(L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Creyeditor » Sun 11 Feb 2018, 10:14

Ahzoh wrote:
Sun 11 Feb 2018, 04:35
I'm wondering how Proto-Afroasiatic *suʔa eventually became Akkadian šū and Ge'ez wəʔətu.
Just some guessing, it is really just guesses:

Akkadian: Basically, a lot of deletion and palatalization before high vowels:
*suʔa > suʔ > šuʔ > šu

Ge'ez: deletion, reduction/diphthongization and some morphology
*suʔa > *uʔa > *wəʔa > *wəʔə > wəʔə-tu > wəʔətu
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Shemtov » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 00:22

Ahzoh wrote:
Sun 11 Feb 2018, 04:35
I'm wondering how Proto-Afroasiatic *suʔa eventually became Akkadian šū and Ge'ez wəʔətu.
Why are you asking this from a Proto-Afroasiatic and not a Proto-Semitic standpoint? Both of them are in the Semetic branch.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Ahzoh » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 01:49

Actually, those were the Proto-Semitic pronouns.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by All4Ɇn » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 16:37

How, if at all, are vulgar characters taught in Chinese and Japanese schools?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by WeepingElf » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:13

All4Ɇn wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 16:37
How, if at all, are vulgar characters taught in Chinese and Japanese schools?
What are "vulgar characters"?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by ixals » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:25

WeepingElf wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:13
All4Ɇn wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 16:37
How, if at all, are vulgar characters taught in Chinese and Japanese schools?
What are "vulgar characters"?
I would guess and say characters for vulgar words. "Fuck", "shit", "pussy" etc? They probably have their own characters but I can't see a school teaching characters like these. So I'd be curious to how this is done in schools!
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by LinguistCat » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 22:31

ixals wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:25
WeepingElf wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:13
All4Ɇn wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 16:37
How, if at all, are vulgar characters taught in Chinese and Japanese schools?
What are "vulgar characters"?
I would guess and say characters for vulgar words. "Fuck", "shit", "pussy" etc? They probably have their own characters but I can't see a school teaching characters like these. So I'd be curious to how this is done in schools!
I wouldn't know about Chinese at all and I don't know about Japanese schooling, but aren't most of these words written in kana in Japanese anyway?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by All4Ɇn » Mon 12 Feb 2018, 23:47

LinguistCat wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 22:31
I wouldn't know about Chinese at all and I don't know about Japanese schooling, but aren't most of these words written in kana in Japanese anyway?
That's definitely true so I'd imagine it wouldn't be a problem even if there are terms like that with Kanji at all. But the problem still remains in Chinese.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by esoanem » Tue 13 Feb 2018, 01:26

I imagine kids look them up in dictionaries and then spread them amongst themselves

edit: I doubt this is the only mechanism, but suspect most of the learning is through unofficial channels e.g. like this, or graffiti, or just from other students
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by GrandPiano » Tue 13 Feb 2018, 01:38

LinguistCat wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 22:31
ixals wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:25
WeepingElf wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 17:13
All4Ɇn wrote:
Mon 12 Feb 2018, 16:37
How, if at all, are vulgar characters taught in Chinese and Japanese schools?
What are "vulgar characters"?
I would guess and say characters for vulgar words. "Fuck", "shit", "pussy" etc? They probably have their own characters but I can't see a school teaching characters like these. So I'd be curious to how this is done in schools!
I wouldn't know about Chinese at all and I don't know about Japanese schooling, but aren't most of these words written in kana in Japanese anyway?
To my understanding, Japanese doesn't really have swearwords. While there are words that could be considered vulgar, I don't believe any of them have the same strength or taboo as swearwords do in English. The closest equivalent to a swearword that I know of would be the word "kuso", which seems to have originally meant "feces" (and is probably still used in this sense, like "shit" in English), but is frequently used with a meaning similar to "damn" or "dammit". It's usually written in kana as くそ or クソ, but it can also be written with the kanji 糞. I don't believe that the character 糞 itself is vulgar, though. I'm not even sure that the word kuso is truly vulgar, since it appears in compound words like 糞虫 kusomushi "dung beetle".

Chinese, on the other hand, definitely has vulgar taboo words. Two that come to mind are 肏 cào "fuck" and 屄 bī "cunt". Not only are the words themselves obviously very vulgar, but the characters used to represent them are very suggestive: 肏 is composed of 入 "to enter" and 肉 "meat; flesh", and 屄 is composed of 尸 "body" and 穴 "hole". I don't know how these characters are treated in public education, but I doubt that they are taught at all. Even in casual writing, the actual characters I just gave for these words are rarely used. Instead, another character that is phonetically the same or similar is typically used euphemistically. Cào is often written with 操 cāo "to operate". Bī is often written with its one common homophone, 逼 bī "to compel".

Again, I don't know for certain the answer to All4En's question, but my guess would be that they simply aren't.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Omzinesý » Wed 14 Feb 2018, 17:13

I read about Dothraki. In it, the nominal predicat(iv)e in the present is in Nominative but in the past it is in Ablative. This is quite interesting an idea to code tense with case. Russian and Standard Arabic also have different cases (Instrumental and Accusative respectively) as complements of the past copula but the copula is always needed in the past.
Does it really appear in natlangs that the case is the only tense marker?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by All4Ɇn » Thu 15 Feb 2018, 01:47

GrandPiano wrote:
Tue 13 Feb 2018, 01:38
Again, I don't know for certain the answer to All4En's question, but my guess would be that they simply aren't.
Thanks for your answer! I'm curious how people in China learn vulgar characters though. But considering their characters are often replaced with similar sounding ones, I'd imagine the simple answer is that most people don't know them to begin with.
Omzinesý wrote:
Wed 14 Feb 2018, 17:13
Does it really appear in natlangs that the case is the only tense marker?
It's not exactly the same but apparently in Māori the past tense copula is marked with a locative particle that indicates the former location of an object. So thus the only difference between "Kei hea, a Pita?" and I hea, a Pita? (both literally (literally "at where Peter?") is that one is marked with a locative particle used exclusively to mark where an object was.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Xonen » Thu 15 Feb 2018, 03:21

Omzinesý wrote:
Wed 14 Feb 2018, 17:13
I read about Dothraki. In it, the nominal predicat(iv)e in the present is in Nominative but in the past it is in Ablative. This is quite interesting an idea to code tense with case. Russian and Standard Arabic also have different cases (Instrumental and Accusative respectively) as complements of the past copula but the copula is always needed in the past.
Does it really appear in natlangs that the case is the only tense marker?
I don't know of a particular natlang which does this, but I'd actually be rather surprised if there isn't one. For once, I can even refer to a conlanging idea I once had: what if different forms of the verb had originally triggered different case marking, and later sound changes had then obscured the differences between the verb forms but the cases had remained distinct? Both entirely natural processes with plenty of natlang precedent, even if the combination produces a somewhat unusual result. No reason why that couldn't happen.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Omzinesý » Fri 16 Feb 2018, 13:48

Thank you both.

I have a deja vu that I have actually asked that before.
An interesting feature. Must utilize.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Salmoneus » Fri 16 Feb 2018, 17:27

Xonen wrote:
Thu 15 Feb 2018, 03:21
Omzinesý wrote:
Wed 14 Feb 2018, 17:13
I read about Dothraki. In it, the nominal predicat(iv)e in the present is in Nominative but in the past it is in Ablative. This is quite interesting an idea to code tense with case. Russian and Standard Arabic also have different cases (Instrumental and Accusative respectively) as complements of the past copula but the copula is always needed in the past.
Does it really appear in natlangs that the case is the only tense marker?
I don't know of a particular natlang which does this, but I'd actually be rather surprised if there isn't one. For once, I can even refer to a conlanging idea I once had: what if different forms of the verb had originally triggered different case marking, and later sound changes had then obscured the differences between the verb forms but the cases had remained distinct? Both entirely natural processes with plenty of natlang precedent, even if the combination produces a somewhat unusual result. No reason why that couldn't happen.
I'd be surprised if such a feature were able to remain throughout a language family for thousands of years. But there's no reason why, as you say, it couldn't temporarily emerge as a result of other, reasonable changes.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by clawgrip » Sat 17 Feb 2018, 12:51

Regarding "vulgar" characters and Japanese, the words that actually have characters are, as stated, not taboo to the extent of any words in English. The word mentioned above, kuso, appears for example in a word like hanakuso, (dried) snot, which is a word you will hear children use, or even parents use with children, no problem.

There are a few words that are really not to be used in regular conversation, but these are written in kana, as also mentioned above, so you don't need to learn any characters anyway.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by ixals » Sun 18 Feb 2018, 02:47

Does anyone know why "e" is pronounced as /ə~œ/ in the French alphabet and not as /e/ like every other letter?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by shimobaatar » Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:07

ixals wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 02:47
Does anyone know why "e" is pronounced as /ə~œ/ in the French alphabet and not as /e/ like every other letter?
What do you mean "like every other letter"?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by ixals » Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:15

shimobaatar wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:07
ixals wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 02:47
Does anyone know why "e" is pronounced as /ə~œ/ in the French alphabet and not as /e/ like every other letter?
What do you mean "like every other letter"?
I mean the letters that end in /e/. "b", "c", "d" etc. all end in /e/ and in other languages they all rhyme with "e" (like English /diː/ and /iː/, German and even original Latin /deː/ and /eː/), so I'm just wondering why "e" is somehow /ə~œ/.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by GrandPiano » Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:18

ixals wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:15
shimobaatar wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 04:07
ixals wrote:
Sun 18 Feb 2018, 02:47
Does anyone know why "e" is pronounced as /ə~œ/ in the French alphabet and not as /e/ like every other letter?
What do you mean "like every other letter"?
I mean the letters that end in /e/. "b", "c", "d" etc. all end in /e/ and in other languages they all rhyme with "e" (like English /diː/ and /iː/, German and even original Latin /deː/ and /eː/), so I'm just wondering why "e" is somehow /ə~œ/.
Probably because /ə/ is the most common pronunciation of <e> in French (I don't think /œ/ is accurate... perhaps you meant [ɵ̞], which might be a more accurate transcription of French /ə/?).

Also note that, at least according to Wikipedia, those consonant letters are written <bé>, <cé>, <dé>, etc., with an acute accent, when spelled out.
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