Elmira Kaljanova

Keywords: Old Turkic, Kazakh, Orkhon, common words


An article was written as an attempt to determine common words in Old Turkic inscriptions and Kazakh language through examining the vocabulary of the Orkhon Inscriptions. The study has revealed that there are more than 280 common words in the old Turkic inscriptions and Kazakh language. Most of the mentioned words are of the same structure and have undergone phonetic change, while a very small part of them (ubut/uyat "modesty, shyness", yét-/jetekte- "to tow, to lead", yokad-/joğal- "to perish") are words from the same root having different affixes. The common words in both languages in general are being used in exactly the same meaning. Along with that it is seen that some of the words in contemporary Kazakh are used close to the old meaning (kıd- "to kill" = qiy- "to cut", yabız "bad; inauspicious" = javız "machiavellian, oppressor"); furthermore certain words have undergone semantic changes (arığ "clean, pure" = aruv "beauty (woman)", katun "queen" = qatın "wife; woman", yılkı "herd of horses" = jılqı "horse") such as semantic transfer, semantic restriction and semantic extension. Besides, it was found that there are words e.g. apa, azman, eke, eren which have remote semantic relations between them, though same words are available in terms of word format