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Girekian Morphology Part 1: Nouns
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nouns, pronouns, articles, possession
This public article was written by [Deactivated User], and last updated on 13 Dec 2020, 00:14.

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Menu 1. Introduction 2. Nouns 3. Pronouns 4. Articles 5. Paucal & Partitive 6. Possession
[edit] [top]Introduction

This is the first lesson in  Girekian grammar. I'll be discussing nouns, pronouns, article use, and construct case. See the previous article, Girekian Phonology & Orthography, for information on the writing system (including punctuation). And check out the next article, Girekian Morphology Part 2: Verbs, for more information on, well... verbs. To find out how to describe the nouns you'll learn about in this article, check out Girekian Morphology Part 3: Adjectives. Future grammar articles will cover interjections, numbers, and derivational morphology, and I'll also be adding syntax articles. So, on to nouns:


Noun declension is via suffix and is based primarily on number. Nouns can be singular (unmodified), double (-iz/-jiz), triple (-e/-he), or generally plural (-am/-'am). Mass/uncountable nouns are declined as singular.

▼ Click to see examples.

The double, triple, and plural suffixes may be used to approximate, when saying things like "I need a couple things" or "we went a few times" or "they have plenty of potatoes". Use of an actual number adds specificity. Saying 'iz läjiz literally means two things while läjiz is a couple things.

[edit] [top]Pronouns

Pronouns are divided into four persons. There is a clusivity distinction in first person plural and an animacy distinction in third person. Pronouns are not classed by gender or case.

singularplural inclusiveplural exclusive
1st person notœbamba
2nd person 'amam
3rd person animate remi
3rd person inanimate hohom


[edit] [top]Articles

There is only one true article in  Girekian , the definite article la. This article is used to make a specific reference to an inanimate object or lower life form. For example, fånyq is a book and may refer to any book in general (or "books" as a mass noun, depending on context), while la fånyq is the book and refers to a specific book that is common knowledge, has previously been mentioned, or will gain context through the rest of the sentence. An article must agree in number with the noun to which it is attached. For example, lam fånyqam translates to the books. Saying "la fånyqam" would sound foreign and uneducated, like saying "those book" in English.

Articles help distinguish between singular and mass/uncountable nouns. For example, la ci translates as the water and would reference a specific body of water (or a container of water) while ci simply translates as water and refers to water in general or as a whole. By saying notœ wozmäjum la ci one would specify I do not have the water (as in "the cup of water"), while notœ wozmäjum ci means I do not have [any] water.

Articles are generally not used with higher life forms. For example, bumili refers to a doctor in general. To refer to a specific doctor, the actual name of the doctor would be used rather than his or her title. Alternatively, simply using the word bumili is sufficient if referring to a specific doctor if the identity of the person is implied, commonly understood, or previously mentioned. Using an article connotes possession or a dependent relationship, and generally conveys a sense of affection and familiarity. For example, mänoco is a child or the child depending on context, while la mänoco may be used to say the child if the speaker is a parent, teacher, caretaker, etc of that child. Likewise, la bumili may be acceptable for the doctor (implied my doctor) if you happen to have a doctor in your private employ.

▼ Click to see examples.

The word la generally translates as the but may also be translated as that when used as a determiner. In these cases, the words the and that are pretty much interchangeable. For example, 'ir 'a la na zo notœ could be translated as either give the food to me or give that food to me without changing meaning since, presumably, "which food" is obvious.

▼ Click for more on "that".


[edit] [top]Paucal & Partitive

Paucal/partitive case is used when describing a portion (ie. a cup of, some of, a piece of, etc) or any vague amount (ie. few, most, any, etc) of something. The suffix (-ynæ/-næ) is used in place of a pluralizer.

won bumili'am
won bumili'am
[wo̞n bɤmiliʔäm]
twelve doctor-PLPlural (number)
more than one/few

twelve doctors

hoko bumilinæ
hoko bumilinæ
[ho̞kʰo̞ bɤmilinɛ]
PAUPaucal (number)
a few, some
doctor-PTVPartitive (number)
'some of' or for mass nouns

some doctors

notœ wozmä la ci
notœ wozmä la ci
[no̞tə wo̞zmäɪ lä ʃi]
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
have-INTIntelligent (gender/class)
Sentient beings
.PRESPresent tense (tense)
current
DEFDefinite
"the"
.ARTArticle
indicate the type of reference being made by the noun
water

I have the water

notœ wozmä hoko la cinæ
notœ wozmä hoko la cinæ
[no̞tə wo̞zmäɪ ho̞kʰo̞ lä ʃinɛ]
1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
have-INTIntelligent (gender/class)
Sentient beings
.PRESPresent tense (tense)
current
PAUPaucal (number)
a few, some
DEFDefinite
"the"
.ARTArticle
indicate the type of reference being made by the noun
water-PTVPartitive (number)
'some of' or for mass nouns

I have some of the water

[edit] [top]Possession

Construct case is applied to the object of possession, and there is no genitive form for the possessor of the object. A suffix is added to the noun being possessed based on whether it is mine (-tœ), yours (-a/-ra), inclusively ours (-ba), exclusively ours (-bi), his/hers (-re), its (-ho), or theirs (-mi).

Proper syntax is [possessor] [object]+[construct suffix], however when the possessor is marked by a pronoun it is typical to omit the pronoun when it is obvious who owns the object. For example, while both notœ wytœ and wytœ both translate to my mother, it is rare to include notœ since there is no other option if the construct suffix is -tœ. This pronoun dropping is considered standard, but is not mandatory and all pronouns are often included in more formal (ie ceremonial) settings and in written work.

Inanimate objects are not considered capable of possession. The suffix -ho is only used for lower lifeforms. For example, the person’s hand would be translated as la mäno babakre and the ape's hand would be translated as la ræku babakho, while the clock’s hand would be translated as la babak ho hetano, literally the hand of clock. A person or an ape owns his or her hand, while the hands of a clock are just parts of a whole object. It should be noted that the article la refers to the object of possession babak. As always, it is generally improper to use an article when discussing a higher life form. One most likely shouldn't say la mäno bumilire, and would instead say mäno bumilire for the person's doctor.

Compound Possession
If there are multiple separate possessions, each object of possession has its own construct suffix. The same rules apply for articles and construct case as in every other circumstance. For example, la [notœ] wytœ babakre translates to my mother’s hand. In this sentence, mother (wyt) is mine (-tœ) and hand (babak) is hers (-re).

Construct suffixes can be "stacked" when multiple instances of the same object are possessed separately. A sentence like my and Zilja’s clothes would be translated as lam notœ 'am Zilja ruwa'amtœre. This sentence explains that there are clothes (ruwa'am) that are owned by myself (-tœ) and clothes owned by Zilja (-re). This particular construction would only be used in situations where it was important to emphasize that the object(s), clothes in this example, are owned separately by each of us. Otherwise lam notœ 'am Zilja ruwa'ambi would refer to clothes that are ours (shared, owned by both of us together).

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