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Re: LONG: Latest Wenetaic Stuff

From:Dr. David E. Bell <dbell@...>
Date:Wednesday, October 27, 1999, 11:39
From: Paul Bennett <Paul.Bennett@...>

> Well, I'd like to say "you asked for it, folks..." but the true anwser =
is "not
> enough of y'all tried to stop me..." <G>, and here is the latest greate=
> Wenetaic. It's not "finished", but it's "improved".
> Positionals > > -a- Near > -o- Far > -u- Apparent > -=EB- Obscure > -e- Probable/Believed > -i- Improbable/Disbelieved
Interesting mix of locatives (near, far), epistemic evidentials (apparent= , obscure) and epistemic judgementals (probable/believed, improbable/disbelieved) this list! Are these all associated with the sam= e word class? nouns? verbs? I ask because while locatives are generally associated with nominals or adverbials, evidentials and judgementals are typically modal predicate modifiers. Could you elaborate on their usage here?
> Cases (used in forming particles) > > >Gene(ra)tive (these all take the -a- Positional, almost always elided) > s'e - possessive (normal genetive, something which is possessed) > ya - trapping (an habitual or essential possession) > pa - familial (technically used for a family member, also extended to > very close friends. When used to or of people and things outside the > previous definition, it implies a sense of "solidarity" or > "cameraderie").
Is the distinction between 'possessive' and 'trapping' that between alienable and inalienable possession or are you going for something else here?
> tuu - partative (a section of an uncountable substance, or made of > something) > ce - component (a distinguishable, seperate part of an object, or > member of a countable group)
Hmm, I like this distinction. Do you also make a mass/count noun distinction morphologically?
> so - produced (that which is made by something) > nu - productive (that which forms something)
Not sure I fully understand these! I would have to see examples of their usage.
> >Attributive > ta - absolute attributive (used to form similes, metaphors, and so > forth)
Ditto. Could you give an example of how this is used?
> re - relative attributive (marks the noun which is being compared > > against. "x y-arek" means "as x as y", "x y-orek" means "x-er than y") > /* the above is misleading gibberish, please see below */ > > The relative attributive <re> takes the -k- gender as agent, and > attaches to the attribute to form the superlative. > > Examples of Attributives: > (ap) makhetap - (it is) big > (ap) makhetap Yonutrek - (it is) as big as John > (ap) makhetap Yonutorek - (it is) bigger than John > (ap) makhekrep - (it is) the biggest of its kind > (ap) makheprep - (it is) about average size compared to an anaphoric se=
> (ap) makheporep - (it is) the biggest of an anaphoric set > > /* "Ar makhertar Yonutcerorek" could be used as a very personal
> though one that would probably cause mixed emotions <GGG> */
This looks interesting, but I suspect that there's more here then you've explained. More, more...
> >Tense > ng=EB=EB - past tense > ngoo - future tense > > When combined with positionals, the following specific meanings result: > ang=EB=EB, angoo - as in English "recent past", "near future". > ong=EB=EB, ongoo - as in English "ancient past", "distant future". > =EBng=EB=EB, =EBngoo - "mythical" past, "prophetic" future > ung=EB=EB, ungoo - "obvious", "well known" past and future > eng=EB=EB, engoo - something like "IMHO", or "IIRC" > ing=EB=EB, ingoo - yet to be fully deciphered, often used when describ=
> enemy propoganda and non-orthodox religious beliefs
Ah, so this is how they (positionals) are used! Very creative!
> Tenses can be compounded infinitely, each tense mark being taken as > reletive to its antecedent. For example <
> {VI.{G1.ACC}.{G3.OBS.PAST}.{G3.NEAR.FUT}.G3} means literally "in the ne=
> future of the mythical past, he touches me", but translates as "in the > mythical past, he was about to touch me".
Is this how aspect is realized? I would like to see more examples of thi= s.
> >Location /*long and complex history, basically inspired by hearing abo=
ut a
> similar feature in some North American natlangs*/ > yi - directional (roughly equivalent to Dative Case) > ru - locational (roughly equivalent to Accusative Case)
In what sense do you see these equivalencies?
> >Truth Value /* check the CONLANG list archives towards the end of 1998
for a
> list of contributors, meng=EB=EBmakh=EBk this thread ran and ran */ > khu - definately true > kh=EB - seemingly/probably/partly true > y=EB - indeterminate truth/falsehood > th=EB - seemingly/probably/partly false > thu - definately false > > Positionals are used with the above to show evidentiality, ie how/why o=
> knows/thinks that this is the truth value. > > akhu, akh=EB, etc - personal experience > okhu, okh=EB, etc - reported experience, imparted knowledge > ukhu, ukh=EB, etc - deduced from plentiful evidence > =EBkhu, =EBkh=EB, etc - implied from scant evidence > ekhu, ekh=EB, etc - taken on faith, generally accepted > ikhu, ikh=EB, etc - generally accepted, but disputed "here & now"
We are again in the realm of epistemic modality, a favorite topic of mine. My language, amman iar, also has 5 epistemic modal inflections, 3 judgementals and 2 evidentials (and an even larger number of deontic modals) : Judgementals Assertion : unmarked modality, Speculative/Possibility : A weak judgment characterized by what is epistemicly possible or a speculation about an event, Deductive/Necessity : A strong judgement characterized by what is epistemically necessary or a deduction about an event, Evidentials Quotative/Hearsay : used when the speaker's evidence is based on secondha= nd information. Sensory : used when the speaker's evidence is based on firsthand sensory information The last actually comprises 4 modals depending on which sense provides th= e evidence (visual, auditory, olfactory or tactile).
> >Volitional - /*thanks for insipration to Sally Caves, Matt Pearson and
> Schelin, all on the CONLANG list*/ > w=EB - deals with the desire to do/be something in various ways > > aw=EB - want to > ow=EB - fail to > uw=EB - appear to > =EBw=EB - pretend not to / secretively > ew=EB - "because it's the right/expected/honorable thing to do" > iw=EB - "for no particular/discernable reason", spontaneously
Yes I remember these concepts from both Matt's Tokana and Sally's Teonaht. Two excellant sources of inspiration. Keep listening to them.
> Affirmative/Negative > > Evidentials are used to form standard affirmative/negative responses.
These can
> be combined with or replaced by restating the word about which the
question was
> asked, with <-ne> to show the negative. > The word <yaa> is used to give a kind of "grudging" agreement, or an
> where the respondent has no pertinent evidence to form an opinion. > The particle <ru> is used when forming pronouns used to point out the
answer to
> a <kii> question.
A very modal language yours. It would be interesting to see how these diverse modal influences interact. One can imagine some very subtle semantics emerging.
> Suffixes - are used almost exactly the same way as if they were prepose=
d to
> their associated word in English. > /*main sources are the Latin and PIE natlangs*/ > > -ne Not > -khe And > -ra Additive Or (x yra zra =3D one or more of x y z) > -co Exlusive Or (x yco zco =3D exactly one of x y z) > (w xco yra zco =3D w (x yra)co zco =3D one or both of x y or one of w z=
> (w xra yco zra =3D w (x yco)ra zra)
There is an interesting book that you might want to read called 'Everythi= ng That Linguist Have Always Wanted To Know about Logic But Were Ashamed To Ask' by James McCawley. I've got more comments, but I got to run. Keep up the good work. David