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Voice modals

From:Gerald Koenig <jlk@...>
Date:Monday, September 21, 1998, 18:59
On Sat, 19 Sep 1998 20:07:08 -0700 (PDT), you wrote:
>>=Gerald >=Stephen
>> >>I need comments and criticism on this new bit of grammar I have just >>written. As has happened before, Stephen made me do it. >> >>FIU type of modals. > >First and foremost, I question whether these morphemes ought to be >considered modal. Voice and mood seem to me to be separate things...
I could write an essay on this, but it will have to be another time. For now I want to concentrate on the nuts and bolts of this invention.
> >>fiu::- when x1, the first argument of P, is the subject of P and >> the patient in P; P is true. >> Abel fiu pa kill Cain. >> Abel(the patient) was killed by Cain. >> >> Abel fiu pa kill. >> fiup >> Abel(victim) was killed. > >BTW, as I understand it, the phonology >which has been ratified by vote forbids words ending in two vowels. >The way we've been getting around that is to add a -' to the end of >these words.
A big OOPS! for not using the phonology I voted for. But I want to float the idea for a proposal here. The glottal stop "'" could be replaced by an h. It might just become NGL's first silent letter, as it doesn't contribute much to the pronunciation. Personally I don't like all those terminal glottal stops. Furthermore, I propose we emulate French and use ellision with it, thus: Abel fiuh pa kill---> Abel fiupa kill. It would facilitate contractions so much.
> > >Just to let you know, the way I've been doing it is a bit reminiscent >of Latin. Passive marked sentences are _not_ symmetrical with active >sentences in PVS. Passive verbs cannot have direct objects... their >agent, if referred to, must be refered to with the ablative of agent, >which is made idiomatically by marking it with the preposition {wi'} >(by, near) and placing the noun in the dative. It may be a bit longer >winded, but it helps in the passive's role of de-emphasising the >actor, and I find it aesthetically pleasing. >
>>hia::- when x1, the first argument of P, is the subject of P and the >> agent in P; P is true. >> Cain hia pa kill Abel. >> hiap >> Cain (agent) killed Abel. >> >> Cain hia pa kill. >> Cain (perpetrator) killed.
> >It is interesting that you have chosen to create a way to explicitly >mark the active relationship between the subject and the object... but >I am concerned that in practice, this will prove redundant and be >forgotten. The vast majority of sentences will be of the {hia'} type, >and so in the interest of brevity (a thing you place high value on), I >predict that people will almost always omit the active marker and only >mark voice in rare cases where the passive {fiu'} is desired.
This I entirely agree with and I never conceived of the hiah marking being mandatory. I did it for symmetry and in the faith that it would find usage because it is symmetrical. For example it could emphasize that the doer willed the action. I leave that to usage. Further to the question of passives and agent/patient; Carlos Pinzon has brought my attention to the cases where agent and patient are one and the same. The reflexive is required in Spanish expressions such as "me llavo" I wash myself. An NGL modal for this is: sieh mi sieh ucah. I control myself. Carlos, please forgive the yankee word-imperialism. Steven, thanks for urging me to put passives into Vtense. Jerry _______________________________ Vector tense is virgin.