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"Nilvalent". Like it.

Sent from my iPhone

On 12 Jun 2014, at 01:14, J P <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>> Khangaþyagon has a passive copula, which means "there is".
> 
> A thing that this reminds me of: as you may be aware, Finnish has a small number of nilvalent verbs, e.g.
> _sataa_ | rain-3PS | "It is raining"
> _tuulee_ | wind-3PS | "The wind is blowing"
> (the 3PS markers are semantically null, much as in in English _It is raining_)
> 
> And straightforwardly enuff, some intransitive verbs can be used in the "passive person" to yield similar nilvalent-ish expressions:
> 
> _pihalla tanssitaan_ | yard-ADESS dance-PASS.PRES | "there is dancing in the yard"; i.e. "there are people dancing in the yard"
> _talvella kaadutaan usein_ | winter- fall-PASS.PRES often | -- "falling often happens in winter" i.e. "in wintertime, [unspecified entities] will be often falling down"
> 
> A prepositional phrase is still necessary here, though.
> 
> I'm also reminded of some verbs of mental states (some of them even transitive) that allow superficially nilvalent expressions. These kind of statements normally imply an 1st person experiencer:
> _kyrpii_ | be_pissed_off_by-3PS | "there is being-pissed-off", usually i.e.: "I am pissed off"
> _nukuttaa_ | feel_sleepy-3PS | "there is feeling-sleepy", usually i.e.: "I am sleepy"
> 
> The same holds even when an object is used, though.
> _työ kyrpii_ | work be_pissed_off_by-3PS | "work pisses one off", usually i.e.: "I'm pissed off by work"
> 
> Contextually other persons could be implied too.
> 
> _j.