Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: Genitives NPs as Relative Clauses

From:Doug Barr <dbarr@...>
Date:Saturday, November 17, 2001, 1:49
Keith Gaughan scripsit:

----- Original Message -----

> In my (English) idiolect, it's not uncommon for me to use genitive > constructions > in the place of relative clauses. Example: > > My idiolect: ...of my seeing... > 'Normal English': ...that I see... > > It's not something I always use, and I can't predict when I use it but I
do. I
> think there's parallel idioms in Irish, but I can't think of any like it
> the top of my head.
Keith, this is definitely a calque from Irish (i.e. Gaeilge) to Irish English - "da kannst du Gift d'rauf nehmen" as Christophe said - Scottish Gaelic does exactly the same thing. "Fear a gaoil" means "the man she loves" but actually translates as "the man of her love": "fear" "man," "a" "her" (doesn't lenite the next word, which is why I chose it, to keep things simple) "gaoil" "of love," genitive of "gaol" "love." "Fear a faicinn" "the man of her seeing" does sound a little odd - you'd normally say "am fear a chunnaic i" "the man that she saw" *or* "the man that saw her" (without an adverb in there you can't distinguish them) - I think it's more to do with, um... states? Terminology is breaking down here, what I mean is that "... that she saw" or "... that saw her" is a single definite action, "that she loves" is sort of ongoing, and internal. Dunno. Scottish Gaelic at least - and I would assume Irish - is in general much more noun-oriented than verb-oriented; many many many idioms involve simply prepositions - e.g. "tha cóig doilearan/miosan agam air," literally "there are five dollars/months at me on him," less literally "I have five dollars/months on him," idiomatically "he owes me five dollars" or "I am five months older than he is," respectively. Verbs don't have infinitives *per se*, they have "verbal nouns" - which have gender and decline like nouns, how frightening is *that*? :) To say nothing of what they call "conjugated prepositions"... Doug


Keith Gaughan <kmgaughan@...>
Michael Poxon <m.poxon@...>
Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>