Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: TYPOLOGY: (conlangs and natlangs): "Tense-Prominent" vs "Aspect-Prominent"

From:Herman Miller <hmiller@...>
Date:Wednesday, August 16, 2006, 3:15
Eldin Raigmore wrote:

> How about your conlangs? Would you say they are: > 1. Very Tense-Prominent but not very Aspect-Prominent? > 2. Very Aspect-Prominent but not very Tense-Prominent?
My earlier languages were more "tense-prominent", for a simple reason: I wasn't aware that such a thing as "aspect" existed. Later, I gradually started shifting to more "aspect-prominent" languages.
> That might not be all there is to it at all. > Languages with evidentials may be "Mood-Prominent", or at > least "Evidential-Prominent", rather than either Aspect-Prominent or Tense- > Prominent. > > Does your conlang require that any speaker mention how he/she knows what > he/she is saying happened, but hardly ever require at that they mention > when it happened (or how often it happened, or how long it took to happen, > or whatever)?
Tirelat requires an evidential suffix on verbs, but the evidential suffix also specifies the tense. For instance, there's a "past hearsay" suffix -li- and a "nonpast hearsay" suffix -ja-. The aspect suffix is also obligatory in most cases.
> Whatever your answers to the above questions, can you also answer this one? > Where did you get that idea to put it in your conlang? > Is your conlang a lot like any natlang or any group of natlangs in that > way?
I started putting aspects into my languages after reading about the Slavic languages. I'm not sure when I had the idea to de-emphasize tense, but I would've known about languages like Chinese. I got the idea for evidential suffixes from Thomas E. Payne's book _Describing Morphosyntax_.