Phaleran update: switch-reference causatives; comparatives; inherently plural verbs
|From:||Thomas R. Wier <trwier@...>|
|Date:||Friday, December 14, 2001, 10:11|
Last summer sometime I sent out a flurry of posts on voice
constructions in Phaleran, including things like active,
passive, antipassive, and middle. 'Middle' forms all shared
the same morphological marking -mi- on the verb, but differed in
the number of noun phrase arguments according to whether they
had reflexive, reciprocative or pure 'middle' constructions.
The switch-reference here can be seen as another distinct type of
middle which takes a specific marking for a change of subject
(1) Causative middle (same-subject):
'The children caused themselves to look at themselves'
(2) Causative middle (different subject)
'The children caused him/her/it/them to see/look
This could thus be seen as a kind of internal object agreement
on the verb, except only that the patient of the causing is also
the subject of its own action. Phaleran has no other (known)
switch-reference markers like this, which is why it is termed the
When you're overtly comparing the qualities of two or
more (sets of) things in Phaleran, the typical order is
the following: [topic] [standard] [marker] [quality].
Ahr' ai tuthuran phrâstyumenuo er|a
governor.ABS and PL.janissary council-of-20.DAT than
'The Governor and his janissaries are more ruthless
than (even) the Council of Twenty, they say.'
_er|a_ (where <r|> marks a uvular trill) functions as a
postposition, and always takes dative case.
Inherently plural verbs
In Phaleran society, some social practices are ritually
required to be carried out by certain numbers of participants
at a given time. Some of these actions have been grammaticalized
into the language by reduplication on the verb, while others
(1) tþegasyonti ahrâs
'He is ritually bowing for his master'
'Two [people] are ritually bowing for their superior'
'He is making a ritual ablution before seeing his lord'
(4) Lexical verb:
'Four [people] are making ritual ablutions before seeing
Thomas Wier <trwier@...> <http://home.uchicago.edu/~trwier>
"...koruphàs hetéras hetére:isi prosápto:n /
Dept. of Linguistics mú:tho:n mè: teléein atrapòn mían..."
University of Chicago "To join together diverse peaks of thought /
1010 E. 59th Street and not complete one road that has no turn"
Chicago, IL 60637 Empedocles, _On Nature_, on speculative thinkers