Latvian: reflexive nouns

CapnPrep

Senior Member
AmE
I found this on-line grammar that gives the declension of reflexive nouns in Latvian (feminine ending in -šanās, -tājās, masculine ending in -ājies, …, -umies). Can someone who speaks Latvian confirm that dative and locative case absolutely do not exist for these words? E.g. vēlējumamies (masculine dative singular) or vēlēšanāmies (feminine dative plural).

What happens if you need to use a dative or locative form? For example, "after the next two meetings", which could be "pēc + dative plural", but the noun tikšanās ("meeting") does not have any dative forms.

Thanks for your help!
 
  • karuna

    Senior Member
    Latvian, Latvia
    The reflexive forms with -ājies or -umies are not used in the literal language anymore. They are only of historical interest. There is an example of vēlējumies but even that is used only in some dialects.

    The answer to the second question is that the constructions with the dative or locative form are not possible. You have to find a different way how to say it, perhaps by a subclause, or using a different noun: kad visas tikšanās bija beigušās,... or pēc kopīgi pavadītajiem laika brīžiem or something like that.
     

    CapnPrep

    Senior Member
    AmE
    Thank you for this quick and informative reply! Do you happen to know the history of these paradigms? (what the dative/locative forms used to be, and when/why they disappeared)

    And there is any problem using the genitive of -šanās nouns, or are these forms also awkward?
     

    karuna

    Senior Member
    Latvian, Latvia
    I don't know much about history but in this old article it is theorized that -umies has never been used in spoken language and it might have been artificially introduced by some purists to replace -šanās but it never caught on. I don't think there had been dative forms as these nouns are only derivatives from verbs and have limited use as other participle forms of the reflexive verb forms cannot be used in the dative and some other forms even if formally such forms were possible.
    The language purists have always despised the forms that end with -šanās, -šais etc. because they consider them disharmonious. But they are too convenient to be abandoned. The genitive form seems completely normal and are widely used.
     

    CapnPrep

    Senior Member
    AmE
    Thank you again, karuna. One day maybe I will be able to read that article…

    Since you mentioned them, I now have a question about the reflexive participles, but I should start a new thread for that. I hope to see you there!
     
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