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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:46 am 
Avisaru
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According to some linguist I forgot the name of, languages differ in what things they include in their motion verbs. Most IE langs lexicalise manner, whereas Romanic and Semitic languages lexicalise path. So in the first you would say "the bottle floated into the cave", and in the other you would say "the bottle entered the cave floating". Different things end up in the verb, and the rest is expressed with adverbs etc. (English being Germanic with heavy Romanic influences can pretty much do both.) Some languages, including the Amerind language Atsugewi, lexicalise figure, which basically means the properties of the thing involved in the motion, such as in "to dust" or "to milk". Another possibility is using serial verbs, like in Thai, presumably something like "the bottle floated entered the cave".

Howsabouts your conlangs?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:59 am 
Sumerul
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I don't know what it means, but Lakota can do both, but prefers to use a contracted form of the manner (e.g. floating, running, flying, crawling), followed by one of its words meaning "come/go":

Ókaȟ hiyú.
It came floating out on the current.

ókaȟ < ókaǧA "to float with the current"
hiyú to come out


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:33 am 
Avisaru
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:o

Never even thought about this with Maka.
Maka lexicalizes manner; path is generally left to the locative or causative cases, and is left very vague.

Eg,

Tómo kidzòrko shòsòn.
Tó-mo kidzòr-tò shòsòn-(nu).
cave-LOC bottle-NOM float-(Implied as Verb)
The bottle floated (in/into/to/towards/in the direction of/etc) the cave.

It may be moving directly to it, or it may be going a bit to the side; it may or may not have entered the cave, or it may already be in the cave.

Thank-youuu for this thread. I'm going to try and work something out of this with my new pet conlang.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:48 am 
Avisaru
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This is scary. I just came back from a lecture on this, with the bottle floating as the major example. If it weren't for your location, I'd think you were in my class or something.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:08 am 
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I, too, have just had a lecture on this ... (no floating bottles, though, and it didn't start till 14 minutes after the original post ...)

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:03 pm 
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This is kind of split in Áressa. There are two general motion verbs which only lexicalize path: kvat 'go' and bat 'come'. There are also more specific motion verbs which grammaticalize manner and to some extent path. There are also preverbs/prefixes on motion verbs which encode path, and the use of different locative cases with nouns also complement these.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:17 pm 
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I considered this question in Jamna Kopiai, and concluded that I liked the idea of lexicalizing both parameters. So there are independent lexical items for e.g. "float forward", "float upward", and so forth. Generally four categories of path are distinguished: forward, upward, downward, and sideways/turning, with other distinctions being relegated to adverbs - though there are gaps in the system (there is no "flow upward", e.g., because water normally doesn't do that.)

Yes, that means having to have a godawful lot of basic motion verbs. I love it.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:22 pm 
Avisaru
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I was screwing with something like this a few days ago. South Eresian handles it like this:

aholp'astlazecuil sócua e seréxquel
[ɑʔɔlˈpʼɑstla,tsekwil ˈsokwɑ e seˈɾeʃkel]
a-olp'astlah-se-cui-l sócua e seréxc-l
3PS.INAN.INDIR-cave-CHANGE-INSIDE-3PS.INAN.ABS container ADV float-3PS.INAN.ABS
"The bottle floats into the cave."

The suffix <-se>, which I have glossed as CHANGE, works in conjunction with the next suffix (which here is <-cui>, "inside"), to say that a change took place in location towards the target location <-cui> "inside." The verb here is translatable as "it changed to become inside the cave." Floating is here treated as an adverb.

EDIT: A note: You could also say this, which is perhaps relevant:

aholp'astlacuil socua e serexquel
[ɑʔɔlˈpʼɑstlakwil ˈsokwɑ e seˈɾeʃkel]
a-olp'astlah-cui-l sócua e seréxc-l
3PS.INAN.INDIR-cave-INSIDE-3PS.INAN.ABS container ADV float-3PS.INAN.ABS
"The bottle floats inside the cave."

Is it possible to say that South Eresian lexicalizes location, or am I being confused and this is really just path?

(editing again to make my glosses prettier)

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Last edited by Risla on Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:32 pm 
Avisaru
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The most daunting realization I had during that lecture was that this is only one single lexical field, but these kind of distinctions exist for every possible thing you can think of. Not calquing your native language to some extent is more or less impossible, or else you'll never get your language to anything resembling a usable state.

For example, we had to read a twenty page paper on the distinctions between lexemes for temperature, and the grammatical constructions they're used in, in different languages. Apparently languages tend to divide temperature perceptions into three categories; tactile ("the stones are hot"), ambient ("it's hot here") and personal ("I'm hot") (English is atypical in not doing so). There's differences between how "cold" and "hot" are treated lexically and grammatically too, as well as in how many levels of temperature there are words for ("hot", "warm", "lukewarm", "chilly" etc.). If you can write a twenty page introductory paper on that, then god help me creating a conlang that's not just a bare skeleton with some feathers on it in a bigger perspective...

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:56 pm 
Lebom
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Ulrike Meinhof wrote:
The most daunting realization I had during that lecture was that this is only one single lexical field, but these kind of distinctions exist for every possible thing you can think of. Not calquing your native language to some extent is more or less impossible, or else you'll never get your language to anything resembling a usable state.


Which is, I think, the benefit of being familiar with more than one language. Even if you're not fluent, understanding the grammatical and lexical quirks of other languages gives you a much wider palette to draw from when conlanging.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:08 pm 
Avisaru
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Japanese forms a compound verb with go/enter, so it seems to me to be closer to your Semitic example:

瓶は洞窟の中に浮かんで行った。
bin wa doukutsu no naka ni uka-nde i-tta.
bottle TOP cave GEN inside DAT float-CNJ go-PST
The bottle went floating into the [inside of the] cave.

Japanese also lexicalizes honor and humility:
  • 行く iku -- go (plain)
  • 参る mairu -- go (humble, lowers the speaker)
  • いらっしゃる -- go (honorific, raises the referent)
(The polite -masu suffix is separate and indeed is usually applied to these roots)

My conlang is closer to the IE example:

kapra gōrotset min fadanot
[kʰap.ɾa k⁼oː.ɾot.setʰ min fa.da.notʰ]
kapra-∅ gōrot-set min fadan-ot-∅
wood-NOM cave-LAT inward float-PFT-IND
The piece of wood floated into the cave.

Glass bottles are a little too high-tech for the beginning of the Bronze Age so I made it driftwood. (It coming out as "goat" was an accident of my random word generator. It had to happen eventually.) <min> is a postposition that narrows the lative into an illative (and the locative into inessive). This "float" is also used for things being blown away by the wind -- the object is out of human control, and it'll go wherever the water/wind takes it (which may mean floating in place). In another time period this would probably include a hydroplaning car and stalled aircraft. Making semantic sets that don't map exactly to English/etc is fun but so slow...


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:32 pm 
Avisaru
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spats wrote:
Ulrike Meinhof wrote:
The most daunting realization I had during that lecture was that this is only one single lexical field, but these kind of distinctions exist for every possible thing you can think of. Not calquing your native language to some extent is more or less impossible, or else you'll never get your language to anything resembling a usable state.

Which is, I think, the benefit of being familiar with more than one language. Even if you're not fluent, understanding the grammatical and lexical quirks of other languages gives you a much wider palette to draw from when conlanging.

Yes, of course, but the sheer number of lexical fields to consider is so huge that even if you know four or five languages fluently, there's bound to be many that just happen to be treated in the same way in all of them, especially if the languages you know are related.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:10 pm 
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Am I correct in assuming a language with morphological cases, amongst which locative cases (lative, ablative...) will likely lexilize manner instead of path, which is grammaticalized?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:28 pm 
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An interesting question was raised during the lecture, by the way: it is well known that locative prepositions and particles tend to grammaticalize from body parts, such as "head" for "on, above, up", or "foot" for "down, below". How does the way languages split up the lexical domain of body parts play into that? Do languages with fewer distinctions between body parts (for example no word for "foot" distinct from "leg") have less precise locative particles? The lecturer couldn't answer.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:46 pm 
Lebom
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EnterJustice wrote:
Am I correct in assuming a language with morphological cases, amongst which locative cases (lative, ablative...) will likely lexilize manner instead of path, which is grammaticalized?

I don't know if it is true but I would think instrumental, benefactive, and similar cases could as easily reduce the chance of lexicalizing manner.

Majiusgaru does not lexicalize manner. Instead it is done by instrumental phrase- flying is going by wing. Certain aspects are differentiated e.g. leave, go, come, and arrive. It also differentiates volition and agentivity e.g. go, ride/be taken, forced to go, and forcibly taken. Destination and some elements of path are handled with anatomic metaphors, e.g. I go it's-stomach house = I went into the house versus I go it's-head house = I went onto the roof.

@Ulrike: That is an interesting question. I know certain mesoamerican languages actually use body parts for position, e.g. I travel it's-head mountain = I went to the top of the mountain.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 4:28 pm 
Avisaru
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Ulrike Meinhof wrote:
...it is well known that locative prepositions and particles tend to grammaticalize from body parts, such as "head" for "on, above, up", or "foot" for "down, below".

Prmysl wrote:
I know certain mesoamerican languages actually use body parts for position, e.g. I travel it's-head mountain = I went to the top of the mountain.

This is really good to know! Certain locative concepts were going to be hard for me to figure out since I'm aiming for Tibetan Dwarvish to be as close to "all noun" as I can. I've already placed "objects" in the spotlight. I'm using OVS order, with the idea being that Dwarves focus their attention on a thing being acted upon more than the agent. Wit that typical dwarvish attitude in mind, I really like the idea of using anatomical references for concepts like "top", "bottom", etc. It would be as though the language itself, along with its speakers, tend to ascribe living attributes to even inanimate objects.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 5:39 pm 
Lebom
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Bengedian lexicalizes manner; for example I have grubem "to fly", clodem "to walk", ferem "to go/travel", brithem "to ride".

Some path lexemes also exist, like utem "to rise", derived from the word for "up"

Derivational affixes can be used to express path, for example ofrem "to exit" ← of-ferem, lit. "to go away".

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 7:48 pm 
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Uscaniv has barely any path-marking verbs. Path is generally indicated with noun cases. There are also tam (to come) and hant (to go) but they are not very well distinguished.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:01 pm 
Lebom
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I'm not quite sure how to classify Feayran in this regard. It has plenty of roots that lexicalize manner, but plenty of others that lexicalize place, and these can be inflected as verbs to effectively form lexicalizations of path:

Kurukáhuòlte tenuósh.
walk<inside.LAT> den<LAT>
He walked into the house. (lexicalized manner)

Ukuterukátenoshl.
inside<walk.VIA-den.LOC>
He, walking, entered the house. (lexicalized path)


So, sometimes it lexicalizes manner, other times it lexicalizes path. English can do the same thing, though--it is just a question of which strategy is more common? It's a close enough race in Feayran that I'm not sure it would be a useful distinction to make.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:46 pm 
Avisaru
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How would you express manner in a system that mostly lexicalizes path? It seems that are so many manners that something along the line of prepositions would be difficult.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:52 pm 
Lebom
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Adverbs?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:10 pm 
Avisaru
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Jetboy wrote:
How would you express manner in a system that mostly lexicalizes path? It seems that are so many manners that something along the line of prepositions would be difficult.


Just look at the example in the original post, which shows verbal adverbs:

He entered the house [walking]
He entered the house running
He entered the house jumping

Etc.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:11 pm 
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Prmysl wrote:
That is an interesting question. I know certain mesoamerican languages actually use body parts for position, e.g. I travel it's-head mountain = I went to the top of the mountain.

I'm taking a course on Native American languages, and a few weeks ago we discussed this. I can't remember the name of the language and don't have my papers at hand, but one of the grad students in my class is working with a language like this. 'X is in front of him' and 'X is on his forehead' are only distinguishable by context; the form is the same.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:34 pm 
Avisaru
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Mecislau wrote:
Just look at the example in the original post, which shows verbal adverbs:

He entered the house [walking]
He entered the house running
He entered the house jumping

Etc.

Oh, right, I was going to take that into account, but forgot. Since those are all participles, one would assume they come from verbs with finite forms, in which case, why wouldn't those be used?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:43 pm 
Lebom
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Jetboy wrote:
Since those are all participles, one would assume they come from verbs with finite forms

One could, but one probably shouldn't--in path-centric languages they needn't be participles any more than English prepositions must be participles.


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