adam-lar-a >> 1 old - 2 men - 4 PL - 7 DAT
- "The old men" (attribute before the final word, without concordance in number and case)
- birçok çocuk >> 1 much 2 child
- "Many children" (because of the quantifier "many" there is no plural marker)
The verbal system of the Turkic languages
A typical verbal form has the following positions:
1 stem - 2 tense / mode markers - 3 personal extensions
The following table shows the tenses and modes of the verb in the Turkic languages with a general formula and realization in Azerbaijani and Turkish (1. Sg. The root al- "take, get, buy")
|Tense / mode||formula||Azerbaijani||Turkish||meaning|
|infinitive||m + V + k / g||al-maq||al-mak||to take|
|imperative||O; -in||al; al-ın||al; al-ın||take! take!|
|Present||V + r||al-ır-am||al-ıyor-um||I take|
|Future tense||acak||al-acağ-am||al-acağ-im||i will take|
|preterite||d / t + V||al-dı-m||al-dı-m||I took|
|Conditional||sa||al-sa-m||al-sa-m||(if) I take|
|Optional||(j) V||al-maq is-tə-yi-rəm||al-mak is-ti-yo-rum||i want to take|
|Necessitive||malı||al-malı-y-am||al-malı-y-im||I should take|
|Part. Present tense||Vn||al-an||al-an||taking|
|Part. Perfect||d V k / g||al-dığ-im||al-dı-ğım||taken (having)|
|passive||il / n||al-in-maq||al-in-mak||be taken|
|Causative||d / t + i + r (t)||al - dırt - mag||al-dırt-mak||caused to take|
Examples of more complex Turkish verbal forms that can also replace entire subordinate clauses:
- ben milyoner ol-mak isti-yor-um >> I [millionaire - become-INF] want-PRÄS-1sg
- "I want to be a millionaire"
- ben biz-im haps-e at-ıl-acağ-ımız-ı duy-du-m
- >> I [we-GEN prison-DAT throw-PASS-FUT-1pl-] - AKK hear-PRÄT-1sg
- "I heard that we should be thrown in jail"
- (more literally: I heard our-to-be-thrown-in-prison )
- öp-üş-door-ül-dü-ler >> kiss-REZIP-KAUS-PASS-PRÄT-3pl
- "They were made to kiss each other"
- yıka-n-ma-malı-yım >> wash-REFL-NEG-NECESS-1sg
- "It is necessary that I do not wash" ie "I am not allowed to wash"
- yıka-n-acağ-ım >> wash-REFL-FUT-1sg
- "I will wash myself"
(Some examples from IEL, Article Turkish, and GLCampbell, Concise Compendium of the World's Languages. )
Early Turkic languages and their tradition
Some scholars take the view that tribes who spoke early forms of a Turkic language were already in the associations of the Huns, who migrated westward since the 1st century. Massive migrations by Turkic peoples can be proven beyond doubt since the 8th century. The peak of the westward migration of Turkish populations was the conquest of Anatolia in the 11th century. The last migration of Turkish population groups was that of the Yakuts , which began in the 12th century. The language of the Turks of South Siberia (the language in which the oldest Turkic texts - the Orkhon inscriptions - were recorded, i.e. Old Turkish ) is the only language form that gained its own profile before the great migrations of the Turkish peoples.
- The oldest Turkish written documents are the runic inscriptions of the Orkhon-Yenisei region and the Turan inscriptions. Most of these date from the 8th century. The script in which the Orkhon texts are handed down shows external similarities with the Germanic runes (but without being related to them), so that it is also called runic script .
- The actual writing tradition of the southeastern Turkic languages begins in the 11th century under the Qarakhanids . There, in 1069 or 1070, the work Kutadgu Bilig ("Blissful Wisdom") by the poet Yusuf, consisting of 6645 individual verses, and in 1074 the monumental Turkish-Arabic dictionary Diwan Lughat at-Turk by Mahmud al-Kāschgharī .
- The Khorezm Turkish of the 13th and 14th centuries also belonged to the southeastern Turkic languages, but shows some southwestern influences. It formed the basis of Chagataic, an important literary language of many Muslim Turkic peoples until the end of the 19th century.
- The earliest evidence of the northwestern Turkic languages comes from the 14th century, when the Codex Cumanicus was written in the Cuman language . The follow-up talks are Tatar and Bashkir .
- Inscriptions in Volga Bulgarian are only from the 13th / 14th centuries. Passed down in the 17th century, from it - or from a related dialect - the strongly deviating Chuvash later developed .
- Since the 15th century, belonging to the Southeast group Tschagataisch occupied, the basis for today's languages Uzbek and Uighur represents.
Writing of the Turkic languages
- The writing of the classical literary languages Ottoman , Azerbaijani , Chagataisch , Tatar and Crimean Tatar was done exclusively using the Arabic alphabet.
- In the period from 1924 to 1930 , other Turkic languages were written, initially on the basis of a Latin alphabet, which had been used for Azerbaijani since 1922 .
- From 1936 to 1940 the transition to a Cyrillic written form adapted to the needs of the Turkic languages began in the Soviet sphere of influence . While the Arabic and Latin scripts were designed to make different Turkic languages mutually understandable, the opposite was true for the languages written in Cyrillic - there, different dialects were artificially created into separate languages. Loyal linguists were commissioned by Stalin to convert regional or tribal dialects into teachable high-level languages and thus to break up old contexts. The Turkic languages in the USSR in particular had to be separated as far as possible in order to destroy the old pan-Turkish aspirations.
- In October 1990, shortly before the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the states of Azerbaijan , Kazakhstan , Kyrgyzstan , Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan decided at a Turkic summit in Ankara to introduce Latin alphabets for their national territory within 15 years. This should be based closely on the alphabet used in Turkey. The aim of this step should be to preserve the common cultural heritage of the Turkic peoples.
- Up to 2007 the following Turkic states and areas wrote with Turkish-Latin alphabets :
- Kazakhstan (unofficially for the website of the state news agency; Cyrillic is still used officially)
- Crimea (along with the Cyrillic)
- Tatarstan (along with the Cyrillic)
- Turkey (since 1928)
- Turk-speaking Jews have used the Hebrew script since ancient times .
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