In a message dated 1/18/03 5:54:32 AM, [log in to unmask] writes:

>Josh Roth <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>An Eloshtan verb could have, I believe, 52,728 forms. Here's an example
>>maximally inflected verb:
>>yerehenecketifkeskev - (something like) 'and may they have been taught
>>[plural] by [other] them'
>>It's not really more complicated than the corresponding English, but all
>>morphemes are together in one word.
>Wow. 52,728! Perhaps rather than "501 Eloshtan verbs", you could start
>with "501 forms of one Eloshtan verb". I wonder if there's a program you
>could use to plug in a verb and the affixes and let it generate all the
>possible forms.

I'm sure someone could make one (certainly not me), but who needs it? Look at
the scheme below. If you start with a stem, and then pick one out of the
choices for each parentheses, you can get any possible form of the verb
(these affixes are good for front-vowel words only, I should mention):

stem (—/he) (—/ne) (fy/m/s/c/f/ll/q/mk/sk/ck/fk/llk/qk) (—/[e]t/en)
(—/em/es/ec/ef/ell/eq/emk/esk/eck/efk/ellk/eqk) (—/ev)

>Just to be a show-off:
>Rhean is "sort of" agglutinative. It certainly doesn't have 52,728 verb
>forms! It has like six or seven "tenses" with six personal forms each,
>a few participles. BUT I've given it a lot of suffixes that can change
>part of speech into another with various shades of meaning (a verb can
>become a noun in a few ways, or an adjective in a few ways; an adjective
>can become a noun in a handful of ways; a noun can become an adjective
>at least a dozen ways... all the different resultant forms have a different
>And so, I don't usually stick together long long words, but there is the
>potential to create beasts like this:
>"it was like those repeated occasions in which (he) behaves like one who
>has been overly burdened with responsibility."
>skij-   =   too much, over-
>ag-...(-ek)   =   to cause to be ...
>ozok'nas'ec'   =   vested with responsibility (itself being ozok'nas' +
>-ibz(a)   =   passive of -ek verb
>-urz   =   "one who is (adjective)"
>-agar(ek)   =   to behave like ...
>-ervo   =   a regularly occuring event
>-mik   =   -like, like (a) ...
>-ig(ek)   =   to be (suffixed to adjectives)
>-ios'   =   3rd person singular past tense of -ek verb
>I would like a program like the one I mentioned above, to generate the
>forty or fifty verb forms of Rhean. 501 verbs that way wouldn't be too

That is pretty cool. I think you're underestimating the number of possible
forms. Just with seven tenses and six person/number categories you have 42
forms, then if you add on just the possibility to be passive or active, to
have 'skij' or not, and to have 'mik' or not, you wind up with 346 forms, and
I'm sure there are more variations you could have.


Josh Roth