Switch Reference in Mongolian

5. SR in Ad-subordinate (Adverbial) Clauses

In addition to functioning as direct daughters, subordinate clauses ending in case suffixes may also function as sentence adverbials (ad-subordinate clauses).

Such case endings have a strong tendency to be used with particular meanings. Tserenpil & Kullmann place them along with a ragbag group of collocations in a category called "Subordinating Conjunctions".

Janhunen (2012) more systematically classes them as 'quasiconverbs', analogous to converbs proper (see below), with the functions given in the following table:


᠊ᠬᠤ ᠳᠤ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠳᠤ

-хад, -хэд, -ход, -хөд

᠊ᠬᠤ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-хдаа, -хдээ, -хдоо, -хдөө

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠳᠤ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠳᠤ

-дагт, -дэгт, -догт, -дөгт

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-дагтаа, -дэгтээ, -догтоо, -дөгтөө

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠳᠤ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠳᠤ

-санд, -сэнд, -сонд, -сөнд

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠳᠤ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-сандаа, -сэндээ, -сондоо, -сөндөө

*᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠳᠤ
*᠊ᠭᠡ ᠳᠤ

*-аад, *-оод, *-өөд, *-ээд

*᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠳᠤ ᠪᠠᠨ᠂
*᠊ᠭᠡ ᠳᠤ ᠪᠡᠨ

*-аадаа, *-оодоо, *-өөдөө, *-ээдээ

᠊ᠬᠤ ᠡᠴᠡ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠡᠴᠡ

-хаас, -хээс, -хоос, -хөөс

᠊ᠬᠤ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-хаасаа, -хээсээ, -хоосоо, -хөөсөө

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠡᠴᠡ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠡᠴᠡ

-дагаас, -дэгээс, -догоос, -дөгөөс

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-дагаасаа, -дэгээсээ, -догоосоо, -дөгөөсөө

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠡᠴᠡ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠡᠴᠡ

-санаас, -сэнээс, -соноос, -сөнөөс

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-санаасаа, -сэнээсээ, -соноосоо, -сөнөөсөө

᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ
᠊ᠭᠡ ᠡᠴᠡ

-аас, -оос, -өөс, -ээс

᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠪᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠭᠡ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-аагаасаа, -оогоосоо, -өөгөөсөө, -ээгээсээ

᠊ᠬᠤ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ

-хаар, -хээр, -хоор, -хөөр

᠊ᠬᠤ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠬᠦ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-хаараа, -хээрээ, -хоороо, -хөөрөө

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ

-дагаар, -дэгээр, -догоор, -дөгөөр

᠊ᠳᠠᠭ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠳᠡᠭ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-дагаараа, -дэгээрээ, -догоороо, -дөгөөрөө

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ

-санаар, -сэнээр, -соноор, -сөнөөр

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠰᠡᠨ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-санаараа, -сэнээрээ, -соноороо, -сөнөөрөө

᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ
᠊ᠭᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ

-аагаар, -оогоор, -өөгөөр, -ээгээр

᠊ᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ ᠪᠠᠨ᠂
᠊ᠭᠡ ᠵᠢᠡᠷ ᠵᠢᠡᠨ

-аагаараа, -оогоороо, -өөгөөрөө, -ээгээрээ

Janhunen notes that it is not possible to treat -aad4 as a converb of time since it has the same form as -aad4, which is a coordinating converb ☟. By implication -aadaa is also not possible since coordinating converbs do not take the reflexive suffix.


-аад, -оод, -өөд, -ээд

5.1. Verbal noun + Dative-locative

5.1.1 Temporal sense

Of the 'quasiconverbs', by far the commonest is the Dative-locative, particularly the form -xad4/-xdaa4 (Futuritive + Dative-locative), which is commonly used in situations where English would use 'when'.

In the following example, the subject of the subordinate clause (bid ‘we’) differs from that of the main clause (aav ‘father’). As a consequence, there is no reflexive suffix on the Dative-locative ending. (The Accusative ending on bid ‘we’ is due to differential subject marking and also indicates 'different subject'.)

Bidn-ijg xool-oo ide-x ge-ž baj-x-ad, aav ir-lee.
1pl.ACC meal.REFL eat.FUT that be.FUT.DAT father come.PST

When we were just about to eat, father came.

ᠪᠢᠳᠡ ᠪᠠᠭᠰᠢ ᠪᠠᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ
ᠡᠭᠦᠨ ᠢ ᠵᠢᠭᠠᠯᠭᠠᠭᠰᠠᠨ᠃

Биднийг хоолоо идэх гэж байхад, аав ирлээ.

In the following sentence, the reflexive indicates that the subject of the main clause and that of the subordinate clause are identical. The subject is thus not expressed in the subordinate clause.

Bi ojuutan baj-x-d-aa exner-tei-gee tani-lc-san.
1sg student be.VN.DAT.REFL wife.COM.REFL know.MUT.PST

When I was a student I got to know my wife.

ᠪᠢ ᠣᠶᠤᠲᠠᠨ
ᠪᠠᠢᠬᠤ ᠳᠦ ᠪᠠᠨ
ᠡᠬᠨᠡᠷ ᠲᠡᠢ ᠪᠡᠨ

Би оюутан байхдаа эхнэртэйгээ танилцсан.

In the next example, the subject of the subordinate clause is a person, and is different from that of the main clause (tenger 'sky'); hence the use of the possessive particle n' in the subordinate clause.

gadaa gara-x-ad n' tenger arč-san tol' šig tungalag, öglöö-nij ulaan xavsarga-ny ul mör č ügüj bol-son baj-v.
outside come-out.FUT.DAT 3POSS sky polished mirror like clear, morning.GEN red blizzard.GEN trace also NEG become.PST be.PST

When (he) came out, the sky was clear like a polished mirror and there was not trace of the red blizzard of the morning.

ᠭᠠᠳᠠᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠭᠠᠷᠬᠤ ᠳᠤ ᠨᠢ ᠲᠡᠩᠷᠢ
ᠠᠷᠴᠢᠭᠰᠠᠨᠲᠣᠯᠢ ᠰᠢᠭ ᠲᠤᠩᠭᠠᠯᠠᠭ᠂
ᠥᠷᠯᠦᠭᠡ ᠶᠢᠨ ᠤᠯᠠᠭᠠᠨ ᠬᠠᠪᠰᠠᠷᠭᠠᠨ ᠦ
ᠤᠯᠠ ᠮᠥᠷ ᠴᠤ ᠦᠭᠡᠢ ᠪᠣᠯᠤᠭᠰᠠᠨ ᠪᠠᠢᠪᠠ᠃

Гадаа гарахад нь тэнгэр арчсан толь шиг тунгалаг, өглөөний улаан хавсарганы ул мөр ч үгүй болсон байв.

5.1.2. Other uses of Verbal Noun + Dative-locative

The classification of Dative-locative forms as 'quasiconverbs' of time fails to capture their full range of uses. This is covered at an earlier post on subordinate Dative/locative clauses. 'Hard/easy to', 'good/bad at', 'good/bad for'

One usage concerns the concept of difficulty of, adeptness at, or suitability for a certain activity. The following example is a saying. As a set piece not referring to any particular person, it does not use the reflexive.

xele-x-ed amar xij-x-ed xecüü.
say.DAT easy do.DAT difficult

Easy to say, hard to do (Easier said than done).

ᠬᠡᠯᠡᠬᠦ ᠳᠦ ᠠᠮᠠᠷ᠂
ᠬᠢᠬᠦ ᠳᠦ ᠬᠡᠴᠡᠭᠦᠦ᠃

Хэлэхэд амар, хийхэд хэцүү.

The reflexive can occur when the subject of the subordinate clause is the same as that of the main clause.

ax n' balin, šalsaj xij-x-d-ee gar-yn düj-tej.
brother.his kneaded-dough, fried-dough make.FUT.DAT.REFL adept

His elder brother is good at making kneaded and fried dough.

ᠠᠬ᠎ᠠ ᠨᠢ ᠪᠠᠯᠢᠩ᠂ ᠱᠠᠯᠰᠠᠢ
ᠬᠢᠬᠦ ᠳᠦ ᠪᠠᠨ ᠭᠠᠷ ᠦᠨ ᠳᠦᠢᠲᠡᠢ᠃

Ах нь балин, шалсай хийхдээ гарын дүйтэй. Causation

The past tense + Dative-locative can be used in the sense of causation.

This is common in set expressions of gratitude, which by definition involve a different subject.

xuraldaan-d-aa cag-t-aa ir-sen-d bayarl-laa.
meeting.DAT.REFL time.DAT.REFL come.PST.DAT thank-you

Thank you for coming to the meeting on time

ᠬᠤᠷᠠᠯᠳᠤᠭᠠᠨ ᠳᠦ ᠪᠠᠨ
ᠴᠠᠭ ᠲᠤ ᠪᠠᠨ ᠢᠷᠡᠭᠰᠡᠨ ᠳᠦ

Хуралдаандаа цагтаа ирсэнд баярлалаа.

This format probably derives from the fact that the verb bayarlax 'be happy (at)' requires the dative. (Tan-y is Genitive as the subject of a subordinate clause ending in a verbal noun.)

tan-y ir-sen-d bid ix bayarla-ž baj-na.
2sg .GEN come.PST.DAT we much overjoy.SIMUL be.PRS

We are very pleased that you came.

ᠲᠠᠨ ᠦ ᠢᠷᠡᠡᠭᠰᠡᠨ ᠳᠦ
ᠪᠢᠳᠡ ᠶᠡᠬᠡ ᠪᠠᠶᠠᠷᠯᠠᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠨ᠎ᠠ᠃

Tаны ирсэнд бид их баярлаж байна.

A similar example involves the expression -sandaa4 bolood, a fixed expression for 'due to one's actions', often found in ajsandaa bolood 'out of fear'. In this expression it always occurs with the reflexive because the sense is 'out of one's own fear'. Bolox means 'to become'.

ter aj-san-d-aa bol-ood ujl-čix-san.
he/she fear.PST.DAT.REFL cry.COMPL.PST

He/she cried 〖out of his.her fearing〗.

ᠲᠡᠷᠡ ᠠᠶᠤᠭᠰᠠᠨ ᠳᠦ ᠪᠠᠨ
ᠪᠣᠯᠤᠭᠠᠳ ᠤᠬᠢᠯᠠᠴᠢᠬᠠᠭᠰᠠᠨ᠃

Тэр айсандаа болоод уйлчихсан

᠊ᠰᠠᠨ ᠳᠦ ᠪᠠᠨ ᠪᠣᠯᠤᠭᠠᠳ᠃

-сандаа / -сэндээ / -сондоо / -сөндөө болоод

While Janhunen notes that -aad4 is not possible as a converb of time, this restriction does not apply where it indicates a cause, as seen in the following sentence:

Seržamc udirdagč xün-tej tanil-ca-ž baj-gaa-d-aa öör-öör-öö baxarxa-ž baj-v.
Seržamc leading person.COM get-to-know.CNV be.ANT.DAT.REFL self.INST.REFL be-proud.SIMUL be.PST

Serjamts was proud of himself for getting to a know a famous person.

ᠰᠡᠷᠵᠠᠮᠰ ᠤᠳᠤᠷᠢᠳᠤᠭᠴᠢ ᠬᠦᠮᠦᠨ ᠲᠡᠢ
ᠲᠠᠨᠢᠯᠴᠠᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠳᠦ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ
ᠥᠭᠡᠷ᠎ᠡ ᠪᠡᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ ᠪᠠᠬᠠᠷᠬᠠᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠪᠠ᠃

Сэржамц удирдагч хүнтэй танилцаж байгаадаа өөрөөрөө бахархаж байв.

5.2. Verbal Noun + Ablative

The Ablative is used to indicate cause, although less systematically than the use of the Dative-locative to indicate time. It is often found with the verb bajx 'to be'.

bajg.uulga-yn dotood xjanalt sul baj-gaa-gaas olon xün-ij am' ersde-ž baj-na.
organisation.GEN internal control lax be.PROG.ABLmany person.GEN life lose.SIMUL be.PRS

Many people's lives were lost because control within the organisation is lax.

ᠪᠠᠢᠭᠤᠯᠤᠯᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠦᠨ ᠳᠣᠲᠤᠭᠠᠳᠤ ᠬᠢᠨᠠᠯᠲᠠ
ᠰᠤᠯᠠ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠣᠯᠠᠨ ᠬᠦᠮᠦᠨ ᠦ ᠠᠮᠢ
ᠡᠷᠦᠰᠳᠡᠵᠦ ᠪᠠᠢᠨ᠎ᠠ᠃

Байгууллагын дотоод хяналт сул байгаагаас олон хүний амь эрсдэж байна.

However, the reflexive form bajgaas-aa is far more likely to be used in a comparative construction.

či itge-ž baj-gaas-aa ilüü zorig-toj, sana-gda-ž baj-gaas-aa ilüü xüč-tej, bodo-ž baj-gaas-aa ilüü uxaalag.
2sg believe.SIMUL be.ABL.REFL more courageous, think.PASS.SIMUL be.ABL.REFL more powerful, think.SIMUL be.ABLREFL more intelligent.

You are more courageous than you believe, more powerful than you imagine, more intelligent than you think.

ᠴᠢ ᠢᠲᠡᠭᠡᠵᠦ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠪᠡᠨ ᠢᠯᠡᠭᠦᠦ ᠵᠣᠷᠢᠭᠲᠠᠢ᠂
ᠰᠠᠨᠠᠭᠳᠠᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠪᠡᠨ ᠢᠯᠡᠭᠦᠦ ᠬᠦᠴᠦᠲᠡᠢ᠂
ᠪᠣᠳᠤᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠪᠡᠨ ᠢᠯᠡᠭᠦᠦ ᠤᠬᠠᠭᠠᠯᠢᠭ᠃

Чи итгэж байгаагаасаа илүү зоригтой, санагдаж байгаагаасаа илүү хүчтэй, бодож байгаагаасаа илүү ухаалаг.

More common is the use of the Ablative in the expression aj-sn-aa-saa bol-ž 'out of (one's) fear'. The following example has no explicit subject in either main or subordinate clause but refers to the same entity:

ajs-an-aas-aa bolž ed xöröngö-güj, erx medel-güj baj-saar baj-x uu.
fear.PST.ABL.REF property.NEG, rights.NEG be.CONT be.FUT Q.

Are (you) without property or rights out of fear?

ᠠᠶᠤᠭᠰᠠᠨ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠪᠠᠨ ᠪᠣᠯᠵᠤ ᠡᠳ᠋ ᠬᠥᠷᠦᠩᠭᠡ
ᠦᠭᠡᠢ᠂ ᠡᠷᠬᠡ ᠮᠡᠳᠡᠯ ᠦᠭᠡᠢ ᠪᠠᠢᠭᠰᠠᠭᠠᠷ
ᠪᠠᠢᠬᠤ ᠤᠤ᠃

Айснаасаа болж эд хөрөнгөгүй, эрх мэдэлгүй байсаар байх уу.

5.3 Verbal Noun + Instrumental

This construction is used in the meaning 'by way of'. The following is an example using the reflexive. There is no explicit subject in either clause, but the implication is that the person looking after handicapped citizens is the one seeking some kind of benefit from the government.

xögžl-ijn berxšeel-tej irgen asar-č baj-gaa-gaar-aa tör-öös yamar negen möngön tetgemž ava-x uu?
development.GEN difficulty.COM citizen care.SIMUL be.PROG.INST.REFL government.ABL what-kind one money.GEN benefit get.FUT Q?

Can (one) receive some cash benefits from government by way of caring for the disabled?

ᠬᠥᠭᠵᠢᠯ ᠦᠨ ᠪᠡᠷᠬᠡᠰᠢᠶᠡᠯ ᠲᠡᠢ ᠢᠷᠭᠡᠨ
ᠠᠰᠠᠷᠠᠵᠤ ᠪᠠᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠵᠢᠠᠷ ᠵᠢᠠᠨ
ᠲᠥᠷᠥ ᠡᠴᠡ ᠶᠠᠮᠠᠷ ᠨᠢᠭᠡᠨ ᠮᠥᠩᠭᠦᠨ
ᠲᠡᠳᠬᠦᠮᠵᠢ ᠠᠪᠬᠤ  ᠤᠤ?

Хөгжлийн бэрхшээлтэй иргэн асарч байгаагаараа төрөөс ямар нэгэн мөнгөн тэтгэмж авах уу?

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