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> Date: Fri, 30 Apr 2010 11:32:29 +0100
> From: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Morphosyntactic allignment oddity
> To: [log in to unmask]
> 
> Suppose we have an isolating SOV language. Basic sentences can look like
> NOUN VERB
> PRONOUN VERB
> NOUN NOUN VERB
> NOUN PRONOUN VERB
> PRONOUN NOUN VERB
> PRONOUN PRONOUN VERB
> 
> Now suppose we turn our pronouns into clitics, we get (for sentences 
> involving pronouns)
> 
> PRONOUN-VERB
> PRONOUN-NOUN VERB
> PRONOUN-PRONOUN-VERB
> 
> Now, suppose the speakers start interpreting the cliticised pronouns as 
> agreement markers when attached to the verb, and an accusative marker 
> when attached to the noun. We then get
> 
> NOUN X-VERB
> X-VERB
> NOUN ACC-NOUN Y-X-VERB
> NOUN Y-X-VERB
> ACC-NOUN Y-X-VERB
> Y-X-VERB
> 
> What we've got here is nominative-accusative marking on nouns, and 
> ergative-absolute agreement on verbs. This interesting thing is that 
> it's fairly common in natlangs to have erg-abs marking on nouns and 
> nom-acc agreement on verbs, but not as far as I know the other way round.
> 
> Pete


My very first language did almost exactly this, except that the verb only cliticized one pronoun at a time, and it was a postclitic. (There was also a rule that pushed the subject after the verb if there was both a direct and an indirect object.) The possible sentences were:

 

(Lowercase is a pronoun)

VERB

NOM VERB-nom

ACC NOM VERB-acc

DAT NOM VERB-dat

ACC DAT VERB-acc NOM

 

or as I summarized it:

1 2 V-1 3

ACC > DAT > NOM

 

(Just now, I'm looking at it after 3 years of learning German, and I find it could almost be appropriate to call that a V3 word order, but I didn't speak German back then (almost because there are valid sentences of less than 3 items.).)

 

If the argument in position one was itself a pronoun, it was dropped completely as it was already adfixed to the verb.

 

In short, it seems ACADEW.

 

Maxime

 
 		 	   		  
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