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number classifiers & grammatical gender

From:Jonathan Chang <zhang2323@...>
Date:Friday, September 15, 2000, 23:02
    In regards to this subject ^, Vivo (my conlang) is modelled loosely on
Chinese Pidgin English (CPE).

    CPE uses constructions directly influenced by Chinese numeral classifiers:

    in Classical CPE (circa 1664 to about 1900, China Coastal areas under the
British &, later, the Americans as well) there were 2 numerical classifiers:

        - _pisi_  ("piecee") which was for inanimates, i.e.
            _won-pisi plenti hansum silka_ <a beautiful piece of silk>
            _won-pisi iving-dris_ <an evening dress>
            _thri-pisi dola_ <3 dollars>

        - _fela_ ("fella") which was for animates
        (in the early 20th CE, this all was shifted to the sole useage of
_pisi_ )

        Otherwise, nouns were not marked to whether they were singular or
plural... context or specifiers made things clear if needed.

    A very attractive quality this... One can then refer to certain types of
people, things or ideas, etc. in a very general manner... sorta like the
English equivalent of the written constructs (which I am fond of):  _
constructed language(s)_ , _concrete idea(s)_ , _any traveling
Englishperson(s)_, _ any book(s) on...._, _recording(s) of sound(s)_, etc.)
But unlike these written constructs, one can actually "easily" speak these
constructs if fluent in CPE, Chinese ... &/or (eventually) Vivo...

    In Vivo, there are 3 numerical classifiers with grammatical gender:

        _pezzi_ ("Italianization" of _pisi_): for inanimate, non-sentient,
non-living, man-made objects (artistic, mechanical, architectural,
electronic, etc.)  - as well as - human-populated places... [this gender does
not include computers and robots]

        _grappolo_ (Italian for "bunch", as in a "buncha grapes" ;)
for inanimate organic/mineral/biochemical, plant, vegetable, etc.

        _senzi_ (derived from Italian _senziente_ <sentient, sentience>)
animal, human,  computer, robots - pretty much anything that has a semblance
of "thinking/feeling" processes (or the possiblity of sentience)  - as well
as - the thought-products of thinking: ideas, ideologies,
worldviews/religions, etc
    - AND, in an extension of certain animistic, Asian* and "deep
ecology"/Gaian concepts - natural environments, animal habitats and any of
the multiple aspects of the Earth and the Cosmos themselves...   :)

    *especially contemporary Buddhism and Taoism (& progressive "Green"

    Did I leave any inconsistencies?  o_0 ?


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have in common is that they make
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    * Jasia Reichardt
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