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ILCAA Joint Research Project

Cross-linguistic Research on “Verbals” (jrp000192)

Cross-linguistic Research on “Verbals”


  • Verbals
  • Participles
  • Converbs
  • Linguistic Typology


  • Extensive areas


in preparation

About the Project

Project term: April, 2013–March, 2015

This project investigates the “verbals” (i.e, non-finite verbs) of various languages, especially of the Altaic-type (the agglutinating languages mainly spoken in middle, inner, and east Asia), and other languages that have different morphosyntactic features.
In traditional grammar, verbal inflections are divided into two classes: finite and non-finite. Such a classification is suitable for describing the grammar of Indo-European languages. Therefore, many grammars of other languages such as Altaic-type languages are also described using this classification (finite / non-finite). However, this classification sometimes seems unsuitable for other languages. For example, in the Hateruma dialect of Yaeyama Ryukyuan, the same inflectional form can be used as the predicate, of both the main and subordinate clauses. In Hateruma, enclitics decide the functions of verbs. Therefore, we cannot define both the finite and non-finite forms in this language. This phenomenon does not seem to be a rare case.
We consider the following four points: (1) how to describe the verbal inflection of languages that makes no distinction between the predicates of the main and subordinate clauses, (2) how to analyze the diversity of the functions of verbals, (3) (especially with regard to participles) how to distinguish between derivation (derivational nominalization) and inflection (inflectional nominalization), and (4) what the relationship is between the characteristics of adjectives and the functions of verbals.
We clarify the above points and suggest the diversity and cross-linguistic features of verbals using the primary data that individual co-researchers collected through their fieldwork.

Yasuhiro YAMAKOSHI, Project Coordinator (ILCAA)



  • Yasuhiro YAMAKOSHI (ILCAA)


  • Honoré WATANABE
  • Tokusu KUREBITO
  • Norikazu KOGURA

Joint Researchers

  • Atsushi YAMADA
  • Chikako ONO
  • Daisuke EBINA
  • Fuyuki EBATA
  • Hiroyuki UMETANI
  • Kosei OTSUKA
  • Linjing LI
  • Michinori SHIMOJI
  • Reiko ASO
  • Shinjiro KAZAMA
  • Yasuhiro KOJIMA
  • Yukari NAGAYAMA



The 5th meeting Report (Japanese)(272KB)

  • Date/Time: 20 December 2014 (Sat.) 10:30-17:30, 21 December 2014 (Sun.) 10:00-15:00
  • Venue: Room 304, ILCAA
  • 20 December
  • Sambuudorj OCHIRBATIIN (ILCAA Visiting Professor)
    “Verbal nouns in the Oirat dialect of Mongolian: Comparing with the Khalkha dialect”
    “Verbals in Chukchi”
    “Nominalization in Sliammon”
    Yuta MATSUOKA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Nagasaki University of Foreign Studies)
    “Verbals in Korean”
  • 21 December
  • Kosei OTSUKA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies)
    “Two VP structures in Tiddim Chin”
    Atsushi YAMADA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Japan Health Care College)
    “Verbs in Parauk Wa”
    All members

The 4th meeting Report (Japanese)(225KB)

  • Date/Time: 14 June 2014 (Sat.) 10:30-17:30
  • Venue: Room 304, ILCAA
  • Hiroyuki UMETANI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, ILCAA Research Associate)
    “Converbs in Mongolian: Relationship between “converbs” and “verbal nominals with a case suffix””
    Daisuke EBINA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Kobe Shukugawa Gakuin University)
    “Verbals in Cusco Quechua: Focusing on nominalization”
    Michinori SHIMOJI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Kyushu University)
    “Non-finite verb forms in Irabu Ryukyuan”
    All members

The 3rd meeting Report (Japanese)(14KB)

  • Date/Time: 9 February 2014 (Sun.) 10:30-17:30
  • Venue: Room 304, ILCAA
  • Ryo MATSUMOTO (Kyoto University)
    “A preliminary study on the classification of Nenets verbals”
    Norikazu KOGURA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Kyushu University/JSPS Research Fellow)
    “On the syntactic function of "Verbals" in Sibe: its association with semantics and phonology”

The 2nd meeting Report (Japanese)(212KB)

  • Date/Time: 19 October 2013 (Sat.) 10:30-17:30
  • Venue: Room 304, ILCAA
  • Linjing LI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Seikei University)
    “Hezhen Verbal Inflectional Forms and Their Syntactic Functions”
    Taiki YOSHIMURA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Ryukoku University)
    “On the morpho-syntactic behaviour of verbs in Turkish”
    Chikako ONO (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Chiba University)
    “Verbals in Itelmen: an attempt to classify Infinitives”

The 1st meeting Report (English)(44KB)

  • Date/Time: 11 May 2013 (Sat.) 10:30-17:30
  • Venue: Room 306, ILCAA
  • Yasuhiro YAMAKOSHI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Sapporo Gakuin University)
    “Aims and plans of the project”
    Fuyuki EBATA (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Niigata University)
    “Sakha (Yakut) verbal inflectional forms and their syntactic function”
    Yasuhiro YAMAKOSHI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Sapporo Gakuin University)
    “On the function of “participles” in Buryat”
    Iku NAGASAKI (ILCAA Joint Researcher, NINJAL)
    “Verbal inflection in Kolyma Yukaghir: Functions and morphology of participles”
    Reiko ASO (ILCAA Joint Researcher, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies)
    “Participles in Hateruma (Yaeyama Ryukyuan)”

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