A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

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Alessio
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 23 Dec 2019 20:28

No answer? [:(]
I guess I will just post a new lesson and hope to get some more people interested [;)]


LESSON 6
VERBS, SECOND PART


Quick recap: Emilian has three main conjugations, i.e. the 1st (-êr), the 2nd (-er) and the 3rd (-îr).
We already checked out 1st conjugation verbs; today, we're going to have a look at the remaining two conjugations.

2ND CONJUGATION: -ER
First of all, here are some common 2nd conjugation verbs:

màter (a → i) - to put
vàder (a → Ø) - to see
lěżer (ě → i) - to read
scréver (é → i) - to write

The main difference, in terms of infinitive, between 1st and 2nd conjugation verbs is the position of the stress. The 1st conjugation is stressed on the ending; the 2nd on the root. This distinction stays in the three singular persons as well as the 3pl; for 1pl and 2pl it's reversed. This means that, while for 1st conjugation verbs ablaut is applied (with respect to the infinitive) in 4 of 6 forms, for 2nd conjugation verbs it's applied only for the remaining 2, i.e. 1pl and 2pl.
Let's have a look at the conjugation!

Mè a màt
Tè't màt
Ló/lě al/la màt
Nuêtr'a mitàm
Vuêtr'a mitî
Lǒr i màten

From this verb, we can guess the 2nd conjugation endings:

Code: Select all

	SG		PL
1	Ø		àm
2	Ø		î
3	Ø		en
Basically, all three singular forms are the exact same; there is no -a ending, unlike in the 1st conjugation, for 3sg.
1pl and 3pl are the same as the first conjugation; 2pl is different though, as it adds -î, and not -ê.


3RD CONJUGATION: -ÎR

3rd conjugation verbs are quite unique in their pattern. Here are some regular 3rd conjugation verbs:

finîr - to finish, to end
partîr - to leave, to start (from)
capîr - to understand

Let's take finîr and conjugate it:

Mè a finés
Tè't finés
Ló/lě al/la finés
Nuêtr'a finàm
Vuêtr'a finî
Lǒr i finésen

The first thing to notice is that there is no ablaut for 3rd conjugation verbs. The stress never moves from the ending, so one forms fits the whole conjugation.

The second important thing to notice is the -és ending, which is shared among the three singular persons and is found in the 3pl as well.
One could analyze the present conjugation of a 3rd conjugation verb as the same that the 2nd conjugation uses, except all forms that would carry a stress on the root get the extra -és.
This feature adds a layer of distinction between Emilian and Italian, since many -ire verbs in our national language don't get the -isc extension that -és corresponds to. Compare:

finîr - mè a finés vs. finire - io finisco

BUT

partîr - mè a partés vs. partire - io parto

Now, to tell the truth, there are some verbs in Emilian that don't get the -és extension. Most of them, however, do not belong to the 3rd declension - they are irregular. Take "durmîr" (to sleep), for example:

mè a drôm, tè't drôm, ló al drôm, nuêtr'a durmàm, vuêtr'a durmî, lǒr i drômen

Some other irregular -îr verbs include:

dîr (to say) - mè a dég, tè't dî, ló al dîṡ, nuêtr'a giàm, vuêtr'a gî, lǒr i dîṡen
gnîr (to come) - mè a végn, tè't vin, ló al vén, nuêtr'a gnàm, vuêtr'a gnî, lǒr i vénen

Some verbs have an -îr ending, but behave like 2nd declension verbs:
murîr (to die) - mè a mǒr, tè't mǒr, ló al mǒr, nuêtr'a muràm, vuêtr'a murî, lǒr i mǒren

One could, of course, classify these verbs in at least three ways:
-they are regular 3rd declension verbs, but don't get the -és extension;
-they are regular, but belong to a separate declension (4th maybe?);
-they are irregular altogether.
My advice is - don't worry too much about this. There's only a handful of such verbs, so learning them as if they were irregular is probably the best thing to do.

Speaking of which...

IRREGULAR VERBS

Let's have a look at some very common Emilian irregular verbs!

ĚSER - to be

Mè a soun
Tè t'ě
Ló/lě l'è
Nuêtr'a sàm
Vuêtr'a sî
Lǒr i/agli ein

AVĚR - to have*

Mè a j ò
Tè t'ê
Ló/lě l'à
Nuêtr'a j àm
Vuêtr'a î
Lǒr i/agli an

* avěr by itself can only be used to form compound tenses of verbs that use it as an auxiliary. The proper way to express possession is via its compound form avěreg:

AVĚREG - to own, to possess

Mè a gh'ò
Tè't gh'ě
Ló/lě al/la gh'à
Nuêtr'a gh'avàm
Vuêtr'a gh'avî
Lǒr i gh'an

Note that, while all other forms are just prefixed with gh', 1pl and 2pl have a different form, that looks like it was prefixed with av-. From an etymological point of view it's actually the opposite, i.e. the av- is dropped when the verb is used to form compound tenses.


TǑR - to take

Mè a tóg
Tè't tǒ
Ló/lě al/la tǒṡ
Nuêtr'a tulàm
Vuêtr'a tulî
Lǒr i tǒṡen

As a side note, tǒr comes from the Latin verb tollo, which has evolved into Italian to make togliere "to remove".
Emilian, on the other hand, uses a periphrasis to express this meaning, i.e. tǒr vìa, quite literally "take away".

VLĚR - to want

Mè a vój
Tè't vǒ
Ló/lě al/la vǒl
Nuêtr'a vlàm
Vuêtr'a vlî
Lǒr i vǒlen

This will be the last irregular verb for today, but now that I finally can, let me introduce a good old Emilian joke about irregular verbs!
Two men are going around in the red light district of their city, when they finally find two hookers they like.
As the driver pulls over, he tells the passenger:
"Edmandeg s'al vǒlen."
He looks out at the hookers and says:
"Oh, vulêv?"
"Mo nò! Edmandeg s'as tǒṡen!" the other guy tells him.
Again he looks out at the hookers and says:
"Oh, as tuṡêv?"

The joke here is that "vǒlen" is the 3pl of vlěr as much as of vulêr (to fly), and "s(a)" is both the conjunction "if" and the interrogative "what" (often used to mean "how much" with money). Thus, the driver might have told the passenger
Ask them how much money they want
or
Ask them whether they can fly
and, of course, the passenger picked the wrong possibility and asked "can you fly?".
So the driver tries to correct him, but falls once again into a linguistic trap: "tǒṡen" is the 3pl of "tǒr" (again used often with money, to mean how much someone charges for their service) but also of "tuṡêr" (to shave, especially the head). So the second question could be either
Ask them how much money they charge
or
Ask them to shave us
and yet again the passenger chooses the wrong possibility and asks "would you please shave us?".


EXERCISES
  1. Complete these sentences by properly conjugating the verb in brackets.
    1. Par Nadêl al _____ seimper trôp. (spànder) - He always spends too much on Christmas.
    2. Incǒ la cà't la ____ tè. (pulîr) - You clean the house today.
    3. Sa dît? A fóm dimóndi? A _____ quand a ____! (smàter, vlěr) - What are you saying? I smoke too much? I (can) quit when I want!
    4. Spàs as _____ elegant. (vistîr) - He often dresses smart. (the verb is reflexive in Emilian, but for the sake of this exercise nothing changes)
    5. Oh mo et _____ seimpr'incǒsa! (pěrder) - You always lose everything!
  2. Show the full conjugation of these verbs. Ablaut is shown in brackets where needed.
    1. měder (ě → i) - to harvest, to reap
    2. bâter (â → a) - to beat (an object, especially with a stick, or someone at a game; not as in "to purposefully hurt")
    3. armâgner (â → a) - to stay, to remain (somewhere)
    4. cumpîr - used with an age to mean "to turn (that age)"
    5. cundîr - to season food
    6. preferîr - to prefer
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

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Xonen
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Xonen » 23 Dec 2019 21:29

Alessio wrote:
23 Dec 2019 20:28
No answer? [:(]
I guess I will just post a new lesson and hope to get some more people interested [;)]
For what it's worth, I'd like to announce that I, for one, am certainly interested. This is a rather well-written thread on a language that, as you pointed out in the first post, there's not exactly an overly abundant wealth of material available on.

Unfortunately, however, I can't really commit to actually studying any new languages right now, so I'm just sort of browsing. [:|]

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DesEsseintes
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by DesEsseintes » 24 Dec 2019 05:45

Xonen wrote:
23 Dec 2019 21:29
For what it's worth, I'd like to announce that I, for one, am certainly interested. This is a rather well-written thread on a language that, as you pointed out in the first post, there's not exactly an overly abundant wealth of material available on.

Unfortunately, however, I can't really commit to actually studying any new languages right now, so I'm just sort of browsing. [:|]
I want to firstly echo Xonen’s sentiment and secondly say that I just didn’t see the last post. Otherwise I would probably have said something.

Please post more.

Alessio
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 24 Dec 2019 13:56

Don't worry people, I was just joking, and I have no intention to stop posting anyway [;)]

I noticed that my o-carons get turned into some weird "oˇ" sequence on Chrome. Is it just me or does everybody see them like that?
If so, I recommend switching to Firefox since it doesn't seem to have problems displaying that character. I could use ō but I don't want to mess with people who aren't used to the spelling yet.

PS:
Bouna Viżéglia a tót, e in previṡioun, boun Nadêl e boun ân nǒv!
/bɒʊ̯na vi'z̪ĕʎ(ː)a a tŏt e in previ'zjɒ̃ʊ̃ bɒ̃ʊ̃n‿na'dεːl e bɒ̃ʊ̃n‿aːn noːv/
good.FS eve to everybody and in prevision good Christmas and good year new
Merry Christmas eve to everybody, and merry Christmas and a happy new year in advance!
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

Alessio
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 28 Dec 2019 13:09

Today, since Christmas is over, I thought I could write a Christmas-themed lesson [:D]

CULTURE LESSON 1
AL NADÊL A VGNǑLA
(Christmas in Vignola)


Christmas is one of those things that can be quite different across the 20 regions of Italy, but invariantly revolves around food on the entire national territory. The celebrations last three days: Christmas Eve, Christmas and Saint Stephen (Dec 26, holiday in Italy). Each family has its own tradition, but usually at least one big badass lunch or dinner (the latter called "Cenone" in Italian) is involved.

My family meets Dec 24 by my grandparents in Vignola; on Christmas Eve the Christian tradition says one cannot eat meat, so we eat fish instead (I will never understand how fish is not considered meat). This year, we ate spaghetti with tuna - or, in Emilian, spagàt al toun.
Christmas day is where things get serious. A Christmas lunch must include appetizers, at least one first course (pasta), at least one second course (meat) and multiple desserts. Our 2019 Christmas menu was (plates listed by their Emilian name):
  • Appetizers (antipâst):
    • Stràli ed pâsta frôla al furmâj (shortcrust pastry stars filled with cheese)
    • Panetoun gastronômic con toun, zivuleini tritêdi, salâm, persót côt e carciufein (gourmet panettone with tuna, ground pearl onions, salami, baked ham and artichokes)
  • First course (prém piât): turtlein a la buscajǒla (traditional Modenese tortellini filled with minced pork, minced mortadella, nutmeg powder, pepper and parmesan cheese, eaten in cream, mushrooms and baked ham)
  • Second courses (secànd piât):
    • Arôst ed pǒrc arancia e speck (roasted pork with orange slices and speck)
    • Custeini d'agnêl frést (fried lamb ribs)
  • Desserts (dǒlz):
    • Truncàt ed Nadêl (tree trunk-shaped rolled sponge cake, bathed in liquor, filled with marron glacé cream and covered in chocolate, decorated with sugar figurines and, in my case, ice cream cones covered in chocolate to make them look like Christmas trees)
    • Turtě ed Nadêl frét (fried Christmas ravioli, filled with the typical mixture of three jams called savǒr, additional black cherry jam and pine nuts)
Here are some pics! Everything you see in them is hand-made by my lovely grandmother, the author of my pronoun table, who appears in the pics holding the Christmas trunk.

Dec 26 was yet another big day: my grandmother cooked turtlein in brôd, the most classic tortellini plate, where they are submerged in a capon and beef broth. Tortellini are mandatory in the Emilian tradition, and usually not found anywhere else (except in Romagna, the other half of our shared region, that calls them caplàt or cappelletti in Italian).
Since making the broth for the tortellini requires boiling some meat, we ate it afterwards: it is tradition in Emilia to accompany this làs (that's how the boiled meat is called) with a slightly spicy green sauce made with capers, celery, green peppers and olive oil, and optionally onion and garlic, which we do not include because some of us can't eat them. You can see the sauce in the pics as well.

Finally, Italy is home to two Christmas desserts called pandoro (pandôr, not to be confused with tomatoes i.e. pamdôr) and panettone (panetoun). The first is typical of Verona, and the second of Milan; they are not properly part of the Emilian tradition, in that they are more nation-wide, but you can't call yourself an Italian without eating them AND having a strong opinion on which of the two is better (it's obviously pandoro).

I hope I caught your interest and made you hungry! See you around for next lesson [;)]
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by kanejam » 07 Jan 2020 04:07

Pronoun Exercises
Spoiler:
  1. Fill in the gaps using the correct unstressed object (or reflexive) pronoun.
    1. At peins e-spàs. - I often think of you. (the e- is euphonic)
    2. Im an vést par strêda l'êter dè. - They saw me on the street a few days ago.
    3. Al l'ò catê par chêṡ. - I found it (masculine) by chance.
  2. Fill in the gaps using the correct combination of unstressed subject and object pronouns.
    1. Im vǒlen mazêr! - They (m) want to kill me!
    2. I tǒ amîg it zěrchen. - Your friends (mixed) are looking for you.
    3. An n'ò gnanc incàra capî s'ag piěṡ o s'lam tǒṡ par al cûl. - I'm yet to find out if she actually likes me or if she is just mocking me.
  3. Fill in the gaps using the correct combination of unstressed subject and dative (or reflexive) pronouns.
    1. Fěrmet! T'um fê mêl! - Stop it! You're hurting me! (rendered as "you do harm to me")
    2. At telěfon edman. - I'll call you tomorrow. ( rendered as "I'll phone to you")
    3. Al avàm regalê un żǒg. - We gave him a toy as a present.
    4. Am lêv i deint tót i dè. - I wash my teeth every day.
    5. Bêda bein che acsè t'et ruvîn la mâja! - Watch out or you'll ruin your t-shirt!
  4. Fill in the gaps using the correct stressed object pronoun.
    1. S'a fósa in , a starév zét. - If I were him, I'd shut up.
    2. A vlîva picêri mê, a la fin i m'an picê lǒr a . - I wanted to beat them, but in the end it was them who beat me.
    3. ? Ět sicûr ch'et vǒ prôpria ? - Her? Are you sure it's her that you want?
Alessio wrote:
23 Dec 2019 20:28
This will be the last irregular verb for today, but now that I finally can, let me introduce a good old Emilian joke about irregular verbs!
Two men are going around in the red light district of their city, when they finally find two hookers they like.
As the driver pulls over, he tells the passenger:
"Edmandeg s'al vǒlen."
He looks out at the hookers and says:
"Oh, vulêv?"
"Mo nò! Edmandeg s'as tǒṡen!" the other guy tells him.
Again he looks out at the hookers and says:
"Oh, as tuṡêv?"
[xD] [xD] That's a bloody good joke! One question, why do vulêv and tuṡêv have -êv rather than just -ê?

Verb Exercises
Spoiler:
  1. Complete these sentences by properly conjugating the verb in brackets.
    1. Par Nadêl al spànd seimper trôp. (spànder) - He always spends too much on Christmas.
    2. Incǒ la cà't la pulés tè. (pulîr) - You clean the house today.
    3. Sa dît? A fóm dimóndi? A smàt quand a vój! (smàter, vlěr) - What are you saying? I smoke too much? I (can) quit when I want!
    4. Spàs as vistés elegant. (vistîr) - He often dresses smart. (the verb is reflexive in Emilian, but for the sake of this exercise nothing changes)
    5. Oh mo et pěrd seimpr'incǒsa! (pěrder) - You always lose everything!
    (Going easy on us with only singular forms [:P] )
  2. Show the full conjugation of these verbs. Ablaut is shown in brackets where needed.
    1. měder (ě → i) - to harvest, to reap

      Code: Select all

      a měd, èt měd, al/la měd, a midàm, a midî, i měden
    2. bâter (â → a) - to beat (an object, especially with a stick, or someone at a game; not as in "to purposefully hurt")

      Code: Select all

      a bât, èt bât, al/la bât, a batàm, a batî, i bâten
    3. armâgner (â → a) - to stay, to remain (somewhere)

      Code: Select all

      a j'armâgn, t'armâgn, l'armâgn, a j'armagnàm, a j'armagnî, i armâgnen
    4. cumpîr - used with an age to mean "to turn (that age)"

      Code: Select all

      a cumpés, èt cumpés, al/la cumpés, a cumpàm, a cumpî, i cumpésen
    5. cundîr - to season food

      Code: Select all

      a cundés, èt cundés, al/la cundés, a cundàm, a cundî, a cundésen
    6. preferîr - to prefer

      Code: Select all

      a preferés, èt preferés, al/la preferés, a preferàm, a preferî, a preferésen
Alessio wrote:
28 Dec 2019 13:09
Here are some pics! Everything you see in them is hand-made by my lovely grandmother, the author of my pronoun table, who appears in the pics holding the Christmas trunk.
Looks amazing! Colour me jealous! Funnily enough, my aunt made us all Bûche de Noël for Christmas, which looks very similar - this one didn't have the decorations, and had strawberries in it as well.

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 13 Jan 2020 09:59

I just wanted to reply because next lesson will take a while to make.
The -v you see in the -êv forms is due to the verbs being in their question form, which will indeed be the topic of the next lesson together with the negative form.
I'm currently struggling to figure out a phonetic rule of utmost importance, since without knowing it it's quite hard to figure out the spelling of some words. Unfortunately it seems that I am the first ever to even realize that such a rule exists, at least judging from the material I found, or rather did not find, online and in what few books I have.
So stay tuned, I hope to post soon! As sintàm
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 14 Jan 2020 19:31

Well, guys, I made it.

LESSON 7
BOUNDARY GEMINATION


As you already know, Emilian roots (almost) never contain geminated consonants, unlike Italian and Latin ones.
There are a few exceptions to this rule; for example when an unstressed vowel became syncopated at a certain stage it might have left two identical consonants together, giving birth to a geminate.
Another such situation is what we'll call, from now on, boundary gemination.

Why? Because it happens exclusively across a syllable boundary, i.e. when two morphemes meet and the first one ends in a consonant, under certain circumstances that consonant might geminate.

I must add a disclaimer to this: as far as I know, I'm the first person ever to investigate this issue and I'm far from being an expert at linguistics. Thus what I write here might not be entirely correct and is based solely on empiric evidence.

FIRST CASE: -ia
This case is not as much about -ia as it is about /j/, but -ia provides a useful example.
As we're going to see in a future lesson, 1sg and 1pl verbs add a /ja/ when used in their interrogative form. This ending is generally spelled as -ia after a consonant, or -ja after a vowel (e.g. ôja, vâghia).
Now, usually in Emilian - and I guess in Romance languages in general - adding a suffix to a word triggers a syllable recalculation. For example, the verb guardêr, whose stressed (ablauted) root is guêrd-, has /gwεːrd/ (1 syllable) in its 1 and 2sg forms, but /'gwεːr.da/ (2 syllables) in its 3sg form; the /d/ has been carried over to the next syllable, for the sake of pronunciation.
This is the rule, and most of the time it happens just the way I described. However, the -ia suffix behaves differently, in that sometimes it does not trigger such a recalculation, i.e. it doesn't cause any consonant to be carried over.
I've found that this behavior happens quite regularly when all of the following conditions are met:
  1. The verb form that -ia needs to be attached to, i.e. the verb in its 1sg or 1pl form, ends in a VC pattern;
  2. The V of said pattern is a short vowel;
  3. Said vowel is stressed.
For example, the 1sg of màter is màt, and as such its question form is /'mat.ja/ - the /t/ stays in its former syllable and is not carried over to the same syllable as the /ja/ suffix.
Now, where is our problem? Well, you must understand that Emilian doesn't really have a written form, and as such every single native speaker learned to write through Italian; and Italian words can never contain a sequence of a consonant and /j/ in a different syllable. This is entirely forbidden per the Italian phonetic rules. For this reason, and because Emilians subconsciously pass through Italian to spell words, we get what I call the fake boundary gemination.
You will most often, if not always, see /'mat.ja/ and all other words like it being spelled with a double consonant - <màttia>. This is not a real geminate. The illusion is given by the process I explained earlier, and is helped by the fact that the vowel before the consonants is short (stressed vowels in the penultimate are long in Italian if the penultimate is open).

Note that, since the 1pl ending is -àm, each end every verb ending will always undergo fake boundary gemination in its 1pl interrogative form. Thus you will always see -àmmia as a suffix, and almost never -àmia.
A more scientific spelling for this could be the following: use <j> to spell /j/ if it is the very first sound of its syllable, and <i> otherwise, i.e. spell <mitàmja> but <guêrdia>. I will not do this because no other native speaker would ever do it.

This phenomenon is so important in terms of Emilian phonology that we unconsciously apply it in Italian. There is an Italian word that Emilian people are renowned for pronouncing "wrong", i.e. <fastidio> - annoyance, nuisance, discomfort. Now, in Emilian this word is <fastédi>, it doesn't show any weird phonetic phenomenon in particular, and all is nice. But the way we pronounce it in Italian is... yep, you guessed it, /fas'tid.jo/. This is "wrong" for two reasons: first of all because, like I said, /j/ cannot start a syllable if there's a VC pattern right before it; second, because you can't break /sC/ clusters in Italian unless C is another /s/, so the correct syllabation would be /fa'stiːdjo/, with a long /i/ nonetheless. The result of this "mispronunciation" (I put quotes everywhere because each dialect has its own mutations blah blah blah you get my point) is that the word "fastidio", pronounced by an Emilian, sounds to most Italians as if it was spelled fasstiddio. Guys, if we even carry it over into Italian, without giving a shit for its phonetic rules, it must be a pretty regular thing.

SECOND CASE: an
During our next lesson, we will also study the negative particle <an>. This particle shows what I call real boundary gemination: one of the few cases in which Emilian does, in fact, show actual gemination.

This rule is pretty simple: whenever <an> is followed by a word beginning with a vowel, its <n> has to be reduplicated in the next syllable.
Thus, for example, if we want to negate the verb "to be", 3sg <è>, we have to say
/an‿nε/
and spell it <an n'è>, with a real geminate spanning two words.
I can only imagine, under the influence of the previous rule, that this happens because /an ε/ has to stay like that, i.e. the /n/ mustn't be carried over. However, Emilian phonetics do not allow for a consonant and a vowel to be adjacent without being part of the same syllable, hence the need to put another /n/ in the same syllable as the vowel that follows, generating a geminate.

That was all! Thank you for reading through this boring post. It was much needed to explain the spelling choices I will have to make in my next lesson. Stick around!
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by kanejam » 15 Jan 2020 22:28

Neat! So this is pretty much the same thing that happens with the object pronouns and the feminine singular article right? al -> al l' / ajj'

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 25 Jan 2020 21:53

kanejam wrote:
15 Jan 2020 22:28
Neat! So this is pretty much the same thing that happens with the object pronouns and the feminine singular article right? al -> al l' / ajj'
I'm not sure which form in particular you refer to, but don't confuse a genuine geminate (al and l both have pretty clear semantic meanings) with boundary gemination (the second <n> in an n' doesn't mean anything on its own).

Okay guys, we need to wrap up verbs as soon as possible so I can start posting something... idk maybe more interesting and easier at the same time!
You'll see hehe
Now, time for

LESSON 8
VERB FORMS


So far we've only been studying verbs in the affirmative form, but there are, of course, a couple other forms that we need to check out.

NEGATIVE FORM

Negatives in Emilian are formed by using two particles, much like in French (ne... pas).
In Emilian, those two particles are an /ãː/ and one of several words that change according to various factors - for example the location and, to some extent, the speaker's preference. In Vignola, the most used such word is by far ménga, but brîṡa and mìa are also common.
The etymology of these negating particles is quite straight-forward: ménga comes from Vulgar Latin mica (crumb, grain), brîṡa from bricia (again, crumb), and mìa is a shortened version of ménga. So to say, for example, "I don't eat", in Emilian you say "I don't eat [, not even] a crumb" - at least etymologically speaking, because as we'll see those particles do not disappear before a different object.
I would also like to point out that, as we'll see, Emilian has a full double negation system, i.e. you don't say "I never do that" but "I don't never do that". You could even say that this system extends to cases where there isn't even any other negative word, adding dummy ones (ménga or brîṡa) to compensate.

But enough talking! Let's try this out. The way you form negative phrases using the particles we just met is:

UNSTRESSED SUBJECT PRONOUN + an + CONJUGATED VERB + NEGATING PARTICLE

The problem is that an merges with the USPs, giving us the following forms:

Code: Select all

	SG		PL
1	an		an
2	t'an		an
3	an/l'an		in/an
You might be interested in knowing how I come up with the proper form for such words, since they almost always appear merged with some other particle and there is no official written Emilian, so no real way to know what the "real" form of, in this case, an is.
Well, 7 of the 8 forms showed in the diagram above don't give it away. The particle might very well be just n. One-letter particles are far from uncommon in Emilian, as you've seen with unstressed object pronouns. However, for the 2sg, since the euphonic vowel in Vignolese Emilian is usually /e/, ten would be expected if the particle was just the n, and although this form does exist, it's much more common to say t'an, giving away that the particle must be, in fact, an.

So, if we use ménga as the negating particle, we will have the following affirmative-negative conversions:

A guêrd la televiṡioun. - An guêrd ménga la televiṡioun. (I watch/don't watch TV)
Et cràd in Dìo. - T'an cràd ménga in Dìo. (You believe/don't believe in God)
Al finés a sě ǒr. - An finés ménga a sě ǒr. (He finishes/doesn't finish [his shift] at 6)

Remember from our previous lesson that real boundary gemination occurs between <an> and a word starting with a vowel:

Ciâno l'è un mě amîg. → Ciâno an n'è ménga un mě amîg.
Lucius is a friend of mine. → Lucius is not a frend of mine.


If another negative word is used in the sentence, an still needs to be used, but ménga and its equivalent are dropped. Among such words we find, for example, "mâi" (never), "nisun" (nobody), "gninta" (nothing), "da nisóni pêrt" (nowhere) or "gnanc" (not even):

An mâgn mâi fǒra. - I never eat out.
An vâg da nisóni pêrt. - I'm not going anywhere.

In this sentence, mâi, meaning "never", is used, thus ménga is left out, much like its French equivalent pas would be.
If, instead, the negative word is the subject of the clause and comes before the verb, no other negative at all is used, not even an:

Nisun m'à aviṡê! - Nobody warned me!

Notice how this sentence lacks an unstressed subject pronoun. I've actually heard negative sentences like this one both with and without the USP, but leaving it out sounds more natural to me.
Finally, if you rewrite the sentence above so that the subject comes after the verb - something you can often do to put stress on it, as you know from my lesson on stressed subject pronouns - the negative an reappears:

An m'à avisê nisun. - Nobody warned me.

It's hard to tell if the USP has reappeared as well, since a(l) + an = an, but my Emilian brain tells me that it has. In any case, if it is indeed used in this kind of sentence, the form one should use is never anything different from an, regardless of gender (e.g. if you want to say no girl wants you the sentence will still be an (u)m vǒl nisun; you don't use l'an).



QUESTION FORM
Much like English, but totally unlike Italian, Emilian has a mandatory subject-verb inversion in questions. The only times this inversion is not respected is when asking for confirmation and especially when something is surprising, again much like in English (compare "are you a doctor?" and "you are a doctor?").

This inversion affects the unstressed pronouns, which, as we know, are mandatory. However, the pronouns undergo some degree of modification before being actually appended to the conjugated verb:

-2pl verbs add a <v>, ignoring the <a> they use for their USP.
-all other instances of <a> become <ia>. This is not just euphony after vowels, as it might seem: it's mandatory even after consonants.
-the two instances of <al> behave differently: 3sg m <al> becomes <el> (just -l after a vowel), and 3pl f <al> merges with its masculine counterpart and becomes <i>.

In practice, as you can see, only <et> and <i> stay the same, and all other pronouns change slightly.
Additionally, the verb form itself slightly changes:
-verb forms ending in -a drop it; in the present, this happens only for 1st conjugation verbs in their 3sg;
-the universal 3pl ending -en loses its -e- because of syncope before adding -i;
-verbs ending in a stressed vowel (mainly monosyllables) lengthen it in the singular (see "ěser" and "avěr" below, but also dêr: ló al dà, dâl?);
-fake boundary gemination may apply, as per our previous lesson.

Now, apart from FBG, spelling a verb in its question form is still controversial. There are two main lines of thought: one is to attach them directly to the verb; the other is to separate the two with a hyphen <->. I've chosen the first because, in my experience, it's the one that appears most frequently within native speakers.

Knowing all this, let's finally see a verb in its question form for each of the three main conjugations.

GUARDÊR
guêrdia?
guêrdet?
guêrdel?/guêrdla?
guardàmmia?
guardêv?
guêrdni? (notice the loss of the -e- of the -en ending and the resulting -rdn- cluster)

MÀTER
màttia?
màtet?
màtel?/màtla?
mitàmmia?
mitîv?
màtni?

FINÎR
finéssia?
finéset?
finésel?/finésla?
finàmmia?
finîv?
finésni?


One should also keep in mind the question forms of ěser (to be) and avěr (to have):

ĚSER
sounia?
ět?
ěl?/ěla? (irregular: êl/êla would be expected)
sàmmia?
sîv?
eini?

AVĚR
ôja?
êt? (sometimes realized as [e(ː)t])
âl?/âla?
(av)àmmia?
(av)îv?
âni?

Notice the two irregularities, both having to do with <ê> to some degree. The first is that 3sg "is", i.e. <è>, becomes <ěl(a)> instead of the expected <êl(a)>; and the other is that <êt> is, as I wrote beside it, often realized as if it was <ět>, especially when it acts as an auxiliary. Also, 1pl and 2pl for avěr have two alternative forms, but this is nothing new - it happens for affirmative clauses as well and we talked about it already.

Now, how does one reply to these questions?
Well, "no" can be translated as <nò>:
«Ět prunt?» «Nò.» - «Are you ready?» «No.»

"Yes" has two possible translations: <sè>, from Latin "sic" (reflected in its Emilian translation <acsè>), and <ói>, visibly related to the word "oïl" used in... well, the Langues d'Oïl.
Those two translations are not always interchangeable. "Sè" is the standard reply.

«Ět prunt?» «Sè.» - «Are you ready?» «Yes.»

"Ói", on the other hand, has some slight nuances in meaning; for example, when used with a command, it can mean "I understood" or "it will be done":

«Và a tǒr dal lât.» «Ói.» - «Go buy some milk.» «Understood, I'm on my way.»

In this sentence, using "sè" would sound a bit rude, as if you were saying "yeeeees, just shut up, I'll do it if you stop bothering me".
The converse also applies: if someone asks for confirmation, "ói" will mean "yes, you understood correctly".

«Gîno al s'è spuṡê?!?» «Ói!» - «Lewis got married?!?» «Yes he did, as incredible as it might sound!»
compare:
«Gîno al s'è spuṡê?!?» «Sè!» - «Lewis got married?!?» «Yes, I told you! How many times do you have to ask?»

"Ói" is also preferrable when you're addressed:
«Alêsio!» «Ói!» - «Alessio!» «Yes?»

As a final note, negative questions can be asked by barely adding "ménga" or "brîṡa" (or any other negative word if needed), leaving out the "an":
L'è chè. - He's here.
Ěl chè? - Is he here?
An n'è ménga chè. - He's not here.
Ěl ménga chè? - Is he not here?

Unfortunately, Emilian does not have any word corresponding to, say, the French "si" or the German "doch". You'll have to reply "sè" (you'd better not use "ói" in this context, as it might be understood to be the same as "nò") and, if needed, repeat the sentence in affirmative form:
«Ěl ménga chè?» «Sè, l'è chè.» - «Is he not here?» «Yes, he's here.»



INTERROGATIVES
Being able to form a yes/no question is cool and everything, but is in no way enough.
What happens when interrogative particles get thrown in the sentence?
Well, first of all, let's make our acquaintances!
Below are the main Emilian interrogative particles. Most of them have a stressed and an unstressed form: the unstressed form is generally used when they are accompanied by a verb, and the stressed form otherwise.

Code: Select all

ENG	STR	UNS
What?	Cǒṡa?	Sa... ?
Who?	Chî?	Chi... ?
Where?	Indǒve?	Indu (before vowels)/inda (before consonants) ... ?
When?	Quand?	Quand... ?
Why?	Parchè?	Parchè... ?
How?	Cǒme?	Cum(a)... ? (euphonic <a>)
These words go right before the verb, that has to be in its question form, i.e. inverted:

Sa fêt? - What are you doing?
Chi ět? - Who are you?
Inda vêt? - Where are you going?
Quand ěla la fěsta? - When is the party?
Parchè dît acsè? - Why do you say that? (lit. why do you say so?)
Cum fêt a saltêr acsè ělt? - How do you manage to jump so high?

Some examples using stressed interrogatives:
"A gh'è un gât!" "Indǒve?" - "There's a cat!" "Where?"
"Vîra cla butéglia lè." "Cǒme? An gh'avàm gnanc un tirabuṡoun." - "Open that bottle." "How? We don't even have a corkscrew."

I'm thinking of dedicating an entire lesson to interrogatives and their corresponding relative/demonstrative pronouns later on, but this should be enough to get you started.



EXERCISES
  1. Negate the following sentences.
    1. Dělmo l'è un cuntadein. - Adelmo is a farmer.
    2. A soun italian. - I'm Italian.
    3. T'ě fûreb. - You're smart.
  2. Complete these sentences by inserting the verb between parentheses aptly conjugated in the negative present. You will also have to insert the proper USP.
    1. Brîṡa cridêr! ________________ (ěser) sǒrd! - Don't shout! I'm not deaf!
    2. ______________ (guardêr) mâi la televiṡioun. As fà schîf. - We never watch TV. We find it disgusting.
    3. I mě amîg ______________ (finîr) mâi quàl ch'i tâchen. - My friends never finish what they start.
  3. Put these sentences in question form.
    1. A sî żǒven. - You're (pl) young.
    2. I ein al mêr. - They're by the sea.
    3. L'è indal lêt. - He's in bed.
    4. An n'è mâi a cà. - He's never home.
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by kanejam » 28 Jan 2020 04:39

Alessio wrote:
25 Jan 2020 21:53
kanejam wrote:
15 Jan 2020 22:28
Neat! So this is pretty much the same thing that happens with the object pronouns and the feminine singular article right? al -> al l' / ajj'
I'm not sure which form in particular you refer to, but don't confuse a genuine geminate (al and l both have pretty clear semantic meanings) with boundary gemination (the second <n> in an n' doesn't mean anything on its own).
Ah okay, then I've misunderstood this part on the object pronouns:
Alessio wrote: All pronouns ending in -l behave a bit differently before a vowel:
  • if the object is masculine singular, the /l/ sound is duplicated, and written just before the second word with an apostrophe dividing them (a+l (m) + ò = al l'ò);
  • if the object is feminine plural, the -l ending becomes -gli (a+li + ò = agli ò);
  • as an exception, the field marked with **, i.e. 3pl f + 3sg m, becomes <al l'> before a vowel.
EXERCISES
Spoiler:
  1. Negate the following sentences.
    1. Dělmo l'è un cuntadein. - Dělmo an n'è ménga un cuntadein.
    2. A soun italian. - I'm Italian. An soun ménga italian.
    3. T'ě fûreb. - You're smart. T'an n'ě ménga fûreb
  2. Complete these sentences by inserting the verb between parentheses aptly conjugated in the negative present. You will also have to insert the proper USP.
    1. Brîṡa cridêr! An soun ménga sǒrd! - Don't shout! I'm not deaf!
    2. An guardàm mâi la televiṡioun. As fà schîf. - We never watch TV. We find it disgusting.
    3. I mě amîg in finésen mâi quàl ch'i tâchen. - My friends never finish what they start.
  3. Put these sentences in question form.
    1. A sî żǒven. - Sîv żǒven?
    2. I ein al mêr. - Eini al mêr?
    3. L'è indal lêt. - Ěl indal lêt?
    4. An n'è mâi a cà. - Ěl mâi a cà?

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 28 Jan 2020 09:31

kanejam wrote:
28 Jan 2020 04:39

Ah okay, then I've misunderstood this part on the object pronouns:
Alessio wrote: All pronouns ending in -l behave a bit differently before a vowel:
  • if the object is masculine singular, the /l/ sound is duplicated, and written just before the second word with an apostrophe dividing them (a+l (m) + ò = al l'ò);
  • if the object is feminine plural, the -l ending becomes -gli (a+li + ò = agli ò);
  • as an exception, the field marked with **, i.e. 3pl f + 3sg m, becomes <al l'> before a vowel.
Ah! Actually I think I misunderstood your question.
Yes, a + l'ò does look like it triggers boundary gemination. Real boundary gemination, nonetheless. I got the table from my grandma, so I pretty much copy-pasted it and then described it without really thinking about it. But you seem right indeed. This might require further study...

Also, your excercises are correct. Good job!
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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 10 Feb 2020 21:40

Okay guys, it's been a while, and my next lesson isn't ready yet (sorry for taking so long, but I want to provide quality material this time), so I thought "why not post something about lexicon for once?"
So here we are!

LEXICON CARD 1
THE HUMAN BODY


TĚSTA (f) - Head
Cavî (m pl) - hair (plural; use in the singular for "a single strand of hair")
Frunt (f) - forehead
Ghégna (f) - face
Uràcia (f) - hear (uràc' (m) is also possible)
Ôc' (m) - eye
Zéj (m) - eyelash (a single piece; usually feminine "zégli" in the plural, although the singular "zéglia" is quite rare in Vignolese Emilian)
Nêṡ (m) - nose
Bàca (f) - mouth
Lâber (m) - lip
Deint (m) - tooth
Meint (m) - chin
Bâf (m) - moustache, facial hair growing above the upper lip (plural for the "whole thing", singular for a single piece)
Bêrba (f) - beard, facial hair growing anywhere else (collective noun; a single piece is "un pěl (e)dla bêrba")


TROUNC (m) - Upper body
Côl (m) - neck
Spâla (f) - shoulder
Panza (f) - tummy, stomach
Schîna (f) - back, spine
Umbréghel (m) - navel
Fianc (m) - hip


BRÂZ - Arms
Man (f) - hand
Dî (m) - finger
Óngia (f) - nail
Pǒls (m) - wrist
Gàmet (m) - elbow
Laseina (f) - armpit (this one is perhaps the only word in this card that isn't directly relatable to its Italian counterpart, ascella)


GAMBI - Legs
Pě (m) - foot
Didoun [dal pě] (m) - toe (usually only the first toe)
Żnôc' (m) - knee
Cavéglia (f) - ankle
Taloun (m) - heel (yes, this is cognate with English "talon")
Cavâl (m) - crotch, groin



I wanted to make a chart like those you find on children's books, but I couldn't find a base image that looked suitable for this task. If any of you feels like making one, they'll be more than welcome [:D]
Have fun and stay tuned for the next "proper" lesson [;)]
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

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Re: A soun incàra vîv - Emilian lessons v2

Post by Alessio » 20 Feb 2020 16:36

Sorry to keep you waiting, guys. Here we go!

LESSON 9
THE PAST


I don't think I need to explain what a past tense stands for. In this lesson, we will focus on the two main past tenses of the indicative mood.
Yes, two: just like most Romance languages, Emilian has two tenses that could be translated into the English simple past.
The rules regarding their usage are pretty much the same as in, say, Italian, French and Spanish, but I will list them nevertheless.


IMPERFECT PAST
The imperfect past, or just imperfect, is used:
  • for actions that were habitual in the past (e.g. "I used to wake up at 7 when I went to school", for both verbs);
  • for states someone or something used to be in (including position, e.g. "I was home");
  • with some adverbs indicating contemporarity, especially "meinter" and its phrasal form "in cal meinter che" (while).
In general, the principle is that an action has to have been ongoing for a while before it can be expressed with an imperfect past.
Forming this tense is actually quite easy once you know the present.
  1. Take the 2pl present form:
    stêr → stê
    vàder → vdî
    durmîr → durmî
  2. Add -v-:
    stêv-
    vdîv-
    durmîv-
  3. Add the imperfect endings:

    Code: Select all

    	SG	PL
    1	a	-em
    2	Ø	-i
    3	a	-en
Note that none of these endings are accented, as you might have noticed from phase 1, where we left some accents on the stem. Also, note that Italian uses -o as its 1sg imperfect ending, while Emilian uses -a, just like Spanish and truer to the original Latin -am.

Now, knowing all of the above, let's check out the imperfect past of the verb DURMÎR (to sleep):

Mè a durmîva
Tè't durmîv
Ló al durmîva
Nuêtr'a durmîvem
Vuêtr'a durmîvi
Lǒr i durmîven

What about irregular verbs?
Well, for ĚSER, the root is ěr- and no -v- is inserted:
mè a j ěra
tè t'ěr
ló l'ěra
...

For most other irregular verbs, the same rule as for regular verbs is applied: take the 2pl present, add -v and the proper endings.
avěr (have) → avîv-/îv- (remember the distinction between "avàm" and "àm"? Same principle. We'll look into it as soon as we get to the compound past anyway)
psěr (can, may) → psîv-
vlěr (want) → vlîv-
tǒr (take) → tulîv-

As you might have noticed, this rule allows us to get rid both of ablaut mutations and irregularities (except for ěser) all at once.



SIMPLE (COMPOUND) PAST

Emilian historically had two simple past tenses: one, usually called the remote past or the historical past for other Romance languages, used to refer to actions that were far away in time and suitable, for example, for history or narrations; and the other, called the near past, for actions that were close in time.
Nowadays, the historical past has almost completely disappeared; only a handful of verbs retain it. The only one you are likely to come across is dîr (to say), that retained both 3rd persons in the historical past: in the singular and gèn in the plural. For all other verbs, regarldess of the distance in time from the event, the near past is always used, so much that I decided that a better name for it would be just simple past ("simple" as in "basic"), or compound past since it's made up of two words.

Those two words are, as you might imagine, an auxiliary verb and a past participle, making the simple past visually similar to the English present perfect. While the simple past is used in a lot of situations where you use a present perfect in English (but not all), it's used much more than that, especially to translate the English simple past.

Before we begin, it's important to add a note for Italian speakers. Italian has pretty much lost its remote past in common usage, especially in northern Italy, probably under the influence of each region's local language. However, it still has a productive, fully-working remote past, that can and must be used in formal settings. Emilian does not simply "ignore that tense in common usage"; except for a handful of verbs, there is no such tense at all. There isn't even any rule to form it.

Now, the first word we need to use is the present of either ĚSER or AVĚR. Choosing which of the two is the correct auxiliary can often be done by following a couple of rules.

ĚSER is always used:
  • with passive, medio-passive and reflexive verbs: al s'è sbagliê - he made a mistake (reflexive in Emilian);
  • with verbs that are inherently in a dative form: a m'è pêrs - it seemed to me;
  • with verbs indicating concrete movement, towards a stated place: a soun cǒrs a cà - I ran home;
  • with modal verbs followed by a verb requiring ĚSER as their auxiliary: a soun dvû córer vìa - I had to run away;
  • with itself: a soun stê - I was, I have been.
AVĚR is always used:
  • with (active) transitive verbs: a j ò magnê - I ate, I have eaten;
  • with verbs indicating abstract movement: a j ò cǒrs par dû ǒr - I ran for two hours;
  • with modal verbs used alone (as pro-verbs), or followed by a verb requiring AVĚR as their auxiliary: a j ò dvû bàver - I had to drink;
  • with itself: a j ò avû - I had, I have had.

Unfortunately, there is no specific rule for most other intransitive verbs, so it's often better to memorize the auxiliary of such verbs together with the verb itself.

Now we need to find out how you get the past participle of a verb.
The general rule is as follows:
  1. Take the 1pl form and remove the -àm ending.
  2. Add the appropriate desinence:
    • 1st conjugation verbs get -ê (magnêr → magnê);
    • 2nd conjugation verbs get -û (seinter → sintû);
    • 3rd conjugation verbs get -î (durmîr → durmî)
    Notice how 1st and 3rd conjugation verbs are identical to their infinitive without the final -r, while 2nd conjugation verbs are not and undergo ablaut as well.
  3. Add the appropriate gender and number ending:
    • none at all for the masculine gender, regardless of the number (es. sintû → sintû);
    • <(d)a> for feminine singular (es. sintûda);
    • <(d)i> for feminine plural (es. sintûdi).
    These endings should be added in two situations:
    1. with verbs used with the auxiliary ĚSER, agreeing with the subject (e.g. a soun andê = I went (m), but a soun andêda = I went (f));
    2. with transitive verbs used with the auxiliary AVĚR, only if the object is an UNSTRESSED PRONOUN, and should agree with the gender and number of the OBJECT, not the subject. For instance, "he ate it" becomes "al l'à magnêda" if "it" refers to something feminine, e.g. "la pâsta", and "al l'à magnê" if it refers to something masculine, e.g. "un tôst" (a toast).
      Additionally, past participles ending in a consonant will only add the vowel (-a or -i), and never the -d-.

Past participles ending in a consonant? Didn't we just see that it's impossible? They either end in -ê, -û or -î, right?
... wrong. Unfortunately, many, many verbs are irregular in the past participle, especially 2nd conjugation verbs. While some verbs in -ěr do actually take -û regularly just like those in -er (for example avěr → avû, psěr → psû, vlěr → vlû), many others end in a consonant and are quite unpredictable. Some notable irregular past participles are:
  • ěser (to be) → stê (suppletive from "stêr")
  • tǒr (to take) → tǒlt
  • córer (to run) → cǒrs
  • vàder (to see) → vést
  • màter (to put) → màs
  • avrîr (to open) → avěrt
  • lěżer (to read) → lêt
At the moment I can't give you a set of rules and patterns you could use to guess at least some irregular past participles, and unfortunately you won't find many Emilian verb conjugators out there. I can only say one thing: the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. While it does not originate from it, Emilian (the apple) is tightly related to Italian (the tree), so many of its irregular past participles are quite similar to their Italian counterpart. Have a look:

Code: Select all

EML-INF	EML-PP	ITA-INF		ITA-PP	ENG
ěser	stê	essere		stato	to be
tǒr	tǒlt	togliere	tolto	to take (EML); to remove, to subtract (ITA)
córer	cǒrs	correre		corso	to run
vàder	vést	vedere		visto	to see
màter	màs	mettere		messo	to put, to place
avrîr	avěrt	aprire		aperto	to open
lěżer	lêt	leggere		letto	to read
As you see, the resemblance is uncanny. So my advice is to look for the Italian translation of the verb you're interested in conjugating, have a look at its Italian past participle, and make an educated guess as to what its Emilian past participle will be.

Now, there is one thing that English speakers often get wrong in Italian, and since Emilian works in the same way with respect to this matter, it's important that I point it out now.
You do not use a compound past to express actions that are still ongoing. Ever.
In English, you say "I've been a teacher for three years" and it means that during the past three years, up to today, your occupation has been teaching. But if you translate it word by word, using the Emilian compound past, you get "a soun stê un insgnant par trî an", that means "I WAS a teacher for three years" - and I no longer am one.
This should be quite obvious, since the present perfect is a present tense and the compound past is a past tense. Nevertheless, people fail to realize this and often pick the wrong translation because it sounds more literal.
But then, how do we translate "I have been a teacher for three years" into Emilian? Well, we use the only present indicative tense that Emilian has, and say "a soun un insgnant da trî an (fà)", which literally translates to "I am a teacher since three years (ago)". The "fà" is optional, and adding it slightly changes the meaning of the sentence: leaving it out gives you "I've been a teacher for three years", and inserting it gives you "I have been a teacher since three years ago". You can see that the preposition also changes in English, but not in Emilian, where it stays "da" in both cases. (as a side note, in Emilian you usually say "a fâg l'insgnant", lit. "I do the teacher", rather than "I am a teacher". I chose the form I chose for the sake of explaining myself more easily with a more literal translation)

Another important thing to point out for those of you who speak Spanish is that stêr does not behave like estar. In other words, even though the past participle of ěser is taken from stêr, this is the only occasion in which you replace one with the other. There is no "ser-estar" dichotomy in Emilian: you always use ěser regardless of the temporarity of the state.



PAST TENSE USAGE

Let's now examinate some sentences whose verbs are in either past tense to better underline the differences between the two.

«Indu ěret?» «A j ěra a cà.» - «Where were you?» «I was home.»

In this case, the speaker was obviously looking for the listener. He has been looking for him for a while, which means, conversely, that the listener has been home for a while. Thus, the imperfect tense is required. Look at what happens if we rewrite a similar sentence using the compound past:

«Indu ět e-stê?» «A soun stê a Làndra.» - «Where have you been?» «I have been to London.»
(by the way, the <e-> prefix is but a euphonic aid because "tst" is not really an easy sequence for Emilian speakers)

I know what you're about to say. "Hasn't the listener been in London for a while? I doubt he just went and immediately came back, or did he?"
No, he didn't, but the focus of this sentence is not the fact that he was there for a while - it's the fact that, at some point in time, he was in London, i.e. he experienced the action. This is pretty much the same difference that "have been" vs. "was" conveys.

Da cíno am piaṡîva dimóndi la ciocolêta. Adêsa an la magn pió. - As a child, I used to love chocolate. (Now) I don't eat it anymore.

Beside the speaker's obvious lack of taste, this sentence expresses a habitual action in two different moments in time: in the past, using the imperfect tense, and currently, using the present tense.
As a side note, Emilian uses the same construction as many other Romance languages to express the concept of liking things, i.e. "it pleases me" (with "me" being an indirect object in Emilian). Hence "am piaṡîva".

A j ò strabuchê e a soun caschê. - I tripped and fell.

Both actions happened at a single, well defined point in time, thus you use the compound past. "A strabuchêva e caschêva" implies that you used to trip and fall as a part of your daily routine or something. Doesn't sound like fun. (BTW, "strabuchêr" is probably a loanword from French "trébucher"; Italian uses "inciampare").

Finally, let's see the two past tenses together:

Meinter ch'a magnêva, a m'è sunê al telěfon. - While I was eating, my phone rang.

Meinter is the Emilian counterpart of English while, and it requires an imperfect past, as per the rules I stated at the beginning of this lesson.
The intervening action, on the other hand, is in the simple past. You could use another imperfect there, but that would greatly change the meaning:

Meinter ch'a magnêva, am sunêva al telěfon. - While I was eating, my phone was ringing.

As you see, using the imperfect twice expresses a prolonged contemporarity of the two actions, i.e. they were ongoing together all the time. Since it takes the average Italian up to 30 minutes to eat, that would be absolute hell. Know your past tenses guys ;)



EXERCISES

Well, this has been a long lesson. Have fun with these exercises!
  1. Conjugate these verbs in both past tenses. Ablaut, when needed, is in brackets. Try to guess the right auxiliary for a. through d.; for e., use "avěr".
    1. vànder (a → i) - to sell
    2. cumprêr - to buy
    3. srêr - to close
    4. avrîr - to open (refer to the irregular past participles table above)
    5. réder (e → i) - to laugh
  2. Complete these sentences with the missing verb in the imperfect tense.
    1. Da cìno l'______ (andêr) a scǒla a Chêrp. - He went to school in Carpi as a child.
    2. A ______ (zerchêr) al telěfon e ag l'______ (avěr) in man... - I was looking for my phone and I had it in my hands...
    3. T'e-______ (stêr) méj coun cl'êter vistî. - You looked better in (it. "stayed better with") the other dress.
    4. A ______ (vlěr) cumprêr un żlê, mo an gh'______ (ěser) gnanc óna gelaterìa avěrta. - We wanted to buy ice cream, but there wasn't a single open ice cream shop.
  3. Complete these sentences with the missing verb in the simple (compound) past tense.
    1. Ajěr a ______________ (andêr) a la fěra a Milan. - We went to the exposition in Milan yesterday.
    2. A t'____________ (vàder) trôp têrd e at ____________ (gnîr) adôs! - I saw you (f) too late and hit you! (lit. "came against you"; this instance of "come" is considered concrete motion)
    3. A m'_______________ (scapêr) al gât... - My cat fled... (watch out for the dative possession)
    4. I ____________ (vinzer) al lôt! - They won the lottery!

    For sentence d., including an irregular verb, I encourage you to make a guess on the past participle, based on its Italian form.
  4. Choose the correct past tense to insert in these sentences and complete them accordingly. I might have dropped some euphonic particles that could give out the solution. Add them back if that's the case.
    1. I gh'_____________ (intrêr) i lêder in cà in cal meinter ch'al _________ (durmîr). - Thiefs broke into his house while he was sleeping.
    2. Indi ân zinquanta i custóm i ______________ (quacêr) dimóndi de pió. - Swimsuits used to cover a lot more of your body in the 50s.
    3. Coun lè lǒr an eg vâg pió fǒra. I _____________ (vlěr) seimper ch'ag paghésa da bàver mè. - I won't go out with those guys anymore. They always wanted me to pay for their drinks.
    4. Ajěr a ______________ (pinsêr) a cla ragazǒla tót al dè. Am sà ch'lam piěṡ... - I've thought about that girl for the whole day yesterday. I think I like her... (note "am sà", lit. "it knows to me", a common way to express "I think, I reckon")

Well, this was a long lesson, but I'm glad this is out of the way! Stay tuned for more!
:ita: :eng: [:D] | :fra: :esp: :rus: [:)] | :con: Hecathver, Hajás, Hedetsūrk, Darezh...

Tin't inameint ca tót a sàm stê żōv'n e un po' cajoun, mo s't'armâgn cajoun an vōl ménga dîr t'armâgn anc żōven...

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