Under Constantine, rumblings of division within the Roman empire shifted attention away from the eastern provinces. This left Armenia with little hope of assistance against the onslaughts of the new Sasanid king, Shapur II (309 - 379 A.D.). It was amidst his attacks on Armenia and Syria, and in response to the Zoroastrian proselytizing, that Trdat the Great had chosen to make Armenia a Christian state.
Just who ruled Armenia after Trdat the Great remains veiled in obscurity. The next ruler to emerge, about whom some certain information is known, was Arshak II. It is not clear, however, if his reign began in 338 or 350 A.D. Under his rule, Armenia entered a period of restructuring, which began with the Church. A descendant of Gregory, Nerses I, became the catholicos and forbade the practice of any non-Christian religions. Permitting married men to join the clergy, he established church hierarchy wherein non-celibate clergy were subordinate to the celibate clerics. Arshak, however, was a proponent of the Arian doctrine, and when Nerses would not fall in line with this view, Arshak had him replaced. Such leniency was not granted to other nobles, whom Arshak had killed if they voiced any opposition.
Arshak's position of relative security faltered when Shapur II defeated the emperor Julian and forced his successor Jovian to cede Armenia to Persia in 364 A.D. Arshak and his general Vasak Mamikonian were taken to Persia and blinded, and Arshak's wife was likewise killed. Only his son Pap escaped to Pontus. Armenia was thus subject to Persian domination, and Zoroastrianism was imposed as the state religion.
Rome finally took initiative in 367 A.D., supplying troops to Arshak's son Pap and an Armenian general Mushegh Mamikonian, who managed to re-take Armenia from the Persians. Pap invited Nerses to return as catholicos; but Pap's pro-Arian views, in line with those of the emperor Valens, led to dissent within the Church. Nerses was eventually killed and Mushegh Mamikonian, together with several nobles, turned against Pap. The nobles split the region of Dsopk into five districts, independent and under the protection of Rome. Pap was murdered in 374 A.D., and the nephew who succeeded him was soon replaced by a Mamikonian. The death of Shapur in 379 A.D. and the partition of the Roman empire into the Western and Eastern empires changed the political climate, and the Mamikonians eventually restored Pap's two sons to the throne, marrying them to Mamikonian women.
Pap's younger son, Arshak III, was forced to flee to the western regions in 385 A.D., and the Arshakuni prince Khosrov IV was elevated to king by the pro-Persian nobles. In 387 A.D., the emperor Theodosius and Shapur III decided to partition Armenia, and Arshak III was given reign over the Byzantine-controlled western region. Khosrov IV continued to rule over Greater Armenia subject to Sasanid domination. When Arshak died, no new Armenian king was appointed, and the Arshakuni line came to an end in Byzantine Armenia. In the east, Khosrov was followed by Vramshapuh (389 - 417 A.D.). Under Vramshapuh, Sahak was named catholicos, the last one of the line of Gregory the Illuminator.
The partition of Armenia into west and east divisions subject to the dominion of different empires was a force threatening to dissolve the sense of a national Armenian identity. A similar problem plagued the Armenian Church: in much of Armenia the Syrian liturgy was used and threatened the authority of the Armenian Church; Byzantium was rapidly becoming the dominant regional power in church matters; paganism and Zoroastrianism still had a foothold in Armenian territory. This was the situation which faced Vramshapuh and the catholicos Sahak. Their solution was to codify the identity of the Armenian people through their language. For this an alphabet was needed, one distinct from those of the neighboring regions. This was the task which they charged to Mesrop Mashtots, a cleric born in the province of Taron, and who had studied Greek and Syriac.
Sometime between 400 and 407 A.D., having studied other alphabets and having consulted different calligraphers, Mesrop created the Armenian alphabet. The Sasanid rulers of the time were tolerant, and Mesrop's students were able to open schools for teaching the alphabet. The Byzantine emperor Theodosius II allowed them to do the same in Byzantine Armenia. The Armenians then entered into a period of translating works from other languages, beginning with the Bible and other liturgical material. Translations of classical works of philosophy, rhetoric, and grammar soon followed, with manuscripts of Aristotle's works becoming particularly prevalent. Voluminous translation continued from the fifth to seventh centuries, when Arab invasion curbed their efforts. Original works began to be composed after the end of the Arshakuni line, signalled by the death of Vramshapuh's son Artashes IV in 428 A.D.
Yeznik Kolbatsi, that is, Yeznik of Kolb, was probably born in A.D. 400, but the date of his death is not known. The purpose of his writing was to maintain orthodoxy and to repel heresies and other religious systems that opposed Christianity. His work Against the Sects is in four books: (1) Against the Heresy of Sects; (2) Against the Religion of the Persians; (3) Against the Religion of the Greek Philosopher; (4) Against the Marcion Heresy. This passage is from Book 1, Chapter 12.
Ard ew zayn ews harcʿanen: etʿē čʿar inčʿ čʿkayr aṙaǰi, usti⁰ ōjn` zor satanay kočʿēkʿ` imacʿaw zhangamans čʿarin :
Asemkʿ, etʿē satanay čʿar zstunganeln mardoyn Astucoy imacʿaw, vasn oroy zmardn yayn yōžarecʿoycʿ :
Orpēs yoržam icʿē okʿ urukʿ tʿšnami, ew tʿagucʿeal ztʿšnamutʿiwnn` gałt kamicʿi vnasel, ew čʿgiticʿē zhangamans vnasakarutʿeann, ew šurǰ ekeal yacicʿi hnars xndrel:
apa gteal žamanak` yoržam okʿ i bžškacʿ tʿšnamwoyn nora patuēr taycʿē yays inčʿ čʿhpel, ew yays niš kerakrocʿ čʿčašakel, orov aṙołǰutʿeann karicʿē hasanel, ew nora lueal` vałvałaki i kełcis barekamutʿean kełcaworeal` zbžiškn parsawicʿē, ew zōgtakarsn nma vnasakars tʿeladreal karcecʿucʿanicʿē, ew hakaṙak patuērs hramanacʿ bžškin taycʿē, ew aynu aṙnicʿē nma vnas:
or očʿ etʿē yaṙaǰagoyn gitēr zhangamans vnasakarutʿeann, ayl i patuireloy bžškin gteal hnars` ełew vnasakar :
Noynpēs karci ew zsatanayē` naxanjeln nma ənd naxastełc mardoy, ew čʿgitel zhangamans, vnasakarutʿeann:
kʿanzi očʿ etʿē čʿar inčʿ aṙaǰi kayr` usti zhangamansn martʿ ēr aṙnul:
useal yAstucoy patuiranēn` or mardoyn tuaw argelul zna i čašakeloy i tnkoy imekʿē i mahaberē, zayn yaṙaǰadreacʿ mardoyn: or očʿ etʿē anpitan inčʿ i kerakurs mardoy ēr, ew očʿ bnutʿeamb tunkn mahaber, ew vasn aynorik inčʿ argelaw mardn i čašakeloy i nmanē, ayl ansastutʿiwnn ełew patčaṙ mahuan mardoyn, ibrew yancʿawori` or ancʿanicʿē zhramanaw hramanatui` or nma kargeal icʿē :
Ard ew zayn ews harcʿanen: etʿē čʿar inčʿ čʿkayr aṙaǰi, usti⁰ ōjn` zor satanay kočʿēkʿ` imacʿaw zhangamans čʿarin : Asemkʿ, etʿē satanay čʿar zstunganeln mardoyn Astucoy imacʿaw, vasn oroy zmardn yayn yōžarecʿoycʿ : Orpēs yoržam icʿē okʿ urukʿ tʿšnami, ew tʿagucʿeal ztʿšnamutʿiwnn` gałt kamicʿi vnasel, ew čʿgiticʿē zhangamans vnasakarutʿeann, ew šurǰ ekeal yacicʿi hnars xndrel: apa gteal žamanak` yoržam okʿ i bžškacʿ tʿšnamwoyn nora patuēr taycʿē yays inčʿ čʿhpel, ew yays niš kerakrocʿ čʿčašakel, orov aṙołǰutʿeann karicʿē hasanel, ew nora lueal` vałvałaki i kełcis barekamutʿean kełcaworeal` zbžiškn parsawicʿē, ew zōgtakarsn nma vnasakars tʿeladreal karcecʿucʿanicʿē, ew hakaṙak patuērs hramanacʿ bžškin taycʿē, ew aynu aṙnicʿē nma vnas: or očʿ etʿē yaṙaǰagoyn gitēr zhangamans vnasakarutʿeann, ayl i patuireloy bžškin gteal hnars` ełew vnasakar : Noynpēs karci ew zsatanayē` naxanjeln nma ənd naxastełc mardoy, ew čʿgitel zhangamans, vnasakarutʿeann: kʿanzi očʿ etʿē čʿar inčʿ aṙaǰi kayr` usti zhangamansn martʿ ēr aṙnul: useal yAstucoy patuiranēn` or mardoyn tuaw argelul zna i čašakeloy i tnkoy imekʿē i mahaberē, zayn yaṙaǰadreacʿ mardoyn: or očʿ etʿē anpitan inčʿ i kerakurs mardoy ēr, ew očʿ bnutʿeamb tunkn mahaber, ew vasn aynorik inčʿ argelaw mardn i čašakeloy i nmanē, ayl ansastutʿiwnn ełew patčaṙ mahuan mardoyn, ibrew yancʿawori` or ancʿanicʿē zhramanaw hramanatui` or nma kargeal icʿē :
But accordingly they also ask this: "If nothing evil existed before, whence did the serpent, which you call Satan, learn the characteristics of Evil?" We say that Satan understood as evil man's disobedience to God, on account of which he induced man to this. It is like when one would be another's enemy, and having concealed his enmity, he would secretly wish to harm him; yet he would not know the nature of the harm, and having come he would wander around in search of means; then, having found the time when someone among the physicians would give an order to his adversary not to touch this thing, and not to taste such a type of food, by which he could arrive to health; and having heard of it, soon pretending under the guise of friendship, he would blame the healer; and, labelling the useful things as harmful to him, he would persuade him, and he would give directions contrary to the orders of the physician, and by this do him harm; and, if he did not recognize beforehand the nature of the harm, rather having found the cure in the physician's order, it was harmful. Thus it is thought also of Satan, his envying of the first-created man, and his not knowing the nature of the evil-doing; because, though there was no evil before, from which it was possible to recognize its nature, nevertheless having learned from God's commandment -- which was given to man to keep him from partaking of some deadly part of the plant -- he offered to man that which, though it was not a useless bit of food for man, and not by nature a deadly plant, nevertheless on this very count man was prohibited from partaking of this -- rather disobedience was the basis of death for man, as for a criminal who would disobey the dictum of an authority that would restrain him.
The interrogative adjective o⁰r 'which?' is declined as follows.
The form o⁰r of the singular is often used in place of the N Ac plural forms o⁰rkʿ and o⁰rs. Less frequently, the L singular oru⁰m replaces the L plural o⁰rs. The interrogative adjective does not distinguish between animate or inanimate referents. For example, o⁰r tʿagawor taycʿē paterazm 'which king will wage war?'; oro⁰v zawrutʿeamb kam oro⁰v anuamb ararēkʿ dukʿ zays 'by what power or by what name did you do this?'; yoru⁰m žamanaki 'at what time?'
Other interrogative adjectives are o⁰rpisi, G o⁰rpiseacʿ 'what sort of?' and kʿani⁰ 'how many?'
The interrogative pronoun is formed from two stems, o- for persons and i- for things. The i-forms exhibit no plural. The declensions are as follows.
|N Sg.||o⁰v, o⁰||zi⁰, zi⁰nčʿ|
|Ac||o⁰v, o⁰||zi⁰, zi⁰nčʿ|
The instrumental forms oro⁰v and oro⁰vkʿ are borrowed from the interrogative adjective. The forms zi⁰ and zi⁰nčʿ display the accusative marker z-, which has spread analogically to the nominative. zinčʿ may also be used as an interrogative adjective for things, e.g. zi⁰nčʿ gorc gorceal ē kʿo 'what deed have you done?'
The forms zi⁰ and hi⁰m may mean 'why?', as well as the form zmē built from the ablative with z-. ənd and vasn may be used with the genitive in the same role: əndē⁰r, vasn ē⁰r 'why?'
There are several interrogative adverbs, referring to
The relative pronoun has no distinct forms; rather the forms of the interrogatives are used in this role. Understanding of their usage, however, requires distinguishing between two types of relative clause: the attributive relative clause and the substantive relative clause. An attributive relative clause is one which serves to describe its antecedent noun, much as an attributive adjective does. Some English examples would be 'the person who is writing the Armenian lessons has brown hair', or 'send all email enquiries to the person by whom the Armenian lessons were written.' In both examples the relative clauses serve an adjectival, or attributive, role modifying 'the person'. By contrast a substantive relative clause is a relative clause which, as a whole, fills the place of a noun. Again, this parallels the substantive use of an adjective. Some English examples would be 'who stole the last cookie is no friend of mine', which in slightly smoother English becomes 'whoever stole the last cookie is no friend of mine'; or 'do what I say.' In the first example, the relative clause in its entirety functions as the subject of the verb 'is'; in the second example, the whole relative clause is the object of the verb 'do'. In either situation the relative clause could be replaced by a single noun, e.g. 'Cicero is no friend of mine' or 'do something.'
Once the distinction is made between types of relative clause, relative pronoun usage becomes straightforward. Namely, in
The forms are the same as those listed for the interrogative adjective and pronoun, without the question mark ⁰.
Examples of attributive relative clauses are vasn banicʿn zor pʿawsecʿan hoviwkʿn 'on account of the words which the shepherds had said'; ewtʿn łambarkʿ... or en ewtʿn hogikʿn Astucoy 'seven torches... which are the seven spirits of God'; əntreacʿ erkotasans, zors ew aṙakʿeals anuaneacʿ 'he chose twelve, whom he also called Apostles'; vecʿ awr ē, yors aržan ē gorcel 'there are six days in which working is permitted'. Note in this last example that yors < i + ors is locative.
Examples of substantive relative clauses are or hawatay yordi, ənduni zkeansn yawitenakans 'who(ever) believes in the Son obtains eternal life'; or zinčʿ asicʿē jez, arasǰikʿ 'do what he tells you'.
As with the interrogative pronouns, the indefinite pronouns exibit a base o- for persons and a base i- for things. Two series of pronouns are formed from these, one with an indefinitizing suffix -mn, the other with -kʿ. Both series may be used in either adjectival or pronominal roles. The declensions are as follows.
|N Sg.||omn||imn||okʿ||*ikʿ, inčʿ|
The form *ikʿ is not found alone, but only in combination with the negative čʿ- in the form čʿikʿ 'there is not, there does not exist', e.g cʿikʿ jez keankʿ 'there is no life for you', čʿikʿ okʿ ayl Astuac 'there is no other God'. In place of *ikʿ the noun inčʿ, G ən′i 'thing' is used. This word is also found with a prefixed negative, očʿinčʿ, G očʿənčʿi 'nothing', e.g. yočʿəčʿēn arar znosa 'He created them from nothing.' As adjective, inčʿ remains in the singular even with plural substantive: awurs inčʿ (Ac Pl.) 'for some days'.
The instrumental singular form omamb from omn fills in for the missing instrumental singular of okʿ.
The indefinite pronouns are often used to strengthen the interrogatives, e.g. o⁰v okʿ 'who indeed?, who in the world?'; orpisi okʿ kin 'what a woman!' The okʿ and *ikʿ series of indefinites, however, are not used in general declarative statements; they only occur in negative, interrogative, conditional, and relative clauses, and with the pronoun iwrakʿančʿiwr 'each', adverb haziw 'hardly' and particle tʿerews 'perhaps'. This does not hold true for the forms inčʿ. For example, ēr omn hiwand 'someone was ill', but očʿ okʿ ē 'it is no one'.
The indefinite adverb of time has two forms parallel to the pronouns: erbemn and erbekʿ 'sometime'. The same restrictions of usage apply as to okʿ, e.g. očʿ erbrkʿ 'never'.
Word formation typically treats the formation of new lexical items from old. In rare instances, such new items may be derived from complete phrases, e.g. erkrpagu 'worshipper' from erkir paganem 'I kiss the earth, I worship'; zgetnem 'I throw down' from z-getni 'to the ground'. Alternately, two lexical items may be compounded to create a new word. When this occurs, the two words are typically connected by the vowel -a-, unless the second member begins with a vowel: čʿar-a-xaws 'slanderer' < čʿar 'malicious' + xawsim 'I speak'; leṙn-a-kołmn 'hill country' < leaṙn 'mountain' + kołmn 'side, country'; barekam 'benevolent, friend' < *bari-a-kam < bari 'good' + kamim 'I will, wish'; cov-ezr 'sea-side'; jkn-ors 'fisher' < jukn 'fish' + ors 'hunter'.
Generally speaking, new lexical items derived from old may be split into two categories: derivatives from verbs and derivatives from nouns. More precisely, words are derived from noun or verb stems. Typically the noun stem is the same as the nominative-accusative form; the verb stem is either the root aorist stem or the -cʿ aorist stem. In both noun and verb derivation, the stem vowels may be subject to vocalic alternation.
The most common derivatives from verbal stems are listed below.
Causative Verbs: These are usually derived from intransitive verbs, though some transitive verbs are also subject to causative derivation, e.g. bnakem 'I dwell' yields bnakecʿu'anem 'I make to dwell, I establish'. Causatives are built from the aorist stem by addition of the suffix -oycʿ- / -ucʿ-. The form -ucʿ- occurs word-internally, -oycʿ- appearing otherwise. The -e- found in -eay aorists drops before the causative suffix is added. Examples are listed below.
|bnakem 'I dwell'||bnakecʿi||bnakecʿoycʿ-|
|molorim 'I err'||molorecʿay||molorecʿoycʿ-|
|kam 'I stand'||kacʿi||kacʿoycʿ-|
|usanim 'I study'||usay||usoycʿ-|
|daṙnam 'I turn'||darjay||darjoycʿ-|
|pʿaxčʿim 'I flee'||pʿaxeay||pʿaxoycʿ-|
|yaṙnem 'I rise'||yareay||yaroycʿ-|
The present stem of causative verbs has the extension -an-. The aorist stem is the same as the base. Thus there are the following examples.
|Causative Present||Causative Aorist||Caus. Aor. 3 Sg.|
|molorecʿucʿanem 'I lead astray'||molorecʿucʿi||molorecʿoycʿ|
|kacʿucʿanem 'I set up, place'||kacʿucʿi||kacʿoycʿ|
|usucʿanem 'I teach'||usucʿi||usoycʿ|
|pʿacucʿanem 'I chase'||pʿaxucʿi||pʿaxoycʿ|
The 2 Sg. Imperative of causative verbs shows -oycʿ > -o, e.g. bnakecʿo 'establish!', uso 'teach!'.
Action Nouns: These are dervied by means of several suffixes. The more frequent suffixes are listed below.
Agent Nouns: There are a few suffixes denoting agent nouns which are worthy of mention.
Adjectives: The suffix -un is commonly used to derive adjectives from verbs. It follows the o-declension. Examples are šaržun 'movable, moving' from šaržim 'I move'; zelun 'running over' from zelum 'I pour, overflow'; pʿaylun 'bright' from pʿaylem 'I shine'.
The most common derivatives from nominal stems are listed below.
Denominative Verbs: Nominal stems may form the base for verbs in -em and -im, more rarely -am. Examples are vkayem 'I testify' from vkay 'witness'; bžškem 'I cure' from bžišk 'physician'; anuanem 'I name' from anun 'name' (note the stem for the oblique cases is anuan-); nawem 'I sail' from naw 'ship'; srbem 'I clean' from surb 'clean, pure'; yusam 'I hope' from yoys 'hope'.
Inchoative Verbs: The suffix -anam is typically appended to adjectives to derive inchoative verbs. These fall into category (D) in the classification of verbs. Examples are ōǰanam 'I recover' from ołǰ 'healthy'; čʿoranam 'I become dry' from čʿor 'dry'. In certain instances such verbs are derived from nouns: kʿahanayanam 'I become a priest' from kahanay 'priest'; veranam 'I am extolled', cf. i ver 'upwards'.
Nouns of State or Quality: The suffix -utʿiwn may also be used to derive nouns denoting quiality. Examples are bazmutʿiwn 'multitude' from bazum 'many'; čšmartutʿiwn 'truth' from čšmarit 'true'; kʿahanayutʿiwn 'priesthood' from kʿahanay 'priest'.
Collective Nouns: Collective nouns may be derived by means of the suffixes -ik (serund-decl.), -ti (tełi-decl.), -ean. Examples are mardik 'men, people' from mard 'man'; mankti 'children' from manuk 'child'; xozean 'pigs' from xoz 'pig'. Such nouns are declined in the singular only.
Diminutive Nouns: The suffixes -ak (a-decl.) and -ik (serund-decl.) serve to derive diminutive nouns. Examples are covak 'lake' from cov 'sea'; eramak 'small herd' from eram 'herd'; ordeak 'son' from ordi 'son'; mankik 'little child' from manuk 'child'; pʿokʿrik 'little' from pʿokʿr 'little'.
Nouns of Place or Containment: Nouns denoting placement are derived by means of the suffixes -(an)ocʿ, -astan, -aran (a-decl.). Examples are žołurdanocʿ 'place of assembly' from žołowurd 'meeting'; ganjaran 'treasure-house' from ganj 'treasure'; Hayastan 'Armenia' from Hay 'Armenian'; vardastan 'rose-garden' from vard 'rose'; dprocʿ 'school' from dpir 'teacher'; amaranocʿ 'summer quarters' from amaṙn 'summer'.
Possessives and Relationals: There are several formations which yield adjectives and nouns denoting possession or relation.
General: The following derivatives do not fit into the other categories listed above.
Iteration is a process which may be used to derive new words from old. It applies equally to verbs, nouns, and adjectives. For example one finds the verbs hot-ot-im 'I smell' from hot 'scent' and kaz-kaz-em 'I run back and forth'. There are substantives xor-xor-at 'pit' from xor 'deep', leṙn-leṙn-ayn 'hill country' from leaṙn 'hill', heł-eł 'current' from hełanim 'I flow'. There are adjectives mec-a-mec 'very big', ǰerm-a-ǰerm 'very warm', arag-arag 'very quick'. In most instances the reduplication serves as intensification, as many of the above examples illustrate. The same effect may be achieved merely by doubling a word in context, without deriving a new combined word. For example one finds luṙ luṙ 'totally quiet' and canr canr 'very tough'.
In contrast to the notion of intensification, although in some sense allied to it, is the use of iteration in a distributive function. Examples are gund-a-gund 'in swarms' (also gund gund); goyn-a-goyn 'multicolored'; ami ami 'throughout the year'; awur awur 'day by day' (also awr awur).
At times the doubling occurs with m- preceding the second member, as in ałx-a-małx 'goods' from ałx 'equipment', and in sut mut 'completely wrong' from *sut sut.
The most common uses of the nominal cases are outlined below. For the use of cases with simple or compound prepositions, see Section 5 of Lesson 1.
The nominative case is the case of the grammatical subject, e.g. koyrkʿ tesanen 'the blind regain their sight', astełkʿ ankcʿin yerknicʿ 'stars will fall from heaven'. When the verb is a copula, the nominative is also the case of the predicate: ein ardarkʿ erkokʿin 'they were both just'. The nominative, with or without ov, may be used in forms of address: patani du, ari 'get up, young man!' The nominative is also used when quoting a person's name, even if the noun representing the person so named is in another case: aṙ komsi umemn Likianēs anun kočʿecʿeloy 'with an earl, called Likianos by name'. Here komsi is in the locative case, modified by kočʿecʿeloy, but the name quoted, Likianēs, remains in the nominative form.
The nominativus pendens is a usage whereby a word, which in its own clause should grammatically be in another case, is placed at the head of the statement in the nominative, and then taken up again by a pronoun in the correct oblique case. For example, caṙay or ənd unkn očʿ lsē, ənd mkanuns tan lsel nma 'the servant, who does not listen with the ear, they make him listen with the back.' Here caṙay is in the nominative, marked in the main clause by the pronoun nma.
The accusative case is the case of the direct object, e.g. or očʿ berē ptuł 'which does not bear fruit'. Rarely a verb may take an internal object: erkean erkiwł mec 'they had a great fear', lit. 'they feared a great fear.' Some verbs take a double accusative, such as harcʿanem 'I ask': harcʿicʿ inčʿ zkʿez 'I ask you (something)'. The accusative may be predicate: Stoyikeankʿn... zamenayn inčʿ marmin karcecʿin 'the Stoics held everything (to be) body.' The accusative may denote an extent of space or time. From this use come such adverbs as aynawr '(during) this day', hence 'today'. An accusative of respect is found in the use of zayn awrinak 'by this means, thus', and in the use of anun in the accusative to mean 'by name, in respect of name': aṙ komsi umemn Likianēs anun kočʿecʿeloy 'with an earl, called Likianos by name'. The accusative form of adjectives may be used adverbially: barwokʿ margarēacʿaw 'they prophesied well'.
The accusative is often marked with the preposition z-. This is generally used with demonstrative pronouns, relatives, personal pronouns, proper names, and nouns with a demonstrative suffix. Examples are zna 'this', zor 'which', zis 'me', zhayrn 'the father', zAbraham 'Abraham'. The marker z- is not an inherent feature of the accusative case. It is often employed simply to distinguish the accusative form from the nominative or locative forms, e.g. yoržam dustr zmayr antrgicʿē, ew nu zkesur iwr, ew kin zayr, ew caṙay ztēr, ew ełbayr zełbayr 'as the daughter reviled her mother, and the daughter-in-law her mother-in-law, and the wife her husband, and the servant his master, and the brother his brother.' The particles kʿan 'than', ibrew 'like, as', and orpēs 'like, as' are often followed by z- plus the accusative of the point of comparison, e.g. očʿ Sołomovn... zgecʿaw ibrew zmi i nocʿanē 'Solomon... did not dress as one of them.'
The genitive case is the possessive case. More generally, it is a relational case, covering a wide range of nuanced meaning, usually delimiting or specifying the sphere of validity of its referent. In Classical Armenian, the genitive case is distinguished morphologically from the dative only by personal pronouns and demonstratives. The genitive may qualify a substantive, e.g. anun nora 'her name' or awur mioy čanaparh 'a day's journey'. The genitive may be used as a predicate: erku partapankʿ ein urumn pʿoxatui 'two debtors were of a certain lender', i.e. 'there were two debtors of a certain lender', 'a certain lender had two debtors.' A genitive modifying an infinitive used as a substantive may indicate the logical subject of the action: diwrin icʿē erknicʿ ew erkri ancʿanel, kʿan yawrinacʿn mioy nšanaxecʿi ankanel 'it is easier for heaven and earth to perish than for one stroke of the law to fall away.' The partitive genitive is more often expressed by the preposition i with the ablative, in the sense 'from among'.
Perhaps the most idiosyncratic use of the genitive in Classical Armenian is with the participle in -eal. When the subject of a clause is modified by the past participle, this subject may be in either the nominative or the genitive case, e.g. nora aṙeal zna taraw 'he, having seized (him), led him'; matucʿeal ašakertacʿn nora asen cʿna 'his disciples, having come, say to him...'. This usage is extended to impersonal constructions involving the participle, where the genitive denotes the logical subject: zpayn isk im ačʿawkʿ teseal ē 'I have seen the fairy with my own eyes'; aṙ ekełecʿeawn, zor šineal ēr aṙaǰnoyn mecin Grigori 'at the church which the first great Grigor had built.'
The dative case is the case of the indirect object, or, more generally, the case of the party interested in, but not directly affected by, the actions of the statement. The dative is used frequently with verbs. Examples are cʿucʿēkʿ inj zdahekan 'show me the money'; kin kʿo cnčʿi kʿez ordi 'your woman bore you a son.' Several verbs take their object in the dative, such as tirem 'I rule', išxem 'I have power', aṙaǰnordem 'I lead', sastem 'I command', tʿagaworem 'I rule as king', yałtʿem 'I overwhelm'; hnazandim 'I comply', caṙayem 'I serve', ansam 'I conform'; hawatam 'I believe', ołormim 'I have compassion', spasem 'I tend', nerem 'I forgive'; karawtim and karawtanam 'I use'; cʿankanam 'I wish'; vnasem 'I harm', barkanam 'I become angry', spaṙnam 'I threaten'; tełekanam 'I learn of'. Examples are apa tʿe očʿ tirescʿen inj 'if they not have power over me'; inj spasecʿin meławorkʿ 'sinners served me'; tełekacʿaw hayreni gorcocʿn 'he learned of his father's deeds.' The dative may serve as a predicate when the verb is a copula, e.g. ełew nma čʿar ew očʿ inčʿ 'no evil befell him.'
The dative is also used with adjectives. These may denote similarity, e.g. nman 'similar, like', hasarak 'common, public', hamemat 'proportional, commensurate'; or they may denote knowledge, e.g. gitak 'knowing', tełeak 'well-informed, instructed, skilled-in', hmut 'knowledgeable, skilled, learned', xelamut 'taught, informed, learned'; or usefulness, e.g. pitani, pitoy 'helpful', anpitan 'useless', hačoy 'pleasing', vnasakar 'harmful', patrast 'prepared', partakan 'guilty'. Examples are erkrordn nman smin 'the second similar to this one'; meṙealkʿ očʿ en gitak ew očʿ imikʿ 'the dead know nothing'; čʿē aynm partakan Astuac 'God is not to blame for this.'
In clauses with the infinitive, the dative may often be considered to be related to one word in particular, usually the infinitive itself. In these situations the dative often supplies the subject of the action denoted by the infinitive, e.g. ełew šabatʿu... ančʿanel nma ənd artoraysn 'it happened on the sabbath... that he went through the fields'; part ē inj awetaranel 'it is necessary for me to preach.' Such constructions occur where Latin and Greek might employ an accusative and infinitive.
The locative case denotes static position in space or time, generally equivalent to the English 'in', 'on', or 'at'. In Classical Armenian the locative is only found with prepositions. By far the most common preposition is i, e.g. yaynm kłzwoǰ očʿ gtanēr očʿ ǰur... ew očʿ... 'on this island was found neither water nor...'. It is also used with aṙ 'beside', e.g. nstēr aṙ durs 'he sat by the door'; with ənd 'with', e.g. xawsel ənd nosa 'to speak with them'; seldom with z-, e.g. zgetni harkanel 'to cast on the ground'; with əst 'after', e.g. hatucʿanes iwrakʿančʿiwr əst gorcs iwr 'you shall repay each according to his deeds.'
The ablative case denotes the source or origin, and separation therefrom. The ablative is used without a preposition only in certain fixed situations, generally in conjunction with a monosyllabic substantive in the accusative, often marked by i. Examples are z'amē i žam 'from time to time'; am yamē 'each year'; tanē i tun 'from house to house'; azgē yazg 'from people to people'; minčʿew i nawasardē nawasard 'from new year to new year', that is, 'till the new year'; i kʿałakʿē i kʿałakʿ 'from city to city'. The ablative forms of personal pronoun, such as injēn and kʿezən, may be used without propositions, typically with the meaning 'self': es injēn as′awkʿ tesi 'I have seen it with my own eyes.'
The instrumental case denotes the means or instrument of an action, whether physical or other. It roughly takes the place of the English preposition 'with'. Examples are očʿ okʿ gay aṙ hayr, etʿe očʿ imew 'no one approaches the father, except though me'; eleal... i gerezmanē anti ahiw ew xndutʿeamb bazmaw 'having gone... from the grave with awe and great joy'; li xnkov 'filled with incense'. The instrumental may be used predicatively: orearn ayn xałałutʿeamb en ənd mez 'these men are peaceful with us'; mer keankʿs čʿen yusahatutʿeamb 'our life is not (fallen) into despair.' The instrumental is used in the sense of accompaniment, usually in conjunction with following handerj 'with, together with': and nstēr ašakertawkʿn handerj 'he sat there with his disciples'; Yisus ašakertawkʿn iwrovkʿ gnacʿ 'Jesus withdrew with his disciples.'
Classical Armenian lacks a morphologically distinct future tense. Inasmuch as the subjunctive expresses purpose, wish, demand, or prospect, its sense is linked to the expression of future events. It is therefore common to find the Greek future translated by the aorist subjunctive. Within native treatments of Armenian grammar it has thus been common to find the aorist subjunctive called the future tense. Since there is also a present subjunctive, some treatments refer to two future tenses. The subjunctive is not, however, the only means of relating future time in Classical Armenian. When particular emphasis or clarity is required, the present tense may express future action, e.g. očʿ hawatam 'I will not believe'. When there is an attendant sense of necessity, the verbal adjective in -locʿ is often employed in periphrastic constructions: du es or galocʿn es 'Art thou He who is to come?'.
The term adverbial clauses is here used as a catch-all term for several types of clauses which modify a statement as a whole. This is in contrast to, say, relative clauses, which usually modify a substantive within a given statement. Typically in such clauses the subjunctive and indicative moods of the verb stand in free contrast. That is to say, the indicative is generally used for actual action, otherwise the subjunctive. Some of the more important types of clauses are listed below with general comments on construction.
Final Clauses: The verb of final clauses is always subjunctive. The beginning of such clauses is typically signalled by zi, less often by tʿe, etʿe, or orpēs zi. Examples are ayl ays amenayn ełew, zi lcʿcʿi or asacʿawn i teaṙnē 'this all happened so that what the Lord had said be fulfilled'; ...etʿe gawravarin hačoy linicʿi '... so that he be pleasing to the one enlisting'; orpēs zi tescʿen zgorcs jer baris 'so that they may know your good deeds'. If the subject or object is the same as in the main clause, the final clause is typically expressed by an infinitive: taran zna i xačʿ hanel 'they led him out to crucify (him)'. A final clause with a subject different from that of the main clause may be expressed with a dative plus infinitive construction: xnayecʿi es i kʿez, čʿmełančel kʿez yis 'I look after you that you not sin against me.'
Consecutive Clauses: Also termed resultative clauses, these are introduced by orpēs zi, ibrew zi 'so that'; or simply zi 'that' or zi ew (when the preceding clause contains a word meaning 'so' or 'in such a way'). Less frequently etʿe or minčʿew introduce these clauses. Examples are čʿaračʿarkʿ yoyž, orpēs zi čʿer hnar ancʿanel umekʿ ənd ayn čanaparh 'exceedingly harsh, so that it was not possible for any one to proceed by that path'; aynčʿapʿ emkʿ ołormeli ibrew zi aṙancʿ jorjoy mi awr čʿkaremkʿ hamberel 'we are so dejected that we cannot go one day without a coat'; Astuac aynpēs patuel zmardn kamecʿaw, zi ganjničʿxanutʿiwnn pargeweacʿ nma 'God wanted to so honor man that He granted him free will.' An extended example of the use of etʿe is the following: kʿanzi očʿ etʿe anmit inčʿ okʿ ełew na jAstucoy, etʿe čʿgitēr, etʿe or inčʿ əst Astucoy kamacʿn lini, bari ē 'since there was none created by God so ignorant that he knew not that whatever happened by the will of God is good.'
Temporal Clauses: These have been treated separately in Lesson 4, Section 20.
Causal Clauses: These are usually introduced by zi, kʿanzi, vasn zi, tʿe or etʿe, orovhetew 'since, because'; manawand zi 'especially since'. If the causal clause treats a factual occurrence, the verb is conjugated in the indicative; if the clause treats an assumed occurrence or one which is denied or refuted, the verb may be either indicative or subjunctive. Examples are zia⁰rd linicʿi inj ayd, kʿanzi zayr očʿ gitem 'how will this be, since I do not know a man'; əndē⁰r zxawss im očʿ gitēkʿ dukʿ, vasn zi očʿ karēkʿ lsel zbann im 'on what account do you not know my speech? since you are not able to hear my word'; manawand zi gtanemkʿ 'especially since we find'. zi may be strengthened by the demonstrative ays or its instrumental form aynu, e.g. aynu zi əst čʿareacʿ gorcočʿn vrēžs pahanǰicʿē, yayt ē etʿe... 'since he imposes penalties according to the wicked deeds, so it is clear that...'.
Concessive Clauses: These are introduced by tʿēpēt, tʿepēt 'though, although', usually followed by ew; tʿe ew 'even though'; tʿepēt... tʿepēt 'be it that... be it that'; etʿe... (ew) etʿe 'either... or'. Examples are tʿēpēt ew ordi ē, usaw zhnazandutʿiwn 'though being the son, he learned obedience'; ew čʿem tʿepēt aržani 'though I am not worthy'; tʿe ew trtmecʿucʿi zjez tʿłtʿovn očʿ złǰanam 'even if I pained you in the letter, I am not sorry'; ard, əte uticʿēkʿ, etʿe əmpicʿēkʿ 'therefore, either eat or drink!'
Local Clauses: These are introduced either by relative adverbs jo 'to where, whither', ur 'where, to where', usti 'from where, whence' or by prepositional constructions involving relative adverbs. Examples are ur ganjkʿ jer en and ew sirtkʿ jer ełicʿin 'where your treasures are, there too will be your heart'; yor tun mtanicʿēkʿ, andēn awtʿewans kalǰikʿ 'in whichever house you enter, take accomodations there.'
Comparative Clauses: These have been treated in Lesson 4, Section 19.
Exceptional Clauses: Under this heading are grouped clauses often beginning in English with 'unless, except that..., save that..., save to...'. In some instances Classical Armenian uses a construction with infinitive and preposition, or with a negative participle: očʿinčʿ gorceal... matnecʿay 'but had I done something,... I was betrayed'. Elsewhere clauses with finite verb forms are employed. baycʿ etʿe often serves as English 'unless', usually followed by the subjunctive: o⁰v ē skizbn aynpisi anpatehicʿ, baycʿ etʿe icʿē inčʿ čʿar zawrutʿiwn 'who is the origin of such inconsistencies, unless it is an evil force.' pʿoxanak zi, and sometimes kʿan, renders English 'rather than that': pʿoxanak zi part er jez linel vardapets, pitoy ē jez usanel 'rather than that you should become teacher, it is proper that you learn.'
Conditional Clauses: The subordinate clause (protasis) is introduced by the conjunction etʿe, less often tʿe, and only rarely with zi. Use of zi in particular gives the sense 'when, in the case that': zi aṙancʿ kamacʿn Astucoy gorcin irkʿ inčʿ, linin čʿar 'in the case that things are done contrary to the will of God, they are bad.' The conjunction need not be the first word of the clause. očʿ is always used for negation. The main clause (apodosis) is signalled by apa, ew, or apa ew when it follows the protasis. There are three basic constructions: