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Re: USAGE: Mayan construct state?

From:Tim May <butsuri@...>
Date:Monday, July 25, 2005, 0:28
Andreas Johansson wrote at 2005-07-25 01:36:24 (+0200)

 > I'm reading about the Classic Maya again, and came across the word
 > _yajaw_, obviously a form of _ajaw_ "lord", and translated as "his
 > lord". However, from it's occurence in phrases like _yajaw te'_,
 > translated as "lord of the tree", it rather seems some kind of
 > construct state form, used in head-marked possessive formations.
 > Can someone give me the straight dope on this? Thanks.

Mayan languages employ possessive prefixes inflecting for person
(these are often (always?) the same as the ergative prefixes on
verbs).  So, yeah, it's pretty much as you've surmised.   "Lord of the
tree" is expressed as "its-lord the tree", here.

Here are some Tzotzil examples (from

j- na		my house
a- na		your house
s- na		his/her house

s-na    li  Xun=e
3-house DEF John=DEF
his-house   John
"The house of John"


Patrick Littell <puchitao@...>