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prepositions in Tok Pisin & Vivo (long)

From:Jonathan Chang <zhang2323@...>
Date:Friday, September 15, 2000, 20:30
    In pidgins & some creoles, prepositions - as opposed to locatives - are
few in number compared with other languages (especially in regards to their
lexifier languages).
    Example, Tok Pisin divides its semantic "space" between _bilong/blong_
and _long_ (source: Mark Sebba _Contact Languages: Pidgins and Creoles_)

        _long_ - a relationship 'tween a noun and a location in time &
    space, i.e. a place or a period, or a comparison:

            _ol meri long  kantri_  => women in the country

            _bung i bin stat long Mande_ => the meeting began on Monday

            _toktok long hevi bilong helt_ => talk about the difficulties of

            _moa long 40 meri_ => more than 40 women

    _bilong/blong_ - a relationship between 2 nouns, e.g. possesser &
possessed, a personal/family relationship, or relationship of

            _laip bilong famili_ => family life

            _ol opisa bilong Melanesin Envairomen Faundesen_
            => the officers of the Melanesian Environmental Foundation

            _...i stap tu bilong givim toktok
            => are there too in order to give talks

            _toktok long hevi bilong helt_ => talk about the difficulties of

    In regards to _bilong_, Sebba goes onto quote Edward De Bono:

    One of the most powerful words I have come across in any language is the
word 'bilong' which is to be found in Pidgin in Papua New Guinea [wontok
bilong Tok Pisin: Papua NiuGini]. The word has nothing to do with property or
possession but simply indicates a perceptual field - its very lack of
specificity is its strength.

    I am thinking of dividing Vivo's semantic space quite differently and
would like feedback on my rough idea so far:

    _nexi_ (derived from _connexion_):
            -'about' 'in this/that' subject/matter/method, etc (pertaining
to, on the topic of)

            -'because of', 'due to'

            - 'like', 'similar to' =.> _nexi-moda_

            - 'of' (owned by, belonging to, associated with; = genitive)

            - 'of' (containing the measured quantity:
                _bi-pezzi litre nexi aqua_)

            - 'with' (accompanied by)

        _ex_  meaning:

            - "except for", "besides", "apart from", "other than", "excluding"

            -"without", "with no ___...", "lacking"

        _circa_ meaning:

            - "during"

            - "near", "close to ___..." , "somewhat", "almost",

        _oltre_ meaning:

            - " beyond", "farther than", "exceeding" (temporal/descriptive
comparatives, ie. _oltre futuri possibi_, _oltre simpli ca-caco-soni_<beyond
simple noisiness>)

        _via_ meaning:

            - "by means of", "per," "with" (using, through instrumentality of

        _per_ meaning:

            - "for" (to benefit, destined for, for purpose of, in exchange

        _nexi-moda_ => like, similar to

    Locative prepositions (also function as adverbs, adjectives, verbs):

        IN => 'at' (in same location as),
                'in' (located inside of)
        EXO=> "from", "out of" , "away from"
                "outside of" , "exterior"
        CIRCA=> "around", "encircling" , "surrounding"
            "near(by)", "close to"
        SUR=> "on(to[p]",  "touching" top, "on surface of"
        TRANS=> "across"
        AD=> "to(wards)", "(moving) at"
        SOPRA=> "above", "over", "superimposed"
        AVANTI=> before, in front of, ahead of (spatially)
        RETRO=> behind, in back/rear of
        INTRA=> between, among, amidst, inter-
        SOTTO=> under, beneath

    Temporal prepositions (also function as adverbs, adjectives, & even, at
times, as verbs):

        PRI=> before, prior to, earlier to
        DURA=> during, meanwhile, simultaneously, etc.
        CIRCA=> around a certain time period, "sooner or later than..."
            (temporal approximation)
        DOPO=> after(wards), later on, etc.
        AVANTI => in (the) [near-/remote] future, ahead of the current
        situation, etc.
        INRETRO=> in retrospect, to recall/remember, to
            restate/react(ion), from past experience/history, "once upon a
        time," etc.

    That's it so far...

        ... I would appreciate any & all creative/critical feedback (even if
ya hafta tell me to shutup till I get Vivo more developed) [I think I have
alienated some on the list by my constant changing of my conlang...
::cringe:::  ... Trust me this time I have Vivo firmly in a more concrete,
more consistent general direction ... and  I am now quite happy with how it
is developing.]

    Mi 'tz grazi per du Tempo / Spazi nexi Materia  ...
    <<Thanx for your Time-&-Space in this Matter...>>


p.s. - next Vivo installment is it's odd non-pidgin-like grammatical gender
system in it's 3 numerical classifier words... then to Vivo's creole-style
TMA system (a very simple system I might add...)

 > English is a whore.
- Lars Henrik Mathiesen

"For last year's words
belong to last year's language,
And next year's words
await another voice."
    - T. S. Eliot