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Iversen’s Multiconfused Log (see p.1!)

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Iversen
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 Message 2633 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 12:19am | IP Logged 
As planned I have read through a handbook of Greenlandic Grammar this weekend - although I only could spend around 4 hours on the project. This handbook in question uses homemade Danish names for everything, so in the description below (in English) I may not have guessed at the most used English or Latin name for a certain feature, even though I have consulted the English Wikipedia article after my return home. One good thing about the Handbook is that it is very systematic in its use of translated examples, often in pairs to show some feature in operation. However it would have been even better to use hyperliteral translations. For instance on p. 34:

Kunuk ajorunnaaruni aggisaaq
Kunuk kommer når han er rask (Kunuk comes when he is well (= has recovered))

(Nuliani) ajorunnaarpat Kunuk aggissaaq
Kunuk kommer når (hans kone) er rask (Kunuk comes when his wife is well)

If I hadn't seen the last sentence (and the preceding pages) I would have thought that "ahorunnaarpat" meant 'comes', but it seems to be "aggisaaq" (I have checked it in this dictionary). Therefore it would have been better to use a translation with the correct order of the elements like "Når (hans kone) er rask, kommer Kunuk"). Actually the theme that is under scrutiny here is the socalled 4. person, which is a reflexive version of the 3. person. If you use this in a subiordinate phrase then the subject is the same as in the main phrase. The more exotic the grammar is, the more helpful towards the reader it would be to use literal or maybe even hyperliteral translations, and it is a shame that this isn't done more commonly in grammars and textbooks.

One thing I have learnt about Greenlandic is that it is an ergative language. The first time this is suggested in the book is at p. 14, where the separation between the main form ("grundform") and the dependent form ("afhængig form") is introduced. The first one is the one used in dictionaries, but it is actually only used as the subject case with intransitive verbs - with transitive verbs you have to use the dependent form, and it is the object that is in the main form. This is pure undiluted ergativism. The verbs also have different endings without and with an object, but before the ending that shows this you will typically have infixes that indicate some kind of mode:

atuarpunga: jeg læste (I read) - atuarpara jeg læste den (I read it)

atuarpit: læste du? (did you read?) - atuarpiuk: læste du det? (did you read it?)     

Here is a case where it would have been better to use the same person to illustrate the mechanism. There is a list of modes ('udsagnsmåder' or just 'måder') i main phrases and subordinate phrases, and they are NOT identical - which isn't surprising (think of the extended use of the subjunctive in subordinates in German or Spanish). This means that the mode markers in practice will be combined with other affixes and personal affixes/endings in a quite complex matrix, and it doesn't feel really reassuriong when Wikipedia states that "In principle there is no limit to the length of a Greenlandic word, but in practice words with more than half a dozen derivational suffixes are not so frequent, and the average number of morphemes per word is 3 to 5. The language employs around 318 inflectional suffixes and between four and five hundred derivational ones."

One final observation: these suffixes (or endings) to some extent change their form according to the surrounding elements.

PS just for fun I looked the Greenlandic language up in different Wikipedias, and in the Greek one I was surprised to see the spelling: Η Γροιλανδία (στα Γροιλανδικά : Kalaallit Nunaat , "Η Γη των Γροιλανδών (Καλααλλίτ)", Δανικά : Grønland).


Edited by Iversen on 17 October 2011 at 1:22pm

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Fasulye
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 Message 2634 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 6:21am | IP Logged 
Iversen wrote:
One thing I have learnt about Greenlandic is that it is an ergative language. The first time this is suggested in the book is at p. 14, where the separation between the main form ("grundform") and the dependent form ("afhængig form") is introduced. The first one is the one used in dictionaries, but it is actually only used as the subject case with intransitive verbs - with transitive verbs you have to use the dependent form, and it is the object that is in the main form. This is pure undiluted ergativism. The verbs also have different endings without and with an object, but before the ending that shows this you will typically have infixes that indicate some kind of mode:


ENG: Greenlandic is an interesting language, because it's so completely different! I don't involve myself in languages, which I would never learn. But you mention two grammar terms in Danish here: I find it a great pity that all three of my Danish textbooks don't use the grammar terms bilingually German / Danish. The grammar terms are always used ONLY in German, so I really don't know, how these are named in Danish.

Fasulye

Edited by Fasulye on 03 October 2011 at 6:22am

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Iversen
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 Message 2635 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 10:17am | IP Logged 
Main phrase: hovedsætning
Subordinate phrase: bisætning
Paragraph: afsnit

Verbum: udsagnsord
Substantive: navneord
Adjective: tillægsord
Adverbium: biord
Pronomen: forholdsord
Demonstrative pronomen: påpegende stedord
Conjunction: bindeord

Genitive: ejefald

Present: nutid
Future: fremtid
Preteritum: datid
(compund) Perfect: fornutid
Plusquamperfect: førdatid
Subjunctive: konjunktiv
compund tense: sammensat verbalform
Imperative: bydemåde, bydeform
Participle: tillægsmåde
Infinitive: navnemåde

'member of phrase': sætningsled
Subject: grundled
Verbal: udsagnsled
Object: genstandsled
Indirect object: indirekte genstandsled
Adverbial: biled

Sentence knot: sætningsknude

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 Message 2636 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 10:38am | IP Logged 
Iversen wrote:
Main phrase: hovedsætning
Subordinate phrase: bisætning
Paragraph: afsnit

Verbum: udsagnsord
Substantive: navneord
Adjective: tillægsord
Adverbium: biord
Pronomen: forholdsord
Demonstrative pronomen: påpegende stedord
Conjunction: bindeord

Genitive: ejefald

Present: nutid
Future: fremtid
Preteritum: datid
(compund) Perfect: fornutid
Plusquamperfect: førdatid
Subjunctive: konjunktiv
compund tense: sammensat verbalform
Imperative: bydemåde, bydeform
Participle: tillægsmåde
Infinitive: navnemåde

'member of phrase': sætningsled
Subject: grundled
Verbal: udsagnsled
Object: genstandsled
Indirect object: indirekte genstandsled
Adverbial: biled

Sentence knot: sætningsknude


Tusind tak, Iversen! Ik zal ervan een viertalige lijst ENGELS - DEENS - DUITS - NEDERLANDS maken en die in mijn Nederlandse blog zetten.

But what's a sentence knot = saetningknude = zinsknoop??? It may be "ein Satzgefüge", but I'm not sure.

Fasulye

Edited by Fasulye on 03 October 2011 at 11:32am

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 Message 2637 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 11:06am | IP Logged 
GRAMMAR TERMINOLOGY ENG - DK - GER - NL

Main phrase = hovedsætning = Hauptsatz = hoofdzin
Subordinate phrase = bisætning = Nebensatz = bijzin
Paragraph: afsnit = Abschnitt = alinea

Verbum = udsagnsord = Verb = werkwoord
Substantive = navneord = Substantiv = naamwoord
Adjective = tillægsord = Adjektiv = bijvoegelijk naamwoord
Adverbium = biord = Adverb = bijwoord
Pronomen = forholdsord = Pronomen = voornaamwoord
Demonstrative pronomen = påpegende stedord = Demonstrativpronomen = aanwijzend voornaamswoord
Conjunction = bindeord = Konjunktion = voegwoord

Genitive = ejefald = Genitiv = genitief

Present = nutid = Präsens = tegenwoordige tijd
Future = fremtid = Futur = toekomstige tijd
Preteritum = datid = Präteritum = preteritum
(compund) Perfect = fornutid = zusammengesetztes Perfekt = perfectum
Plusquamperfect = førdatid = Plusquamperfekt = plusquamperfectum
Subjunctive = konjunktiv = Konjunktiv = voorwaardelijke wijs
compund tense = sammensat verbalform = zusammengesetztes Verb = samengezet werkwoord
Imperative = bydemåde, bydeform = Imperativ = gebiedende wijs
Participle = tillægsmåde = Partizip = deelwoord
Infinitive = navnemåde = Infinitiv = onbepaalde wijs

'member of phrase' = sætningsled = Satzglied = zinslid
Subject = grundled = Subjekt = onderwerp
Verbal = udsagnsled = Prädikat = gezegde
Direct object = genstandsled = Akkusativobjekt = direct voorwerp
Indirect object = indirekte genstandsled = Dativobjekt = indirect voorwerp
Adverbial = biled = Adverbiale Bestimmung = adverbiale bepaling?

Sentence knot = sætningsknude = Satzgefüge? = zinsknoop

Iversen, this might be very useful for you as well!

Fasulye

Edited by Fasulye on 03 October 2011 at 11:15am

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Iversen
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 Message 2638 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 2:08pm | IP Logged 
About KNOTS:

Think of a sentence as something organized around a verb. Think about subordinate phrase as a phrase which is a member (or constituent or whatever) in another sentence - and normally there is a conjunction of some sorts which often also is a pronomen with a reference somewhere. In other word a subordinate phrase is like a little box in a big box. And in the little box there can be an even smaller box.

The conjunction (whether pronominal or 'empty') is typically at the start of the phrase to which it belongs.

Now imagine that you have a a three tier system, but the connecting word is actually a relative pronomen (rp) which - when judged on its function - clearly belong to the lowest level. So you have V1 rp3 V2 V3 :

something could happen --->
I told you (that) something could happen --->
This is exactly the thing which I told you could happen --->

Number three is a sentence knot.

Notice that the first phrase (a variant of V3) starts out having an indefinite pronoun as its subject, and in the final construction the subject is a relative pronoun which points to "thing" at the topmost layer. So in spite of claims in bad grammars the linking pronoun rp3 does not 'belong' to the nearest verb V2, but to V3. And that's what makes the sentence a knot.

Sentence knots can be found in many Romance and Germanic languages, and in Danish they are especially common - maybe because we under certain conditions can drop the conjunctions, which makes the whole thing even more gordian-like:

Jeg ville sige noget om et eller andet --->
Jeg sagde, at jeg ville sige noget om et eller andet --->
Det var just det (som) jeg sagde (at) jeg ville sige noget om
It was exactly that (which) I said (that) I would say something about

(indefinite "et eller andet" -> relative "som" - both are used as regimen for a preposition "om")


Edited by Iversen on 24 May 2014 at 8:16pm

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 Message 2639 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 2:15pm | IP Logged 
Iversen wrote:
Det var just det (som) jeg sagde (at) jeg ville sige noget om
It was exactly that (which) I said (that) I would say something about


Dieses syntaktische Konstrukt würde ich durchaus als ein "Satzgefüge" bezeichnen. Insofern ist meine Übersetzung richtig gewesen.

Muss immer ein Relativsatz daran beteiligt sein?

Fasulye

Edited by Fasulye on 03 October 2011 at 2:15pm

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Iversen
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 Message 2640 of 3959
03 October 2011 at 2:31pm | IP Logged 
Wikipedia: "Ein Satzgefüge ist ein komplexer Satz, der aus mindestens einem Hauptsatz und einem oder mehreren Nebensätzen (auch Gliedsätze genannt) gebildet wird"

Dies ist nicht genug - 'Satzknoten' müssen wenigstens drei Stufen haben. Ich weiß tatsächlich nicht, ob sie bereits einen echt deutschen Namen haben, und das Niederländische Wort "Zin(s)knoot" scheint mir auch etwas suspekt. Ich weiß aber, daß Maurice Grévisse von "noeuds" in "Le Bon Usage" sprach, so auf Französisch gibt es einen belegbaren Namen.

rp3 muß unbedingt ein Satsglied von V3 sein. Kompletives "daß" und fragendes "ob" sind daher wohl ausgeschlossen. Aber einige adverbielle Pronomina sind brachbar:

Dies ist die Stunde, wo ich dir versprochen habe, die Konstruktion der Satzknoten zu erläutern.

Ich meine aber, das "wo" hier auch relativisch verwendet wird, obwohl das Wort als Adverbial steht.

Er kam irgendwann zurück -->
Seine Frau hat behauptet, daß er zu einer bestimmten Zeitpunkt zurückkam --->
Ich habe ihm gefragt, wann seine Frau behauptet hat, daß er zurückkam

Hier dagegen ist statt en Relativum rp3 ein Interrogativ-Pronomen ip3 verwendet worden.

Aber vergleicht dies mit:

Er kam noch Heute zurück -->
Seine Frau hat irgendwann behauptet, daß er noch Heute zurückkam -->
Ich habe ihm gefragt, wann seine Frau behauptet hat, daß er noch Heute zurückkäme

---

Fasulye asked whether only relative pronomina could tie a knot. Well, in some cases the connecting rp3 has the role of an adverbial in the sentences defined by V3 - but I have always claimed that it is a relative pronoun irrespective of its 'wordclass' as long as it has the typical reference 'upwards' of a relative pronoun:

This is the moment where I have promised you that I would explain the mechanism of sentence knots

However you can find examples with interrogative pronouns as well, provided that they have a role to play in the V3 phrase:

I have asked him when his wife claimed he came back home

But this is a fragile construction which easily can tip over and become an ordinary sentence in three levels, - for example by adding an adverbial which takes op the spot in V3 which the pronoun intended to occupy:

I have asked him when his wife claimed (that) he came back home today

Now "when" refers to the moment where wifey made the claim and not to the moment where her inebriated husband came back from his latest binge - we already know that he came back today.


Edited by Iversen on 03 October 2011 at 3:09pm



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