Appendix:List of glossing abbreviations

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This page lists common abbreviations for grammatical terms that are used in linguistic interlinear glossing.

Gloss Meaning
direction of transitivity (2›3 means 2 acts on 3)
0 zero, covert morpheme
(such as gender in a language where the word doesn't show it)
1 first person
2 second person
3 third person
A agent-like argument of canonical transitive verb
ABE abessive case (AKA caritive case or privative case: 'without')
ABL ablative case ('from')
ABS absolutive case
ACC accusative case
ACT active voice, actor role
ADJ adjective
ADE adessive case ('at'; more specific than LOC)
ADM admonitive mood (warning)
ADV adverb(ial), adverbial case
AFF affirmative mood
AG agentive case (cf ACT)
AGR agreement
ALL allative case ('to')
AN animate gender (cf R)
AND andative (going towards: cf venitive)
ANT anterior (used for PRF in some traditions)
ANTE antessive case ('before')
ANTIC anticausative
ANTIP, AP antipassive voice
AP, ANTIP antipassive voice
APP apposition
APL applicative voice (= APPL)
ART article
ASP aspect
ASS associative case (= COM), assumptive mood
AT agent trigger
ATT attenuative
AUD auditory evidential
AUG augmentative
AUX auxiliary verb
B core benefactive
BE 'be' verb (a conflation of EXIST and COP)
BEN benefactive case ('for')
C common gender
CAP (cap)ability, modal case
CAUS causative
CENT centric case
CF counterfactual conditional
CIRC circumfix
CIT citation form
CL, CLF classifier
CNJ conjunction (= CONJ)
CNSQ consequential
COL collective
COM comitative case ('together with')
COMP comparative; complementizer
COMPL completive aspect
CONC concessive
COND conditional mood
CONJ conjunction (= CNJ)
CONN connective particle
CONT continuative aspect
CNTR contrastive
COP copula
COR coreference
CRAS crastinal tense ('tomorrow')
CRS current relevance marker (as in the perfect)
CVB converb
D core dative case
DAT dative case
DE different event, change of event (cf DS)
DECL declarative mood
DEF definite
DEI deixis, deictic
DEL delayed imperative (a command to do s.t. later)
DEL delative case ('off of'), deliberative mood
DEM demonstrative
DEO deontic mood
DEP dependent (as in DEP.FUT)
DES desiderative mood
DEST destinative aspect
DET determiner
DH motion downhill, seaward (cf DR)
DIM diminutive
DIR direct evidential (= EXP); directional (= LAT); direct case
DISJ disjunction
DIST distal demonstrative
DISTR distributive case
DLM delimited
DM discourse marker
DO direct object
DR motion downriver (cf DH)
DS different-subject (change of subject) marker (cf DE)
DU dual number
DUB dubitative mood
DUR durative aspect, continuous aspect
DYN dynamic aspect
E epenthetic morpheme
-E (used to form various -essive cases)
ELA elative case ('out of')
EMP emphatic
EPIS epistemic mood, epistemic modality
ERG ergative case
ESS essive case
EVID evidential
EVIT evitative case (= aversive case)
EX, EXCL exclusive person
EX.DUR excessive duration
EXIST existential ('there is')
EXO exocentric case
EXP experiential, eyewitness, = direct evidential
F, FEM feminine gender
FACT factive evidential
FAM familiar register (as the T-V distinction)
FIN finite verb
FOC focus
FORM formal register (as the T-V distinction)
FP final particle (joshi)
FREQ frequentative aspect
FMR former, deceased
FUT future tense
G gender (G4 = 4th gender)
GEN genitive case
GER gerund
GNO gnomic tense (generic mood)
HAB habitual aspect
HBL humble register
HEST hesternal tense ('yesterday')
HIST historic(al), as in historical present or past historic tense
HOD hodiernal tense ('today')
HON honorific
HORT hortative,
HSY hearsay, reported evidential
HUM human, anthropic gender (cf. HBL; R)
HYP hypothetical mood
I inflected
ID identical (~ NID)
IDENTIF identifiable
IGNOR ignorative
ILL illative case ('into')
IMM immediate, as in immediate imperative mood, near future tense
IMP imperative mood
IMPERF imperfective aspect (= NPFV)
IMPREC imprecative mood
IMPRS impersonal verb
IN, INCL inclusive person
INAN inanimate gender
INCHO inchoative aspect, inceptive aspect
INCL inclusive person (= IN)
IND indicative mood
INDF indefinite
INE inessive case ('in')
INF infinitive
INFER inferential evidential
INEL inelative case ('from within')
INS instrumental case
INT intensifier; interrogative (= Q)
INTEN intentional
INTR intransitive (covers an intransitive case for the S argument)
INV inverse
IO indirect object
IPFV imperfective aspect
IRR irrealis mood
IS indirect speech
ITER iterative aspect
JUS jussive mood
-L (used to form various -lative cases)
L2 second language (code-switching)
LAT lative case (= MVMT, direction)
LD locative case + directional
LK linker
LOC locative case (includes essive case)
M, MASC masculine gender
MAN manner
MID middle voice
MIM mimetic
MIR (ad)mirative
MOD mood, modal, modal case
MVT movement
N, NEUT neuter gender
N- non- (e.g. NSG non-singular, NPST non-past)
NEG negation, negative
NMZ nominalizer/nominalization
NOM nominative case
NS non-subject (Latin 'oblique' case)
NUM numeral
OBJ object
OBL oblique case
OBV obviative
OPT optative mood
P patient-like argument of canonical transitive verb
P pre-, post- (P.HOD prehodiernal)
PART participle (= PTCP,PCP); particle (= PTCL); partitive case (= PTV)
PAS(S) passive voice
PAT patientive (= UND)
PAU paucal number
PEG pegative case (a special case for the giver)
PER perlative case ('per', using)
PERF, PRF perfect aspect
PERS personal
PFV perfective aspect
PL plural
PM phrase marker
PN pronoun
PO primary object
POL polite register
POS, POSS possessive marker
POST postposition, postpositional case
POSTE postessive case ('after')
POT potential mood (a possible conditional)
PP past participle
PPFV past perfective
PR proper noun
PRED predicative
PREC precative mood (requests)
PREP preposition, prepositional case
PRESP present participle
PRET preterite (= PFV.PST)
PRF, PERF perfect aspect (= ANT)
PRS, PRES present tense
PROB probability
PROG progressive aspect
PROH prohibitive mood ('don't!')
PROL prolative case (= VIA)
PROT protasis
PROX proximal/proximate
PST past tense
PT patient trigger
PTCL particle
PTCP,PCP participle
PTV partitive case ('some of')
PURP purposive
Q question word or particle (= INT)
QUOT quotative case (marks quoted speech)
R rational gender (thinking beings)
REAL realis mood
REC recent past tense
RECP reciprocal voice
REF referential
REFL reflexive voice
REL relative(izer)
REM remote past tense
REP reported evidential (= HSY); repetitive (cf ITER)
RES resultative; resumptive
S single argument of canonical intransitive verb (cf CIT)
SBJ, SUB subject
SBJV, SJV subjunctive mood
SE same event (cf SS)
SEM semelfactive aspect ('once')
SENS sensory evidential mood (= VIS+AUD
SEQ sequential
SG singular (but 1.SG = 1s, 3MASC.SG = 3ms)
SGV singulative number
SIM simultaneous aspect
SJV, SBJV subjunctive mood
SPEC specifier; speculative mood
SS same-subject (cf SE)
STAT stative aspect, stative verb
SUB subject
SUBR, SUBORD subordinator
SUBE subessive case ('under')
SUBL sublative case ('onto', 'down onto')
SUP(L) superlative (SUPL); supine
SUPE superessive case ('on')
-T trigger (used for AT, PT)
TAM tense, aspect, or mood
TEL telic aspect (cf PFV)
TEMP temporal case
TERM terminative case
TNS tense
TOP topic
TR, TRANS transitive verb
TRANSL translative case (becoming)
TRI trial number
TVF truth-value focus
U uninflected
UH motion uphill, inland (cf UR)
UND undergoer role (cf PAT)
UR motion upriver (cf UH)
V verb(al)
VBZ verbalizer
VEN venitive (coming towards; cf andative)
VER veridical mood (a certain conditional)
VIA vialis case
VIS visible, visual
VI verb intransitive
VN verbal noun
VOC vocative case
VOL volitive mood
VT verb transitive
-Z (used to form -(al)izer glosses)
ZO zoic gender (animals)


  • Enclyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, 2nd edition.
  • Leipzig Glossing Rules
  • Payne, Thomas E. 1997. Describing Morphosyntax.
  • Bybee, Perkins, Pagliuca. 1994. The Evolution of Grammar.
  • Blake, Guide to Terminology.
  • Aikhenvald, Alexandra. 2004. Evidentiality.
  • Helasvuo, Marja-Liisa. Argument splits in Finnish grammar and discourse.