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Red is a Color

From:H. S. Teoh <hsteoh@...>
Date:Thursday, September 28, 2000, 1:23
Oops! I forgot that I promised to send another tidbit about my conlang
today :-P  Well, now that I remember, here it is:

My last post talked about stative sentences, and covered two kinds of
statives: the expressive stative, and the possessive stative. Now, I'd
like to introduce a third kind of stative: the partitive stative.

The name "partitive" isn't really a good name, because it only describes
*one* of the functions of this construct. But regardless, let's first take
a look at the partitive function of the partitive stative:
1)      k0'rumi    k3'.
        color(loc) red(cvy)
        "Red is a color", or, "Red is among the colors".

The noun in the conveyant case is a subcategory of the noun in the
locative case. The locative-conveyant construct itself shows an inequality
relationship: the locative noun is "larger" and the conveyant noun is a
"smaller" part of it. This idea manifests itself in the second use of the
partitive stative:

2)      3jhyl33'   juli'r.
        rooms(cvy) house(loc)
        "The house has [many] rooms", or "There are [many] rooms in the

This second usage of the partitive stative shows a part-to-whole
relationship: the rooms are part of the house, or, the rooms are within
the house. This latter leads us to the third use of the partitive stative
-- containment:

3)      3mil3d33'  jhy'li.
        girls(cvy) room(loc)
        "The girls are inside the room", or "the room contains the girls".

Again, we see the idea of the conveyant noun being "part of" or "within"
the locative noun. Of course, the above sentence could also be interpreted
as simply indicating *location*, as in the fourth use of the partitive

4)      jhy'l3   loo'ri.
        hut(cvy) countryside(loc)
        "The hut is in the countryside."

(People who read and actually understood that cryptic post about how noun
inflection works in my conlang may notice that the word for "hut" here is
the same word translated "room" in (3). That's because the Ebisedi (native
speakers of my conlang) borrowed the word for "hut" to mean "room" -- in
the sense that a room is a "hut within a bigger hut (the house)". The
word "jhy'li" actually refers to tiny, single-room huts; so it should be
no surprise that they think of a room as a hut within a house.)

And now, to close off, let me (ahem) scare everyone by adjoining a chain
of partitive stative sentences together:

5)      bii'l3n3 l3       jhy'li   l3       moo'ji       loo'ri.
        boy(cvy) AUX(cvy) hut(loc) AUX(cvy) village(loc) country(loc).
        "The boy was in the hut, in that village out in the country."

ObConlang challenge: parse the above sentence. :-P
(Hint: I've posted to the list before about how adjoining works...)