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Ergative pattern

SYNTAX: a term used for a situation in which one case marker or affix is used to mark the subject of intransitive verbs as well as the object of transitive verbs, while another case marker or affix is used for the subject of transitive verbs. The former case marker is called the Absolutive (ABS), and the latter, the Ergative (ERG). The following examples from the paleosiberian language Chukchee are taken from Spencer (1991:24):

(i)	@tl@g-e		l_?unin	ek-@k		'the father saw the son'
	father-ERG	saw	son-ABS
(ii)	ek-@k k@tg@ntatg_?e			'the son ran'
	son-ABS		ran

LIT. Spencer, A. (1991)