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LONG: Latest Wenetaic Stuff

From:Paul Bennett <paul.bennett@...>
Date:Monday, October 25, 1999, 16:00
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".

Not all examples (especially those at the end) are "fixed" to conform
with the new grammar yet.  All examples that have been "dotted" are
guaranteed to be fixed, some or none of the others may have been.

Having bought Trasks Dictionary of Grammatical Terms (Initial
reaction: "ohhhhh .... my .... gosh!"), I'm going to start relexing
this description as and when I find "official" terms to replace my
home-grown gibberish.

Main Headings are preceded by two blank lines, subheadings are preceede=
by ">".

Meta-notes are surrounded by "C-style blockquotes" (</*> and <*/>)

I've just realised that tone is a much more significant feature than I'=
anticipated, especially in relative clauses.  More research is required=

Is this lang incorporating, polysynthetic or agglutinative?

By combining Trask 1993 and Daniels & Bright 1996, I think I may have
fixed a lot of the phonetic descriptions, which can only be a good thin=

Fixed Pitch required throughout for proper readability.

All comments welcome.



Phonological terms are as classified by native speakers, rather than
being "close" phonetic descriptions.  They suffice to describe the
phonemes used, and are only mentioned in this document (outside this
section) in the /*as yet nonexistent*/ section on "Etymology, and Sound=

Change Rules".

         Orthographic      ASCII-IPA
         Front Mid  Back   Fr  Md  Bk
Plosive  p     t    k      p   t   k
Aspirate ph    th   kh     p_h t_h k_h
Nasal    m     n    ng     m   n   N
Sibilant s     s'   c      s   S   tS
Liquid   w     r    y      w   4   j

Open     i     e    a
Closed   u     =EB    o
L Open   ii    ee   aa
L Closed uu    =EB=EB   oo

/4/ is something like /t/, /d/, /r/ and /l/ all rolled into one.
Several English dialects use this consonant between unstressed vowels
as an allophone of /t/ and /d/.

The "native" Wewnet alphabetical order can be seen by reading the grid
above in row-by-row order, except it begins with the Plosive and
Aspirate rows interleaved, ie it starts "p, ph, t, th, k, kh, m, n ..."=

Terms in the lexicon are listed in this order.

Within the lexicon, bracketed parts of roots are listed in the order
they would appear if the brackets were not present, regardless of the
spelling of any particular form of the root.  For example the lexicon
pairs the(kha), thekhu and sungi, su(ng=EB) occur in that order.

Doubled vowels are Long, marked (L) in the table above. Here is /* a g= uess at */ a list of appropriate IPA values. i smallcap-i e turned-smallcap-3 a turned-a u turned-smallcap-omega =EB schwa o turned-script-a /* The above description of the vowels is a guesstimate from someone who has never officially studied phonetics. Audio files of the whole phoneme inventory _WILL_ be posted on the Web, I promise. */
These are alternate symbols for the digraphs s' s-acute ng n-hook
>Consonant Clusters
Two rules are present which seem to make most consonant clusters pronounceable. /* These are thanks to comments made by Nik Taylor on the CONLANG mailing list about clusters like /et_hke/ being hard to pronounce */ 1. Post-stop nasals are realised as voiced stops at their original POA, ie {etnge} -> [etge] 2. Pre-stop aspirated consonants are realised as fricatives near their original POA, ie {ethke} -> [eTke] The actual fricatives they become are: {ph} -> [f] {th} -> [T] {kh} -> [C](SAMPA) the sound in German "ich" These rules apply (in that order) when going from {...} to [...], ie {ethnge} -> [eTge] These are the only circumstances where the abovementioned phones are produced. Where the cluster is still "awkward" a minimal euphonic [@] is inserted. Root Formation There are four different syllable structures for roots, refered to as minimal, reduced, regular and extended. The following should serve as an explanation of their formation. Basic root (conceptually) : C1 V1 C2 V2 NS: The same NP: C1 V1 C1 C2 V2 VI: C1 V1 C2 C1 V2 VC: C1 V1 C2 V1 C1 V2 For minimal roots, C2 and V2 are omitted from the NS form, and C2 is omitted in the NP form. The Lexicon form is always "C1V1(C2V2)" Reduced roots work in essentially the same way as Regular roots, except= the initial C1 is ommited. The Lexicon form is always "V1C2V2(C1)" Regular roots are as above. The Lexicon form is always "C1V1C2V2" Extended roots follow the same pattern, except non-initial C1 is replaced by a "C3". The Lexicon form is C1V1C2V2(C3)
>Basic Paradigm /*There's a touch of Arabic in here, but it started
life as a PIE e-stem vs o-stem thing*/ NS NP VI VC LX Minimal so sosu sorsu sorosu so(ru) Reduced ame arme amre amare ame(r) Regular taki tatki takti takati taki Extended moru motru mortu morotu moru(t) NS - Noun Singular NP - Noun Plural VI - Verb Instant (or complete) VC - Verb Continous LX - The way the root is presented in the lexicon. Affixes and Word Order
>Words have a basic structure of
Root+Particle+Flexion+Suffix where a. The root may be omitted. Words that do not contain a root are also sometimes referred to as "immediate"s, as they have an immediate (i.e. direct) effect on the semantics of a sentence without "going via a root= ". b. Several particles may be used in one word. c. Flexion indicates the Gender of the root (if it's a noun), or of the= agent of the root (if it's a verb) d. The relative or subordinate clauses that refer to a word will "break= " the word, and are inserted between the root and the particle. When thi= s happens the structure becomes: Root1+Flexion1 Root2+Particle2+Flexion2 Particle1+Flexion1 If Word1 would normally take no particle, the "neutral particle" of a- (plus flexion) is used as a kind of "resumptive pronoun". e. Suffixes are "flat", ie they take no other modifiers, eg "-khe" whic= h marks the meaning "and". They always come right at the end of a word.
>Particles have a basic structure of
Flexion+Position+Case where a. Flexion is in agreement with what the Particle refers to, not necessarily the root of this word. b. Position shows where in real or conceptual space the meaning takes place (in relation to the Flexion). c. Case is a syllable such as "ta" (attributive), or "ru" (locational).= d. Any (or all) of the three parts of a Particle may be omitted if not required. Flexion /* originally based on Elamite, but they've lost a lot of the ambiguity in classification */ Flexions are used to represent either or both of the person and/or gender of a word. They are also referred to as Genders. Where the mark .g<x>. (ie .g1. .g2.) occurs (often in interlinears) it refers to a flexion, the number used refers to the position of the gender in the following list. 1 Speaker -m- 2 Adressee -s- 3 Human -t- 4 Animal -r- 5 Inanimate -p- 6 Abstract -k- In effect, there's a two-way branching going on, where one leg of the branch leads to a Flexion, the other leads to another branch. Each level of the tree represents a state of Animacy/Person that is more and= more similar to the Speaker. ?-Abstract (k) \ (Concrete)--Inanimate (p) \ (Animate)--Animal (r) \ (Human)--Somebody Else (t) \ (Me & You)--You (s) \ Me (m) E.g., moru.p is "a corpse", moru.k is "a death", moru.t.s'e.k is "his death", mortu.k is the infinitive "to die", and morotu.s is "you are dying". In word-final or word-initial position, the flexion -k- may be elided in colloquial speech. In medial position, it is always used. Positionals -a- Near -o- Far -u- Apparent -=EB- Obscure -e- Probable/Believed -i- Improbable/Disbelieved The positional -a- is used when no positional is required (thanks to context, or for cases where position is irrelevant), and is elided in non-formal texts (both verbal and written). If any other positional used is completely obvious from context, it too may be elided in colloquial texts. Note:- except when they occur as positionals, vowels are not normally elided. 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"). 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) so - produced (that which is made by something) nu - productive (that which forms something)
ta - absolute attributive (used to form similes, metaphors, and so forth) 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= t (ap) makheporep - (it is) the biggest of an anaphoric set /* "Ar makhertar Yonutcerorek" could be used as a very personal complim= ent, though one that would probably cause mixed emotions <GGG> */
>Essive /*provisional term, the first term from Trask that I used*/
taa - Essive Wenetaic is essentially zero-copula; <taa> is used to make some forms that take copula in other languages and that aren't marked in any other way in Wenetaic. In the translation of the English <being tired,= he slept> (meaning <he slept because he was tired>), <being tired> is formed using the essive, and could be translated back to english as <the tired (one) slept>. The essive marks forms sometimes translated by verbal nouns and nominal verbs, or by adjective/adverbial constructions. The essive is also used to form group nouns from plural= nouns, for example <mamnu.r> (the men) vs <mamnu.taa.r> (men in general= ).
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= ing enemy propoganda and non-orthodox religious beliefs Tenses can be compounded infinitely, each tense mark being taken as reletive to its antecedent. For example < .ngoo.t> {VI.{G1.ACC}.{G3.OBS.PAST}.{G3.NEAR.FUT}.G3} means literally "in the ne= ar future of the mythical past, he touches me", but translates as "in the mythical past, he was about to touch me". /* It strikes me that, as tenses may take independant flexions, Wenetai= c may well work nicely as a lang for time-travellers. Hmmm... Now I thi= nk about it, this actually ties in well with other features of the lang...= */
>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) These combine with Positionals in obvious ways, except for -e- and -i-,= about which more research is required. Available informants (and attested te= xts) show these forms to be very rare, and give a large range of inconsistent mea= nings to them.
>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= ne 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"
>Volitional - /*thanks for insipration to Sally Caves, Matt Pearson and=
Larry 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 Interrogatives /*inspiration from E-o and the Japanese particle <ka>*/ These prefix the sentances, clauses or words to which they apply, or fo= rm words for simple questions by taking flexion. ke - "yes-no" questions. ("ket?" means "is it him?") kha - "yes-no" questions, where one is soliciting an affirmative respon= se. kii - WH-questions. ("kiit?" means "which of 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 ques= tion was asked, with <-ne> to show the negative. The word <yaa> is used to give a kind of "grudging" agreement, or an ag= reement where the respondent has no pertinent evidence to form an opinion. The particle <ru> is used when forming pronouns used to point out the a= nswer to a <kii> question. 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) Pronomials Pronouns are formed as particles specifying the pronomial function. Relative Clauses /* This section is an expansion and clarification (hopefully) of the st= atements made under "Word Order". They are culled from a response to a request = by Mathias Lassailly about this subject on the CONLANG mailing list. Math= ias' original questions are quoted with ">".*/ There are a number of caveats, most notably, that some of the nouns inv= olved have been given "incorrect" genders in order to better illustrate the e= ffects in play.
> rel. subject: > "The dog that saw the cat was large."
kuni.t kato.r phithphe.r.yi.t a.t makhme.t dog.g3 cat.g4 see.g4.DAT.g3 0.g3 be-big.g3
> rel. object: > "The dog saw the cat that killed the mouse."
kuni.t kato.r musi.p a.r a.t phithphe.r.yi.t dog.g3 cat.g4 mouse.g5 kill.g5.ACC.g4 0.g4 0.g3 see.g4.DAT.g3
> nested: > "The dog that saw the cat that killed the mouse that was large drank > from the river that John put the poison in."
I had to break this down into its component parts to translate it, so I= 'll show them here: 1) musip makhmep - the big mouse 2) kator 1 mortupyir ar - the cat that kills 1 3) kunit 2 phithpheryit at 4 phowpheprut - the dog that sees 2 drinks 4= 4) purop Yonus patopayis ap - the river that John poisons kuni.t, kato.r musi.p makhme.p a.r phithphe.r.y= i.t dog.g3 cat.g4 mouse.g5 be-big.g5 kill.g5.ACC.g4 0.g4 see.g4.DAT.g= 3 a.t, puro.p, Yonu.s pato.p.a.yi.s a.p, 0.g3 river.g5 John.g2 sickness.g5.near.DAT.g2 0.g5 eat/drink.g5.AC= C.g3
> rel. indirect object: > "The dog that John gave the ball to."
Technically, this is: kuni.t para.t.yi.p Yonu.s inri.t.yi.s a.p (a.t) dog.g3 ball.g3.DAT.g5 John.g2 move.g3.DAT.g2 0.g5 (0.g3) Colloqiually, it would be: kuni.t Yonu.s para.t.yi.s (a.t) dog.g3 John.g2 ball.g3.DAT.g2 (0.g3) The (0.g3) would only be included if this phrase was itself part of a R= el. Cl.
> rel. oblique: > "The mouse that the cat chewed on." or,
musi.p kato.r (a.p) mouse.g5 cat.g4 eat/drink.g5.ACC.g4 (0.g4)
> "The cat that the dog was bigger than."
kato.r kuni.t (a.r) cat.g4 dog.g3 be-big.g4.REL-ATT.g3 (0.g4)
> rel. posessor: > "The dog saw the cat whose teeth were huge."
kuni.t kato.r thethni.r.ce.p makhme.ta.p a.r dog.g3 cat.g4 teeth.g4.COMP.g5 be-big.EMPH-ATT.g5 0.g4 phithphe.r.yi.t see.g4.DAT.g3 Examples The best way to give a rough sketch is to demonstrate a few sample utte= rences tatki.s.ce.m.o.yi.s! - An imperetive meaning <get your hands off me!> taki.m.o.yi.s! - The same (the meaning is more ambiguous), more colloqu= ially and urgently. mekhe.s.s'e.p.tuu.p - some of your milk mekhe.s.ya.p.tuu.p - (the same, to someone who's stock-in-trade was mil= k) mekhe.p.tuu.s.s'e.p - the [part of the milk] you own, ie "your portion = of milk" mekhep phow=EBrsop tuup - some of the cow's milk [2] mekheptuus - you divide the milk (this shows a difference between bound= and unbound particles, ie bound particles imply a more "verb-like" function= , unbound particles also imply a relative, clarifying or modifying clause has bee= n inserted) phosk=EBrsom - my words phosk=EBrtaam - I (am) the speaker [3a] (at) w=EBkurtat - he is like a wolf [3b] as taktitngootng=EB=EBt - he was about to touch you [4] as taktitng=EB=EBtngoot - he is about to have touched you [4] mekhep phow=EBrsop tuup inripang=EB=EBpangoot - he is about to have tak= en the cow's milk [1] Truth/Evidentiality forms do not imply any specific tense relation [2] Note the final -p in, in this compound genetive,= marking agreement with lekhep, although this is the unmarked word-order for thi= s type of construction [3] Parenthesised word not required. [3a] A comma could replace the (am= ) [4] The forms _arus takti..._ can be used for explicitness or emphasis = if needed = ************************************************************* This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they are addressed. If you have received this email in error please notify the sender. This footnote also confirms that this email message has been scanned for the presence of computer viruses. *************************************************************