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Yeah, I don't think I've seen any language where the choice of word order
definitely wouldn't carry any information with it.

With this in mind, the basic word order in Kišta is Top ... Foc V with
non-topical elements not part of the core information focus mostly coming
between Top and Foc. The verb can also be topical which leads to V initial
word order (for example existential clauses, as discussed above). Two
important additions to this scheme are that afterthoughts can be added
after the verb (especially heavier ones like dependent clauses) and
contrastive elements are moved to the absolute start of the sentence. This
means that contrastive focus always precedes the sentence topic. One
category that lives in this contrastive slot are all interrogatives except
for verbs inflected in the interrogative mode for polar questions and all
words followed by a focus clitic.

I guess that this means that the most common word orders in Kišta are SOV,
OSV, and AdvSOV.

   -Jyri


2017-09-01 20:15 GMT+02:00 Aidan Aannestad <[log in to unmask]>:

> Word order variation is almost universally an information structure
> question - things move to mark them as topic, focus, and so on. (There's a
> few other reasons, but those are unusual.) Even English does this a lot,
> but it's hidden, as the rigidity of English's word order rules force you to
> have to rephrase things to make it valid (eg fronting with the 'it's the X
> which Y Z-ed' construction). Because of this, I don't believe in 'free word
> order' - it's not free at all, it's just governed by pragmatics rather than
> syntax.
>
> On 1 Sep 2017 12:03, "Daniel Bowman" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> > Angosey is strict VSO, except for a few verbs that seem to switch it to
> > VOS.  A particular one is the verb "to assay."  A few others too.  I'm
> not
> > sure how to explain these idiosyncrasies diachronically.  Suggestions?
> >
> > On Fri, Sep 1, 2017 at 10:41 Gary Shannon <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> > > I have several conlang sketches (which could probably be considered
> > > slightly different versions of the same sketch) where each phrase is
> > > marked.
> > >
> > > The subject is unmarked, which identifies it as the subject.
> > > The verb phrase uses words unique to verb phrases, thus marking it.
> > > All other phrases, including the direct object, are marked with
> > > "prepositions".
> > >
> > > Word order within the phrase is strictly enforced, but every possible
> > > phrase order is equally comprehensible:
> > >
> > >      1. [John] [gave] [to Mary] [li a gift].
> > >      2. John gave li a gift to Mary.
> > >      3. John to Mary gave li a gift.
> > >      4. John to Mary li a gift gave.
> > >      5. John li a gift to Mary gave.
> > >      6. John li a gift gave to Mary.
> > >      7. Gave John to Mary li a gift.
> > >      8. Gave John li a gift to Mary.
> > >      9. Gave to Mary John li a gift.
> > >     10. Gave to Mary li a gift John.
> > >     11. Gave li a gift John to Mary.
> > >     12. Gave li a gift to Mary John.
> > >     13. To Mary John gave li a gift.
> > >     14. To Mary John li a gift gave.
> > >     15. To Mary gave John li a gift.
> > >     16. To Mary gave li a gift John.
> > >     17. To Mary li a gift John gave.
> > >     18. To Mary li a gift gave John.
> > >     19. Li a gift John gave to Mary.
> > >     20. Li a gift John to Mary gave.
> > >     21. Li a gift gave John to Mary.
> > >     22. Li a  gift gave to Mary John.
> > >     23. Li a gift to Mary John gave.
> > >     24. Li a gift to Mary gave John.
> > >
> > > Prepositional phrases are, of course, also marked by a preposition, so
> > they
> > > can be placed anywhere:
> > >
> > > [For her birthday] gave li a gift to Mary John.
> > > Gave [for her birthday] li a gift to Mary John.
> > > Gave li a gift [for her birthday] to Mary John.
> > > Gave li a gift to Mary [for her birthday] John.
> > > Gave li a gift to Mary John [for her birthday].
> > >
> > > When the subject is located a long distance from the verb it may also
> be
> > > marked with a verbish sort of word, possibly a detached tense marker:
> > >
> > > Gave for her birthday li a gift to Mary [did John].
> > > or:
> > > Give for her birthday li a gift to Mary did John. (with present tense
> > main
> > > verb)
> > >
> > > --gary
> > >
> > >
> > > On Fri, Sep 1, 2017 at 5:12 AM, C. Brickner <
> [log in to unmask]>
> > > wrote:
> > >
> > > > How strict are you in maintaining the word order you have given to
> your
> > > > conlangs? What are the reasons that you deviate from this word order?
> > I'm
> > > > especially interested in SVO.
> > > > Charlie
> > > >
> > >
> >
>