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Re: Weekly Vocab 8

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Tuesday, June 3, 2003, 9:49
En réponse à Nik Taylor :

>There was no nominative particle in Old Japanese. There was also no >simple accusative particle, (w)o being an interjectional particle with a >number of uses, which apparently included (optional) accusative >marking. It's fairly complex, but an interesting snip from The >Languages of Japan: "In the reading of materials written in imitation of >Chinese syntax, word order was inverted so that the actual reading would >follow Japanese syntax, and in the process, relation-indicating >particles were supplied so as to make the material easier to >comprehend. In this Sinico-Japanese reading tradition, o was regularly >employed to mark the direct object. Indeed, it is quite reasonable to >assume that this use of o in fact had by far the strongest effect in the >spread of the object-marking o".
So the modern Japanese grammar which relies so much on those particles has its source in Sinico-Japanese reading tradition? Strange and nice! :)
>Incidentally, in earlier periods, _no_ could also be used to mark the >subject of an independent clause, with a semantic difference, _no_ >generally showing greater respect towards the marked noun than _ga_.
Nice distinction :) .
>But, eventually, ga finally displaced no as the sole nominative marker >for independent clauses in the standard dialect. Incidentally, there >are some dialects in Kyuushuu that still use both _ga_ and _no_ as >nominative particles, with the difference of respect, and some that have >come to use _no_ as the sole nominative marker (for independent clauses) >with _ga_ as the attributive/genetive particle (i.e., the same as _no_ >in the standard dialect!)
LOL. Funny, a complete reversal of uses of the two particles. Japanese doen't cease to surprise me :)) . Are there any source online about Old Japanese grammar (a PDF or something like that?) I'm curious how it was, since it looks it was quite different from Modern Japanese grammar. Christophe Grandsire. You need a straight mind to invent a twisted conlang.