Piotr wrote:I thought - read somewhere I believe - that *šьdlъ was related to *xoditi (though I don't grasp the ablaut going on here fully, ь?), which seems unrelated to *jьti at the PIE level.
Yes, that is the general consensus. And what's wrong with the ablaut? You see ь~o elsewhere in Slavic as well (cf. *bьrati, *bor)
človek [tSlOv@k] (sg.) - ljudje [ljud"je] (pl.) for "human being" is another one.
This seems to be the case in almost every Slavic language (apparently Bulgarian is an exception, as they've replaced the latter form with something weird
, and човеци is possible too*
Russian is actually far more complicated in this respect. Человек could be said to have three different plurals in common usage.
Люди, of course, is the most common one.
Человек is sometimes used as the genitive plural of человек (yes, the same word), instead of the more typical людей, after numbers.
Народ (lit. "nation") is often used as a collective plural (сколько народа здесь! "(look) how many people are here!", сколько народу живет в этом городе? "how many people live in this city?")
Piotr wrote:That's if you consider the Slavic perfective/imperfective system to be inflection rather than derivation, IMO it's somewhere in between the two. "Suppletion" is mostly applicable to what's considered to be inflection, isn't it? - the division being admittedly a little fuzzy.
Either way, it can still be considered suppletive. It's just suppletive derivational morphology rather than inflectional morphology.
Piotr wrote:Isn't say имя neuter? That's the regular reflex of PSl. *-ę of the neuter en- and -ent-stems.
Well, of -en- stems, yes. Russian имя, племя, семя, etc, are all neuter.
-ent- stems, however, become masculine though suffixation (*telę "calf" > телёнок) in the singular; in the plural Russian gender distinctions are neutralized anyways.
Georgian has some really good suppletive forms. I'll have to look this one up (I don't use it very often), but some verbs have suppletive forms depending on the person of the indirect object
(ie, one form for no indirect object, one for 1st or 2nd person indirect object, and one for 3rd person indirect object). Oy.