|From:||Aidan Grey <frterminus@...>|
|Date:||Monday, August 6, 2001, 8:46|
> >No. This is a distributive/collective distinction.
> Say you want to refer
> >to the tools in the back yard. If they are
> scattered all over the yard,
> >you use the plural marker, but if they are stacked
> up by the porch all
> >together, then you use the singular or a collective
> plural (depending on
> >the language). So the distributed plural indicates
> multiplicity of
> >"locations" of the noun/pronoun/verbal action in
This reminds me of a demonstrative feature of an
Iniuk lang (don't remember which one) I adore. Shape
is a distinctive feature of the demonstrative system,
round and long being the two main features. How this
works is that if I was referring to a man running, he
would be +long, because the space he's occupied over
time is greater in one dimension. And a man sitting
still would be +round, because he's basically the same
in all dimensions. A pair of gloves piled is +round,
but one glove separated from the other is +long,
because the two sort of bookend the space between them
and include it as part of the set.
Ran teithan Jeff:
> I hope you're kidding -- that is not at all how I
> understand "distributive"
> and "collective". To me, "distributive" is like
> mathematical distributive
> and "collective" means that the set of entities is
> treated like an entity
Nope, he's not kidding. And it gets weirder still,
like in my example above. Remember that every
occupation will have its unique uses of certain terms.
A psychologist will have a very different
understanding of distributive than a mathematician!
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