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Re: describing names

From:Roger Mills <romilly@...>
Date:Sunday, August 4, 2002, 21:46
Majken wrote:
This little story brings me to my
>actual question. > >1. Her name is Mary >2. Her name is beautiful > >The first sentence tells me her name, while the second >only describes it. But the only difference is the last >word. There is no way to be sure that she isn't called >Beautiful, except that is an unusual name. How do >other languages solve this problem?
A belated welcome! rapinda! Many languages would resolve this problem by making "beautiful" a verbal form, which is what my Kash does: arañi mina 'her name is Mina' (aran 'name', -ni '3d poss.', no copula) arañi yavirik 'her name is beautiful' (ya- '3s subj. marker', virik '(be) beautiful') There is also the idiomatic verbal _vele aran_ lit. 'give name' = 'to name' as in: yavele aran mina anayeni 'she named her child Mina' 3s-[give name] Mina(nom.) child-dat.-poss. _vele aran_ must be followed by a personal name (in nominative case), which is in apposition with _aran_, and the person named is in the dative. Technically this violates S-V-IO-DO order. Otherwise-- yavele anayeni aran ehas 'she gave her child a strange name' which follows normal order of constituents S-V-IO-DO Note: yavele aran ehas anayeni 'she named her child Strange', and conversely yavele anayeni aran mina 'she gave her child the name Mina' would imply that Mina was only a temporary name or nickname, not the child's "real" name. This complication in Kash syntax was inspired by one of James McCawley's amusing examples: "They named their child Fafnir" "They named their child something strange"