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Daimyo verbs

From:David Stokes <dstokes@...>
Date:Saturday, November 25, 2000, 19:25
Muke Tever wrote:

> > I figured that I could throw out the notion of verb tense, and replaced it > with something like Whorf's description of 'assertion' in Hopi, but not > quite. > > A verb can be in either of two tense/assertions (anyone who can supply > better names, for the category or the individuals, please feel free!) > > - 'gnostic', for things that the speaker knows: > the visible (known present), > that in one's own thoughts, > the planned (known future), > remembered history (known past) > - 'agnostic', for things that are the speaker does not know: > the unseen (unknown present), > other's thoughts, > the unplanned (unknown future), > forgotten history (unknown past). > > So, say, instead of: > > -John is coming Thursday. [present/future] > -Are you angry with me? [present] > -He is holding a cat. [present] > -The house may have burnt down. [present/past] > -I don't know the answer. [present] > -Loose lips sink ships. [present/timeless] > > One might do: > > John comes.GN Thursday [known] > You are angry.AGN with me? [unknown] > He holds.GN a cat [known] > The house burns down.AGN [unknown] > I know.GN not the answer [unknown] > Loose lips sink.GN ships [known] > > Note that one can know one doesn't know something. Also, the Daimyoish > structure of the 'angry' sentence would likely be much different (emotion > verbs will probably have to behave differently here) but it'd still be AGN. > > What do you think, sirs? Is this feasible? > > *Muke! > -- >
I like it. Its nice to see a change from the usual tense system. And it seems perfectly reasonable to me, although I'm not a professional. I was thinking about something similar for a language I'm working on. In my case I was thinking about a change to the stem for a certain/uncertain distinction onto which various aglutinative endings would be piled. Thus I would get things like: John comes(certain)-future Thursday. John and I have agreed plans. John comes(uncertain)-future Thursday John might drop by. The house burned(certain)-past down. I saw it. The house burned(uncertain)-past down. I've heard a rumor. A tree falls(uncertain)-present-indicative in the forest. And no one is there to hear if it makes a sound. I'm interseted to see what you do with it. David.