Zaza Kirmanc Dimili
Research & Comments - Araştirma ve Görüsler.
|DIM(I)LI (or Za@za@), the
indigenous name of an Iranian people living mainly in eastern Anatolia,
in the Dersim region (present-day Tunceli) between Erzincan (see ARZENJAN)
in the north and the Muratsu (Mora@dsu@, Arm. Aracani) in the south, the
far western part of historical Upper Armenia (Barjr Hayk). They are also
found in Bingl, Mu, and the province of Bitlis, as well as around Diyarbekir
(D^a@rbakr), Siverek, and Sivas (for details, see Lerch, p. xxi; Haykuni,
p. 84; Andranik, pp. 111-16; Hadank, pp. 8-9; Erevanian, pp. 1-20; Halajian,
1973, pp. 9-100; Gasparian, p. 195; Bruinessen, 1978, p. 30). About 300,000
Diml^s live in western Europe, mainly in Germany. Some of them are political
refugees. The total population of Diml^s at present is unknown, but it
can be estimated at 3-4 million.
The people call themselves Diml^ or D^mla, apparently derived from Deylam (Andranik, p. 161 n. 1; Hadank, pp. 2, 11-12; Minorsky, 1932, p. 17; idem, 1965, p. 159 n. 21), as appears from Armenian delmik, dlmik, and the like (Yuzbashian, pp. 146-51), which must be derived from *de@lm^k "Deylamite." The Deylamite origin of the Diml^s is also indicated by the linguistic position of Diml^ (see below).
Among their neighbors the Diml^ are known mainly as Za@za@, literally "stutterer," a pejorative perhaps owing to the relative abundance of sibilants and affricates in their language (Hadank, p. 1; MacKenzie, p. 164; cf. za@z@a@ "dumb" in Arm. dialects of the Vaspurakan area). Armenians also call them Delmik, Dlmik, Dmlik (see below), Zaza (Alevi) Krder, arkik (Halajian, Dersimi azgagrakan nyuter [DAN], passim; Mkrtian, pp. 54-55), and Duik or Duik Krder, the last after the name of a mountain in Dersim (Spiegel, II, p. 65). The Armenian term Krder, literally "Kurds," in this context denotes social status or mode of life, rather than nationality. Even those Armenian authors who use the term Krder explicitly distinguish the Diml^ from the ethnic Kurds (Halajian, DAN, p. 242; for similar use of the term in the Middle Ages, see Minorsky, 1943, p. 75). In Turkish the Diml^ are known as Dersimli and Qezelba@ (i.e., Shiite).
The appearance of the Diml^ in the areas they now inhabit seems to have been connected, as their name suggests, with waves of migration of Deylamites (q.v. ii) from the highlands of G^la@n during the 10th-12th centuries. Unlike the Kurds, the Diml^s are mainly sedentary cultivators, though animal husbandry occupies a considerable place in their economic activities. They are especially renowned as horticulturists.
Diml^ society is tribal, a sociopolitical, territorial, and economic unit organized according to genuine or putative patrilineage and kinship, with a characteristic internal structure. It encompasses forty-five subtribes, each divided into smaller units. The most prominent are Aba@sa@n, Ag@a@a@n, Ala@n, Ba@ma@su@r(a@n), Bakt^a@r(l^), Du@^k, Davre@-Gula@ba@n, Davre@-ama@la@n, Hay-dara@n(l^), Hasana@n(l^), Kore@a@n, Mamik^, and Yu@sufa@n. The names of some small subtribes consist of patronymics combined with the Turkish word uak (servant), for example, A(r)sla@nua@g@^, Aba@sua@g@^, Farha@dua@g@^, a@mua@g@^, To@pu@zua@g@^, and Ko@ua@@g@^ (Spiegel, I, p. 758; Andranik, pp. 156-57; Molyneux-Seel, p. 68; Dersimi, pp. 18-19, 24-28). The chiefs of the most important subtribes, called sey^ds (sayyeds), are both religious and secular clan leaders and thus exercise considerable influence upon the tribesmen.
As the names Alevi (Alaw^) and Qezelba@ imply, most Diml^s are Shiites, often considered extremist, though some are Sunnis. The religious beliefs of the majority, in common with those of most Shiite extremist groups, are characterized by great variety. They venerate Al^ b. Ab^ Ta@leb (q.v.) as the most important incarnation of God, but they also profess an admixture of indigenous primitive and some Christian beliefs. Within this framework the cult practice of the Diml^ inhabitants of each individual region displays specific features, reflecting the absence of a centralized religious institution, like those in Christianity and Islam, that might standardize cult practice and dogma. God is known as Hu@ma@y, Ho@ma@, and Haq (Adontz, pp. 11-12; Te@r Minasian, p. 22; Asatrian, 1991, p. 10; idem and Gevorgian, p. 502).
The Diml^s themselves call their religion by the Turkish term yo@l-ua@g@^ "followers of the [true] path" (Molyneux-Seel, p. 64), a designation with mystical overtones. The influence of folk Sufism on Diml^ religious beliefs is so thoroughly blended with indigenous elements as to permit no definite identification. It may be reflected, however, in the hierarchy of the priesthood, the structure of the community, and the cult of Xizir (Ka@zer, Kezr) lya@s; in the last, however, elements of the Armenian Surb Sargis (Saint Sergius) are also recognizable. The feast of Kizir, considered an incarnation of Al^/God, coincides with Ali-bayrami (the feast of Al^), also known as Ag@a-bayrami (God's feast) among the Qezelba@ of the Ma@ku@ region, as well as with the Armenian feast of Surb Sargis (Asatrian and Gevorgian, p. 503 n. 25; Mller, pp. 29-30; see also Abeghian, pp. 95-97). It is usually celebrated in February. Christian elements are assimilated to Shiite conceptions (as in the example of Xizir) or have been adopted directly from the Armenian population of Dersim, for example, the rites of communion, baptism, and worship at Christian shrines and churches (e.g., the Su@rb Ka@ra@pe@t monastery, Ha@lvo@r^ va@nk in the Du@^kba@ba@ mountains, and De@r Ova@ [Arm. Te@r Ohan, Saint John] monastery near Se@lpu@s/zda@@g@). There are also perceptible remnants of "nature worship," including worship of mountains (e.g., Mu@nzu@rda@g@, Du@^kba@ba@, Se@lpu@s/z, Se@l), rocks, springs (e.g., Ka@n^ye@ Hazrate@ Xizir^ "the spring of Kezr" on the slopes of Du@^kba@ba@ and Ka@n^ye@ a@nma@h@u@tyan "the spring of immortality" at the foot of Se@lpu@s), trees (mainly oaks), and animals (snakes, rabbits, etc.). The cult of the snake, considered a holy creature, is most distinctive. It has been symbolized by a stick called u@e@ haq^ (God's stick), the top of which is carved in the form of a snake's head. It is preserved in a green cloth bag suspended from a wooden pillar (e@rkyan) in the sanctuary of the village of Kitim near Dersim. The stick is believed to be a piece of the rod of Moses and the bag a copy of the one carried by St. John the Baptist (Halajian, DAN, pp. 475-80; Molyneux-Seel, p. 67). The u@e@ haq^ is used in cult ceremonies on the feast of Xizir lya@s, which is celebrated after a three-day fast, during which, according to some reports (Mkrtian, p. 51), even cattle and other livestock are not fed. On this day thousands of pilgrims gather in the village to gaze upon the holy staff (e@vl^ya@ ket^m^ "the saint of Kitim"; for details, see Dersimi, pp. 97-98; Halajian, DAN, pp. 475-80; Haykuni, p. 133; Erevanian, p. 79; Mller, pp. 27-28; Asatrian and Gevorgian, p. 508).
One noteworthy trait of Diml^ religious rituals is the equal participation of women, which has often served as an excuse for accusing them of ritual promiscuity and calling them by derogatory names (e.g., ira@g@-kua@n, ira@g@-so@ndura@n, mu@m-so@ndura@n, kuro@s-kua@n "candle extinguishers") suggesting participation in orgies (e.g., Fontanier, p. 168; Mkrtian, p. 51).
The Diml^s' profound hatred of the Turks, in contrast to their mild and friendly attitude toward Armenians, may partly reflect the fact that they, like the Ahl-e Haqq (q.v.) and Yaz^d^s, rigorously deny that they are Muslims and stress their claim to follow a distinct religion (Bruinessen, 1991, p. 12; Molyneux-Seel, p. 64). Antagonism to the Turks has also acquired a clear nationalistic character, which is currently being expressed in the powerful upsurge of a Diml^ separatist movement in Turkey (Taawarian, p. 79; Asatrian, 1992a, pp. 104-05; idem, 1992b, pp. 8-9; idem, 1993, p. 7).
Beside special public places for performing their religious ceremonies (tekke), the Diml^s, like the Yaz^d^s, also worship in private houses, including those of their religious leaders (Taawarian, p. 64; Mller, p. 228; Asatrian, 1992a, p. 105). They are mostly monogamous, though, according to some authors, polygamy, limited to no more than four wives, is also exercised. Divorce is strictly forbidden. Diml^s do not practice circumcision (Trowbridge, p. 348; Mller, p. 25; Asatrian, 1992a, p. 106; Mkrtian, p. 55).
Four clans (Ag@a@a@n, B@a@ma@su@ra@n, Kure@a@n, and Davre@-Jama@la@n) are the traditional custodians of Diml^ religious doctrine. Religious offices are hereditary. The highest, that of p^r^-p^ra@n (cf. Pers. p^r-e p^ra@n, elder of elders) may also be conferred by ordination within the hereditary line. Successively lower levels are p^r, sey^d, dede, mur^d, and rayvar (cf. Pers. rahbar). Such terms as "mulla" and ulem (Ar. and Pers. a@lem) are never used in non-Sunni Diml^ religious affairs. The p^r^-p^ra@n is the theocratic head of the community. His wife (ana) enjoys almost equal rights in managing family affairs (Halajian, DAN, pp. 464-65). Dedes and sey^ds, who never shave or have their hair cut, perform wedding and funeral rites (Haykuni, p. 86). Rayvars, the lowest class of clergy, have the social status of ordinary laymen (ta@lebs). They are not paid for their services, which include visiting members of the congregation, performing daily religious rites, and ensuring that the religious and ethical norms of the community are observed. They can punish the guilty but are not allowed to show clemency. Only the p^r^-p^ra@n, upon the application of the supreme council (jama@at), a mixed secular and clerical body, may forgive sins. The nonreligious affairs of the rayvars are attended to by their families or lay volunteers (Halajian, pp. 463 ff.).
A curious social aspect of the Diml^ community is the institution of mosa@heb (perhaps "holy brotherhood"). Similar institutions, called bire@ a@xirate@ and xu@ka@ a@xirate@ (brotherhood and sisterhood of the next world), and art-e eqra@r exist also among the Yaz^d^s and Ahl-e Haqq respectively (Asatrian, 1985; idem and Gevorgian, p. 507).
Diml^ (Za@za@) belongs to the Northwest Iranian language group (Windfuhr; see DIALECTOLOGY). It is known from several dialects, S^ve@re@k, Ko@sa@, aba@ku@r, Kig@^, Buja@q, Ova@i@g@, and others, which, however, do not differ greatly.
Phonology. The Diml^ phonological system is the same in all dialects, with only slight variations. The vowel system consists of eight phonemes and two diphthongs (Cabolov), which are transcribed variously in the recorded texts:
The Diml^ consonant phonemes are:
The opposition between a rolled and a simple flap r is found also in Kurma@nj^. The marginal phonemes // and /h/ occur in some dialects under the influence of Kurma@nj^ Kurdish.
In certain dialects older is commonly represented by s, for example, sit or it "milk" (cf. Parth. ift), go@s or go@ "ear" (cf. Pers. gu@), hu@sk "dry" (cf. Pers. kok, Kurdish hik), mask(a) "churning bag" (cf. OPers. maka@-, NPer. mak); sim- "drink" (probably from MIr. *a@m- from older *ya@ma-, cf. NPers. a@-a@m-, Khotanese tsa@m- "to digest"); and so@n- or o@n- "flow" (possibly from *xaudna-). Conversely also replaces original s, for example, ^r "garlic" (cf. NPers., Kurdish s^r). There is also worth mentioning the initial s- in sol(a), "salt," which is probably also from - (cf. Parth. wryn "salt[y]," NPers. u@r); one, however, cannot exclude the possibility of its original character (cf. Mid. Pers. so@r, Bakt^a@r^, su@r, Balu@^ so@r, Brahui so@r; see Henning, 1947, p. 55). Of more uncertain interpretation is a "black," whose may be from *sy (cf. Sogd. w but Parth. syw, NPers s^a@h), and a@t or a@st "right" (cf. Parth. rt but NPers. ra@st, Kurdish a@st). A similar situation is seen in the language of those Armenians of Dersim who belong to the so-called Mirakian tribe, in which Armenian has become s, for instance, sun "dog" < un and us "late" < u. In this dialect Armenian , , have become j, c, c (e.g., jur "water" < ur, cut "chicken" < ut, and cor "dry" < or).
In the dialect of northern Dersim the voiceless and voiced stops k-, g- are sometimes palatalized in initial position, for instance, e@ or ke@, kaya "house, home" (cf. NPers. kada, Ta@le^ ka), ana@, ayna, e@nak or kaynak "girl, maiden" (cf. Av. kainiia@-, Mid. Pers. kan^g), and ^ "excrement" (from MIr. *gu@h, cf. Pers. goh, Kurdish gu@).
Morphology. Nouns and pronouns. Two grammatical genders are clearly distinguished in substantives, adjectives, pronouns, and verbal forms. The nominative singular masculine is unmarked; the feminine usually takes the ending short unstressed -i. The plural endings are -(a@)n, -^, and -e@ for both genders. There are two cases, direct and oblique, which are distinguished in the singular: masculine -^/-, feminine -e@/-i/-, but not in the plural. The eza@fa is masculine singular -e@/, -o@/, -de@/, -di/, -do@ and feminine singular -(y)a@, -da@(y). The plural form for both genders is usually -e@, as in ne@ po@sta@le@ min "these my shoes."
The two cases are distinguished in the personal pronouns, as well. In addition, the third person pronouns have a possessive form derived from Old Iranian *haca "from" plus the oblique form of the pronoun.
To be compared with the possessive forms are Kurdish e@, Aftar^ u@n, Ta@kista@n^ a@, ana@, Ta@le^ ay, avo@n, Semna@ni masc. o, fem. in, and the like.
Verbs. The verbal system is based on two stems, present and past, which correspond to the older present stem and past (passive) participle. The present tense is formed from the present stem plus the formant -an-/ -(i)n- derived from the Old Iranian present participle in *ant(a)- (cf. Pers. -anda) for instance, barm-an- "weep, cry" (Parth. bram-). If the stem ends in r this is assimilated to the following n: kar- but kan-an- "do," *yar- but yan-n- "come." The present stem without -an- occurs in the subjunctive (aorist) and imperative, for instance, karo@ "may he be." Some verbs take the preverb bi- in the subjunctive and imperative, for instance, be@r^ "come!" The imperfect is made from the present stem plus the suffix -a@n^ or -in^ without personal endings, for example, ti a@gayra@-yn^ "you were walking."
The endings of the present tense (gender marked only in the singular) are:
A secondary (regular) conjugation is formed by affixing -a@- to the present stem, past stem -a@y-, for example, a@ma@ "he ran away."
The passive of transitive verbs is expressed either by periphrastic constructions or by a secondary conjugation (as in Gu@ra@n^ and Mokr^ Kurdish) formed with the passive morpheme -ya-: present stem in -(y)e@n-, past stem in -(i)ya@-. This passive is conjugated as an intransitive verb and is used only when the agent is not expressed or is unknown.
Both the infinitive and the active (present!) participle are formed from the past stem. The infinitive ends in -^ from Middle Iranian -in (only exceptionally used with past stems) and the participle in -o@, -o@x, probably borrowed from the Armenian suffix for the noun of agent -o/-o, as intervocalic k does not become x or in Diml^ (cf. Asatrian, 1987, p. 160). Examples or the infinitive: a@ma@y^ "to come" (cf. Mid. Pers. a@madin), kard^ "to do," a@ma@y^ "to run away," o@ti "to sell," wand^ "to read," wa@ti "to say." Examples of the present participle: a@ma@yo@x "runner," o@to@x "seller, vendor," kardo@ "doer, maker," wando@ "reader."
A characteristic feature of Diml^ is the use of postposition -r^, -ra@ to form the ablative, as in harzan^-ri "from Harzand" (cf. Kurdish where -ra@ expresses the instrumental).
Linguistic position of Diml^. After their migration in the Middle Ages, for almost a millennium the Diml^s had no direct contact with their closest linguistic relatives. Nevertheless, their language has preserved numerous isoglosses with the dialects of the southern Caspian region, and its place in the Caspian dialect group of Northwest Iranian is clear. The Caspian dialects comprise Ta@le^, Harzan(d)^, Gu@ra@n^, G^lak^, Ma@zandara@n^, and some dialects in Ta@t^-speaking areas and in the area around Semna@n. Historically the Caspian dialects belong to the "Northwest Iranian group of languages" and are related to Parthian (see Windfuhr). The isoglosses are of historical phonetic, morphological, and lexical order.
The typically North Iranian and Northwest Iranian phonetic features found in Diml^ include the developments of Indo-European *k and (Indo-Iranian) *ts to *s, *kw to *sp, *g(h) to *z, *dw- to b- and the preservation of *r from Indo-European *tr. Examples of *s from Indo-European *k and Indo-Iranian *ts include saa "year" (cf. Parth. srd, Pers. sa@l), pas (cf. Av. pasu-), dis or dus "kind, form" (cf. Mid. Pers. de@s), ma@s^ "fish" (cf. Skt. matsya-, Av. masiia-, Pers. ma@h^). Examples of *-sp- from Indo-European *kw include aspa@r "horseman" (OIr. *aspa-ba@ra-, cf. OPers. asa-ba@ra, Pers. sava@r, Kurdish siya@r), a@spi/a "louse" (cf. Av. *spi-, Pers. epe). Examples of *z from Indo-European *g(h) include za@ma@ "son-in-law" (cf. Ta@le^ za@ma@, Kurdish zawa@, Pers. da@ma@d), za@n- "know" (cf. Av. zana@-, Pers. da@n-), zan "gold" (cf. Av. zaraniia-, Pers. zarr); az "I" (cf. Av. azm), de@s and de@z "wall" (cf. Av. dae@za-), barz "high" (cf. Av. brzant-, Pers. boland). Examples of b- from Old Iranian *dw- include bar "door" (Parth. br, but Pers. dar), b^n "other, this" (cf. Parth. byd, but Mid. Pers. did, Pers. d^gar). Old Iranian *r further became *hr, which in initial position acquired a supporting vowel in the modern languages, as in h^ra/e@/i "three" (cf. Parth. hry, Av. ra@iio@, versus Pers. se < *aiiah), but between vowels became r, for instance, ma@r(i) "mother" (cf. Av. ma@ro@, gen. of ma@tar-), a@wra@ (cf. Av. apura@- < *a@-pura-, but Kurdish a@vis, Pers. a@bestan < *a@pua@-).
Other typical early Northwest Iranian phonetic features include: Preservation in initial position of Old Iranian * and * (as or j [dz]), which in other positions became and or z, respectively, for example, *: i "what" (cf. Pers. e), arx "wheel"; po@nj or po@n "five" (cf. Pers. panj), o@ "day" (cf. Av. raocah-, Pers. ru@z), va@- "say" (cf. Parth. wa@-), (a)e@r "downward, below" (cf. Kurdish e@r, Pers. z^r); (a)o@r "upward, above" (cf. Kurdish o@r, Mid. Pers. azabar); lo@ina "flue, aperture" (cf. Mid. Pers. ro@zan); ana or iina "woman, wife" (cf. Av. jaini-, Kurdish in, Pers. zan), da/z "ache, pain" (from OIr. *dai-?).
Diml^ go@n(i) "blood" corresponds exactly to Parthian gwxn, the relation of which to Old Iranian *wahuni- (Gu@ra@n^ win^, wun, Pers. ku@n = Kurdish, all from *xwaun-, a transformation of OIr. *wahuni-) is uncertain.
The phonetic isoglosses of Diml^ in modern times overlap to varying degree with those of the Caspian dialects, Kurdish, Persian, the Central dialects (q.v.), and the like (see Henning, 1954, pp. 174-76; Windfuhr). The most characteristic are the following. Initial *x- became h- or was lost, as in Gu@ra@n^, for example Old Iranian initial *x- became h- or was lost, as in har "donkey" (Av. xara-, Gu@ra@n^, Lor^ har, versus Kurdish kar, Pers. kar, etc.), ya@n^ "spring, well" for *ha@n^ (Mid. Pers. and Parth. xa@n^g, Gu@ra@n^ ha@na, versus Kurdish ka@n^). Initial *xw- became w-, as in the Kandu@la@y^ dialect of Gu@ra@n^, for example, wala "ash" (versus Kurdish xwal^ "soil"), wa@(y) "sister" (versus Pers. ka@har), war- "eat" (versus Pers. kordan). Initial *fr- became *hr-, which either received a supporting vowel, as in hara@ "wide, far" (versus Pers. fara@k), or became -, as in o@ti "sell" (also in the Central dialects, versus Pers. foru@kt).
Survey of typical phonetic developments. Diml^ has preserved the Middle Iranian mahu@l vowels o@, e@ (cf. go@s/ "ear," bo@(y) "smell," ge@s "hair," etc.). The corresponding diphthongs are secondary, however; au is from older *-aw-, *-ap-, *-ab-, *-ag-, or *-af-, whereas ai is the result of phonetic combinatory changes.
The Old Iranian voiceless stops *p, *t, *k remained in initial position or became the apirates p, t, k; *t and *k also remained after s and , but became d and g after r. Examples of *p include pas "lamb, ram" (see above) and p^za "belly" (cf. Av. *pa@zah- "chest," Parth. pzh "in front"). Examples of *t include t'au "fever" (cf. Pers. tab), t'ars "fear" (Cf. Pers. tars), ka@rd(i) "knife" (cf. Pers. ka@rd), po@rd "bridge" (also pird influenced by Kurdish; cf. Korma@nj^ pir, Southern Kurdish pird; Pers. pol); a@stik, a@sta "bone" (cf. Av. ast-); a@sta@ra "star" (cf. Pers. seta@ra). Examples of *k include ka@r "work" (cf. Pers. ka@r); e@, kaya "home"(see above); ku@tik "dog" (cf. Sogd. kwty /kuti/, Oss. kuj, Kurdish ku@/ik, etc.), hu@s/k "dry" (see above), varg "wolf" (cf. Av. vhrka-, Pers. gorg); exceptionally k remained in ha@k "egg" (Fa@rs dialects ha@g, Ku@r^ xeik).
Between vowels *p became -u-/-w-, and *t became y or was lost. Examples of *p include a@u "water" (cf. Pers. a@b); a@wra@ "pregnant" (see above); au "night" (cf. Pers. ab); a@rya, a@yra "mill" (from OIr. *a@r-ry-? cf. Kurdish a@, NPers. a@s-ya@b< *a@-); kawti "fall down" (cf. Mid. Pers. kaft). Examples of *t include e@, kaya "house" (from *kata-, see above) and wa@(y) "wind" (cf. NPers. ba@d). Exceptionally we find d, as in ida@ "separated, different" (cf. Kurdish ihe@, Pers. joda@). Note the secondary -t- in the group sr > str in astiri, ^tr^ "horn," as in Kurdish str^, from Old Iranian *sru@-.
The Old Iranian voiced stops *b and *d are preserved only in initial position, *g in initial position and in the group *rg. The group *rd became . Between vowels the voiced stops were mostly lost. On the palatalization of g to , see above. Examples of *b- include bo@(y) "smell" (cf. Pers. bu@), biz/a "goat" (cf. Pers. boz), b(i)raw(i) "eyelash" (< *bruwa-; cf. Pers. abru@), aspa@r "horseman" (OIr. *aspa-ba@ra-). Examples of *d include darg "long" (cf. Av. dara-, Pers. d^r), pa@^ "foot" (cf. Av. pa@-, Pers. pa@), saa (see above), var(a) or val(a) "neck" (but NPers. galu@, Bakt^a@r^ gye@l, Ma@zandara@ni and G^lak^ ge@l); zaa "heart" (cf. Av. zraiia-, but Gu@ra@n^ zil, Pers. del), gara or gaa "complaint" (but Pers. gela, Kurdish gil^), ko@l(i) "hornless (goat)" (from OIr. *krdu-?). It should be noted that Diml^ words with -i- before r/l, as in a@dir "fire," mil "neck," vil "flower," are likely to be loanwords from other Iranian dialects (cf. mol and vel in Fa@rs dialects). Examples of *g- include go@s/ "ear" (cf. Pers. gu@), ga@(w) "cow" (cf. Pers. ga@v), but ^ or g^ "excrement" (see above); darg "long" (see above); au "swift" (cf. Av. *rau-).
The Old Iranian spirants, *f, *, *x, developed variously. The *f was lost in the cluster *-ft- in s/it "milk" (cf. Parth. yft). On *fr, see above. The group *-n- became -sn- in a@ra@sna, a@risna "elbow" (cf. Avestan arani-, but OPers. arani-, Pers. ara). Similarly *x was lost in the cluster *x-, as in au "night" (see above), but remained in words such as arx (from Persian?). On initial *x- and *xw- , ee above.
On Old Iranian *s and *z, as well as the interchange of s- and , see above. The Old Iranian groups *-st-, * -sn-, and *-sr- are preserved (on *sp, see above), as in a@sna@wi "swimming" (versus Pers. ena@); hars(i) "tear" (cf. Av. asru-, Pers. ak from *asruka-), askaft "cave" (from *ska@fta-, versus Pers. eka@ft). Old Iranian * remained in Diml^, as opposed to Kurdish, where intervocalic regularly became h. Example include go or go@s "ear" (Kurdish guh), a "six" (= Pers.), pa@na "heel" (= Pers., but Kurdish pa(h)n^), pa@nuna, o@/s(a)ya@ "light, illumination" (cf. Pers. rowana@^, but Kurdish o@(h)na@y^), tayan "thirsty" (cf. Pers. tena, but Kurdish t^(h)n).
Old Iranian *y- became -, as in Persian, but *w became v (rather than b- or g-, as in Kurdish, Persian, etc.). Examples of *y include au or jau "barley" (cf. Av. yauua-, Pers. ou, Kurdish a, but Gu@ra@n^ yaw, yaya), ida@ (see above). Examples of *w include vazd (cf. Av. vazdah-, but Kurdish baz), vaya@n or vaysa@n "hungry" (but Kurdish bir^, Pers. gona for gorosna), va@ris "rain" (but Pers. ba@re), va@(y) (see above), vayva "bride" (cf. Kurdish bu@k, Judeo-Pers. bayo@g), varg "wolf" (see above), vin^ "lose, waste" (cf. Mid. Pers. wan^), va@z- "run" (cf. Pers. vaz^dan "to blow" of the wind), va@/s "grass" (cf. Parth. w, Av. va@stra-? "fodder"). Where b- occurs instead of v- it may be assumed to be a borrowing from Kurdish or Persian, for instance, bar "stone" (cf. Kurdish, Lor^ bard) and guma@n "doubt, surmise" and guna "sin" from New Persian via Kurdish.
Old Iranian *m was preserved in all positions in Diml^ but not in Kurdish, where it became v between vowels; examples include mag@wa@ "fruit" (cf. Pers. m^va), da@m(i) "trap" (Pers. da@m, but Kurdish da@w), a@mo@r "counting" (cf. Pers. a@ma@r), a@m(i)na@n "summer" (cf. Mid. Pers. ha@m^n, but Kurdish ha@v^n), (h)arma(y) "shoulder, forearm" (cf. Av. arma-), m^r "dough" (cf. Pers./Ar. kam^r, but Kurdish hav^r).
Morphological isoglosses. The most important morphological isoglosses which link Diml^ with the Caspian dialects are the pronominal possessive forms from *haa plus the pronoun and the formation of the present indicative from the old present participle in *-ant(a)-. The past stem of the secondary conjugation ends in -a@ from *-a@d, as in Parthian. Exclusive to Diml^ are the infinitive ending -^ from *-in and the ablative use of postposition -r^/a@ (Asatrian, 1990, p. 162; idem, 1992c, p. 26).
Lexical isoglosses. These isoglosses
include Old Iranian *arma- "forearm" (Diml^ (h)arma(y), Ta@le^
a@m, cf. Oss. a@rm, versus *ba@zu- in Pers. ba@zu@,
etc.); Middle Persian a@yim "moon" (Diml^ a@/sma@, a@smi,
Tat^ uma@, Ta@les^ ovim, Harzan^ ma); Diml^ baura@n
"dove" (Oss. blon "domestic dove"; cf. Lithuanian baladis "dove");
Old Iranian *bram- "weep, cry" (Parth. bram-, Diml^ barm-,
Ma@zandara@n^ barm-, Harzan^ beram "weeping," Ta@le^ ba@me,
Ta@t^ bera@m, G^lak^ barma@, Aftar^ burme; cf. in
the Central dialects Na@^n^ biremba; versus Pers. gerya,
etc.). Old Iranian *kanya- "woman, girl" (Diml^ kaynak, ana@,
Harzan^ k^na, Ta@le^ k^na, Tat^ k^na, Gal^nqaya kina,
ina, versus Pers. ka@na; marginal lexeme in Pers. kan^z
and Kurdish kinik); Old Iranian *kata- "home, house" (Diml^
kaya, e@, Ta@le^ ka, Gu@ra@n^ ka, Tat^ ka@,
Gal^nqaya kar, Harzan^ kar, a@r, Aftar^ kiye;
cf. in the Central dialects Ku@nsa@r^ k^(y)a, Na@^n^ kiya;
marginal lexeme in Pers. kade and Kurdish kad^ kirin
"to domesticate (animals)"); Old Iranian *ragu- "quick, swift" (Parth.
ra, Diml^ au, Harzan^ rav, Ta@le^ ra, Tat^
rav, Semna@n^ rayk, cf. Oss. rw, rog "light,"
versus Pers. zu@d); Old Iranian *uz-ayara- "yesterday" (Av.
uzaiiara- "afternoon," Diml^ v^e@r(^), v^e@r, Gu@ra@n^
uzera, Harzan^, Ta@t^ z^r, Ta@kista@n^, Ta@le^ az^ra,
Aftar^ yezze, versus Pers. d^-ru@z); Old Iranian *wax-
"burn" (Parth. wxyndg "blazing," Diml^ va or vi-,
Harzan^ va-, Ta@le^ va-, Tat^ va-, versus *sauc-
in Pers. su@ktan, etc.); Old Iranian and common Northwest Middle
Iranian *xwipta- "milk" (Av. xuuipta-, Parth. ift,
Diml^ /sit, Gu@ra@n^ it, ifta, Ta@le^ it, Harzan^,
Aftar^ et, Ta@t^ e(r)t, versus Pers., Kurdish ^r <
*x^ra-); Old Iranian *upa-sar(a)daka- "spring(time)" (Mid.
Pers. a@bsa@la@n, Diml^ u@sa@(o@), vaza@r^, Ta@le^
a@va@so@r, Harzan^ a@va@so@r, classical Pers. a@bsa@la@n);
Avestan vazdah- "fat" (Diml^ vazd "fat, oil"; cf. Kurdish
baz); and Parthian wa@ "fodder" (Diml^ va@/s, Ta@le^,
Ma@zandara@n^ va@, Aftar^ va@t, Semna@n^ vo, versus
Parthian gwyw, Pers., Kurdish giya@h, g^ha@). Also
to be noted is Diml^ ^z, e@s "rice" (
Words found only in Diml^ include anga@z, hanga@ "plough handle" (< *han-ga@za- < *ga@za- "take, accept" found in Sogd. ptz-, Khotanese paja@ys-, etc.; it cannot be from Armenian; see Vahman and Asatrian, p. 272); a@z "generation, offspring" (Man. Mid. Pers. a@zn(a@n), Arm. lw. < Parth. azn "people, generation," azniw "noble"); a@z(i) "branch" (Mid.Pers. azg, Arm. loanword from Parthian azg "race, kind, nation"); ask(i) "goat" (Avestan aza-, Mid. Pers. az(ag); different from Kurdish a@sk "deer" from *a@suka-, cf. Mid. Pers. a@hu@g, Pers. a@hu@); gau "weak, coward, greedy" and gauakay "weakness, cowardice" (possibly related to Sogd. s- "to be fatigued"); haw(i) or hiw(i) "laughter," hawa@y^ present stem hw^n- "to laugh" (cf. Oss. xu@dln); kay "play, game" (Mid. Pers kadag "game, joke," Sogd. ktk-, Arm. lw. < Parth. katak "joke"; cf. Jowaqa@n^ koy "game"); s^r-, in present stem s^n(a)n- "I love" (< OIr. *sr^ra-; cf. Av. sr^ra- "beautiful," Sogd. yr'kk "good," Parth. ^r-ga@mag "friend"; probably not from Arm. se@r, sir- "love"; see Asatrian, 1987, pp. 166-67); and visti and f^na@y^ (or fina@-) "to throw," f^nya@y^ "to be thrown" (Mid. Pers. wistan "to shoot," present stem from *wid-na-) with a@-visti "to spread, lay, put" (Gal^nqaya fest-, fesn- "to throw, spread"), cf. Lor^ bistan "to put down, to cast a foal" (before time).
Diml^ words without clear Iranian etymologies include din(i) or din(i) "rain" (< OIr. *dana-? cf. IE *dhengo-); for "rain" va@ris, va@ra@n and Turkish ya@g@mu@r are also used in Diml^.
Of the numerous borrowings from Armenian (exceeding
perhaps those from Kurdish or even Turkish) the following may be mentioned:
aks/c^g "woman, girl," a@vil^k "broom," bo@, po@
"tail," bu@u@r "small," ga@b "Rheum L.," ha@rs
"bride," he@sa@n "whetstone," irta@n "waterpipe," go@a@g(i)
"button," go@m(a) "cattle shed," ha@st "hard, rigid," ha@go@s(i)
"furrow," h^m "root, base," he@ "cross" (Arm. xa),
ho@llik "hut, shack," hu@ra@k "hatchet, ax," a@/x(i)
"wire mesh," ka/iro@n "beam, girder," ka@l "thrashing floor,"
ka@la@n(i) "scabbard, sheath," kaland^ "scythe," kiray
"lime," kirya, kire@ "Sunday," ki^k "neck," ko@ra/e@k
"a kind of lentil," kuna/i "rye," o@zo@r "branch," pa@
"pod, grain," pana@r "vegetable," pu@rt "wool," sa@va@r
"pearl barley, spelt," se@miga "threshold," su@nk/g "mushroom,"
x@e@(o@), x^nt "mad, insane," xo@r "deep," xo@nj,
xo@z "pig," z^l(ik) "sprout."