عنوان مقاله [English]
The speaker’s view or intention of expressing a sentence is called modality. In all languages, modality is represented in two ways: by adding a marker to a verb, which is called mood (such as indicative, subjunctive, imperative, and optative moods in Middle Persian), or by using lexical or syntactic means such as modal verbs, adverbs, nouns, and adjectives. In Middle Persian, both forms have been used, but modality has mostly been discussed in terms of mood. Mood, modal verbs, nouns, adjectives, and particles have been discussed in the grammar books of Middle Persian, but there are other linguistic forms representing modality, which have never been mentioned before. In this article, we are going to fill this gap.
First, we introduce modality and how it is represented, then we review linguists' opinions on the classification of modality, the concept of modality in logic and literary studies, and discuss the relation between modality and evidentiality. By presenting evidence from Zoroastrian Middle Persian texts, we introduce some modal concepts indicated by linguistic forms. Our goal is to answer the following questions: Is the representation of modality limited to those forms discussed in the literature? In addition to what has been discussed in the literature, what are the other ways of representing modality? In other words, in addition to mood and modal verbs, what are the other linguistic means of representing modality in Zoroastrian Middle Persian?
Along with mood and modal verbs, there are other linguistic forms with modal functions in Zoroastrian Middle Persian. Each of those could indicate various modal concepts. A modal concept might also be represented by various linguistic forms. Therefore, to identify modality, we should consider the context of a sentence. There are many modal concepts, and there might be many common ways of representing them in Middle Persian.
In Middle Persian, the modal concept of conjecture has been represented by the verbal phrases pad ēd dāštan and ēdōn sahēd / sahist kū. In Zand-e Bahman Yasn, after Zoroaster learned from Ormazd about people, sheep, and trees and plants, he thought he had a dream:
zardušt pad ēd dāšt kū pad xwamn ī xwaš … dīd, az xwamn nē winārd hēm.
Zoroaster thought that I saw it in a dream and did not wake up (Rashed-Mohassel, 1991: 3, 52).
Another example of such usage in Bondahišn is as follows:
tō kē hē, kē man ēdōn sahēd kū-t harwisp xwārīh ud āsānīh padiš?
Who are you that I think all this comfort and peace is because of you? (Pakzad, 2005: 348).
Doubts have been represented by mā agar:
ardaxšēr … hamē tarsīd kū mā agar-im gīrēd ud ō ardawān abēspārēd.
Ardashir was afraid (that) lest he catch me and hand me over to Ardawān (Farahvashi, 1999: 44, 45).
The modal concept of intention has been represented by xwāh-/xwāst and pad ān menišn būdan:
ardaxšēr pad ān menišn būd kū ō arman ud ādurpādkān šawēm … be čiyōn stambagīh ud wināhkārīh ī haftānbuxt ašnūd, handēšīd nazdist kār ī pārs abāyēd wirāstan.
Ardeshir wanted to go to Armenia and Azerbaijan, but when he heard about the tyranny and the guilt of Haftānboxt, he thought first I should taking care of Persia (Farahvashi, 1999: 54-57).
In some contexts, some linguistic forms might lose their original meaning, and through grammaticalization, they become means of expressing modality. The original meaning of wurrōyist is ‘to believe’ and ‘to select’, but in the context of the following sentence, it has been used to express intention.
xwarišn ud mizag hazār ān and čand ān ī nūn bawēd. kē-š wurrōyēd xwarēd, kē-š nē wurrōyēd nē xwarēd.
The taste is a thousand times (better than) the current taste. Whoever wants to eat, eats and whoever doesn’t want, doesn’t eat (Williams, 1990/1: 182-183; 1990/2: 84).
Sahēd/Sahist has been used to express requests. Sometimes the gerund form has been used to represent the modal concept.
In the following passage, which is addressed by Ardȃvirȃf to the clergies, sahēd is used to express a request.
agar-itān sahēd, ēg-im akāmagōmand mang ma dahēd.
If you agree, do not give in to me against my will (please do not give me Mang against my will) (Gignoux, 2003: 45).
To warn or to draw attention, niger- has been used at the beginning of the sentence in the imperative mood.
niger kū rōz ud šab az nazdīk ī stōrān ō naxčīr … nē šawē.
Beware day and night, not leaving cattle to go hunting (Farahvashi, 1999: 18).
Depending on the context, the verb menīdan could have been used to mean 'to imagine' to indicate irrealis assumptions. Sometimes in Simile, the unrealisticness of a sentence has also been expressed by indicative mood and analogical particles.
In some contexts, the verb hil-/hišt, which its original meaning is “to abandon”, indicates the modal concept of permission.
In Zoroastrian Middle Persian texts, which are religious texts, to validate an utterance, it was crucial to introduce the source of information to resolve any doubt in its validity among Zoroastrians. Since the speaker/writer's intention of expressing such utterances indicates concepts, such as certainty or permissibility, it could be considered as modality. There are several ways of representing the source of information. Sometimes the source of information are Avestan texts and, scholars refer to them to show certainty.
az abestāg paydāg kū ka anēr dušmen āyēnd ud pad šahr ī ērān wardag ud zyān ī was kāmēnd kardan … .
It appears in Avesta that if non-Iranian enemies come and want to cause damage to the city of Iran ... (Williams, 1990/1: 92-93).
Sometimes the source of information is the Avesta, which is marked by dēn.
pad dēn ōwōn paydāg ku rōšnīh azabar ud tārikīh azēr … būd.
As appear in the (Avestan) religion, the light was high and the darkness was low (Rashed Mohassel, 2006: 163).
ast kē or ast ī have been used to express different opinions, which could be translated to 'some'. They indicate that the speaker/writer has heard an utterance from another person, which reduces its certainty.
pas awēšān … ēkē wirāf / wirāz nām be wizīd ud ast kē wehšāpuhr gōwēnd.
Then they chose a person named Wīrāf/Wīrāz, whom some call Wehšāpuhr (Gignoux, 2003: 45, 73).
Sometimes the source of information is the speaker's inference and, therefore, the speaker's view and evaluation involve in expressing an utterance. In Kȃrnȃmag-e Ardashir-e Bȃbkȃn, after observing stars and planets, an astronomer says:
ēdōn nimāyēd kū xwadāyīh … ī nōg ō paydāgīh ayēd.
It appears that a new king will arise (Farahvashi, 1999: 27, 28).
In narrating stories, the third plural person conjugation has been used in a passive meaning representing the narrator's low certainty.
ēdōn gōwēnd kū andar šab frāz ō dih-ē mad.
It has been said that night he arrived in a village (Farahvashi, 1999: 32, 33).
There are two methods representing modality in Zoroastrian Middle Persian: The first one is the mood, which has been discussed in the literature, and the other is the use of lexical forms such as modal verbs, gerunds, and particles, which have been introduced in the literature. In this article, we introduced some modal concepts and their linguistic forms. These linguistic forms are used to express modality at the sentence level. Sometimes the modality is only determined by the context of sentences. There are many modal concepts, and the linguistic forms representing them are varied. Every linguistic form does not correspond to a modal concept, but, depending on the context, a linguistic form could be used to represent various modal concepts. Also, some linguistic forms indicate the source of information and therefore indicating its validity and certainty. There are also some linguistic forms reflecting the speaker/writer's inference and evaluation of expressing an utterance, which should be considered as the means of expressing modality in Middle Persian.
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