Okay, so I've been drowning in a swamp of homework, but I seem to be temporarily out of that mess so I can work on this more. Thanks for the input, and I apologize for taking so long to respond.
To judge from these examples (or at least the first one?), the person-marking pronouns and affixes don't seem to be specified for number at all (except the inclusive 1pl in the second sentence). Is there a reason you're still glossing them with things like "2PS"?
My current idea is that first and second person markers are specified for plurality, whereas third person markers are not except for with the explicit -hée
thing. My current markers are as follows, with the suffixes first and the independent pronoun thingies in parentheses:
Code: Select all
1SG -ŋ (né)
1PL -qw (néhée)
2SG -ł (ło)
2PL -d (łohée)
1+2SG -si (bê)
1+2PL -b (behée)
3PROX.SG -ʔ (aŋí)
3PROX.PL -ʔ (aŋíhée)
3OBV.SG -wetsi (wetsi)
3OBV.PL -wetsi (wetsihée)
3INAN.SG -g (gi)
3INAN.PL -g (kée)
As for the proximate/obviative thing THC brought up...I'm not sure that it even makes sense to describe obviative as higher on a prominence hierarchy than proximate. All you're really doing is calling a proximate "obviative" and an obviative "proximate", because the whole point is that the proximate third person is the more salient or topicalized or important or whatever. I could be wrong, but from everything I know it seems to me that what you've got now is literally just a reversal of definitions, rather than a new way of treating proximate/obviate marking in a hierarchy.
After spending some time trying to make this work I'm coming to the same conclusion, so I think I'm just going to nix it.
I'm also a little concerned about how Algonquian-y it is overall, grammar-wise. A prominence hierarchy, direct/inverse alignment, and proximate/obviate pretty much just occur in Algonquian and the isolate Kutenai (and Kutenai's system seems to be connected to the Algonquian one somehow--presumably through an old period of contact). At least as far as I'm aware. And even Kutenai isn't really to the level of Algonquian. There are other systems that are kind of like it, but even if there are others it's an extremely rare system. Or at least a system advanced to this extent is extremely rare. Plus you've got an animacy distinction for noun gender, and overt plural marking on nouns, and a clusivity distinction. There's nothing inherently wrong about all that (one of my conlangs is heavily influenced by Algonquian in certain aspects of the grammar and phonology) ... just, make sure you realize that's what you're doing, I guess? (I'm not 100% sure what I originally intended my point to be...)
Yeah, I'm aware that a lot of it is extremely Algonquianish. I don't intend to change how much of it is inspired by Algonquian languages, but to make it unique by having enough non-Algonquian features to balance it out; the word order, the trigger system, evidentiality and the auxiliary verbs, at the very least, are not particularly Algonquian.
I'm seriously considering fucking with the animacy hierarchy to include a complex politeness system. I'm also probably going to add a human/nonhuman/inanimate distinction instead of just binary animacy, and also a distinction for religious figures, i.e. spirits and deities.
For the evidentiality system, I'm considering having these four distinctions:
- Direct 1 (speaker was involved)
- Direct 2 (speaker witnessed it)
I'm unsure about the distinction between what I've labeled Direct 1 and Direct 2; the distinction seems to make sense and I definitely think it would be workable, but I'd like to know if it's attested in any natlangs. If it isn't I'll probably use it anyway because I like it, but it'd still be nice to have some real examples. I'd also be interested in adding an evidentiality marker specifically for religious knowledge, but the realisticity of that seems kind of dubious.
I'd also be interested in mixing evidentiality with the tense system somehow, maybe as a future/nonfuture thing. I don't know of any languages that do this, although I'm certain some languages do it, so I'd appreciate it if anyone could give me examples.