Subject–object–verb word order

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Subject–object–verb)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

In linguistic typology, a subject–object–verb (SOV) language is one in which the subject, object, and verb of a sentence always or usually appear in that order. If English were SOV, "Sam oranges ate" would be an ordinary sentence, as opposed to the actual Standard English "Sam ate oranges" which is subject–verb–object (SVO).

The term is often loosely used for ergative languages like Adyghe and Basque that really have agents instead of subjects.

Incidence[edit]

Word
order
English
equivalent
Proportion
of languages
Example
languages
SOV "She him loves." 45% 45
 
Ancient Greek, Bengali, Hindi, Hungarian, Japanese, Kannada, Korean, Latin, Malayalam, Persian, Sanskrit, Urdu, etc
SVO "She loves him." 42% 42
 
Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Hausa, Italian, Malay, Russian, Spanish, Thai, Vietnamese, etc
VSO "Loves she him." 9% 9
 
Biblical Hebrew, Classical Arabic, Irish, Te Reo Māori, Filipino, Tuareg-Berber, Welsh
VOS "Loves him she." 3% 3
 
Malagasy, Baure, Car
OVS "Him loves she." 1% 1
 
Apalaí, Hixkaryana
OSV "Him she loves." 0% Warao
Frequency distribution of word order in languages surveyed by Russell S. Tomlin in 1980s[1][2]
()

Among natural languages with a word order preference, SOV is the most common type (followed by subject–verb–object; the two types account for more than 75% of natural languages with a preferred order).[3]

Languages that have SOV structure include all Indo-Iranian languages (Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Nepali, Pāli, Pashto, Persian, Punjabi, Sindhi, Sinhalese, Urdu, Zazaki, Kurdish), Ainu, Akkadian, Amharic, Armenian, Assyrian, Aymara, Basque, Burmese, Burushaski, Cherokee, Dakota, Dogon languages, Elamite, Ancient Greek, Hajong, Hittite, Hopi, Ijoid languages, Itelmen, Japanese, Korean, Classical Latin, Lakota, Manchu, Mande languages, Meeteilon, Mongolian, Navajo, Newari, Nivkh, Nobiin, Omaha, Quechua, Senufo languages, Seri, Sicilian, Sunuwar, Somali and virtually all other Cushitic languages, Sumerian, Tibetan and nearly all other Tibeto-Burman languages, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu and all other Dravidian languages, Tigrinya, Turkic languages, almost all Uto-Aztecan languages, Yukaghir, Zazaki and virtually all Caucasian languages.

Standard Mandarin is generally SVO but common constructions with verbal complements require SOV or OSV. Some Romance languages are SVO, but when the object is an enclitic pronoun, word order allows for SOV (see the examples below). German and Dutch are considered SVO in conventional typology and SOV in generative grammar. They can be considered SOV but with V2 word order as an overriding rule for the finite verb in main clauses, which results in SVO in some cases and SOV in others. For example, in German, a basic sentence such as "Ich sage etwas über Karl" ("I say something about Karl") is in SVO word order. Non-finite verbs are placed at the end, however, since V2 only applies to the finite verb: "Ich will etwas über Karl sagen" ("I want to say something about Karl"). In a subordinate clause, the finite verb is not affected by V2, and also appears at the end of the sentence, resulting in full SOV order: "Ich sage, dass Karl einen Gürtel gekauft hat." (Word-for-word: "I say that Karl a belt bought has.")

A rare example of SOV word order in English is "I (subject) thee (object) wed (verb)" in the wedding vow "With this ring, I thee wed."[4]

Properties[edit]

SOV languages have a strong tendency to use postpositions rather than prepositions, to place auxiliary verbs after the action verb, to place genitive noun phrases before the possessed noun, to place a name before a title or honorific ("James Uncle" and "Johnson Doctor" rather than "Uncle James" and "Doctor Johnson") and to have subordinators appear at the end of subordinate clauses. They have a weaker but significant tendency to place demonstrative adjectives before the nouns they modify. Relative clauses preceding the nouns to which they refer usually signals SOV word order, but the reverse does not hold: SOV languages feature prenominal and postnominal relative clauses roughly equally. SOV languages also seem to exhibit a tendency towards using a time–manner–place ordering of adpositional phrases.

In linguistic typology, one can usefully distinguish two types of SOV languages in terms of their type of marking:

  1. dependent-marking has case markers to distinguish the subject and the object, which allows it to use the variant OSV word order without ambiguity. This type usually places adjectives and numerals before the nouns they modify, and is exclusively suffixing without prefixes. SOV languages of this first type include Japanese and Tamil.
  2. head-marking distinguishes subject and object by affixes on the verb rather than markers on the nouns. It also differs from the dependent-marking SOV language in using prefixes as well as suffixes, usually for tense and possession. Adjectives in this type are much more verb-like than in dependent-marking SOV languages, and hence they usually follow the nouns. In most SOV languages with a significant level of head-marking or verb-like adjectives, numerals and related quantifiers (like "all", "every") also follow the nouns they modify. Languages of this type include Navajo and Seri.

In practice, of course, the distinction between these two types is far from sharp. Many SOV languages are substantially double-marking and tend to exhibit properties intermediate between the two idealised types above.

Many languages that have shifted to SVO word order from earlier SOV retain (at least to an extent) the properties: for example, the Finnish language (high usage of postpositions etc.)

Examples[edit]

Albanian[edit]

This sequence (SOV) occurs only in the poetic language.

Agimi librin e mori.

Agimi

Agimi

Subject

librin

the book

Object

e mori

took

Verb

Agimi librin {e mori}

Agimi {the book} took

Subject Object Verb

Agimi took the book. (It was Agimi who took the book)

Azerbaijani[edit]

Ümid ağac əkəcək.

Ümid

Umid

Subject

ağac

tree

Object

əkəcək

will plant

Verb

Ümid ağac əkəcək

Umid tree {will plant}

Subject Object Verb

Umid will plant a tree.

Armenian[edit]

Իմ անունը Շուշանիկ է։

Իմ

Im

my

 

անունը

anunȳ

name

Subject

Շուշանիկ

Šušanik

Shushanik

Object

է

ē

is

Verb

Իմ անունը Շուշանիկ է

Im anunȳ Šušanik ē

my name Shushanik is

{} Subject Object Verb

My name is Shushanik.

Basque[edit]

Basque in short sentences, usually, subject or agent–object–verb; in long sentences, usually, subject or agent-verb-objects):

Enekok sagarra ekarri du.

Enekok

Eneko (+ERG)

Agent

sagarra

the apple

Object

ekarri

brought (to bring)

Verb

du

AUX has

 

Enekok sagarra ekarri du

{Eneko (+ERG)} {the apple} {brought (to bring)} {AUX has}

Agent Object Verb {}

Eneko has brought the apple

Eneritzek eskatu du inork irakurri nahi ez zuen liburua

Eneritzek

Eneritz (+ERG)

Parts

eskatu

asked for

Agent

du

AUX has

Verb

+ + +

+ + +

Objects

Eneritzek eskatu du {+ + +}

{Eneritz (+ERG)} {asked for} {AUX has} {+ + +}

Parts Agent Verb Objects

Eneritz requested the book nobody wanted to read

Bengali[edit]

আমি ভাত খাই

আমি

ami

ami

I.SUBJ

Subject

ভাত

bʰat

bhat

rice.OBJ

Object

খাই

kʰai

khai

eat.PRES

Verb

আমি ভাত খাই

ami bʰat kʰai

ami bhat khai

I.SUBJ rice.OBJ eat.PRES

Subject Object Verb

I eat rice.

Burmese[edit]

Burmese is an analytic language.

ငါက ‌ရေသန့်ဘူးကို ဖွင့်တယ်။

ငါ

ŋà

nga

I

Subject

က

ɡa̰

ga.

SUBJ

 

‌ရေသန့်ဘူး

seʔkù bú

se'ku bu:

water bottle

Object

ကို

ɡò

gou

OBJ

 

ဖွင့်

pʰwìɴ

hpwin.

open

Verb

တယ်

de

PRES

 

ငါ က ‌ရေသန့်ဘူး ကို ဖွင့် တယ်

ŋà ɡa̰ {seʔkù bú} ɡò pʰwìɴ dè

nga ga. {se'ku bu:} gou hpwin. de

I SUBJ {water bottle} OBJ open PRES

Subject {} Object {} Verb {}

I open the water bottle.

Chinese[edit]

Generally, Chinese varieties all feature SVO word order. However, especially in Standard Mandarin, SOV is tolerated as well. There is even a special particle 把 (bǎ) used to form an SOV sentence.[5]

The following example that uses 把 is controversially labelled as SOV. 把 may be interpreted as a verb, meaning "to hold". However, it does not mean to hold something literally or physically. Rather, the object is held figuratively, and then another verb is acted on the object.[citation needed]

SOV structure is widely used in railway contact in order to clarify the objective of the order.[6]

Sentence 我把苹果吃了.
Words 苹果 吃了.
Transliteration píngguǒ chīle
Gloss I sign for moving object before the verb apple ate
Parts Subject Sign Object Verb
Translation I ate the apple. (The apple we were talking about earlier)

Dutch[edit]

Dutch is SOV combined with V2 word order. The non-finite verb (infinitive or participle) remains in final position, but the finite (i.e. inflected) verb is moved to the second position. Simple verbs look like SVO, non-finite verbs (participles, infinitives) and compound verbs follow this pattern:

Ik wil je helpen.

Ik

I

subject

wil

want to

FIN.verb

je

you

object

helpen

help

NFIN.verb

Ik wil je helpen

I {want to} you help

subject FIN.verb object NFIN.verb

I want to help you.

Pure SOV order is found in subordinate clauses:

Ik zei dat ik je wil helpen.

Ik

I

subject

zei

said

FIN.verb

dat

that

SUBORD.CONJ

ik

I

subject

je

you

object

wil

want

FIN.verb

helpen

to help

NFIN.verb

Ik zei dat ik je wil helpen

I said that I you want {to help}

subject FIN.verb SUBORD.CONJ subject object FIN.verb NFIN.verb

I said that I want to help you.

French[edit]

The French language usually uses a subject–verb–object structure but places proclitics before the verb when using most pronouns, which is sometimes mistaken for SOV word order.

Nous les avons.

Nous

We

Subject

les-avons.

them/those-have

Object-Verb

Nous les-avons.

We them/those-have

Subject Object-Verb

We have those/them

Georgian[edit]

The Georgian language isn't extremely rigid with regards to word order, but is typically either SOV or SVO.

მე ქართველი ვარ.

მე

me

I

Subject

ქართველი

kartveli

Georgian

Object

ვარ.

var

[I] am

Verb

მე ქართველი ვარ.

me kartveli var

I Georgian {[I] am}

Subject Object Verb

I am (a) Georgian.

German[edit]

German is SOV combined with V2 word order. The non-finite verb (infinitive or participle) remains in final position, but the finite (i.e. inflected) verb is moved to the second position. Simple verbs look like SVO, compound verbs follow this pattern:

Er hat einen Apfel gegessen.

Er

He

Subject

hat

has

Auxiliary

einen

an

 

Apfel

apple

Object

gegessen.

eaten.

Verb

Er hat einen Apfel gegessen.

He has an apple eaten.

Subject Auxiliary {} Object Verb

He has eaten an apple.

The word order changes also depending on whether the phrase is a main clause or a dependent clause. In dependent clauses, the word order is always entirely SOV (cf. also Inversion):

Weil Horst einen Apfel gegessen hat.

Weil

Because

Conjunction

Horst

Horst

Subject

einen

an

 

Apfel

apple

Object

gegessen

eaten

Verb

hat.

has.

Auxiliary

Weil Horst einen Apfel gegessen hat.

Because Horst an apple eaten has.

Conjunction Subject {} Object Verb Auxiliary

Because Horst has eaten an apple.

Gothic[edit]

𐌲𐌿𐌼𐌰 𐌵𐌹𐌽𐍉𐌽 𐍆𐍂𐌹𐌾𐍉𐌸.

𐌲𐌿𐌼𐌰

Guma

man

Subject

𐌵𐌹𐌽𐍉𐌽

qinon

woman

Object

𐍆𐍂𐌹𐌾𐍉𐌸.

frijoþ.

loves.

Verb

𐌲𐌿𐌼𐌰 𐌵𐌹𐌽𐍉𐌽 𐍆𐍂𐌹𐌾𐍉𐌸.

Guma qinon frijoþ.

man woman loves.

Subject Object Verb

The man loves the woman.

Greek (Classical)[edit]

ὁ ἀνὴρ τὸν παĩδα φιλεῖ.

ho

The

 

ανήρ

anḗr

man

Subject

τὸν

tòn

the

 

παĩδα

paîda

child

Object

φιλεῖ.

phileî

loves.

Verb

ὁ ανήρ τὸν παĩδα φιλεῖ.

ho anḗr tòn paîda phileî

The man the child loves.

{} Subject {} Object Verb

The man loves the child.

Hajong[edit]

Moi hugre'mre' khasei.

Moi

I

Subject

hugre'm

guava

 

re'

ACC

Object

kha

eat

 

sei.

PAST.IND

Verb

Moi hugre'm re' kha sei.

I guava ACC eat PAST.IND

Subject {} Object {} Verb

I ate the guava.

re is a particle that indicates the accusative case and 'sei' indicates past tense declarative. Here, e is pronounced as the 'i' in 'girl' and 'ei' is pronounced as the 'ay' in 'say'.

Hindi[edit]

मैं एक सेब खाता हूँ।

मैं

main

I

Subject

एक

ek

an

 

सेब

seb

apple

Object

खाता हूँ

khaataa hun

eat.PRES.M

Verb

मैं एक सेब {खाता हूँ}

main ek seb {khaataa hun}

I an apple eat.PRES.M

Subject {} Object Verb

I eat an apple.

Hungarian[edit]

Hungarian word order is free, although the meaning slightly changes. Almost all permutations of the following sample are valid, but with stress on different parts of the meaning.

Pista kenyeret szeletel.

Pista

Pista

Subject

kenyeret

bread

Object

szeletel

slices

Verb

Pista kenyeret szeletel

Pista bread slices

Subject Object Verb

Pista slices bread.

Italian[edit]

The Italian language usually uses a subject–verb–object structure, but when an enclitic pronoun is used, this comes before the verb and the auxiliary.

Io la sto mangiando

Io

I

Subject

la

it

Object

sto

am

Auxiliary

mangiando

eating

Verb

Io la sto mangiando

I it am eating

Subject Object Auxiliary Verb

I am eating it

Japanese[edit]

The basic principle in Japanese word order is that modifiers come before what they modify. For example, in the sentence "こんな夢を見た,"[7] the direct object "こんな" (this sort of dream) modifies the verb "見た" (saw, or in this case had). Beyond this, the order of the elements in a sentence is relatively free. However, because the topic/subject is typically found in sentence-initial position and the verb is typically in sentence-final position, Japanese is considered an SOV language.[8]

ジョンは台所で本を読みました。[9]

ジョン

Jon

John

Subject

wa

TOP

 

台所

daidokoro

kitchen

 

de

LOC

 

hon

book

Object

o

ACC

 

読み

yomi

read

Verb

ました。

mashita

PAST

 

ジョン は 台所 で 本 を 読み ました。

Jon wa daidokoro de hon o yomi mashita

John TOP kitchen LOC book ACC read PAST

Subject {} {} {} Object {} Verb {}

John read a book in the kitchen.

A closely-related quality of the language is that it is broadly head-final.[10]

Kannada[edit]

ನಾನು ಮನೆ ಕಟ್ಟಿದೆನು.

ನಾನು

Naanu

I

Subject

ಮನೆ

mane

the house

Object

ಕಟ್ಟಿದೆನು

kaTTidenu

built

Verb

ನಾನು ಮನೆ ಕಟ್ಟಿದೆನು

Naanu mane kaTTidenu

I {the house} built

Subject Object Verb

I built the house.

Kashmiri[edit]

Like German and Dutch, the Indo-Aryan language Kashmiri is SOV combined with V2 word order. The non-finite verb (infinitive or participle) remains in final position, but the finite (i.e. inflected) part of the verb appears in second position. Simple verbs look like SVO, whereas auxiliated verbs are discontinuous and adhere to this pattern:

کور چہے ثونٹہ کہیوان

کور

kuur

girl

Subject

چہے

chhi

is

Auxiliary

ثونٹہ

tsũũţh

apples

Object

کہیوان

khyevaan

eating

Verb

کور چہے ثونٹہ کہیوان

kuur chhi tsũũţh khyevaan

girl is apples eating

Subject Auxiliary Object Verb

The girl is eating apples.

Given that Kashmiri is a V2 language, if the word tsũũţh 'apple' comes first then the subject kuur 'girl' must follow the auxiliary chhi 'is': tsũũţh chhi kuur khyevaan [Lit. "Apples is girl eating."]

Also, the word order changes depending on whether the phrase is in a main clause or in certain kinds of dependent clause. For instance, in relative clauses, the word order is SOVAux:

Main clause + Subordinate Clause میے ان سوہ کور یوس ثونٹہ کہیوان چہے
Transcription => mye eny swa kuur => ywas tsũũţh khyevaan chhi
Gloss => I brought that girl => who apples eating is
Parts Main clause => Subject Verb Object Relative clause => Subject Object Verb Auxiliary
Translation I brought the girl who is eating apples.

Kazakh[edit]

Дастан кітап оқыды.

Дастан

Dastan

Dastan

Subject

кітап

kitap

a book

Object

оқыды

oqıdı

read

Verb

Дастан кітап оқыды

Dastan kitap oqıdı

Dastan {a book} read

Subject Object Verb

Dastan read a book.

Like in Japanese, OSV is possible too. (Кітапті Дастан оқыды.)

Korean[edit]

내가 상자를 연다.

nae

I

Subject

ga

SBJ

 

상자

sangja

box

Object

reul

OBJ

 

여(ㄹ)

yeo(l)

open

Verb

n

PRES

 

다.

da.

IND

 

내 가 상자 를 여(ㄹ) ㄴ 다.

nae ga sangja reul yeo(l) n da.

I SBJ box OBJ open PRES IND

Subject {} Object {} Verb {} {}

I open the box.

'가 (Ga)/이 (i)' is a particle that indicates the subject. '를 (Reul)/을 (eul)' is a particle that indicates the object. The consonant 'ㄹ (l)' in the verb stem (열-) is dropped before the suffix.

※ Here, '나 (na, I (pronoun))' is changed to '내 (nae)' before '가 (ga)'.

Kurdish (Kurmanci)[edit]

Ez xwarin dixwim.

Ez

I

Subject

xwarin

food

Object

dixwim

eat

Verb

Ez xwarin dixwim

I food eat

Subject Object Verb

I eat food.

Kurdish (Sorani)[edit]

.من خواردن دەخۆم

من

I

Subject

خواردن

food

Object

دەخۆم

eat

Verb

من خواردن دەخۆم

I food eat

Subject Object Verb

I eat food.

Kyrgyz[edit]

Биз алма жедик

Биз

Biz

We

Subject

алма

alma

apple

Object

жедик

jedik

ate

Verb

Биз алма жедик

Biz alma jedik

We apple ate

Subject Object Verb

We ate an apple

Latin[edit]

Classical Latin was an inflected language and had a very flexible word order and sentence structure, but the most usual word order in formal prose was SOV.

Servus puellam amat

Servus

Slave.NOM

Subject

puellam

girl.ACC

Object

amat

loves

Verb

Servus puellam amat

Slave.NOM girl.ACC loves

Subject Object Verb

The slave loves the girl.

Again, there are multiple valid translations (such as "a slave") that do not affect the overall analysis.

Malayalam[edit]

ഞാൻ പുസ്തകം എടുത്തു.

ഞാൻ

ñān

I

Subject

പുസ്തകം

pustakam̥

(the) book

Object

(-e)

ACC

 

എടുത്തു

eṭuttu

took

Verb

ഞാൻ പുസ്തകം എ എടുത്തു

ñān pustakam̥ (-e) eṭuttu

I {(the) book} ACC took

Subject Object {} Verb

I took the book.

  • Pustakam̥ + -e = pustakatte (പുസ്തകത്തെ)

Manchu[edit]

Sentence ᠪᡳ ᠪᡠᡩᠠ ᠪᡝ ᠵᡝᠮᠪᡳ
Gloss

ᠪᡳ

bi

I

Subject

ᠪᡠᡩᠠ

buda

meal

Object

ᠪᡝ

be

ACC

 

ᠵᡝᠮᠪᡳ

jembi

eat

Verb

ᠪᡳ ᠪᡠᡩᠠ ᠪᡝ ᠵᡝᠮᠪᡳ

bi buda be jembi

I meal ACC eat

Subject Object {} Verb

I eat a meal.

Marathi[edit]

तो बियाणे पेरतो.

तो

he

Subject

बियाणे

biyāṇē

seeds

Object

पेरतो

pēratō

sows

Verb

तो बियाणे पेरतो

Tō biyāṇē pēratō

he seeds sows

Subject Object Verb

He sows seeds.

Meitei[edit]

ꯑꯩ ꯐꯨꯠꯕꯣꯜ ꯁꯥꯅꯩ꯫

ꯑꯩ

Ei

I

Subject

ꯐꯨꯠꯕꯣꯜ

football

football

Object

ꯁꯥꯅꯩ

sanei

play

Verb

ꯑꯩ ꯐꯨꯠꯕꯣꯜ ꯁꯥꯅꯩ

Ei football sanei

I football play

Subject Object Verb

I play football.

Mongolian[edit]

Би ном уншив.

Би

Bi

I

Subject

ном

nom

a book

Object

уншив

unshiv

read

Verb

Би ном уншив

Bi nom unshiv

I {a book} read

Subject Object Verb

I read a book.

Nepali[edit]

म किताब पढ्छु ।

ma

I

Subject

किताब

kitāb

book

Object

पढ्छु

paḍhchhu

read.PRES

Verb

म किताब पढ्छु

ma kitāb paḍhchhu

I book read.PRES

Subject Object Verb

I read a book.

Odia[edit]

ମୁଁ ଏକ ସେଓ ଖାଏ ।

ମୁଁ

mun

I

Subject

ଏକ

eka

an

 

ସେଓ

seo

apple

Object

ଖାଏ

khaae

eat.PRES.M

Verb

ମୁଁ ଏକ ସେଓ {ଖାଏ}

mun eka seo {khaae}

I an apple eat.PRES.M

Subject {} Object Verb

I eat an apple.

Ossetian[edit]

Алан чиныг кæсы.

Алан

Alan

Alan

Subject

чиныг

činyg

book

Object

кæсы

kæsy

reads

Verb

Алан чиныг кæсы

Alan činyg kæsy

Alan book reads

Subject Object Verb

Alan reads a book.

Pashto[edit]

.زۀ کار کوم

زۀ

Subject

کار

kaar

Object

کوم

kawəm

Verb

زۀ کار کوم

Zə kaar kawəm

Subject Object Verb

I do the work.

Persian[edit]

.من سیب می‌خورم

من

man

I

Subject

سیب

seeb

apple

Object

می‌خورم

mikhoram

eat.1.PRES

Verb

من سیب می‌خورم

man seeb mikhoram

I apple eat.1.PRES

Subject Object Verb

I am eating an apple.

Portuguese[edit]

Portuguese is an SVO language, but it has some SOV constructs.

In case of proclisis:

Todos aqui te amam.

Todos

Everybody

Subject

aqui

here

 

te

you.PRCL

Object

amam

love

Verb

Todos aqui te amam

Everybody here you.PRCL love

Subject {} Object Verb

Everybody here loves you.

Aquilo me entristeceu.

Aquilo

It/that

Subject

me

me.PRCL

Object

entristeceu

saddened

Verb

Aquilo me entristeceu

It/that me.PRCL saddened

Subject Object Verb

It saddened me.

When using a temporal adverb, optionally with the negative:

Nós já [não] os temos.

Nós

We

Subject

already

 

[não]

[not]

 

os

them.MASC

Object

temos

have

Verb

Nós já [não] os temos

We already [not] them.MASC have

Subject {} {} Object Verb

(Positive) We already have them.
(Negative) We do not have them anymore.

Nós ainda [não] os temos.

Nós

We

Subject

ainda

still

 

[não]

[not]

 

os

them.MASC

Object

temos

have

Verb

Nós ainda [não] os temos

We still [not] them.MASC have

Subject {} {} Object Verb

(Positive) We still have them.
(Negative) We do not have them yet.

There is an infix construction for the future and conditional tenses:

Eu fá-lo-ei amanhã.

Eu

I

Subject

fá-lo-ei

do-it-will

Object

amanhã

tomorrow

Verb

Eu fá-lo-ei amanhã

I do-it-will tomorrow

Subject Object Verb

I will do it tomorrow.

SVO form: Eu hei-de fazê-lo amanhã or eu farei o mesmo amanhã

Punjabi[edit]

Punjabi is very flexible in word order and is written in two writing systems, Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi , the second of which is written from right-to-left.

Sentence Gurmukhi ਮੈਨੂੰ ਇੱਕ ਸੇਬ ਚਾਹੀਦਾ ਹੈ।
Shahmukhi مَیں نُوں اِکّ سیب چاہیدا ہے۔
Words Gurmukhi ਮੈਨੂੰ ਇੱਕ ਸੇਬ ਚਾਹੀਦਾ ਹੈ
Shahmukhi مَیں نُوں اِکّ سیب چاہیدا ہے
Romanization mainu ikk seb chaahida hai
Gloss I (dative) an apple want
Parts Subject Object Verb
Translation I want an apple.

Quechua[edit]

Quechuan languages have standard SOV word order. The following example is from Bolivian Quechua.

Ñuqaqa papata mikhurqani.

Ñuqa-qa

I-TOP

Subject

papa-ta

potato-ACC

Object

mikhu-rqa-ni

eat-PAST-1SG

Verb

Ñuqa-qa papa-ta mikhu-rqa-ni

I-TOP potato-ACC eat-PAST-1SG

Subject Object Verb

I ate potatoes.

Sanskrit[edit]

Sanskrit, like its predecessor, Vedic, is an inflected language and very flexible in word order; it allows all possible word combinations. However, it is generally considered a SOV language.

तत्त्

tát

that

Subject

(त्)वम

t(ú)vam

you

Object

सि

ási

are

Verb

तत्त् (त्)वम सि

tát t(ú)vam ási

that you are

Subject Object Verb

That you are.

Somali[edit]

Somali generally uses the subject–object–verb structure when speaking formally.

Aniga baa albaabka furay

Aniga

I

Subject

baa

FOC

 

albaab(ka)

(the) door

Object

furay

opened

Verb

Aniga baa albaab(ka) furay

I FOC {(the) door} opened

Subject {} Object Verb

I opened the door

Spanish[edit]

The Spanish language usually uses a subject–verb–object structure, but when an enclitic pronoun is used, this comes before the verb and the auxiliary. Sometimes, in dual-verb constructions involving the infinitive and the gerund, the enclitic pronoun can be put before both verbs, or attached to the end of the second verb.

Yo lo como

Yo

I

Subject

lo

it

Object

como

eat

Verb

Yo lo como

I it eat

Subject Object Verb

I eat it

Talysh[edit]

Merd kitob handedə.

Merd

Man

Subject

kitob

book

Object

handedə

reading

Verb

Merd kitob handedə

Man book reading

Subject Object Verb

The man is reading a book.

Tamil[edit]

Tamil being a strongly head-final language, the basic word-order is SOV. However, since it is highly inflected, word order is flexible and is used for pragmatic purposes. That is, fronting a word in a sentence adds emphasis on it; for instance, a VSO order would indicate greater emphasis on the verb, the action, than on the subject or the object. However, such word-orders are highly marked, and the basic order remains SOV.

நான் பெட்டியை திறப்பேன்.

நான்

Nān

I-NOM

Subject

பெட்டியை

peṭṭi-yai

box-ACC

Object

திறப்பேன்.

tiṟa-pp-ēn.

open-FUT-1SG

Verb

நான் பெட்டியை திறப்பேன்.

Nān peṭṭi-yai tiṟa-pp-ēn.

I-NOM box-ACC open-FUT-1SG

Subject Object Verb

I will open the box.

Telugu[edit]

నేను పార్టీకి వెళ్తున్నాను.

నేను

Nēnu

I

Subject

పార్టీకి

pārtīki

to party

Object

వెళ్తున్నాను.

veḷtunnānu.

am going.

Verb

నేను పార్టీకి వెళ్తున్నాను.

Nēnu pārtīki veḷtunnānu.

I {to party} {am going.}

Subject Object Verb

I am going to the party.

Tigrinya[edit]

The Tigrinya language usually uses a subject–verb–object structure.

ዳኒኤል ኩዑሶ ቀሊዑ

ዳኒኤል

danī’ēli

Daniel

Subject

ኩዑሶ

ku‘uso

ball

Object

ቀሊዑ

k’elī‘u

kicked

Verb

ዳኒኤል ኩዑሶ ቀሊዑ

danī’ēli ku‘uso k’elī‘u

Daniel ball kicked

Subject Object Verb

Daniel kicked the ball.

Turkish[edit]

Yusuf elmayı yedi.

Yusuf

Joseph

Subject

elmayı

apple

Object

yedi

ate

Verb

Yusuf elmayı yedi

Joseph apple ate

Subject Object Verb

Joseph ate the apple.

Like all other Turkic languages, Turkish has flexibility in word order, so any order is possible. For example, in addition to the SOV order above, this sentence could also be constructed as OSV (Elmayı Yusuf yedi.), OVS (Elmayı yedi Yusuf.), VSO (Yedi Yusuf elmayı.), VOS (Yedi elmayı Yusuf.), or SVO (Yusuf yedi elmayı.), but these other orders carry a connotation of emphasis of importance on either the subject, object, or the verb. The SOV order is the "default" one that does not connote particular emphasis on any part of the sentence.

Udmurt[edit]

мoн книгa лыӟӥcькo.

мoн

mon

I

Subject

книгa

kniga

a book

Object

лыӟӥcькo.

lyjis'ko

to read

Verb

мoн книгa лыӟӥcькo.

mon kniga lyjis'ko

I {a book} {to read}

Subject Object Verb

I am reading a book.

Urdu[edit]

.مَیں نے اُسے دیکھا

مَیں

main

I

Subject

نے

ne

ERG

 

اُسے

use

him/her

Object

دیکھا

dekha

saw

Verb

مَیں نے اُسے دیکھا

main ne use dekha

I ERG him/her saw

Subject {} Object Verb

I saw him/her.

Uzbek[edit]

Anvar Xivaga ketdi.

Anvar

Anvar.NOM

Subject

Xivaga

to Khiva.DAT

Object

ketdi.

went

Verb

Anvar Xivaga ketdi.

Anvar.NOM {to Khiva.DAT} went

Subject Object Verb

Anvar went to Khiva.

The marker "ga" is a dative case marker for the object that precedes it. Due to flexibility in word order in Uzbek, it is possible to transform the sentence into OSV as well ("Xivaga Anvar ketdi" / "It was Anvar who went to Khiva").

Yi[edit]

ꉢꌧꅪꋠ.

nga

I

Subject

ꌧꅪ

syp-hni

(an) apple

Object

zze.

(to) eat

Verb

ꉢ ꌧꅪ ꋠ

nga syp-hni zze.

I {(an) apple} {(to) eat}

Subject Object Verb

I eat an apple.

Zazaki[edit]

The Zazaki language usually uses a subject–object-verb structure,[11] but it sometimes uses subject-verb-object too.

O ey kırışeno.

O

He

Subject

ey

it

Object

kırışeno

carries

Verb

O ey kırışeno

He it carries

Subject Object Verb

He carries it.

Zarma[edit]

Hama na mo ŋwa.

Hama

Hama

Subject

na

COMP

 

mo

rice

Object

ŋwa

eat

Verb

Hama na mo ŋwa

Hama COMP rice eat

Subject {} Object Verb

Hama ate rice.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Meyer, Charles F. (2010). Introducing English Linguistics International (Student ed.). Cambridge University Press.
  2. ^ Tomlin, Russell S. (1986). Basic Word Order: Functional Principles. London: Croom Helm. p. 22. ISBN 9780709924999. OCLC 13423631.
  3. ^ Crystal, David (1997). The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-55967-7.
  4. ^ Andreas Fischer, "'With this ring I thee wed': The verbs to wed and to marry in the history of English". Language History and Linguistic Modelling: A Festschrift for Jacek Fisiak on his 60th Birthday. Ed. Raymond Hickey and Stanislaw Puppel. Trends in Linguistics, Studies and Monographs 101 (Berlin, New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 1997), pp.467-81
  5. ^ "Understanding 把 (bǎ) in ten minutes". ChineseBoost.com. Archived from the original on 2022-01-21.
  6. ^ 车机联控语言——铁路行车领域"共同语言"的研究 (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 2020-12-18 – via Baidu.
  7. ^ Sōseki, Natsume (July 26, 1988) [First published July 25, 1908]. 夢十夜 [Ten Nights of Dreams] (in Japanese). Chikuma Shobō. ISBN 4-480-02170-1 – via Aozora Bunko.
  8. ^ Makino, Seiichi; Tsutsui, Michio (March 1999) [First published March 1986]. A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar. The Japan Times, Ltd. p. 16. ISBN 4-7890-0454-6.
  9. ^ Futagi, Yoko (October 2004). Japanese Focus Particles at the Syntax-Semantics Interface (PDF) (PhD). Rutgers University–New Brunswick. p. 23. OCLC 60853899. Retrieved 2021-08-01.
  10. ^ Siegel, Melanie; Bender, Emily M. (2004). "Head-Initial Constructions in Japanese" (PDF). In Müller, Stefan (ed.). Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar, Center for Computational Linguistics, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Stanford, CA: CSLI Publications. pp. 244–260.
  11. ^ Ahmadi, S. (2020, December). Building a Corpus for the Zaza–Gorani Language Family. In Proceedings of the 7th Workshop on NLP for Similar Languages, Varieties and Dialects (pp. 70-78).