tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Nov 22 22:53:13 2009

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Re: The topic marker -'e'

Christopher Doty (

> Subjects aren't distinct from agents. Both intransitive and transitive verbs
> have subjects. Both transitive ('kill') and intransitive verbs ('run') can
> have agents as subjects.

Dude. I am not getting paid to teach you linguistics.

Subjects and agents are distinct.  In English (and Klingon, and a
butt-load of other languages), subjects and agents get treated the
same (he runs, he kills him).  However, there is a second butt-load of
languages where subjects and OBJECTS are treated the same, and AGENTS
are treated differently (e.g., if forced to use English, him runs, he
kills him).  Thus, the 'S' that I was using to gloss that morpheme
means that it is a prefix which does not indicate an object.  Because
terms like subject and agent can be surprising loaded, these are often
simply shorted in linguistics to S, A, and O.

> You equated the subject of a verb with the object, for which there is no
> justification. I equated two subjects.

Because you decided that Sor was a subject (and a 1pl subject at that)
a priori.  What I was pointing out is that, if we decide a priori what
is what, then there is no reason for the "robots" in "We kill robots"
to be considered an object; it is actually a subject, because I
decided it is a subject (even though there is no justification for
this).  So no, I did exactly the same thing.


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