Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Verbs of ingestion (was: aspects / nasal consonants / meanings)

From:Tim May <butsuri@...>
Date:Friday, March 11, 2005, 20:36
Henrik Theiling wrote at 2005-03-11 13:19:32 (+0100)
 > Hi!
 > Tim May <butsuri@...> writes:
 > >
 > > The Japanese verb in question is _nomu_, whhich is usually
 > > translated as "drink".  However, Takao SUZUKI writes in _Words in
 > > Context_:
 > >
 > >  | The foregoing structural explanation of _drink_ should also
 > >  | help us understand in greater detail the structural
 > >  | significance of the Japanese verb _nomu_, which may be defined
 > >  | as "to introduce a substance into one's body _without chewing
 > >  | it_".  Rice is normally something to _taberu_ "eat", but if a
 > >  | fish bone is stuck in someone's throat, we say, "You should
 > >  | _nomu_ some rice".  This demonstrates that _nomu_, unlike
 > >  | drink, has no restrictions at all as to the shape or the
 > >  | characteristics of the object, but focuses instead on the way
 > >  | it is taken, namely, without chewing.
 > That's very interesting!  After having read that, I realise that
 > Qthyn|gai's word for 'eat', which is a derivation of the generic
 > 'digest' + 'by chewing', must have the same characteristics then!
 > I did not know that my conlang works like Japanese!  I did not even
 > mean to contruct a different meaning than 'normal' eating.  Funny!

That's pretty close to _taberu_, then (at least as Suzuki presents
it).  How does one translate "drink" into Qthyn|gai - just 'digest'?
I think the difference between "drink" and _nomu_ is greater than that
between "eat" and _taberu_ - Suzuki notes that in addition to unchewed
rice, _nomu_ covers medicine and poison, in liquid or pill form, and
"pins or rings which children might swallow by mistake".  If the
semantics of the Qthyn|gai morpheme correspond closely to those of
Englsh "digest", then it probably doesn't include the swallowing of
indigestible items.


Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>