Re: All in the Family
|Date:||Thursday, December 14, 2006, 13:12|
on 12/14/06 4:33 AM, KB at khyranleander@YAHOO.COM wrote:
> Here's a question for you folks. Anyone know of a language that includes
> relational terms defined strictly in terms of distance, not direction?
> I mean, lateral terms like "X is mate of Y" is the same as "Y is mate of X",
> and you can write the same thing if you substitute in cousin or sibling in
> English. But cross-generation terms are all directional:
> "X is older by a generation than Y" = "Y is younger by a generation than
> "X is the sibling of a parent of Y" = "Y is a child of a sibling of X".
> "X is the parent of a mate of Y" = "Y is the mate of a child of X"
> I know some languages eliminate some of this, like calling fathers and uncles
> the same thing, etc. But the ones I've heard of (admittedly, almost a
> negligible sample) seem to require an "older or younger" factor to their terms
> at the least. While I doubt any would be so dependent on a family tree graph
> as to define terms literally as "seperated vertically one degree and laterally
> one degree", anyone ever define AUNT as the same as NIECE, or SON-IN-LAW the
> same as FATHER-IN-LAW, along those general lines?
Acc. to Wikipedia, Chiricahua does this. See
ng_generations (though it doesn't give much detail).
"Farewell, farewell to my beloved language,
Once English, now a vile orangutanguage."