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Re: Relative clauses

From:Philip Newton <philip.newton@...>
Date:Tuesday, June 27, 2006, 14:31
On 6/27/06, Chris Bates <chris.maths_student@...> wrote:
> You must also realize that not all languages *allow* you to > relativize all roles.
Heh. An example I came up with is "Ah! That girl! Tom used to go out with Mary and her". Try to relativise that in English :) *"That's the girl that Tom used to go out with Mary and"? *"That's the girl with whom and Mary Tom used to go out"?
> ikusi duen gizona > > = see.perf 3rd.abs-trans-3rd.erg-rel man-def > = "he/she saw him/her"-rel the man > = the man who saw him/her > = the man who he/she saw > > The -en only marks the relative clause, not the role the head plays in it.
Similar in Klingon, FWIW; the canonical example (in the Klingon Dictionary) is {yaS qIppu'bogh puq}, meaning "the officer whom the child hit" or "the child who hit the officer". (It breaks down into "officer [object, since it precedes the verb] hit.perf.rel child [subject, since it follows the verb]".) The language later gained the ability to disambiguate the head with {-'e'}, previously only the topic marker (one of the very few changes to the language made first by speakers and later canonised by the creator, I'm told) -- so {yaS'e' qIppu'bogh puq} ( hit.perf.rel child) is "The officer whom the child hit" and {yaS qIppu'bogh puq'e'} (officer hit.perf.rel is "The child who hit the officer".
> Such languages may not give the subordinate clause in "I know where you > are going" the form of a relative clause,
And, like Basque, Klingon cannot (to the best of my knowledge) give "I know where you are going" the form of a relative clause. (I think the canonical example of such a not-directly-expressible sentence is "The ship in which I fled". In general, only subjects and objects -- but not complements(?) of prepositions -- can be relativised.)
> but may build such subordinate > clauses in a similar way to questions or in some other way.
"Recast". One of the vital tools for someone attempting to speak Klingon :) Cheers, -- Philip Newton <philip.newton@...>