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Compound Verboids

From:Jeffrey Jones <jsjonesmiami@...>
Date:Thursday, June 9, 2005, 19:28
This is something I'm working on for yet another grammar sketch.

First, some preliminaries about ARGUMENT STRUCTURE.

There are 3 classes if stems, with respect to valence:
V1  1 argument    (intransitive)
V2  2 arguments (monotransitive)
V3  3 arguments   (ditransitive)

Each of these classes is subdivided according to what genders each argument
is compatible with. The genders are "animate" and "inanimate"; there's also
a 3rd "gender" for referring to situations rather than entities.

The arguments are labelled A1, A2, and A3, with actants arranged as follows:
V3:  A1  A3  STEM  A2
V2:  A1  STEM  A2
V1:  STEM  A1, if 1st or 2nd person
V1:  A1  STEM, otherwise.

This is simplified, since I'm pretending there's no Inversion, which would
affect which role was associated with which argument.


(A)   The compound is constructed using one morpheme as a base, with its
arguments become the base's arguments.
(B)   When adding a morpheme, one of its arguments is shared with one of
the base's arguments. Assuming the morpheme is _prefixed_ to the base, the
shared argument is the base's A1 and the morpheme's A2 (but A1 if the
morpheme is V1). These arguments must be gender-compatible. If the morpheme
is V1, the shared argument is the compound's A1, if not, but the base is
V1, the shared argument is the compound's A2, and if neither, the shared
argument is the compound's A3; this last kind is possible only if neither
base nor morpheme is V3. The compound can become a new base.
(C)   The semantics of the compound depends on the specific combination of
morpheme subclasses.

So far, I've only used verboid morpheme subclasses, producing only verboid
compounds. The same rules will work for nominoids, but there are still a
few things to be worked out, such as the gender of each type of compound
and whether the compound is nominoid or verboid.

Here are some TYPES OF COMPOUNDS that I've already worked out. These are
derived from 2 verboids in each case. I've omitted the gender requirements.

    1.  V3 from Locational V2 + Actional V2
        compound A2     = actional A2
        compound A3     = actional A1 and locational A2
        compound A1     = locational A1

        Example:        He CARRIED the child TO the doctor.

    2.  V2 from Locational V2 + Activity V1
        compound A2     = quality/state A2 and activity A1
        compound A1     = quality/state A1

        Example:        She WALKED TO the store.

    3.  V2 from Quality or State V1 + Actional V2
        compound A2     = actional A2
        compound A1     = actional A1 and quality/state A1

        Examples:       He KICKED it TO PIECES.
                        They PAINTED the barn RED.

    4.  V2 from Quality or State V1 + Perceptual V2
        compound A2     = perceptual A2
        compound A1     = perceptual A1 and quality/state A1

        Example:        It LOOKS BIG TO me.



Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>