Re: Azurian adjectival morphology (was: Azurian.)
|From:||Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...>|
|Date:||Friday, October 31, 2008, 15:28|
Den 31. okt. 2008 kl. 09.40 skreiv Yahya Abdal-Aziz:
> You write:
> "The definite and indefinite forms are different
> only in the positive."
> Could you please let me know what "positive" means
> in this context? - "positive" usually connotes an
> opposing "negative", but there doesn't seem to be
> any corresponding "negative" here.
Well, positive means having the property described by the adjective.
Any negative would mean not having the property, I guess. Positive is
the uncompared form of the adjective.
> Allow me to think in my L1 (English, Australian,
> Urban Southern (Melbourne, Launceston & Adelaide)
> for a moment. This English allows the following
> (C=Comparative, S=Superlative, D=with Definite
> article, I=with Indefinite article):
> CD: "Of those two boys, Mick is the better swimmer."
> CI: "Mick is a better swimmer than John."
> SD: "Of all the boys, Jimmy is the best at swimming."
> but not:
> SI: *"Mick is a best swimmer than the other boys."
> Is this the kind of thing you have in mind when
> you write on the webpage:
> "The superlative only has definite forms"?
Yes, precisely. As for Azurian, though, even your first sentence (CD)
would have a superlative.
> The options involved in comparisons may be different
> individuals, as above; or different states of the
> same individual, eg:
> CI: "After training with Lynne, John became a better
> swimmer [than he had been]."
> SD: "John is the best at swimming he has ever been."
> Would you expect Azurian to have the same flexibility
> of reference?
Not precisely. The first syntax (CI) would be grammatical in Azurian,
but not the latter. I believe they would rather use a comparison
("better than he has ever been"). I haven't worked out so much detail
on this yet, though.