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Proto-Kwang Grammar
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new qonk's nguppy sinitish grammar
This public article was written by dendana, and last updated on 23 Dec 2018, 09:36. Editing of this article is shared with Qollab.

[comments] [history] Menu 1. Introduction 2. Alienability and possession 3. Classifiers 4. Pronouns 5. Noun phrases 6. Verbs 7. Tense 8. Aspect and mood 9. Negation 10. Clauses 11. Sentences
[top]Introduction

Welcome to the grammar of  Proto-Kwang, an ancient Ngerupic language spoken around 1000 BCE and the language of Qonklaks' first states and writing systems. It is quite analytic and has converted  Wa Ñi's noun classes into a classifier system. It has also lost verb morphology besides a handful of uses of the former irrealis (which is only marked through tone changes).

[top]Alienability and possession

All nouns in Proto-Kwang are either alienable or inalienable. This information is listed in their dictionary entries. The difference between them mainly governs which set of possessive particles they take.

AlienableInalienable
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
ŋaŋsa
1IUnknown codemawa
1EFirst person exclusive (person)
I/we but not you
ŋwaŋu
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
diû
2PSecond person plural (person)
addressee (plural)
iî
3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
haŋa
3PThird person plural (person)
neither speaker nor addressee, they/them
waŋap
genericti

The so-called pronominal possessive particles are used for meanings like 'my' and 'yours'. The 3S and 3P pronominal ones are only used for human possessors. Finally, the generic forms are used for noun phrases and non-human pronouns.

[top]Classifiers

Classifiers are generic. Many of the classifiers are cognate with the pronouns in Wa Ñi. The classifiers each noun uses can be found in the dictionary (the same as in Wa Ñi), where the first number is the singular classifier and the second is the plural classifier. Each noun has a singular and plural classifier, though they are the same for some words. The reference numbers are based on the noun class numbers in Wa Ñi.

However, there are also some newer, more innovative classifiers which generally describe the shape of an object and are primarily used for inanimate, tangible objects. These tend not to have singular and plural forms. The language is moving in the direction of using these in preference to the older classifiers for inanimate, tangible objects. While the old classifiers are listed with each noun for reference, the old classifiers are predominantly used for intangible things and animate things (generally animals and people, with the exception of insects and sea life).

The classifier forms are:

Old Classifiers
Reference NumberWordSingular/Plural
1aSingular
2paPlural
3niSingular
5heSingular
6riPlural
7ynSingular
8nhaPlural
9tuSingular
10Plural
11saŋEither (depends on word)

Note that 1 and 2 are singular and plural for humans, and 8 is from a combination of the old 7 classifier *en and the old 8 classifier *a. In addition, the 11 class is being replaced by 7 in the singular and 10 in the plural.

New Classifiers

TODO

The classifiers are used as pronouns and definite articles, as well as to link quantifiers and demonstratives to nouns.

[top]Pronouns

While the classifiers can be used as pronouns, personal pronouns continue to form their own class, preserving different ergative and absolutive forms. The ergative forms are used for the subject of a transitive verb and the absolutive forms are used in all other occasions.

AbsolutiveErgative
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
nŋè
1IUnknown codema
1EFirst person exclusive (person)
I/we but not you
ñuŋwè
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
di
2PSecond person plural (person)
addressee (plural)
îi
3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
a
3PThird person plural (person)
neither speaker nor addressee, they/them
pa

Note that the 3S and 3P forms are used for humans only. When humans are the subject, the human classifiers are never used. Instead, these pronoun forms are used.
Dialectally, n becomes .
The 1I ergative form was created by analogy, and the second-person forms come from an earlier nominative/accusative system.

[top]Noun phrases

The noun phrase takes the form (demonstrative classifier) (quantifier classifier) noun (adjective) (possessive) (relative clause)
where the possessive component is either a pronominal possessive particle or in the form (possessive.particle possessor), where the possessor is itself a noun phrase.

In cases where there is both a demonstrative and a quantifier, the classifier follows the quantifier and the one after the demonstrative is usually omitted.

[top]Verbs

Proto-Kwang prefers to use periphrasis to express verbal meanings, and the verbs do not conjugate for anything.

Instead, serial verb constructions and adverbials are used to convey TAM and negation.

[top]Tense

Past tense uses the verb yj 'to go' before the main verb.

Future tense uses the historical irrealis form of 'to go': ỳj before the main verb.

[top]Aspect and mood

Perfect aspect uses the verb 'to finish' làw before the main verb. It is generally not used with a tense marker, and indicates that the action has finished before the reference time.

Habitual aspect uses the verb 'to work' dwỳt before the main verb but after any other tense/aspect verbs.

Progressive aspect on stative verbs (verbs that don't involve action) is marked with 'to lie down' ʔjyn in the realis mood and the historical irrealis form ʔjỳn in the irrealis mood. This occurs after any tense verbs but before the main verb.

Progressive aspect on dynamic verbs (verbs that involve action) is marked with 'to hit' duʔ in the realis mood and the historical irrealis form dùʔ in the irrealis mood. This occurs after any tense verbs but before the main verb.

The subjunctive mood is marked with the special verb wàw, from *oàwa, the conditional verb of 'to see', as the last verb in the verb sequence.

The conditional mood is marked with the irrealis form of 'to take', wỳʔ, as the first verb in the verb sequence.

The imperative is expressed with mhỳʔ as the first word in the clause, from *i mèx 2PSecond person plural (person)
addressee (plural)
.NOMNominative (case)
TRANS subject, INTR argument
do.IRRIrrealis
mood
.

The hortative is expressed without any special marking, just a first-person subject. For emphasis, the subject pronoun can be repeated in the final position of the clause.

[top]Negation

Negation is generally formed with the particle pat immediately after the main verb, which derives ultimately from the Wa Ñi negative suffix *-p(a) plus the negative particle *tì.

[top]Clauses

Clauses in Proto-Kwang take the general pattern (S) P V (O), where P is a pronoun or classifier agreeing with the subject. P is ergative in transitive sentences and absolutive in intransitive sentences. The P is often omitted when the subject is a noun phrase, but is usually kept for non-human subjects.

There is also a kind of passive formed with the pattern (O) P V (S), where P is a pronoun or classifier agreeing with the subject. Again, P is ergative in transitive sentences and absolutive in intransitive sentences.

[top]Sentences
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Edit history
on 23/12/18 09:36+185dendananegation
on 23/12/18 08:17+4dendanafix
on 23/12/18 08:14+1770dendanaTAM
on 23/12/18 08:01-28dendanasmol fix
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