Unilang: the Syntax
|From:||Oskar Gudlaugsson <hr_oskar@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, April 24, 2001, 1:02|
I don't know if anyone noticed, but the order in which I've presented these
threads is from the subjects I know best to the subjects I know worst.
Phonology and phonetics are my linguistic favorites, and that's where I
have the clearest and most confident ideas in what regards Unilang. The
exception to this pattern will be the orthography, to be presented last,
though I consider myself fairly knowledgeable of orthographic
Enough ranting; syntax is not my strong side, that's the point I was trying
At this point, syntactic considerations depend on morphological choices,
and vice versa; depending on the morphological scheme, there are two
syntactic schemes that I find viable:
1. A rigid SVO word order with a preferred, fixed order of items; pretty
much as in general Chinese syntax. For instance:
[subject] - [temporal adverb] - [verbal adverb] - [verb] - [indirect
object] - [object] - [emphatic particle]
This is the order in Mandarin Chinese, AFAIK. Though I wouldn't necessarily
adhere to this specific order, this is roughly descriptive of the first
scheme. The main thing is that the order would be fixed.
2. A somewhat freer word order through the realization of various
morphological grammatic markings, primarily of case and part-of-speech. I
am generally opposed to nominative ~ accusative marking in Unilang, so
subjects would in any case be required to precede objects. Other than that,
some form of case marking could set the indirect object free, and part-of-
speech marking could leave more open the position of the verb and the
adverbial items. In any case, SVO would be set up as a preferred syntactic
pattern, though the above possibilites would allow for variation.
As always, I am attracted to some kind of a mediation between the two
I guess I'm hoping for comments by someone more talented in syntax, who is
otherwise interested in auxlanging; Raymond?