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Relative and Subordinate Clauses
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This public article was written by erassion, and last updated on 6 Mar 2016, 20:28.

[comments] Menu 1. Relative Clauses 2. Subordinate Clauses 3. Subjunctive clauses Both relative and subordinate clauses make use of the verb suffix -na. This suffix is added to the end of a verbal compound after all conjugations and aspectual and tense markers. However, if there are any post-verbal mood or negation markers, '-na' is appended to the end of those.

[top]Relative Clauses

Relative clauses define a previously mentioned noun. Nieren has one simple way of expressing relative clauses:

Ú bunov sibinvóna ú maseś
I am the man who ate the bread
ú
DEFDefinite
"the"
.ARTArticle
indicate the type of reference being made by the noun
bun-ov
bread-ACCAccusative (case)
TRANS direct object; patient
si-bin-vó-na
PFVPerfective (aspect)
completed action
-eat-PASTPast tense (tense)
action occurred before moment of speech
-3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
-RELRelative
ú
DEFDefinite
"the"
.ARTArticle
indicate the type of reference being made by the noun
mas-eś
man-1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


Note: maś becomes maseś when appended with a suffix that begins with 'ś', which is the case for all such nouns.

In a sense, '-na' turns the relative clause into an adjectival phrase, and as a result follows all the rules of adjectives. '-na' must agree in number with the noun described and may also take on the three temporal forms.

Rasvam sinesekvónók maśúk iryhlmó silévóśy
The men who used to like to steal went to the store
rasvam
steal.INFInfinitive (TAM)
non-tensed verb
sin-esek-vó-nó-k
PFVPerfective (aspect)
completed action
-like-PASTPast tense (tense)
action occurred before moment of speech
-SRSubordinator
marks subordinate clause
.PASTPast tense (tense)
action occurred before moment of speech
-PLPlural (number)
more than one/few
maś-úk
man-PLPlural (number)
more than one/few
iryhl-mó
store-DATDative (case)
indirect object; recipient, beneficiary, location
si-lé-vó-śy
PFVPerfective (aspect)
completed action
-go-PASTPast tense (tense)
action occurred before moment of speech
-3PLUnknown code


Another type of relative clause involves the 'wh-' relative markers (i.e. who, what, when, where, why, how)

Most have their own specific constructs, but they are all similar in style. The two fairly straightforward but still deviant of these five are who and what, which require the possessed adjectival gerund along with the interrogative word (if used adverbially).

Note: Past tense gerunds are conjugated by person (same as regular past tense conjugations), and are not possessed.

Mbu śen tyś aśtolatilé komú | Émgurvóśllé ko kúste jamila gévó
This is what I have been teaching | What I have seen was very beautiful

Subject is direct object of relative clause

In the case that the entity referred to in the relative clause is a direct object of the clause, that same word takes the possessed suffix and the agent in the relative clause takes the genitive suffix.

Maśen uśtu simaksivóna baśil śen bajtilmó silévó The fish that the man gave me went to my house

The boy that sees fish came to his house

[top]Subordinate Clauses

Subordinate clauses are formed in the exact same way as relative clauses, except there is a helper noun within the phrase: 'denś', which roughly translates to 'thing'.

Róħek denbeh kulvóna denśov igyś
I know that water was here
róħe-k
water-GNRGeneric (mood)
Generic or timeless truths
den-be-h
here-LOCLocative (case)
'in, on, at' etc
-PREDPredicative
expressions typically following a copula
kul-vó-na
exist-PASTPast tense (tense)
action occurred before moment of speech
-3SThird person singular (person)
neither speaker nor addressee
-SRSubordinator
marks subordinate clause
denś-ov
thing-ACCAccusative (case)
TRANS direct object; patient
igy-ś
know-1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


Be careful, however, as there is no 1:1 correspondence between English 'that' and Nieren '-na' in the subordinate case.
Where English might use 'that' in a subordinate clause, Nieren might use gerundive constructs:

Ú maśen kúste léhnta alonihilov mbyś
I think (that) the man sings well
ú
DEFDefinite
"the"
.ARTArticle
indicate the type of reference being made by the noun
maś-en
man-GENGenitive (case)
possessive
kúste
very
léhnta
good
a-lonih-il-ov
AORAorist (tense/aspect)
usually the simple past
-sing.GERGerund
verbal noun
-POSSPossessive (case)
owns, has
-ACCAccusative (case)
TRANS direct object; patient
mby-ś
think-1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I


It is best to learn which verbs require a gerund construct and which verbs require the subordinating suffix. These will be outlined in the notes section in the dictionary.

[top]Subjunctive clauses

While most clauses can be expressed with '-na', 'denś', and gerunds, some verbs or situations require the subjunctive conjunction 'dó' and optionally the subjunctive particle 'vó'.

To form the subjunctive clause, the subject of the clause takes the genitive case (i.e. 'your', 'my', etc) and the secondary verb takes the possessed gerundive form:

Śega jéhvki bajtilmó mbél dó kekralś vó
I hope you will come to my house today
śega
2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
.GENGenitive (case)
possessive
jéhvki
today
bajt-il-mó
house-POSSGPossessed (case)
marks being owned
-DATDative (case)
indirect object; recipient, beneficiary, location
mbé-l
come.GERGerund
verbal noun
-POSSGPossessed (case)
marks being owned

that.SBJVSubjunctive mood (mood)
desired or possible events
k-ekral-ś
PROGProgressive (aspect)
be verb-ing
-hope-1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
.PRESPresent tense (tense)
current

SBJVSubjunctive mood (mood)
desired or possible events


In particular, 'dó' is used to convey a sense of uncertainty, inquisitiveness or desire. Verbs expressing doubt or desire and the like usually require this conjunction to support its subordinate clauses.

Some verbs, however, may take both the indicative subordinate clause construction and the subjunctive construction for different shades of meaning.

Śega gidukmó kalelov gurś. I see you going to school / I see that you are going to school

Śega gidukmó kalel dó gurś. I prefer that you go to school

It is important to note the distinction between the two constructions, especially for verbs where either can be used for different meanings.
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