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Re: Translation Exercise:

From:David Peterson <digitalscream@...>
Date:Thursday, March 7, 2002, 23:03
In a message dated 03/7/02 11:20:49 AM, annis@BIOSTAT.WISC.EDU writes:

<< Inspired by Uk and Ugh, a slight misquote of Humpty Dumpty:

"When I say a word it means exactly what I want it to mean, no more
and no less." >>

    Hey!  We had our first potluck for SLUGS (the Society of Linguistics
UnderGraduateS) yesterday night, and we were all trying to come up with a
motto, and we came up with that exact same quote!  Weird...  Were you
there...?  ;)  Anyway, so what is the exact quote?  None of us knew; we just
knew kind of what it was.  Anyway, here's Megdevi for it:

"ZUlo m&kIl&ZIm za4a4o ?oj, doj qabasi ZImIm Zu, lI?oj dZakajali, lIdoj
qabasi, dijx va4ij, dijx zova4ij."

And it's like...

(1) (at) the time (in which); (2) word-acc.; (3) say-irr.; (4) I; (5) it; (6)
mean-pres., intr.; (6) that which-acc.; (7) yes; (8) particle-I; (9)
intr.-want-pres.; (10) particle-it; (11) mean-pres., intr.; (12) not; (13)
more; (14) not; (15) opp.-more.

    It occurs to me that I don't know what /lI-/ is.  It's kind of like a
comp., but it also indicates the object of a verbal noun.  So, "I eat the
carrot", would be "I eat carrot-Im", where /-Im/ is the accusative, but in "I
want to eat the carrot", it'd be "I want eating-Im lI-carrot", so that the
verbal noun of eating takes the accusative, and the object of that takes
/lI-/.  So I know how to use it; I just don't know what it is.  Oh, it also
does things for performative verbs.  So, "I think bunnies are cute", would be
"I think, lI-bunnies are cute".  And for, "The man who petted the bunny came
to the store the other day" would be "The man, lI-he petted a bunny, came to
the store the other day".  Any ideas on what this could be?  Or is it just a
particle which takes care of different functions, and, if one were doing a
kind of reconstruction of it, or something, one would just say that these are
different particles that happen to have an identical form?


"Zi hiwejnat zodZaraDatsi pat Zi mirejsat dZaCajani sUlo."
"The future's uncertain and the end is always near."
                --Jim Morrison