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Re: Case

From:A Rosta <a.rosta@...>
Date:Wednesday, July 14, 1999, 14:57
[What a blessed reduction in traffic there's been! Here was I expecting
to find 5000 unread messages and finding only 1500. Relief!]

> From: Matt Pearson > To: Multiple recipients of list CONLANG > Subject: Re: Case > Date: 10 July 1999 08:50
> The INSTRUMENTAL case is used to mark > -- Instruments (I hit the nail *with the hammer*) > -- Paths/routes (I went *through the woods*, I slid *across the ice*, > the bird flew *over the tree*, we travelled *via Boston*) > -- Measures (I live *twelve miles* from here, John is *three feet* > taller than Bill, I am *seven years* older than Bill) > > So, rather than coming up with lots of different cases, as other
> do, I enjoy limiting myself to a few cases, and then figuring out
> semantic relations to assign to each one. The resulting semantic > mappings can be rather intriguing. I find the implied connection > between the PATH, INSTRUMENT, and MEASURE relations rather pleasing, > for example: "I hit the nail BY MEANS OF the hammer", "I walked BY
> OF the woods", "I am taller than Bill BY MEANS OF three feet"...
It sounds to me as if it is PERLATIVITY ("through-ness") rather than INSTRUMENTALITY that is the semantic essence of this case. So better translations would in that case be "I hit the nail VIA/THROUGH the hammer", "I walked VIA/THROUGH the woods", "I am taller than Bill VIA/THROUGH three feet"... --And.