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(Mansi, Mantsi), the language of the Mansi people, who live in the Khanty-Mansi National Okrug in Tiumen’ Oblast of the RSFSR, along the left bank of the Ob’ River and its tributaries, and partly within the Sverdlovsk Oblast. There are approximately 4,000 speakers of Vogul (1970 census).
Vogul is related to the Ugric branch of the Finno-Ugric language family; it is divided into a number of dialects that differ substantially from one another. The literary language is based on the Sos’va dialect. Vogul has long and short pairs of vowel phonemes, the velar nasal [rj] and the velar fricative [y]. Morphological features include a verb system with definite [transitive verb with an expressed or implied direct object], indefinite [transitive verb used in a general sense without a direct object], and reflexive-passive conjugations; single, dual, and plural number; and a rich word inflectional and derivational system. Compounding is well developed in nouns. The old, rigid word order has been preserved. Adverbial and participial phrases are very common. A writing system was created in the 1930’s based on the Russian alphabet.
REFERENCESBalandin, A. N., and M. P. Vakhrusheva. Mansiiskii iazyk. Leningrad, 1957.
Rombandeeva, E. I. Mansiiskii (vogul’skii) iazyk., Moscow, 1973.
Chernetsov, V. N., and I. Ia. Chernetsova. Kratkii mansiisko-russkii slovar’ Moscow-Leningrad, 1936.
Steinitz, W. Geschichte des wogulischen Vokalismus. Berlin, 1955.
Liimola, M. Zur historischen Formenlehre des Wogulischen. Helsinki,1963.
E. I. ROMBANDEEVA