Quoting David Peterson <[log in to unmask]>:

> Present Tense:
> 1.) bo malab.  ("I run", present tense.)
> 2.) bo kun gabab.  ("I see you" present tense.)


> Past Tense:
> 3.) bo malanab.  ("I ran")
> 4.) kun bo gabanak.  ("You saw me.")
>     Look at number four!  Essentially what you've done from number two
> to number one is put the verb in the past tense, switch the order of the
> pronouns and made the verb agree with object instead of the subject.
> That's exactly what Kurdish does!  It's as if in the switch from present to
> past and accusative to ergative they switched the semantics of the affixes!
> It's so confusing!

If you're interested in a good, if dense, book about ergativity,
check out Dixon's book by that name (i.e., "Ergativity").  It has
extended discussion about how languages can slip into ergative
constructions in past/perfective constructions.


Thomas Wier <[log in to unmask]>

"If a man demands justice, not merely as an abstract concept,
but in setting up the life of a society, and if he holds, further,
that within that society (however defined) all men have equal rights,
then the odds are that his views, sooner rather than later, are going
to set something or someone on fire." Peter Green, in _From Alexander
to Actium_, on Spartan king Cleomenes III