> It seems that if one's intention is to convey
> the most striaghtforward manner that a
> would need very few tenses, voices, and
> Exotic forms like the passive could certainly be done
> without. [:)]
Yep. You could use an emphasis particle, or a trigger system.
> Even the future tense seems unnecessary as long as
> some additional word conveys the idea of futurity as in
> "Dinner IS SOON ready," "John is here tomorrow."
Yep. I'd use temporal adverbs.
> "I am here for six months already" gives some notion of
> pastness without a past tense.
Yep. I'd use temporal adverbbs.
> But if one were to strike a happy medium between the
What does 'sublime' mean?
> and the ridiculous, which moods, voices and tenses would
> you consider to be the minimum set for a reasonably
> mature language of daily commerce?
I'd vote for: active, passive (with trigger or emphasis or omission of the
(oblique) subject), antipassive (omission of the object), middle (lke active -
like English); past and nonpast; indicative, subjunctive, imperative. Modality
will be be figured out later; go to http://www.eskimo.com/~ram/lexical_semantics.html#S16_0.
, 'must' etc... are modals.)