On the Usage of Sinhalese Differential Object Markers Object Marker /wa/ vs. Object Marker /ta/
Theory and Practice in Language Studies
Previous studies (Aisen, 2003; Kanduboda, 2011) on Sinhalese language have suggested that direct objects (i.e., accusative marked nouns) in active sentences can be marked by two distinctive case markers. In some sentences, accusative nouns can be denoted by the accusative case marker /wa/. In other sentences, the same nouns can again be denoted by the dative case marker /ta/. However, the verbs required by these accusatives were not investigated in the previous studies. Thus, the present study
... the present study further conducted an investigation to observe whether these two types of case markings can occur with the same verbs. A free productivity task was conducted with 100 Sinhalese native speakers living in Sri Lanka. A comparison study was carried out using sentences with the verbs accompanying /wa/ accusatives and /ta/ accusatives. The results showed that, verbs accompanied by /wa/ case marker and verbs accompanied by /ta/ case marker are incongruent. Thus, this study concluded that Sinhalese active sentences consisting of transitive verbs are broadly divided into two patterns; those which take only /wa/ accusatives and those which take only /ta/ accusatives.