Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

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Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby kadani » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:23 am

Yes, ongoing discussions about phonology can still invalidate whatever we discuss here, but in phonology discussions I feel like a fish out of water.

So... To start the discussion: I have been thinking about tenses and that they are not in all languages, especially creoles often lack them and compensate by a rich aspect system. These languages are supposed to be easy, our language is also supposed to be easy or at least not too weird, so I suggest that we also have something similar. I propose a perfective, progressive, inceptive, terminative, habitual, and maybe also pausative and resumptive aspects. Anyone with me?
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby Uh-Oh » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:55 am

kadani wrote:So... To start the discussion: I have been thinking about tenses and that they are not in all languages, especially creoles often lack them and compensate by a rich aspect system. These languages are supposed to be easy, our language is also supposed to be easy or at least not too weird, so I suggest that we also have something similar. I propose a perfective, progressive, inceptive, terminative, habitual, and maybe also pausative and resumptive aspects. Anyone with me?


I'm with you. I consider the perfective, progressive, and habitual as the most crucial, and I'm fine with the others. A good thing about creoles is that their aspects are usually managed through lexicals, which are open ended, so pretty much any aspect one can imagine can be accommodated somehow. (I tend to lump aspectlessness under "habitual".)
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby PeteBleackley » Fri Mar 19, 2010 6:22 am

How about noun morphology? I suggest something simple but a little unusual.

Number singular and plural

Cases
Nominative (subject)
Genitive (posessor or source)
Accusative (object of monotransitive verb, recipient of ditransitive verb, destination of motion)
Secundative (theme of ditransitive verb)
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby Uh-Oh » Fri Mar 19, 2010 7:26 am

PeteBleackley wrote:How about noun morphology? I suggest something simple but a little unusual.

Number singular and plural


Most creoles don't mark for singular versus plural. However, I have a soft spot for a "plurosingular", which indicates any non-zero number; for count nouns, this amounts to "1 or more". This avoids such constructions as "identify the beneficiary or beneficiaries" and "identify the beneficiar(y)(ies)". But it still allows a distinction between "I saw a beneficiary" and "I saw some beneficiaries... maybe 1, or 2, or 6, or dozens... honestly, it was dark and I just couldn't say how many".

ON EDIT: This is not to say that we are building a creole. Just that there has been a sentiment in favour of a creole-like flavour. And then again, many major eastern languages that are not in any sense creoles also don't mark for plural.

PeteBleackley wrote:Cases
Nominative (subject)
Genitive (posessor or source)
Accusative (object of monotransitive verb, recipient of ditransitive verb, destination of motion)
Secundative (theme of ditransitive verb)


My preference is to mark roles by syntax or particle rather than by declension. But I do like being able to be clear on what role a noun is playing.
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby kadani » Fri Mar 19, 2010 8:18 am

PeteBleackley wrote:How about noun morphology? I suggest something simple but a little unusual.

Number singular and plural

Cases
Nominative (subject)
Genitive (posessor or source)
Accusative (object of monotransitive verb, recipient of ditransitive verb, destination of motion)
Secundative (theme of ditransitive verb)

So a German system with a different name for the Dative case? Do I understand that correctly?

Uh-Oh wrote:Most creoles don't mark for singular versus plural. However, I have a soft spot for a "plurosingular", which indicates any non-zero number; for count nouns, this amounts to "1 or more". This avoids such constructions as "identify the beneficiary or beneficiaries" and "identify the beneficiar(y)(ies)". But it still allows a distinction between "I saw a beneficiary" and "I saw some beneficiaries... maybe 1, or 2, or 6, or dozens... honestly, it was dark and I just couldn't say how many".

Sounds pretty neat. I'm for it!
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby PeteBleackley » Fri Mar 19, 2010 9:57 am

Not a different name for the dative case. In the sentence "I give the dog a bone", its

I-nom give dog-acc bone-sec

Whereas with a dative you'd have

I-nom give dog-dat bone-acc
Last edited by PeteBleackley on Fri Mar 19, 2010 10:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby kadani » Fri Mar 19, 2010 10:13 am

I see. Seems to be strange, but then, I like it. I cautiously agree but might vehemently disagree when I wake up.
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby MicroBalrog » Fri Mar 19, 2010 3:44 pm

If you want to make this as sadistically complex as possible, I suggest adding an ablative and a vocative.
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby Uh-Oh » Fri Mar 19, 2010 7:30 pm

MicroBalrog wrote:If you want to make this as sadistically complex as possible, I suggest adding an ablative and a vocative.


I'm okay with a vocative... always good to be able to tell the audible difference between "Eat Hugo!" and "Eat, Hugo!"

As for an ablative... (or as we'd sort of say in Qakwan, "wu ablative") I'd rather just use a particle, or just have a verb for "move away from".
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Re: Anyone want to start on the grammar already?

Postby Miatato » Fri Mar 19, 2010 7:42 pm

PeteBleackley wrote:Not a different name for the dative case. In the sentence "I give the dog a bone", its

I-nom give dog-acc bone-sec

Whereas with a dative you'd have

I-nom give dog-dat bone-acc


Oh, I see how that works. Very interesting!
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