The Universals
    Number   of 2029        

 Number 3
 Original Grammatical systems with ergativity tend to have ergative-accusative splits.
 Standardized IF alignment is ergative for some rule(s), THEN alignment tends to be accusative for other rules, or also for the same rule(s) in other contexts.
 Formula ergative alignment ⇒ also accusative alignment
 Keywords alignment, ergative-absolutive, nominative-accusative, split
 Domain morphology, syntax
 Type implication
 Status achronic
 Quality statistical
 Basis languages in Silverstein 1976, Dixon 1979
 Source Silverstein 1976, Dixon 1979
By Frans Plank 03.08.2006, 09:49 
possibly Hurrian (extinct, Hurro-Urartean, Ancient Near East) (Plank 1988)
By Frans Plank 03.08.2006, 09:49 
A very common assumption (virtually any work on ergativity could be cited as a source), usually made in categorical form: No language is purely ergative, while it is possible, or supposedly indeed frequent, for languages to be purely accusative.
On the other hand, there are patterns, especially ones reflecting the semantic cohesion between verb and arguments (closer with patients than with agents when both are present), in word formation and syntax, which would universally seem to align ergatively, suggesting that alignment mixture is universal.
Presumably, for purposes of predicting typological variation as this universal attempts to, only such rules and regularities should be taken into account whose alignment is crosslinguistically variable in the first place.

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