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the language of the Ubykhs. Ubykh is related to the Abkhazo-Adyg languages.

The phonetic features of Ubykh include a system of two vowels (close ∂ and open a), a consonant system of 80 phonemes, stops that form a three-way opposition (voiced-unvoiced aspirated-unvoiced glottalized), and spirants that form a two-way opposition (voiced-unvoiced aspirated).

Nouns in Ubykh have the categories of number, case, definite-ness or indefiniteness, and possession. Sentence subjects are in the nominative case when the verb is intransitive; when the verb is transitive, the direct object is in the nominative. The ergative takes the same case as the subject with a transitive verb and combines the functions of the dative and other oblique cases. The verb has a compound and polysynthetic system of inflection and word formation. Verbs are distinguished as transitive or intransitive and static or dynamic; they have causative, potential, version, conjunctive, and reflexive forms, as well as locational and directional preverbs. The distribution of subject and object affixes in the verb depends on the verb’s transitivity or intransitivity.


Kumakhov, M. A. “Ubykhskii iazyk.” In lazyki narodov SSSR, vol. 4 (see Appendix). Moscow, 1967. (Contains bibliography.)
Dumézil, G. La langue des Oubykhs. Paris, 1931.
Vogt, H. Dictionnaire de la langue oubykh. Oslo, 1963.


References in periodicals archive ?
And when the Turkish farmer Tefvik Esenc died in 1992, so did Ubykh, a language from the Caucasus region that had the highest number of consonants ever recorded.
Ubykh had an amazing 81 consonants,but its last fluent speaker died in 1992.