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Kosi Grammar--comments

From:Jim Grossmann <jimg4732@...>
Date:Friday, August 27, 2004, 2:40

Thank you for an interesting link!   Here are my comments:

a)	DEMONSTRATIVES:   Like the fact that these don't need numbers 'cause
they're affixes.

b)    ADJECTIVES:  If your predicative adjectives take conjugations, are
they adjectives or stative verbs?

"Adjectives must agree in case and number with the nouns they modify.
Adjectives can be used attributively and predicatively without change, but
in the latter case, the adjective can be conjugated: kot masse 'a happy boy'
~ masse kot 'the boy is happy' ~ masseat kohtau 'that boy is made happy [by
X]'. Declension of adjectives and nouns is identical. Nouns used with
quantifiers require the partitive case: öt 'five' + has 'house' > öt haso
'five houses'."

c)	COMPARISON:    Well, I guess we know how you compare adjectives in
constructions that translate to sentences like "Hans is just as big as

Can your comparative morphemes be used on attributive adjectives?

How do you convey comparison between states of affairs denoted by clauses?
In other words, how do you say things that translate as "Hans eats just as
much as I do," or "There are more gerbils on the streets than there are

"compared to, than, pertaining to  -ra  hasra"

"2.1.7. Comparison Type  Meaning  Prefix  Example
Comparative of inferiority  'less'  ja-  janae
Comparative of superiority  'more'  si-  sinae
Superlative of inferiority  'least'  hae-  hanae
Superlative of superiority  'most'  ru-  runae
Equative  ''  kö-  könae"

d)	ASPECT:   Nice, rich system.  Your "causative" is not aspectual:  it's a
valence changing morpheme--it changes the number of arguments in the clause,
the structure of the clause one might say.

e)	MOOD:  You may want to describe the combinations of these morphemes can
be used together on one verb.

The interrogative and negative morphemes might be used together in sentences
that translate into things like "Didn't he do the laundry?"

Interrogative and negative could *each* be combined with one of the other
moods:  "Must we go?"  "We must not go."  "Can he walk?"  "He cannot walk."

Also examine combinations among the other moods.  For example...

with imperative:   "Be able to read the passage by next week."
with subjunctive:  "He might be able to walk."
with conditional:   "If he is able to walk, he will come home."

....There's more, but it's your language, so you can work it out.  :-)

f)   	VOICE:   Why must passives always be reduced?

I came in late:  is the simultaneous vs. sequential distinction part of
switch reference or is it an aspectual distinction?  Hope someone who knows
the answer comments.

g)	DERIVATION:  Should "intensive" be called "augmentative"?  I don't know.
Hope someone who does know speaks up.

Are your "universally applicable derivations" all applicable to nouns?
Crecendo, decrecendo, and surfeit don't seem to apply to nouns at first
blush.  If they aren't applicable to nouns, they need their own category.
If they are applicable to nouns, you need to provide examples with nouns.

Nice ideas!  I particularly like your "crecendo" and "decrecendo" morphemes!
Like your selection of participles too.

h)	SYNTAX:  Personally, I would like to see more information here.

Your sections on voice and frame verbs probably belong in the syntax

The uses of the correlatives need to be explained and illustrated.

How do you coordinate sentences?

How many kinds of subordinate clauses do you have?

You've got noun modifying clauses, your relative clauses.  BUT...

Can clauses occupy the NP position in Kosi?   With your frame verbs, you've
got a construction that does the work of English sentences that contain
complement clauses as the objects of certain verbs like "believe," etc.
BUT....what about equivalents to sentences like
"John's playing the guitar at midnight bugs me?", in which a subordinate
clause fills the subject slot?

Also, do you have adverbial subordinating clauses--or constructions that do
the work of these--in Kosi?   How would you say a sentence like "After the
people had succumbed to the knock-out gas, our agents secured the area?" or
"Instead of you going to the store, let's have Barbara order it off the

*	*	*

Kosi looks like it's off to a good start!

Jim Grossmann