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On 25 October 2010 23:39, Gary Shannon <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Working on my new conlang Kunu, I've pretty much stabilized the
> syllabary, and now I'm translating some simple sentences to get a feel
> for how the grammar will work. As much as possible it will be
> non-inflecting, since I want to retain the same "shape" for the words
> in the syllabary font. For that reason I needed an optional particle
> to indicate plural when its not evident from context. But what started
> out as a pluralizing particle, "ma" grew into a collection of
> particles that act like post-positioned articles and/or quantifiers.
> For example, given "shuru mishi" = "bee" (lit: honey bug) I can have:
>
> shuru mishi - a single, unspecified bee.
> shuru mishi da - a particular single bee; "this bee", or "the bee".
> shuru mishi ona - some small number of bees; "some bees", "a few bees".
> shuru mishi mia - a moderate or large number of bees; "many bees", "a
> lot of bees".
> shuru mishi ma - all bees; bees in general.
>
> But suppose I want to say "some large bees" or "this large bee". Let
> "pika" be "large", then I would have:
>
> pika shuru mishi da - large bee this (the large bee)
> pika shuru mishi ona - large bee PLU-few (some large bees)
> pika shuru mishi ma - large bee PLU-all (all large bees)
>
> I'm just wondering if it violates any universal laws of God and nature
> to put what are effectively adjectives both before AND after the same
> noun.
>
> --gary
>

As William said, your postposed "adjectives" are really determiners, and
those needn't behave like adjectives at all. In Modern Greek, adjectives are
normally pre-posed, and between the article and the noun:
ο άσπρος τοίχος: the white wall.
However, determiners like αυτός: this, don't follow this ordering, and
instead can appear before the article or after the noun!
αυτός ο τοίχος or ο τοίχος αυτός: this wall.
αυτός ο άσπρος τοίχος or ο άσπρος τοίχος αυτός: this white wall.

French is similar: adjectives are post-posed, but determiners come before
the noun (some, like "tout": all, even before the article):
le mur blanc: the white wall.
ce mur: this wall.
ce mur blanc: this white wall.

But even if your post-posed determiners were truly adjectives, you still
wouldn't be in trouble: while French puts most adjectives after the noun,
some can be put before instead (usually, but not always, with a slightly
different meaning), and a few are hardly ever found after the noun!
un homme pauvre: a poor man.
un pauvre homme: a pitiful man.
un homme grand: a tall man.
un grand homme: a great man.
un vieil homme or un homme vieux: an old man (but the first form is more
common).
un vieil homme pauvre: a poor old man.

So don't worry, both adjectives both before and after the noun is not
unknown in natlangs.
-- 
Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.

http://christophoronomicon.blogspot.com/
http://www.christophoronomicon.nl/