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'Yemls aspect etc.

From:Jeffrey S. Jones <jeffsjones@...>
Date:Monday, June 2, 2003, 19:55
Hi all,
ObChat: I don't know if I've mentioned it, but I was without a computer
for a while and could only read conlang occasionally at the library. By
the time I got a new (i.e. less old) computer, I was 6 weeks behind.
Good thing I had just gone back to nomail. Anyways ....

One thing I've been stuck on with 'Yemls has been the forms used in
"habitual" aspects. First, a review of what aspects I do have:
imperfective, perfective, resultive (i.e. "perfect") for action roots,
and something that's either inceptive or evolutive for state roots (this
is another thing I have to work on). So far, each of these refers only
to a single event, process, or state.

Note: because the 'Yemls syllabary (the stuff in { }'s) is hard to read
(even Christophe has said so, and he should know), I'm using an ad hoc
transcription in  | |'s: |c| is [t_S_h].

The forms are using {SER} "sing" as an example:
{SER}    |'|    -- imperfective present "is singing"
{SER-f}    |'sae.lof|    -- imperfective past "was singing"
{SER-c}    |'sae.lac|    -- imperfective future "will be singing"
{SER-q}    |'sae.lok|    -- imperfective irrealis "be singing"
{SERf}    |sae'lof|    -- perfective past "sang"
{SERc}    |sae'lac|    -- perfective future "will sing"
{SERq}    |sae'lok|    -- perfective irrealis "sing"
{SERr}    |sae'lor|    -- resultive present "has sung"
{SERrf}    |sae'lor.fu|    -- resultive past "had sung"
{SERrc}    |sae'|    -- resultive future "will have sung"
{SERrq}    |sae'lor.ku|    -- resultive irrealis "have sung"

The imperfective and resultive past, future, and irrealis are always in
reference to some specific time. The English versions are approximate.

OK, now for the problem. I want to have distinct forms for habitual
situations (by that I mean multiple repetitions of an action not limited
to a single time), and I want both imperfective and perfective versions
(maybe also resultive), that is, I want to take the series of events
distributed across time and treat them as a single situation, and then
apply aspect/tense/mood to that. Clear? No???
Ahem. I have a marker {m} reserved for this. Oh, and I also want a
tenseless form (which is what unmarked "nouns" have).

Some possible forms are:
{SER-m}    |'sae.lom|
{SER-mf}    |'sae.lo.muf|
{SER-mc}    |'sae.lo.muc|
{SER-mq}    |'sae.lo.muk|
{SERm}    |sae'lom|
{SERmf}    |sae'|
{SERmc}    |sae'|
{SERmq}    |sae'|
{SER'mf}    |sae.lo'muf|
{SER'mc}    |sae.lo'muc|
{SER'mq}    |sae.lo'muk|
The last 3 are obviously the perfective forms. What I can't decide is
whether to use the 1st 4 as the imperfective forms and the next as the
tenseless form, or the 2nd 4 as the imperfective forms and the 1st form
as tenseless.

Now I wonder who's read this far (assuming it's readable)?

Jeff Jones