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Re: My new Language, concept ideas

From:Jim Grossmann <steven@...>
Date:Tuesday, August 22, 2000, 22:06
re:   Why say One man, when it is obvious it is a single man. While men only
need to be modified by number of men.

The reason it's obvious that one man is being talked about is that "man" is
a singular form.   The implication of what you're saying here is that nouns
don't have to be inflected for number in all languages.   Of course, that's

re:  he & she being variations of the same concept:

'he' is masculine, 'she' is feminine.   They are not synonyms.   More
generally, "variations on the same concept" are more properly conceived as
distinct if related concepts.

However, distinctions that are important to make in one language are not
necessarily important to make in another.   Though masculine and feminine
are different but related concepts, it's not important to the members of all
language communities to mark their pronouns for this distinction.
So, your post raises in interesting question:    how many commonly
grammaticalized distinctions can be left ungrammaticalized in a conlang?

re:   Your conflation of certain concepts:   The concepts you conflate are
not "variations of one concept," but by and large related by metaphor.
"front" & "future" are connected by the "time=space" metaphor, as in "The
future lies in front of us."    "front" and "positive" are connected by the
images of a race or a queue, situations in which being in front means having
the respective advantages of winning or being gratified sooner.   Since
living is considered a good thing by most, and entails having a future,
"living" "positive" and "future" are associated concepts.   I don't see the
connection between "add" and the other concepts you list.   There are many
situations in which things are added to the back, for example, as on a

Though the concepts you list under "fro" can be related, I don't think they
can be represented with a single morpheme without creating ambiguities that
most people, IMO, would find vexing.

"I go in front," is not "I go well," is not "I will go," is not "I'm going
alive," is not "Additionally, I go."

Considering the meanings of "ba," how does one say "I didn't go" (past,
neg), "I didn't go back" (past, neg, back), "I wasn't dead back there,"
(past, back, negative, non-living)?

Considering the meanings of "I," how does one say "I study psychology, whose
starting point is the self." -->"I study psych, whose I is I."   And would
the first person pronoun always be the subject?

If "they/them" and "others" are interchangeable, how would one say "I'll
give the money to them, but not to others"?

> Front/Positive/Future/Living/Add = Fro > Back/Negative/Past/Not-Living/Subtract = Ba > Self/I/One/Start Point/Subject = I > Them/Others/
Granted, you have affixes that resolve these ambiguities; but I still have trouble seeing what your goal is. Are you trying to create a set of roots, so that, for example, all the words for "I," "Self," and "Starting Point" would all CONTAIN the same morpheme? Jim