Generic Plurals (was: Irish/Hebrew proverb)
|From:||Steg Belsky <draqonfayir@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, October 15, 1998, 1:48|
On Wed, 14 Oct 1998 20:39:44 -0400 Nik Taylor <fortytwo@...> writes:
>> > "It's bad manners to talk about ropes in the house of a man whose
>> > was hanged." - Irish proverb
>> In Hebrew:
>> lo mazkirim Hevel beveyto shel haniddon lemavvet =
This reminds me of something...
I've always liked the construction used at the beginning of the Hebrew
version, when the present (male) plural is used ambiguously, in such a
way that it isn't clear whether it's a command "you don't mention...!", a
description of _we_, "we don't mention...", plural _you_, "you don't
mention...", or _they_, "they don't mention...".
Since the same form, _mazkirim_, is used for (male/mixed) "we", "you
(plural)", and "they", it makes the saying more general, from a simple
description of a specific person or persons or an order to a "stam"
statement of how things are and/or ought to be.
A more common expression that uses it is _ein somkhin `al haneis_,
"we/you/they do not rely on miracles" (lit. "the miracle").
Luckily, i've been able to recreate this very useful verb construction in
Rokbeigalmki by using a subject-verb complex that begins without the
amzoi'nyih-darazk = "we don't remind"
emzoi'nyih-darazk = "you (pl) don't remind"
uhmzoi'nyih-darazk = "they don't remind"
and, by cutting off the initial vowel, we get:
_mzoi'nyih-darazk_ = "ein mazkirim".
"i emzii-deiyus ta'dzuwaurg-a tzme-a, i emzii-tezat khalu suddeiyusm"
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