Ways of the Marking of the Animate Participant with Predicatives in Russian and Bulgarian

2022. № 5, 26-46

Alexander B. Letuchiy1, Marina Dzhonova2, 1HSE University (Russia, Moscow),2Sofi a University (Bulgaria Sofi a), 1alexander.letuchiy@gmail.com; 2djonova@slav.uni-sofi a.bg


The article discusses alternative ways of marking the animate participant of predicatives in Russian and Bulgarian. Both languages have a coding option where the argument is more syntactically privileged (dative case in Russian, dative/the preposition na in Bulgarian) or less privileged (prepositional phrase with dlja ‘for’ in Russian and za ‘for’ in Bulgarian). We discuss semantic, syntactic and distributional properties of each pattern. The precise distribution is different for different semantic types of predicatives (for example, the difference of semantic role is very obvious for the class of physical senses and almost invisible for the cognitive and psychological class). At the same time, the distribution is closely related to syntactic factors, such as a part of speech of the head and the opposition of fi nite vs. nonfi nite (infi nitive) clauses in Russian. For instance, we discuss in detail the link between the argument marking and the part of speech of the head (predicative vs. short form of adjective vs. full form of adjective) — we claim that the part of speech distinctions are directly сonnected with semantic differences that are discussed in the beginning of the article. Constructions, where the argument in dative or with the preposition dlja / za does not have a semantic role, are considered separately.

For citation:

Letuchiy A. B., Dzhonova M. Ways of the Marking of the Animate
Participant with Predicatives in Russian and Bulgarian. Russian Speech =
Russkaya Rech’. 2022. No. 5. Pp. 26–46.


The reported study was funded by RFBR (project number 0-512-18005) and BNSF (under the Programme for Bilateral Cooperation Bulgaria — Russia 2019–2020).