(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 Adarain » 06 Feb 2018 12:15

So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
At kveldi skal dag lęyfa,
Konu es bręnnd es,
Mæki es ręyndr es,
Męy es gefin es,
Ís es yfir kømr,
Ǫl es drukkit es.

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

Post by Creyeditor » 06 Feb 2018 13:32

I guess you can describe most systems as a mixture of the above, but some cases might be especially intersting. But that's because 'syntactic, semantic or pragmatic' has a very broad scope, right?
Split-Ergativity changes the case marking either according to a morphological category (e.g. tense) or a lexical class (e.g. pronouns). Differential object marking would be a mixture of 'good old' case marking and some semantic (e.g. animacy) or pragmatic (e.g. definiteness) conditions on case marking. You might say the same about split-S systems.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Xonen » 06 Feb 2018 15:56

GrandPiano wrote:
06 Feb 2018 00:06
Sleep/slept is different, though, isn’t it? According to Wiktionary, Old English slǣpan was a strong verb with present 1st-person singular “slǣpe” and past 1st/3rd-person singular “slēp”. This seems to suggest that sleep historically changed from a strong verb to a weak verb and then ended up with “slept” as its past tense form instead of “sleeped” through an unrelated development (I would assume that the same development occurred in verbs such as leave/left and bend/bent).
Yeah, there seems to have been a fairly regular group of verbs in Middle English which formed the past tense by adding the ending -t rather than -ed, with the resulting word-final consonant cluster then causing the vowel to be shortened if it was long. A stem-final d seems to get replaced by the ending, as in bend : bent.

There are also verbs which seem to follow this pattern but with no visible ending at all, often with stems ending in d or t (where you could analyze the stem-final t as having been replaced by the -t of the ending): lead : led, read : read, shoot : shot or even bite : bit. I'm guessing most (if not all) of these were originally strong verbs where the short vowel originally arose from ablaut, though, so it's just a coincidence that they've ended up looking like weak verbs of this group.

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

Post by Omzinesý » 06 Feb 2018 17:11

Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 12:15
So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
There are the S A P/O.
Logically you can have
1. all marked the same (not that common if you have place in the clause as a criterion, the most common if you only look at formal marking)
2. A and S contrasting with O/P, and P/O and S contrasting with A. (O/P and A contrasting with S are attested in some subsystems though it seems quite uneconomical and badly distinguishing)
3. Then there are split and fluid systems where some Ss are marked like A and some Ss like O/P.

But of course one language can used utulise more than one, say nom-acc for indefinite objects and erg-abs for definite ofjects, nom-acc for the imperfective aspect and erg-abs for the perfective etc.

Typological studies of alignment are usually interested in some very few constructions, sometimes just verbs of killing and dying. Verbs of perception for example very often behave differently from those basic transitive verbs. Somali is good old nom-acc language but the accusative is utilised as the unmarked case where you would wait for the nominative, in contrastive constructions for example.

So basically there isn't anything else - even the Austronesian alignment is a kind of ergative - but there is very much fun in the nuances, i.e. outside verbs of killing and dying in affirmative causes.

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

Post by Adarain » 06 Feb 2018 17:37

Omzinesý wrote:
06 Feb 2018 17:11
Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 12:15
So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
There are the S A P/O.
Logically you can have
1. all marked the same (not that common if you have place in the clause as a criterion, the most common if you only look at formal marking)
2. A and S contrasting with O/P, and P/O and S contrasting with A. (O/P and A contrasting with S are attested in some subsystems though it seems quite uneconomical and badly distinguishing)
3. Then there are split and fluid systems where some Ss are marked like A and some Ss like O/P.

But of course one language can used utulise more than one, say nom-acc for indefinite objects and erg-abs for definite ofjects, nom-acc for the imperfective aspect and erg-abs for the perfective etc.

Typological studies of alignment are usually interested in some very few constructions, sometimes just verbs of killing and dying. Verbs of perception for example very often behave differently from those basic transitive verbs. Somali is good old nom-acc language but the accusative is utilised as the unmarked case where you would wait for the nominative, in contrastive constructions for example.

So basically there isn't anything else - even the Austronesian alignment is a kind of ergative - but there is very much fun in the nuances, i.e. outside verbs of killing and dying in affirmative causes.
All the things you’ve described fall squarely within syntactically based marking (which I’m very familiar with). I believe you misinterpreted my question.
At kveldi skal dag lęyfa,
Konu es bręnnd es,
Mæki es ręyndr es,
Męy es gefin es,
Ís es yfir kømr,
Ǫl es drukkit es.

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

Post by Omzinesý » 06 Feb 2018 17:44

Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 17:37
Omzinesý wrote:
06 Feb 2018 17:11
Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 12:15
So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
There are the S A P/O.
Logically you can have
1. all marked the same (not that common if you have place in the clause as a criterion, the most common if you only look at formal marking)
2. A and S contrasting with O/P, and P/O and S contrasting with A. (O/P and A contrasting with S are attested in some subsystems though it seems quite uneconomical and badly distinguishing)
3. Then there are split and fluid systems where some Ss are marked like A and some Ss like O/P.

But of course one language can used utulise more than one, say nom-acc for indefinite objects and erg-abs for definite ofjects, nom-acc for the imperfective aspect and erg-abs for the perfective etc.

Typological studies of alignment are usually interested in some very few constructions, sometimes just verbs of killing and dying. Verbs of perception for example very often behave differently from those basic transitive verbs. Somali is good old nom-acc language but the accusative is utilised as the unmarked case where you would wait for the nominative, in contrastive constructions for example.

So basically there isn't anything else - even the Austronesian alignment is a kind of ergative - but there is very much fun in the nuances, i.e. outside verbs of killing and dying in affirmative causes.
All the things you’ve described fall squarely within syntactically based marking (which I’m very familiar with). I believe you misinterpreted my question.

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

Post by loglorn » 06 Feb 2018 21:21

Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 17:37
Omzinesý wrote:
06 Feb 2018 17:11
Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 12:15
So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
[..]
All the things you’ve described fall squarely within syntactically based marking (which I’m very familiar with). I believe you misinterpreted my question.
I myself don't see the particular distinction you make as being of any use. It appears to be circular and not lending itself into anything meaningful.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Adarain » 06 Feb 2018 21:26

loglorn wrote:
06 Feb 2018 21:21
I myself don't see the particular distinction you make as being of any use. It appears to be circular and not lending itself into anything meaningful.
It doesn’t come from me, the syntactic vs semantic based marking (which I don’t see any circularity in) comes from Dixon, he has an entire chapter about it in Ergativity. And it’s pretty obvious that discourse-configurationality doesn’t fit in with the two; the name “pragmatically based marking” comes from me.
At kveldi skal dag lęyfa,
Konu es bręnnd es,
Mæki es ręyndr es,
Męy es gefin es,
Ís es yfir kømr,
Ǫl es drukkit es.

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

Post by Creyeditor » 06 Feb 2018 22:27

So, what I might add. There are languages where case marking seems to be dependent on other principles, but these cases are up to now not well understood. I have data from a Papuan language where it looks like matrix subjects of embedding verbs take a different case from usual subjects, so:

I sleep.
I call you.
You-CASE think that I call you.

But as I said, those patterns don't fit the categories, so they are not well understood yet. But maybe you could add something like word class dependent or structure dependent case marking. You could also look at biabsolutive constructions in Archi, they seem to be similar in a way.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Axiem » 06 Feb 2018 22:59

Just getting the term that the ablaut in English occurs in strong verbs is enough to much aid my google-fu. That helps tremendously; thanks.

Ablaut is pretty cool. But if you were to explain to me that some language conjugates by ablaut, I'd be like "whoa, that's gotta be so hard to hear and understand the word and figure out what the base word was for it"...and then I realize that I do it all the time in English without even thinking about it.

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

Post by Reyzadren » 07 Feb 2018 00:02

Adarain wrote:
06 Feb 2018 12:15
So there’s syntactic based marking like good old nom/acc and erg/abs and the likes, where some NPs are cast to S/A/P which then receive case marking as appropriate.

There’s semantic based marking, where this intermediate step is skipped and nouns are marked based on their semantic roles (agent, patient…). It’s rarer than the above, but it certainly exists. Fluid-S systems could be described as a split between syntactic based marking in transitives and semantic based marking in intransitives.

Finally, there’s pragmatic based marking (ie discourse configurationality) where constituents are marked based on their role in discourse (topic, focus, …).

My question is… is there anything else? Of course mixed systems exist, e.g. Japanese marks topics but also has nominative and accusative clitics. But is there any attested system that falls outside the scope of these three systems?
If you/whoever divide(s) it into 3 groups like that, then it depends on your/the author's definition. For example, trigger systems are definitely syntactic-based marking based on the usual morphosyntactic alignment categories, but your definition/explanation above seems to exclude it within any category.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Adarain » 07 Feb 2018 00:36

Reyzadren wrote:
07 Feb 2018 00:02
If you/whoever divide(s) it into 3 groups like that, then it depends on your/the author's definition. For example, trigger systems are definitely syntactic-based marking based on the usual morphosyntactic alignment categories, but your definition/explanation above seems to exclude it within any category.
As I understand trigger systems, they’d be described as a syntactic system where the marking happens not on the nouns directly, but via verbal markings.
At kveldi skal dag lęyfa,
Konu es bręnnd es,
Mæki es ręyndr es,
Męy es gefin es,
Ís es yfir kømr,
Ǫl es drukkit es.

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

Post by LinguoFranco » 07 Feb 2018 01:33

Could anyone explain to me how Navajo's noun class system works, or at least direct me to some resources that cover it?

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

Post by All4Ɇn » 08 Feb 2018 05:23

LinguoFranco wrote:
07 Feb 2018 01:33
Could anyone explain to me how Navajo's noun class system works, or at least direct me to some resources that cover it?
Wikipedia has a bit on it

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

Post by Shemtov » 09 Feb 2018 18:30

This is a more specific question, for one language, so it may not belong here, but would an :ara: speaker ever use "La' Inshallah" to mean "May it not be so"?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Davush » 09 Feb 2018 20:02

Shemtov wrote:
09 Feb 2018 18:30
This is a more specific question, for one language, so it may not belong here, but would an :ara: speaker ever use "La' Inshallah" to mean "May it not be so"?
I don’t think this is usual. Usually it’s حاش الله which means something like ‘May God prevent it’.

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

Post by Shemtov » 09 Feb 2018 20:11

Davush wrote:
09 Feb 2018 20:02
Shemtov wrote:
09 Feb 2018 18:30
This is a more specific question, for one language, so it may not belong here, but would an :ara: speaker ever use "La' Inshallah" to mean "May it not be so"?
I don’t think this is usual. Usually it’s حاش الله which means something like ‘May God prevent it’.
I was wondering about this song, which is by a Jew of Moroccan descent, which explains the loanword and title "Inshallah" (this has caused some conspiracy theories by Ashkenazim, who see the Arabic, and reference to Allah, and think Shwekey has "secretly converted to Islam to be dawah Jews"):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qG8sZyVSotQ
The fact that he sings "la la Inshallah", with "la" being a non-lexical vocable, for scansion, made me suspect he was accidentally singing May it not be G-d's will".
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Ahzoh » 11 Feb 2018 04:35

I'm wondering how Proto-Afroasiatic *suʔa eventually became Akkadian šū and Ge'ez wəʔətu.
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Parlox » 11 Feb 2018 05:23

Does anyone have resources on Proto Afro-asiatic?
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Re: (L&N) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Creyeditor » 11 Feb 2018 10:14

Ahzoh wrote:
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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