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Re: OT: Possession in Ainu

From:Doug Dee <amateurlinguist@...>
Date:Sunday, November 5, 2006, 16:44
In a message dated 11/4/2006 4:03:45 PM Eastern Standard Time,
rakko@CHARTER.NET writes:

>4. To show possession of one noun by another, you simply juxtapose >them, with possessor first, e.g. <kamuy mat> "a god's wife". >- Is it possible to say *<kamuy maci>?
According to _The Languages of Japan_, this is backwards. You would have to use "maci" (the belonging/possessed form) and not "mat". [p. 37]
>5. To show possession of a noun by a pronominal referent, you can >either use the appropriate possessive prefix plus the belonging form, >or use a verbal prefix on the verb <kor>, "to have", followed by the >noun, e.g. <ku=kor mat> or <ku=maci> "my wife".
It's worth pointing out that you are correct here that it's "ku=kor mat" with the plain (not possessed) form of "mat" since this is perhaps counterintuitive.
>9. I have read on this list that Ainu has the alienable/inalienable >possession distinction. >- How is this distinction shown? I haven't found anything that says >e.g. that you use the prefixes for inalienable and prefix+<kor> for >alienable.
The same book says that the "ku-kor mat" construction is "limited to those cases in which the possessed noun refers to a person." [p. 37] You could take this limitation as a partial indocation of alienable/inalienable. -- Doug