Tofa, also known as
1 Classification 2 Geographical and demographical distribution
2.1 Effects of language contact
3 Writing system 4 Phonology
4.1 Vowel harmony
5 Morphology and syntax
6 References 7 External links
Classification Tofa is most-closely related to the Tuvan language and forms a dialect continuum with it. Tuha, and Tsengel Tuvan may be dialects of either Tuvan or Tofa. Tofa shares a number of features with these languages, including the preservation of *d as /d/ (as in hodan "hare" - compare Uzbek qo'yon) and the development of low tones on historically short vowels (as in *et > èt "meat, flesh"). Alexander Vovin (2017) notes that Tofa and other Siberian Turkic languages, especially Sayan Turkic, have Yeniseian loanwords. Geographical and demographical distribution
Historical Range of Tofalaria
The Tofa, who are also known as the
Щ щ ъ Ы ы ь Э э Ю ю Я я
Tofa has letters that are not present in the Russian alphabet: Ғғ [ɣ], Әә [æ], Ii [iː], Ққ [q], Ңң [ŋ], Өө [œ], Үү [y], Һһ [h], and Ҷҷ [d͡ʒ]. Additionally, the letter ъ is sometimes used after a vowel to mark low tone, as in эът "meat". Phonology Vowel harmony Many dialects of Tofa exhibit vowel harmony, although this harmony seems to be linked to fluency: as one decreases, so does the other. Tofa vowel harmony is progressive and based on two features: backness and rounding, and this occurs both root-internal and in affixes. Enclitics do not appear to trigger backness harmony, and rounding harmony in Tofa has been undergoing changes, and may apply inconsistently. In some cases this may be due to opaque rules resulting in an apparent "disharmony", especially among speakers of the younger generation. The complications surrounding Tofa vowel harmony may also be due to fluctuations from language endangerment. In general, Russian loanwords do not appear to conform to vowel harmony. Given the increasing quantity of these loanwords, leveling may also be a factor in the inconsistent application of vowel harmony. Morphology and syntax Tofa is an agglutinative language with a few auxiliary verbs. The bare stem of a verb is only used in the singular imperative; other categories are marked by suffixation, including the singular imperative negative. The Tofa suffix /--sig/ is an especially unusual derivational suffix in that it attaches to any noun to add the meaning 'smelling of + [NOUN]' or 'smelling like + [NOUN]'. Grammatical number in Tofa includes singular, plural, dual inclusive ('you and me'), and plural inclusive, tense includes the present and past, and aspect includes the perfective and imperfective. Historically suffixes conformed to Tofa vowel harmony rules, but that appears to be changing. Some example sentences are included below to illustrate suffixation:
Rounding Harmony in Suffixes Gloss Rounding Harmony in Roots Gloss
gøk—tyɣ 'grass'--[ADJ] [tyŋgyr] 'drum'
tyŋgyr—lyɣ 'drum'--[ADJ] [kuduruk] 'wolf'
kuduruk—tuɣ 'wolf'--[ADJ] (literally 'tail'--[ADJ]) [oruk] 'road'
Plural Perfective orus[t]e -y ber-gen Russian[ize]-[CV] [ASP]-[PST] 'They have become Russian[ized]' Singular Imperative nersa-ɣa bar Nerxa-[DAT] go 'go to Nerxa' Singular Imperative Negative al-gan men 'di-ve take-[PST] 1 say-[NEG] 'don't say "I took"!' Pronouns Tofa has six personal pronouns:
Tofa (transliteration) English Tofa (transliteration) English
мен (men) I биъс (bìs) we
сен (sen) you (singular) сілер (siler) you (plural, formal)
оң (oŋ) he/she/it оларың (olarıŋ) they
Tofa also has the pronouns бо "this", тээ "that", кум "who", and чү "what". References
^ a b Row 223 in Приложение 6: Население
Российской Федерации по владению
языками [Appendix 6: Population of the Russian Federation by
languages used] (XLS) (in Russian). Федерадьная
служба государственной статистики
[Federal State Statistics Service].
^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds.
'Natural' and Obsolescent Change in Tofa
v t e
Italics indicate extinct languages
Äynu1 Khorezmian Turki1 Chagatai Ili Turki Lop Uyghur Uzbek
Cuman Crimean Tatar Karachay-Balkar Karaim Kipchak Krymchak Kumyk Urum2
Siberian Tatar Fergana Kipchak Karakalpak Kazakh Kyrgyz Nogai
Bashkir Old Tatar Tatar
Crimean Turkish Gagauz Balkan Gagauz Turkish Khorasani Turkic Old Anatolian Turkish Ottoman Turkish Pecheneg2 Qashqai Salar (Anatolian) Turkish Turkmen Urum2
Altai Chulym Dolgan Fuyu Kyrgyz Khakas Old Turkic Old Uyghur Shor Tofa Tuvan
Yakut (Sakha) Western Yugur2
Bulgar Chuvash Khazar
1 Mixed language. 2 Classi