Re: Some interesting stuff...
|From:||Rik Roots <rikroots@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, April 24, 2001, 18:34|
I have spent possibly more time worrying about prepositions in Gevey
than anything else. I think (finally I hope) I have a system that now
works, using a set of over 20 different prepositions combined with 4
dative cases to show the relativities and movements.
If anyone is interested, the following link will take you to the
webpage - which includes diagrams to try to explain the use of each
> George Lakoff gave a lecture in my cognitive science class the other day,
> and there were two things I found really interesting.
> The first is some data from an actual, natural language (this blows me
> away). He had three pictures (and it would be much better if I could somehow
> render the here, but I can't, so I'll try to make do):
> 1.) One big circle, and a circle within. In the smallest circle was [m];
> in the area outside that circle and inside the bigger was [j]; outside both
> circles was [?] (glottal stop)
> 2.) There was a weird, phallic looking drawing where it came up like a
> thin bar from the bottom and cut out a thin, long pattern, but didn't reach
> the end of the page. Inside this line was [u] and outside was [a].
> 3.) A picture of a hill with a definite bottom, a side and a top. On the
> bottom was [n]; on the side was [h]; on the top was [l].
> Now, what these letters comprised was a set of a big number of
> prepositions (I can't do the permutation/combination in my head), and these
> prepositions were built in the following way. First, the speaker would
> imagine the first image (1), and if the object they were describing was near
> them, they'd use [m]; if it was a little bit farther, they'd use [j]; and if
> it was farther than that, [?]. Then the next image (2), they'd decide
> whether or not the thing was in or out of their line of sight, and if it were
> in they'd use [u], if not [a]. Lastly, they'd decide if the thing were on
> the bottom of the hill [n], the side of the hill [h], or the top of the hill
> [l]. And so, you had some prepositions:
> mah (near me, out of my line of sight, on the side of the hill)
> man (near me, out of my line of sight, on the bottom of the hill)
> mun (near me, in my line of sight, on the bottom of the hill)
> al (far from me, out of my line of sight, on top of the hill)
> jul (a little bit near me, in my line sight, on the top of the hill)
> jah (a little bit near me, out of my line of sight, on the side of the
> Now, I can imagine someone constructing a language with a system like
> that, but can you imagine that being in a real, natural language? It blew me
> away. It's so...Esperanta, in a way.
> Anyway, the other thing was George Lakoff claimed, in one fell swoop,
> that a lot had been written about the nature of aspect, but that absolutely
> everyone else was wrong, and that he found the one and only correct origin of
> aspect, and it's a diagram as follows.
> - - -
> - Interupt - - Continue
> Cancel Suspend
> Anyway, then he had a bunch of examples of how all actions map onto this,
> such as walking. In the start position, it's "set out", or "start walking"
> (there's no speech for the "ready" position), the process is walking, an
> interupt might be slipping, and if you fall, then that's a finish and can be
> mapped as an action in of itself, but if you regain your balance, then you
> continue, and when you stop walking you finish, and the result is that you're
> somewhere different than before (or the same place at a different time, or
> something). Anyway, I thought it would be interesting if someone made a
> language where every verb had a conjugation just for these particular parts
> of his aspect model. You can't tell me that someone saying "I am ready to
> love you" would not be hilarious.
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