The relationship between the Akkadian possessive suffixes, personal pronouns and independent possessive pronouns is evident when looking at the genetive-accusative forms of the personal pronouns. As you assume, it is quite straightforward.

   Possessive suffix | personal pronoun (Gen.) | possessive pronoun
1  ja (i:) (?a)        ja:ti                     ju:m (m.) jattum (f.)
2m ka                  ka:ta                     ku:m (m.)
2f ki                  ka:ti                     kattum (f.)
3m Su                  Sua:ti                    Su:m (m.)
3f Si                  Sia:ti                    Sattum (f.)

A similar relationship can be found in the plural.

Btw, the Akkadian accusative suffixes, used to indicate a pronominal object by attaching to the verb, are similar to the possessive suffixes in the singular, but to the personal pronoun genetive-accusative in the plural. So in Akkadian it is obvious that those suffixes are really just the pronouns attached to nouns or verbs, resp..

In Middle Babylonian (and later on), the possessive pronouns were replaced by /attu/ + a possessive suffix.

In the course of time, the pronominal suffixes and the pronouns diverged. Just two examples for development on those suffixes:
In New Babylonian (10 - 7 cent. BC)/-i:/has developed into /-a:/; /-Su/ often becomes /-S/. Personal pronouns changed as well, but differently.

May this post be more informative than my last one. ;-)

Christian Köttl wrote:
> The possessive suffixes were in the singular
> -ja "my"
> -ki "thy",
> -ka   "thy",fem.plk
> -Su "his"
> -Sa "her"
(snip etc.)

How, if at all, do the suffixed forms relate to the free forms of the

For example, in all the Austronesian/Malayo-Polynesian languages I can think
of, there's a pretty clear relationship between the two:

I-sg. *aku -- poss.sfx. -ku almost everywhere
II-sg. *kamu -- poss. -mu almost everywhere (*kamu may have been a pl. form
originally, not sure)
(also *kaw ~*kahu -- sfx. -ko in a few; definitely the sing., originally)
(III-sg. see below) --

Suffixes for the plurals are much less common, but where they occur:
I-pl.incl. *kita -- sfx. -ta
(I-pl. excl. *kami -- no sfx. attested AFAIK; it would probably have been
?*-mi, thus falling together with--
II-pl. *miu (Moluccan *kimi) -- sfx. -mi
III-pl. *sida -- sfx. -da (often > -ra)

There was also a possessive/attributive particle *ni, which shows up in N -
N possessives and idioms like *taqi ni aNin (shit (of) wind =) cloud, and
also shows up in the usual III-sg. suffix--

III-sg. *ia, poss. *ni ia > **nya > -nya in some langs. (/-ña/ in those few
that have a palatal nasal, like Ml/Indo), but more often -na, and this too
is near-universal.

This *ni particle is probably present in some variant forms, also
Isg **-Nku, Ipl-inc. **-nta, IIIpl **-nda (perhaps trivially in the forms
with initial nasal)

The general lack of suffixes for the plural seems to be due to the
development of politeness/status distinctions and/or occasional loss of the
incl./excl. distinction, and/or frequent generalization of sing. forms to
the plural, esp. in III person.

In Ml/Indo. the I and II-sg. suffixes are informal; the more usual
construction is collocation, using alternate pronoun forms:

aku, -ku in familiar speech, e.g. rumah/ku 'my house'
saya 'I' non-intimate: rumah saya
and similarly in II-sg, where words like bapak 'father' or titles are used
in lieu of familiar engkau or kamu, so rumah bapak '(your) house' (note
rumah bapak saya 'my father's house')

III-sg. -nya can also be plural, also respectful II-- as, darimana asal/nya
(from.where origin/poss.) 'where do you come from?'; alternate III-pl rumah
mereka (+ 'they')

Here's the set of suffixes in Buginese:
-mu (sing. only AFAIK)
-na both sg. and pl. (pl. also N+na maneng (all) for clarity)-- also used in
N - N, e.g. bola/na Ali 'Ali's house'

-ta (both I-incl./excl, also polite II-sg/pl (alt. + maneng in pl.)
(-keng I-excl., full pronoun i/keng ult. < *kami, but both forms are

Here's the set in Kisar, a Moluccan language:
-u Isg (<*-ku or *-Nku)
-mu II sg/pl
-n(V) III sg/pl

-d(V) (<**nta) Ipl in/ex. --(V)is 0 or a V determined by rule

But very closely related Leti has:
-mu sg. only
-nV sg/pl

-mi II pl.

Leti retains the Ipl in/ex distinction, but has lost the suffixes, cf.
Kis. ik makrom/do (we master/poss) 'our master (relig. Our Lord)'
Let. it matrum/na (generalizing the III sfx.)

Also, the old IIIpl *-da survives in Leti as a plural marker (-ra), but not
in Kisar.

I don't have my Fijian dictionary at hand, but I know it has reflexes of the
singulars, *-ku, *-mu, *-na. It would be interesting to look at the plurals,
since Fij. has dual-trial-multiple.  Will check.

A multi-language study of the relationship between full/poss.-suffix pronoun
forms has probably been done, somewhere, but I don't know of any. Could be
interesting, though I'd suspect there's usually a pretty clear relationship,
just as in AN.

Christian Köttl
Johann-Strauß-Gasse 20/1
1040 Wien
Tel. 0676 597 99 31
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