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Articles, determiners, quantifiers, whatever...

From:Remi Villatel <maxilys@...>
Date:Saturday, July 3, 2004, 0:33
Hi everybody,

I'm writing the last version of my grammar and I'm about to start the
chapter about the articles. So, I decided to browse other conlang sites to
see if somebody present their articles in a better way than I previously did.

Alas! I visited dozens of sites --and I mean it-- to discover that these
conlangers don't really care about the articles. The most imaginative ones
(from an europocentric point of view) get rid of the articles partially or
totally. The less imaginative ones just mimic existing systems (mostly
English or German to some extend).

Hence my question: Do I have a very twisted mind?  ;-)  Well, in fact: Are
there some conlangs with a very complex system of acticles that goes beyond
"a, the, some"?

An (extrem) example in Shaquelingua to really mean what I'm talking about:

zereçügativorükø [zexeCyga:tivoxyk9]

= Numerous parts of almost all these

ze	linear intensifier
re	+ several
çüg	part of
a	+ case marking
ti	resumptive
vo	+ definite (=~ demonstrative)
rü 	linear diminisher
kø	+all the

vir'be gea-vaba grerë ta'zereçügativorükø çibjas zëtos.
[vix(i)'be: ge^a:vaba gxexE ta:'zexeCyga:tivoxyk9 Ci.bjas zEtos]

(descriptor)'(case marking) by-rodent destruction (indicative distant
past)'(complex quantifier) ancient book.

= Numerous parts of almost all these ancient books were destroyed by rodents.

Of course, such a quantifier won't be used in everyday spoken Shaquelingua;
the Shaqueans would rather split it in two:

tivorükuu çibjas zëtos, vir'be gea-vaba grexë ta'zera çya.
[tivoxyku^u: Ci.bjas zEtos], [vix(i)'be: ge^a:vaba gxexE ta:'zexa: CHa]

[relative to](almost all these) ancient book, (descriptor)'(case marking)
by-rodent destruction (indicative distant past)'numerous part.

(This is an extrem example too... I could set the two parts closer than at
each end of the sentence.)

Now, tell me that I'm not the only one to have such overly complicated
ideas...  ;-)

See ya,

Remi Villatel


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Rik Roots <rik@...>
Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>