In a message dated 6/5/99 5:31:02 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
[log in to unmask] writes:

 I started on an agglutinative language once that had five kinds of
 "article" markers. From broad to narrow:

 indefinite plural   "women", "some women"
 definite plural     "the women", "those women"
 indefinite singular "a woman" "one woman or another", "any woman"
 definite singular   "the woman", "that woman", "the woman we've been
                     talking about"
 unique singular     "She" (title of the High Priestess of the very
                     small country where the language was spoken)

In my current language, Nzva, there are four levels of modifiers which i call

la/wa-          "any, a/any type of."  for example "la tysa ky hu pan", "any
girl can/could do it" (shows that "it" is an ability which is a condition of
being a girl or that considering the circumstances, it is possible for any
girl to do 'it')
em/mey-         "a".  "em tysa ky hu pan" "a girl can do it" (insinuates that
a girl is capable of the action as opposed to a boy)
ro/al-          "the". "ro tysa ky hu pan" "the girl can do it" (the meaning
is the same as in english
poy/pay-        "the" unlike in english, this means "the" in the present
circumstances, the here-and-now (or then-and-there).  thus "poy tysa ky hu
pan" means either "this girl (as opposed to another girl in a similar
situation) can do it" or "the girl (here and now, as opposed to normally when
this would not be the case) can do it.

Does anyone else have such a system of "articles"?  Is the term "article"
even appropriate in this situation?

pacs precs
Joe Mondello