Georgian Language

Georgian Language The Georgian language, which is also spoken by the Misgrelians, Lazians, and the Suani, belongs to the Iberian family. The chief characteristics of it are as follows. Its alphabet consists of thirty-five letters; it has no articles; the substantives have eight cases and no genders; the adjectives, when associated with nouns, are indeclinable, but when they stand by themselves are declined; the comparative is formed by the prefix u and the suffix si, and cardinals are obtained by prefixing me to the ordinals. It possesses eight conjugations with several minor subdivisions, and the different persons are indicated by terminations and personal prefixes; it has several forms for the praeterite and the future tenses, and only one form for the present tense; three modes, viz. indicative, imperative, — and the participle, ands supplies the place of the infinitive by a verbal noun; it has postpositions governing different cases, in addition to the prepositions, and can multiply verbs to any extant by the terminations eleba and ola, form abstracts from adjectives by the terminations oba and eba, as well as active personal nouns, adjectives — both active and passive — and diminutives, by various terminations and prefixes, and its construction allows many liberties. From the venerable old Georgian language a dialect developed itself, in the course of time, by the introduction into it of many Armenian, Greek, Turkish, and other foreign words, and by the vitiation of the pronunciation and spelling of many expressions. The two dialects have distinct alphabets: the alphabet in Which the old Georgian is written is called Kuzuri, i.e., the sacred, and consists of the letters invented by Miesrob; and the alphabet of the modern Georgian is called Keduuhi, and is supposed to have been invented by the Georgians themselves in the 14th century. The old language is the ecclesiastical or literary, and is employed in all sacred and literary writinis, whileithe modern is the civil dialect, or the dialect of common life (lingua vulgaris). Compare Ersch und Gruber's Encyklopadie, s.v. Georgier, page 192; Eichhorn, Allgemeine Bibliothek der biblischen Literatur, 1:156 sq.

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