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Re: Compound Tense Mystery

From:Steg Belsky <draqonfayir@...>
Date:Monday, July 14, 2003, 4:51
Thanks to everyone who suggested meanings!
Now it's time to go through them :-)

jsb: you were going to
apollo: you were going to(, but)
joe: you were going to
astrand: you always do (without pause)

I didn't expect any of these... although M. Astrand's idea of past+future
meaning "from the past till the future" is cool, i think i'll go with the
"going to" meaning.  That one seems to fit the system closer to the way
the other forms do.

jsb: you should/must have
apollo: you should have / would that you had!
joe: you should have
jsb: (habitual/general imperative)
apollo: now is the time you should
joe: (imperative for always)
jsb: now, quickly, not with reference to extended times
apollo: now!
joe: right away!
jsb: you should learn
apollo: when you get around to it (delayed imperative) / you might
consider (suggestion)
joe: you will (as a command, not a description)

Now this is a good idea i didn't even consider at all!  I had made
multiple levels of obligation verbs but i never considered encoding it in
the subject-tense complex like this!  I like this idea, i think i'll go
with this use of time+command to convey a general idea of

jsb: (past habitual)
apollo: wow you're always / you seem to every day
joe: you have often
astrand: always in the past
jsb: (future habitual)
apollo: if you were to be (present hypothetical)
joe: you will be
astrand: you keep meaning to / you keep pushing off

These two i think i'll go with the idea of a kind of constant or
repetitive action extending from the present in whichever direction, so
EZOIZU- would mean more or less something like "you have always".

apollo: you should've
astrand: you should have
apollo: you should start and do it in general
astrand: make it a habit to
apollo: go and do it now
astrand: now!
apollo: don't you think you should?
astrand: do it but there's no hurry
joe: same as EZ*ZE-, with different emphasis

With these i think i'll just make them time-specified commands, so
EZEZII- would be "do it in the future", EZEZOI- would be "do it in
general", EZEZA- "do it right now", and i guess EZEZU- could be something
like "have it done (by such-and-such a time)"

apollo: just do it gosh dang it!
astrand: or else!

Makes sense :-)  And if you're really angry or in a rush, EZEZEZEZEZE....

Origin of reduplicated pronomial /z/:
Pretty much.  Originally the compound tenses were long double-verbs where
the first one was |tezat| 'be' and then the second was the regular verb,
so EZUZOI-RIS used to be EZU-TEZAT ZOI-RIS.  The /z/ may have been put on
the second verb in order to mark it clearly as a verb; without it, OI-RIS
could be understood as a noun "routine learning" or "learning in
general".  But now i think that internally, they developed the way Apollo
suggests, from originally a multi-word phrase where the first part was a
verbless subject-tense complex and the second was the verb, i.e. EZU
EZOI-RIS.  Then eventually the subject-tense prefixes merged, and
verbless subject-tense prefixes got moved to sentence-final position (ex.
SUDDAAGHNAAB EZOI 'you're (always) sleepy').

Thanks again to all of you for your ideas!

-Stephen (Steg)
 "she'll be back."
     ~ T3