tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Wed Sep 04 01:27:01 2002

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Re: tlhIngan Hol lujatlhbogh puq'e'

>>i want to have names for those roles. when i called them
>>"nominative", "accusative" and so on (cases), the idea was not very
>>in. so if "roles" are allowed, then we speak of "subject role",
>>"object role".
>>are there any shorter names for "describing another noun role"?
>>"genitive" wouldn't be allowed, as this impies case.
>Actually, the term 'genitive' has been used on this list to describe
>the function of the first noun in a noun-noun construction.  To slip
>into the fiction of Klingon for a bit, I suspect that long ago,
>there was a 'genitive' syntactic marker, and like the other
>syntactic markers it was a Type 5 suffix.  This would explain why
>nouns occupying that grammatical role can't take Type 5 suffixes -
>it's a holdover from when those nouns had Type 5 suffixes of their

normally, t5-suffixes mark nouns that go into the header. it would
have been a strange t5-suffix that doesn't need a "-bogh"-clause,
wouldn't it?

>If I understand correctly, the English construction "the A the B"
>(as in the more the merrier, the bigger the better, etc.) is a
>holdover from a lost case.  This construction really shouldn't mean
>what it does based on the rest of English grammar, but the A term in
>the construction used to be in the instrumental case.
>There are also examples in Finnish of words using an older case
>ending for the case which nows ends in -ssa.  This case represents
>'in' (more or less).  The older ending is -na, which now signifies
>'as' (meaning function, as in 'I work as a programmer').  The word
>'kotona', meaning 'at home' is an example of this.  Nobody would
>ever think that 'Olen kotona' means 'I am as a home' instead of 'I
>am at home', but according to modern usage of -na it should.

... :)

>Interestingly, 'in front of' uses the newer variant (edessä), while
>'behind' uses the older (takana).
>This is all conjecture of course (and all in fun of course, since we
>know that MO invented the language), but there is precedent for
>holdover from lost/changed cases.

nice interpretation (the lost type 5 suffix), though. :)


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