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valency question

From:Muke Tever <alrivera@...>
Date:Thursday, May 10, 2001, 21:27
How do natlangs and conlangs handle making distinctions between sentences like
these?  English uses word order (with intonation differences too, I think),
but I wonder about other ways (are there any?).

     John called the beaver ugly.
     John called the ugly beaver.

     Beth named José Gaia.
     Beth named Gaia José.

It doesn't seem to be a regular ditransitive... The problem is the valency
change, from one object ("the ugly beaver") to two equivalent ones ("the
beaver", "ugly").  In Hadwan I know an article is used, although I think the
basic order (named before name) would be the same:

     B J norits ha  G
         called TTL
     "B called J 'G'."

     B. G. norits ha  J.
           called TTL
     "B called G 'J'."

What kind of verb is this, anyway?

Also a different kind of sentence:

     Mary thought about a cat eating.
     Mary thought about eating a cat.

This seems to be similar but with whether the verb "thought about eating"
calls the noun "a cat", or whether it's the verb "thought about" calling the
phrase "a cat eating".  [Are there two kinds of -ing verb here?]


     Belmo considered all fireflies demons.
     Belmo considered demons all fireflies.

...although I think this is just copula dropping ("considered all fireflies
[to be] demons") it might still be a problem in a language that does it like


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