Russian Orientalists participated—often in a close but precarious relationship with the state—in the transformation of Central Asia from a tsarist colony into part of what Francine Hirsch has called an “Empire of Nations.” One of them was the former tsarist colonial clerk Aleksandr Semenov (1873–1958), who together with such prominent representatives of the region’s Persian-speaking elites as Sadriddin Ayni or Bobojon Ghafurov, and with the support of his academic mentors, such as Vasilii Bartol’d and Sergei Ol’denburg, effectively—albeit somewhat reluctantly—lobbied for the official recognition of the Persian/Tajik language and of Tajikistani statehood. The study of their cooperation shows how Central Asian cultural heritage was researched and preserved, but also how it was reinvented in national terms and codified; and how these processes were negotiated between local intellectuals, scholars and the state.
The present article continues the investigation of the Soqotri verbal system undertaken by the Russian-Soqotri fieldwork team. The article focuses on the so-called “weak” and “geminated” roots in the basic stem. The investigation is based on the analysis of full paradigms (perfect, imperfect and jussive) of more than 170 “weak” and “geminated” Soqotri verbs.