cws
Greetings Guest
home > library > journal > view_article
« Back to Articles » Journal
Verbs in Jutean
4▲ 4 ▼ 0
A small, but strange linguistic creature
This public article was written by Jute, and last updated on 21 Jul 2017, 13:45.

[comments] Menu
1. Verb categories / classes
2. Moods
3. Aspects
4. Trigger
5. Valency and transitivity
6. Voices
7. Gerund
8. Suffixation

?FYI...
This article is a work in progress! Check back later in case any changes have occurred.


Verbs


Who said only polysynthetic verbs of agglutinative languages can be complicated? Jutean has just about a dozen inflections for verbs, and a verb never takes more than one of them (if more are needed, they will become a separate particle immediately following the verb), yet behind the seemingly simple surface lurks a mischievous creation of ergativity, triggers and transitivity, not to mention different moods and voices, while curiously tenses, person marking and a separate passive voice are absent.

[top]Verb categories / classes

Verbs in Jutean are usually sorted into two (or three, or four) categories, objectless (the more scientific term being unaccusative or unergative), and split (or ergative). Object-taking or transitive verbs are not always classified as a separate verb class.

The first category refers to verbs which, like their name implies, take no object, are therefore always intransitive, and in addition usually imply at least a vague sense of agency. These are usually verbs of motion, like to ('go'), ato ('come') or static, like nisaido ('feel energized'), though there are some other ones, like mihinido ('sleep') or moo ('meditate'). Unaccusative verbs (agent-lacking ones) are also usually in this category, such as no ('live, exist').
Of course these can all still use adverbs, as in to li tan ('to go to my home').
These also can't ever convey a passive meaning, aside from more convoluted constructions such as noitono mihinido ('be made to sleep', literally 'be lead to sleep), which use a patient suffix as a trigger on an auxiliary verb, but more on that later.

The second, 'split' or 'ergative' variety refers to more complicated ones. These can both stand in objectless (intransitive) sentences as well as sentences with objects (transitive ones), and depending on which is used convey either a passive or active meaning, similar to for example the English verb to break in The door broke and I broke the door. An example in Jutean would be hemo ('to eat'), where Hemo fal would translate to 'They are all eaten', but Hemo fal kiove would mean 'They all eat something'.

The third one, called 'transitive', covers the verbs who always need an object, such as to learn about. These are rare and often homonyms or additional meanings of ergative verbs, so they aren't always seen as a distinct category. A lot of secondary meanings of daho (base intransitive meaning: 'to have space'), such as 'to accommodate', 'to make room', 'to send into space', to name a few, are transitive.

Finally, the fourth category is essentially a combination of the first and second one. These verbs are called 'mixed' and behave like unergative ones in some circumstances, but ergatively in other ones. For example, atteo ('to run into, to crash') is an unergative verb in sentences where the subject is human (or otherwise sapient and using human pronouns), but ergative when the subject is another living being or inanimate (using the animate pronouns 'uvu/uvuf' or the inanimate ones 'aha/ehi/uhu' or 'ahaf/ehif/uhuf')

The syntactically irregular verb 'memo'

The verb memo can be seen as another example of the fourth category. Depending on context and meaning, it can act either like an unergative or an ergative word.

The five meanings of the verb and ways how to distinguish them are listed here:

to say: if an oblique or direct object or direct speech is present
to mention: same as above, essentially a synonym/secondary meaning of 'to say'
to be told to: auxiliary meaning/use, requires additional verbs (but not 'to be', can be both transitive - X tells/told Y to, or intransitive - X is/was told to)
to be said to be: with no oblique object or direct speech present
to be said to Z: use a 'tine + Z-GER' phrase (inside Z-ing)

Some examples using all of them:

Memo la a hohi (Say 3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
of hold-GERGerund
verbal noun
) - They say/mention [something] about the holding [of an event]
Memo ho la (Be_told_to hold 3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
) - They are/were told to hold [the/an unspecified event]
Memo hohi (Be_said_to_be hold-GERGerund
verbal noun
) - There is/was said to be a holding [of an event] / It is/was said that there is/was an holding [of an event]
Memo hohi tine doonatohi (Be_said_to_be hold-GERGerund
verbal noun
inside.ABSTAbstract (gender/class)
abstract, intangible, idea
celebrate-GERGerund
verbal noun
) - There is/was said to be a holding [of an event] [that is/was] celebrated

Adverbs and adjectival nouns would be used to clarify time, place and manner



[top]Moods


Moods are one of the few things to be marked on verbs in Jutean. There are five moods.

The most basic one is the indicative, for describing reality, general truths and statements proven or, based on some kind of evidence, very likely to be true. It is the default mood and has no suffix.

Vuho vuha ido vuhade a ji. The sun shines at this day
Shine sun at.ABSTAbstract (gender/class)
abstract, intangible, idea
day-OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object
of this.ABSTAbstract (gender/class)
abstract, intangible, idea


No nova un havande. Animals live in the wilderness
Live animal in.DANGUnknown code wilderness-OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object


Saiho ta, ivusaie no ta. I think, therefore I am.
Think 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
, therefore be 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


Then there's the imperative, for commands and urges. It is formed by reduplicating the first two syllables of the infinitive, however some verbs are irregular here and only reduplicate part of the second syllable. The personal pronoun can be omitted in this case (it is assumed to be you (singular) by default, or is understood through context), but can also be included for emphasis or clarification. They are negated by adding the -l suffix or by using the al particle directly after the verb.

Atoato (na) li hen! Come here!
IMPImperative (mood)
command
-come (2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
) towards here


Tatatataimo (fan) a he la! Forget about him! (formal 'you')
IMPImperative (mood)
command
-forget (3Third person (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
.INCLInclusive (person)
speaker and listener
) of IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee


Foofool / Foofoo al (fan) maja a me fan ma! Don't open your (pl) eyes!
IMPImperative (mood)
command
-open-NEGNegative (polarity)
not
/ IMPImperative (mood)
command
-open NEGNegative (polarity)
not
(3Third person (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
.INCLInclusive (person)
speaker and listener
) eye of OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object
2Second person (person)
addressee (you)
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object


The next we'll take a look at is the conditional. In Jutean it's used for sentences expressing a hypothetical condition, state of being or change in the world, i.e. both clauses of a conditional sentence.
In some cases it can also appear as the polite expression of instructions or wishes, especially if you don't have much confidence or interest in them becoming reality or if they are more or less impossible. It's generally seen as the "humble" mood used when talking to someone of high respect or someone you just like that much. It can also be used for exaggerations that are supposed to be a proof of that or just joking.
Formed by adding -ke to the end of the infinitive, which becomes -k in front of words starting with 'h' or in front of verbal particles.

Hokedo no mekoi nuhe hemede ajavi, saimoke to na li saanuti, teoke teko na he uvuf a saanuvade. For there to be fish for food today, you would want to go to the sea, and [there] you would need to get them from below the surface.
Be-able be fish for food-OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object
today, want-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
go 2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
to sea-IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
, need-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
retrieve 2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
ANIMUnknown code-PLPlural (number)
more than one/few
of below.surface.sea-OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object


Saimoke to ta li neteti. I would like to go to the coast [but if it's not possible, that's fine, too]
Want-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
go 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
to coast-IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct


Hedoke la ooneti nuhe me ta ma. He/She/Sg. They would take down the moon for me.
Take-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
moon-IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
BENBenefactive (case)
recipient of benefit
OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
OBLOblique (argument)
indirect or demoted object


Amoke mo sahane hokonoke ta. I would if I could.
do-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
ANTIPAntipassive voice (valency)
valency is decreased by one
if be_currently_able-CONDConditional (mood)
'if'
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


There's also the subjunctive, among other things for energetic proposals, declarations, resolutions, or wishes you have absolute or near absolute faith in becoming true at some point or the time you mentioned. Also a more polite way to command someone to do something (but can be seen as condescending if used among people of the same age)

Formed from infinitives with the -t suffix.

Not ta a meoduki te. I shall be honest from now on.
Be-SBJVSubjunctive mood (mood)
desired or possible events
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
of honesty onwards


Not na vunamoena hen! You shall become governor here! (I support you in doing so and are sure you will succeed, but it's not certain yet)
Be-SBJVSubjunctive mood (mood)
desired or possible events
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
elder here


Another mood used in Jutean is the hortative, which is often somewhere between the two last ones, used for example for unbinding, but nevertheless assertive or affirmative suggestions, reminders or instructions. This would be translated into English with an auxiliary like "let" or "should". If the subject of the sentence is "fa" (1. person collective inclusive), it can be omitted.
Formed with the -f suffix attached to the infinitive. -fe can also be used, but is considered somewhat archaic, except in front of words starting with "f" themselves, where it's still used.

Tofe fa tuuve. Let us go down
Go-HORTHortative (mood)
'let's...'
1First person (person)
speaker, signer, etc; I
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
.INCLInclusive (person)
speaker and listener
down


Saavof na ja. You should clean this.
CCommon gender (gender/class)
common gender
lean-HORTHortative (mood)
'let's...'
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
this.CCommon gender (gender/class)
common gender


See also the grammar tables for unergative and ergative/transitive verbs.

[top]Aspects

Aspects such as habitual, progressive/continuous and perfective are usually indicated by adverbs, but sometimes verbs or nouns can also be used for that. They are not shown by affixes or particles on the verb or directly following or preceding it.

Examples for aspect-indicating adverbs:

he 'now' progressive aspect
lomohe 'already'perfective aspect
anti 'commonly, usually'habitual aspect


[top]Trigger

Since Jutean has the Austronesian alignment, it uses triggers to mark the focus of a sentence. These can also be used to express what other languages use voices or cases at nouns for.

To put it shortly, triggers are used in transitive sentences to signify a change in the morphosyntactic alignment from nominative-accusative or ergative-absolutive or vice versa, or highlight specific objects.

The two most common triggers are patient (-no), agent (unmarked by default, but -mo can be used to emphasize/intensify). Instrumental (-de) and Locative (-hen) exist, but are rather uncommon. They are all also attached to the verb, unless it already has mood or gerundive marking. (See chapter "Suffixation" for more information)

Examples for the ergative verb joo (to see)

Joo ta jaI see this.See 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
this.CCommon gender (gender/class)
common gender
Joono ja he ta This is seen by me / This is what I seeSee-PVPatient trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers ERG-ABS
this.CCommon gender (gender/class)
common gender
IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
Joode dovauhi he ta.The glasses are what I use to see.See.INSVInstrumental trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers instrumental
glass IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
Joohen saanu he taThe sea is where I see.See.LOCVLocative trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers location
sea IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


[top]Valency and transitivity

Valency can be used to express subject and object role in Jutean.

In intransitive sentences the meaning is by default understood as patientive. Here the agentive trigger/suffix -mo, otherwise used, as mentioned before in, in transitive sentences for emphasis, is used to make the subject agentive.

Joo ta.I am seen.See 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
Joomo taI see.See-AVAgent trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers Nom-Acc
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I

The instrumental and locative trigger-suffixes are also repurposed and can be used to make an intransitive sentence have an implied impersonal subject:

Mihinidohen mihinon. The bed is where you sleep/one sleeps
sleep-LOCVLocative trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers location
bed


Joohen maja. The eye/Eyes is/are with what you see/one sees.
see-INSVInstrumental trigger (voice)
Austronesian alignment; triggers instrumental
eye


On the other side, the opposite is true for transitive sentences, where the subjects are by default agentive. As an alternative to turning it intransitive to make it have a patientive meaning as well, the patient trigger -no, as mentioned above, can be used as well.

[top]Voices

How many voices Jutean has is up to discussion. Colloquially, all inflections that aren't moods, negations or gerund forms have been called triggers.
However, technically the triggers only refer to focus-changing inflections in transitive sentences, so causative (-vo), reciprocal (-hut) and reflexive (-he) "triggers" should more properly be analyzed as voices.

Joovo ta he naI'm making you see.See-CAUSCausative (valency/mood)
cause an action to occur, force another argument to act
.trigger 1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
IDRIndirect (case)
indirect or oblique, vs direct
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
Joohut faWe all see each otherSee.RECPReciprocal (valency)
arguments act on each other
3Third person (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
.INCLInclusive (person)
speaker and listener
Joohe fa We all see ourselvesSee.REFLReflexive (valency)
argument acts on itself
3Third person (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
.COLCollective (number)
'group or mass entity'
.INCLInclusive (person)
speaker and listener


In addition, the intransitive agentive suffix -mo is usually regarded as an antipassive by my most grammarians nowadays, with some of the confusion stemming probably from the fact that it is also used in transitive sentences as an intensifier/emphasizing particle for agentive subjects.

[top]Gerund

A gerund form exists, formed via suffixing -hi to a verb. It's used, among other things, to create nominalized subclauses, for example relative clauses. (See syntax article for details)

[top]Suffixation

If multiple suffixes would have to be added, for example mood and trigger or trigger and negation, only one of them is attached to the verb, with the other ones forming a particle.
An exception is the gerund suffix, which never becomes a particle, but gets added after a mood if one is marked on the verb (with an -e- added between mood and gerund suffix), and the imperative, where the negation suffix can still be added, since it uses a (reduplication) prefix rather than a suffix. However, the negation particle can also always be made a separate particle to mark emphasis or urgency.

Which one is added to the verb is decided based on their position in this order: Mood < Gerund suffix < Trigger < Voice < Negation, meaning that if a mood morpheme is present, it will be the one added to the verb, with the other one or two forming a particle.
If only the trigger and the negation are present, the trigger will be attached and the negation becomes a particle directly after the verb.
Comments (0)
privacy | FAQs | rules | statistics | graphs | donate | api (indev)
Viewing CWS in: English | Time now is 21-Sep-17 10:26