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Tom wrote:
<<
iii) In the second example,
the clause with an Absolutive subject and an Ergative "object"
is a subordinate clause, not a main clause.
I'm not sure, but,
isn't it so that quirky subordinate clauses
don't ordinarily have quite the same quirkiness
that the same cases would have if they occurred in a main clause?
 >>

Subordinate clauses can often display variant word orders, and
a typological generalization is that that word order will be the
old word order of the language.  The same could probably be
true of case marking.  So, for example, if the word order is SVO,
it might be the case that in the subordinate clause the ergative
is performing it's old oblique function (marking the reintroduced
agent of a passive verb).  Does the verb have special morphology?
Either that, or maybe the ergative used to be an accusative.
One needs to study Kabardian to know for sure.

-David
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"A male love inevivi i'ala'i oku i ue pokulu'ume o heki a."
"No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn."

-Jim Morrison

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