On Sat, Feb 12, 2011 at 8:35 PM, Douglas Koller <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Garth Wallace" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Sent: Saturday, February 12, 2011 9:46:02 PM
> Subject: Re: Non-subject relativization strategies
> On Sat, Feb 12, 2011 at 5:54 AM, 1 2 <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> My questions are:
>> - What are other possible strategies for non-subject relativization?
>> - The examples I gave above are for nominative-accusative languages. How
>> would an ergative-absolutive language, for example, render this situation?
> Japanese dispenses with relative clauses completely.
> ________________
> I guess it depends on how you define 'em.
> ___________________________
> It just doesn't
> have relative pronouns at all.
> ______________________
> True
> _______________
> Instead, it uses participial phrases
> for just about everything. This is slightly obscured by terminology:
> Japanese participles are usually not referred to as such. Instead,
> participle inflections are referred to as the "plain form", since they
> can double as finite verbs in casual speech (and the "plain" nonpast
> affirmative is the citation form for verbs).
> _____________________
> I have never thought of the "plain form" (citation form) as being participial. The "-te" form, now that I would consider participial.

How? A participle is a deverbal adjective, and the te-form can't be
used attributively, which pretty much precludes it from being
adjectival. The te-form is more like a deverbal adverb (converb?)*.

I consider i-adjectives to be a particular class of defective stative
verbs. For me, the important thing is whether it can be used
attributively. The "polite forms" (-masu, -mashita, etc.) can only be
used predicatively, but the "plain forms" can be used attributively**,
so to my way of thinking they double as participles. They don't have
the same shape as i-adjectives, but they behave very similarly.

> Basically, you just stick a clause in front of the noun you're
> modifying, with the verb of the clause in the plain form, and the
> modified noun acts as one of the otherwise unspecified participants in
> that clause. The way it's been explained to me, it can be any
> participant. In practice, it really seems to be limited to the core
> arguments and any participant that is considered particularly
> important (re: commonly specified) for the verb, which is usually
> recipient or location. So for "iku", to go, it could be the subject or
> the destination; for "ageru", to give, it could be the subject,
> object, or recipient.
> ____________________________
> Tookyoo e iku shinkansen
> "The bullet train that goes to Tokyo." I don't see this as participial.

The going-to-Tokyo bullet train.

The less awkward translation in English is "the bullet train that goes
to Tokyo", because English generally doesn't use participles for that
sort of thing.

> You can also use the simple past in this kind of sentence:
> Tookyoo e itta shinkansen. The bullet train that went to Tokyo. Participial?

Sure, it's a past participle.

> These seem to me participial:
> "Itte kimasu" (Having gone, I shall return.) (Japanese thing you say when leaving)
> "Shinkansen wa Tookyoo ni *tomatte*, Kyoto ni ikimasu."
> After the bullet train has stopped in Tokyo, it will go to Kyoto. (Dunno if that's true, work with me).

Those don't look participial to me. Subordinate, sure.

*As well as being used for certain kinds of verbal complements, and
predicatively as a command form. It doesn't fit easily into any one

**With a few exceptions, I think: AFAIK the plain imperative and
volitive can't be used attributively, and neither can the plain forms
of the copula.