Tundra Yukaghir is one of the extant Yukaghir languages, two highly threatened languages spoken in the north-east of Russia. Yukaghir is considered by different scholars either as a genetic isolate or as a distant relative of the Uralic family, and is therefore crucial to reconstruction of prehistory of Siberia and, potentially, of the Uralic family; for the same reason, it is almost a must in any sample-based research on cross-linguistic variability. In a number of ways, Tundra Yukaghir is similar to the languages of the region. It is a predominantly head-final language with agglutinating morphology. Clause-linking strategies are based on a variety of non-finite verb forms; coordination and balancing strategies are virtually absent. However, there is a number of significant differences, including but not limited to a morphological Focus-marking system, a set of topic-introducing devices based on non-finite forms of copula, absence of grammaticalized past/present distinction, a specialized cross-reference marker of non-reflexive Possessor opposed to reflexive possessive pronouns. The Focus system, which also saliently affects the case alignment, and the tense/aspect/mood system constitute two major domains of grammatical divergence between the two Yukaghir languages, Tundra and Kolyma Yukaghir.
The book constitutes the first grammatical overview of Tundra Yukaghir to be published in English. It is based on previous studies (Krejnoviè 1958, 1982), the author's own field notes (1987, settlement Andryushkino) and analysis of texts archived in the Yakut branch of Russian Academy of Sciences.
ISBN9783895867927. Languages of the World/Materials 372. 100pp. 2003.