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If you see many apostrophes, it's pre-reform. If you see î and only a few apostrophes, it's post-reform. — Arthaey

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These are my rough notes, subject to change completely at any time.

Phonology

  • "small" inventory (according to WALS) of 4 vowels, 11 consonants
  • Vowels: /i e a o/
    • in most VV "clusters," each V is pronounced distinctly, but diphthongs are permissible
    • /e/ tends toward [ɛ], while /ei/ stays as [ei]
    • word-initial diphthongs beginning with /i/ are pronounced as though starting with [j]
    • word-initial diphthongs beginning with /o/ are pronounced as though starting with [w]
    • With very few exceptions, no language has all the diphthongs one could get by arbitrarily pairing all the vowels of the language.LINGUIST-L
  • Consonants: /t k θ s ʃ x ɬ m n r z/
    • the last consonant of a word is voiced (phonetic, not phonemic): [d g ð z ʒ ɣ ɮ]
    • voicing is not written
    • words with /s z/ as their last consonant can be homophonous in the nominative (because no other consonants will be suffixed to them)
  • syllable structure: CCVC
    • coda C is only allowed word-finally
    • CC clusters must be a stop + /ɬ/, friccative + /ɬ ɹ/, or nasal + /ɹ/
    • if an affix would create a VV cluster, insert n
    • if an affix would create an invalid CC cluster, insert a (or the paradigm's vowel)
  • stress: penultimate; ultimate if final syllable is "heavy" (syllable with a coda or a diphthong)
    • affixes do not shift a root's stress, but do change its voicing
    • Madimadi is an Australian language with a truly 'forbidding' surface stress pattern. Coronal second syllables seem to attract stress. A closer look, however, reveals that stress is really just located on the final syllable of the first morpheme in the word -- WALS (emphasis mine)
Eg: shite book
    [ˈʃidɛ] ← last C is voiced: [d]
           ← stress on penultimate because ultimate syllable is open

    shiten book
    [ˈʃitɛn] ← /t/ remains [t]; new last C is already voiced [n]
            ← stress remains on penultimate; suffix does not shift stress,
              even though it creates a closed ultimate syllable

Nouns

Noun Classes

  • based on degree of magic (see culture page for more info):
    • Class I, full magic aka "spirit" (-Vth): spirits, rituals
    • Class II, partial magic aka "half" (-i): half-spirits, bindings, languages
    • Class III, potential magic aka "flesh" (-ei): flesh, priestesses
    • Class IV, no magic aka "none": everything else
  • a noun can be "promoted" or "demoted" to a different noun class by appending the appropriate ending
    • use -o for demoting to class IV
    • suffix is added with a written hyphen
    • pronounced with an epenthetic glottal stop, if needed
Eg: itoshe
    fish (a class IV noun; fish have no magic)

    itoshe-i
    fish-II (a class II noun; perhaps a talking fish?)

Pronouns

  • pronouns mark for:
    • person: 1st a-/t-/k- (sg/incl/excl), 2nd io-/s- (sg/pl), 3rd 0
      • 1st person is always "equal" social status
    • number: singular 0-, plural ai-
    • social status (M/F/mixed): above s-/sh-/lh-, equal k-/t-/x-, below n-/m-/r-
      • mixed groups have the social status of the highest member
    • biological sex (M/F fused w/social status): male, female, mixed/inan.
      • inanimate is always "below" social status
    • magicalness: (noun class) spirit -ath, half -i, flesh -ei, none -o
      • mixed groups have the magic status of the least member
    - form: PERSON-NUMBER-STATUS/GENDER-MAGIC
        - examples:
            - 1-SG-EQ.F-III:        a-0-t-ei  => atei I
            - 1-INCL-EQ.F-III:      t-ai-t-ei => taitei we; you and I
            - 2-SG-EQ.F-III:        io-0-t-ei => iotei you
            - 2-PL-BELOW.MIXED-III: s-ai-r-ei => sairei y'all
            - 3-SG-ABOVE.M-IV:      0-0-s-adh => sath he

        I: Spirit Pronouns, 3rd person singular
        ---------------------------------------
           M     F      Mixed
        +  sath  shath  lhath
        =  kath  tath   xath
        -  nath  math   rath (also inan.)

        II: Half Pronouns, 3rd person singular
        --------------------------------------
           M     F      Mixed
        +  si    shi    lhi
        =  ki    ti     xi
        -  ni    mi     ri (also inan.)

        III: Flesh Pronouns, 3rd person singular
        ----------------------------------------
           M     F      Mixed
        +  sei   shei   lhei
        =  kei   tei    xei
        -  nei   mei    rei (also inan.)

        IV: None Pronouns, 3rd person singular
        --------------------------------------
           M     F      Mixed
        +  so    sho    lho
        =  ko    to     xo
        -  no    mo     ro (also inan.)

    - TBD: irregularities should exist in the pronouns, ne?
        - Third person pronouns are often deictic rather than personal and only
          very rarely (in about one tenth of the cases) show a morphological
          pluralization pattern identical to that of the first and second person
          pronouns (see also Chapter 43). Inclusives are not found in all
          languages (see Chapters 39 and 40) and often lack number distinctions
          altogether.WALS

Denominalization

  • nouns can be turned into verbs via several verbal roots:
Meaning Verbal Root Example
to be an N,
there is an N
-zre Tozrei-zrei kanei. The man is a guildmaster.
Shite-zre. There is a book.
to be at N -rae Miza-rae shite. The book is on the table.
to become an N -iseme Tozrei-isemei kaneilh. The man became a guildmaster.
to have an N -one Shite-onei kanei. The man has a book.
to act like an N -srine Tozrei-srinei klhozei. The assistant acts like a guildmaster.

A further note on -rae... It is a generic locational verb, understood to be the most "natural" location for the patient to be in relation to the subject. More specific locations can be given between the the noun and the verbal root. (This is apparently how the Mayan language Tzotzil works too. [Zapata.org])

Eg: Miza-rae shite.
    miza-rae-0      shite-0
    table-be.at-IV book-NOM
    The book is on the table.

    Miza-raei tamei.
    miza-rae-ei      tamei-0
    table-be.at-III woman-NOM
    The woman is at the table.

    Miza-themoraei tamei.
    miza-themo-rae-ei    tamei-0
    table-top-be.at-III woman-NOM
    The woman is on top of the table.

The verb -rae is also used for generic time clauses:

Eg: Lho-rae kalhrit.
    lho-rae-0    kalhrit-0
    now-be.at-IV meeting-NOM
    The meeting is now.

    Lhoroth-rae kalhrit.
    lhoroth-rae-0  kalhrit-0
    night-be.at-IV meeting-NOM
    The meeting is at night.

Noun Incorporation

  • an object incorporated into its verb emphasizes the process rather than the specific event:
Eg: Toshei kanei shiten.
    toshe-ei kanei-0 shite-n
    buy-III  man-NOM book-ACC
    The man buys a book.

    Shite-toshei kanei.
    shite-toshe-ei kanei-0
    book-buy-III   man-NOM
    The man buys books.         (implies a habitual action)

    I toshe shite.
    i    toshe-0 shite-0
    PASS buy-IV  book-NOM
    Books are bought.

    I shite-toshe.
    i    shite-toshe-0
    PASS book-buy-IV
    There is book-buying.       (a valid answer to a question like,
                                   "What happens at a book fair?")

Possession

  • double-marking
  • marking on the head (the thing possessed):
    • 1st a(m)-/t-/k- (sg/incl/excl)
    • 2nd io(m)-/s- (sg/pl)
    • 3rd e(m)-/x-
  • marking on the dependent (the possesor):
    • argees with the noun class of the head: spirit math-, partial mi-, flesh mei-, none mo-
    • if the possessor would be a pronoun, it is dropped and only the markings on the head show who the possessor is
    • agrees with head's case marking
Eg: PRONOUN POSSESSOR: head-marking only, because dependent is omitted

    shazi   soul gem             aishazi   soul gems
    ashazi  my soul gem          amaishazi my soul gems
    eshazi  his/her soul gem     emaishazi his/her soul gems
    xeshazi their soul gem       xaishazi  their soul gems

    itoshe   fish                ainitoshe   fishes
    titoshe  our fish            tainitoshe  our fishes
    iomitoshe your fish           iomainitoshe your fishes
    sitoshe  your guys' fish     sainitoshe  your guys' fishes

    NOUN POSSESSOR: double-marking

    emitoshe motamei      the woman's fish (nominative)
    emainitoshe motamei   the woman's fishes
    xitoshe monaitamei    the women's fish
    xainitoshe monaitamei the women's feshes

    emitoshen motamein      the woman's fish (accusative or absolutive)

Definiteness

  • no separate articles
  • demonstratives (eg, tie this) used to mark definiteness
    • tie this is also used as a vocative marker: tie tamei a sheomei! o beautiful woman!
  • there is no explicit way to mark indefiniteness

Word Order

Main Clause

  • VSO
  • split ergative wrt TAM (ergative in past tenses)
    • nominative: S,A -0; accusative: P -(e)n
    • ergative: A -(e)lh, absolutive: S,P -(e)n
    • verbal suffix agrees with the class of nominative or absolutive noun
      • no agreement suffix for class IV nouns; verb retains its own -e ending
     - Eg: INTRANSITIVE VERB: S only

           Lhainei atei.
           lhaine-ei adei-0
           laugh-III 1.SG.EQ.F.III-NOM
           I laugh.

           Lhainei atein.
           lhaine-ei adei-n
           laugh-III 1.SG.EQ.F.III-ABS
           I laughed.

           TRANSITIVE VERB: A&P

           Toshei kanei shiten.
           toshe-ei kanei-0 shide-n
           buy-III  man-NOM book-ACC
           The man buys a book.

           Toshe kaneilh shiten.
           toshe-0 kanei-lh shide-n
           buy-IV  man-ERG  book-ABS
           The man bought a book.
  • past tense is implied by ergative -lh for transitive verbs or by -n for intransitive verbs; there is no separate morpheme for basic past tense

Noun Phrases

determiners
Determiner-Noun: tie kanei this man
numerals
Numeral-Noun: ne aikanei two men
possessives
Noun-Possessor: eshite mokanei the man's book
relative clauses
Noun-RelClause: kanei a lhainei the man that laughed

Adpositions

  • Orthographic conventions treat clitics in different ways: Some are written as separate words, some are written as one word with their hosts, and some are attached to their hosts, but set off by punctuation (a hyphen or an apostrophe, for example). -- Wikipedia

Adjectives

  • a few adjectives precede their heads and do not show agreement:
    • demonstratives
    • cardinal numbers
    • adjectives of degree
    • relative order is numeral, then demonstrative, then adjectives of degree, if more than one adjective is present
  • most other adjectives are expressed via relative clauses with stative verbs
    • Dixon (1982) claims that some languages with adjectives do not have an open/major class of adjectives, but just a small, closed/minor class containing words that most often describe relative dimension (small, long, wide, etc.), relative age (e.g., new, young, old), value (good, bad), and colour (red, black, etc.).LINGUIST-L
    • In lakota, adjectives are really stative verbs; NPs containing 'adjectives' do not really exist: you have to use either a relative clause, i.e. the dog that's big = the big dog, or say: dog-big where the big is a stative verb compounded with dog.LINGUIST-L
    • from a mere semantic perspective it is not possible to distinguish between (qualitative) adjectives and (stative) verbs.LINGUIST-L
    • see also Japanese
  • both types of adjectives may modify the same noun

Numerals are a special case. Cardinal numbers precede the noun. Ordinal numbers follow the noun with a, as though the numeral were a verb, but it still does not agree with the noun class:

  • ne aikanei two men
  • kanei a ne second man
Eg: STATIVE VERBS: no copula needed

    tolhritei kanei
    tolhrite-ei kanei-0
    tall-III    man-NOM
    *the man talls
    the man is tall

    STATIVE VERBS AS ADJECTIVES: use a relative clause

    kanei a tolhritei
    kanei a-0     tolhrite-ei
    man   REL-NOM tall-III
    man that is tall
    tall man

    ADJECTIVES WITHOUT THE NOUN: nominalize the stative verb

    tolhrite-ei
    tolhrite-ei
    tall-III
    *the one who talls
    the tall one

    ADJECTIVES OF DEGREE

    iz kanei
    iz  kanei
    DIM man
    little man; the boy

    kanei a ox tolhritei
    kanei a-0     ox  tolhrit-ei
    man   REL-NOM AUG tall-III
    very tall man

    ne tie iz aikanei
    ne  tie iz  ai-kanei
    two DEM DIM PL-man
    these two little men; these two boys

    STATIVE VERSB AS ADJECTIVES WITH TENSE

    itoshe a xaklhe
    itoshe a-0     xaklhe-0
    fish   REL-NOM die-IV
    dying fish

    itoshe an xaklhe
    itoshe a-n     xaklhe-0
    fish   REL-ABS die-IV
    dead fish

    itoshe a lhoshoke an  xaklhe
    itoshe a-0     lhoshoke-0 a-n     xaklhe-0
    fish   REL-NOM stink-IV   REL-ABS die-IV
    stinky dead fish

    ORDER WITHIN A SENTENCE

    Toshei kanei a ox tolhritei tie iz itoshen an xaklhe.
    toshe-ei kanei-0 a-0     ox  tolhrite-ei tie iz  itoshe-n a-n     xaklhe-0
    buy-III  man-NOM REL-NOM AUG tall-III    DEM DIM fish-ACC REL-ABS die-IV
    The very tall man buys this small dead fish.

    Toshe kaneilh a ox tolhritei tie iz itoshen an xaklhe.
    toshe-0 kanei-lh a-0     ox  tolhrite-ei tie iz  itoshe-n a-n     xaklhe-0
    buy-IV  man-ERG  REL-NOM AUG tall-III    DEM DIM fish-ABS REL-ABS die-IV
    The very tall man bought this small dead fish.
  • a noun may modify another noun by following directly after it
    • if the two nouns are different magic classes, the noun phrase's class is the same as the head noun (ie, the first one)
    • the head noun takes any suffixes
Eg: NOUNS MODIFYING OTHER NOUNS

    tamei tozrei
    guildmaster woman

    tozrei tamei
    woman guildmaster

    tamei rateris
    slave-woman (class III noun phrase)

    rateris tamei
    woman-slave (class IV noun phrase)

    BASIC SENTENCES, for comparison

    Nokei tozrein.
    noke-ei  tozrei-n
    talk-III guildmaster-ABS
    The guildmaster talked.

    Noke tamei na raterisen.
    noke-0  tamei na  rateris-n
    talk-IV woman and slave-ABS
    The woman and slave talked (but not to each other).

    Noke-en tamei na rateriselh.
    noke-0-n         tamei na  rateris-lh
    talk-IV-RECIP.IV woman and slave-ERG
    The woman and slave talked to each other.

    SENTENCES WITH NOUN-MODIFIED NOUNS

    Nokei tozrein tamei.
    noke-ei  tozrei-n        tamei
    talk-III guildmaster-ABS woman
    The woman guildmaster talked.

    Nokei tamein rateris.
    noke-ei  tamei-n   rateris
    talk-III woman-ABS slave
    The slave-woman talked.

    Noke raterisen tamei.
    noke-0  rateris-n tamei
    talk-IV slave-ABS woman
    The woman-slave talked.

Verbs

See also the adjectives section, since they are actually stative verbs.

Nominalization

Eg: toshe
    to buy

    toshe-ei
    toshe-ei
    buy-NOM.III
    buyer (who belong to class III)

    Tarei kanei toshe-ein.
    tare-ei kanei-0 toshe-ei-n
    see-III man-NOM buy-NOM.III-ACC
    The man sees a buyer.
  • act of: no visible change, but the bare verb becomes a Class IV noun
Eg: Tarei kanei toshen.
    tare-ei kanei-0 toshe-n
    see-III man-NOM buy-ACC
    The man sees buying (going on).

    Tare kaneilh toshen.
    tare-0 kanei-lh toshe-n
    see-IV man-ERG  buy-ABS
    The man saw buying (going on).

Passive Voice

  • decrease valence (make a transitive verb intransitive) with i before verb
    • original patient is "promoted" to syntactic agent
    • original agent is "demoted" to syntactic patient, or omitted altogether
  • Valence adjusting operators tend to derive from free verb roots that, at an earlier stage of the language, formed analytics constructions. ... there is a distinct tendency for passive voice and perfect aspect markers to be related synchronically and/or etymologically. ... Passive morphemes are also sometimes derived from copulas or affixes/particles that form nominalization on the patient of a verb. — Describing Morphosyntax (p173, 205)
     - Eg: TRANSITIVE: normal examples, for comparison

           Toshei tamei itoshen.
           toshe-ei tamei-0   itoshe-n
           buy-III  woman-NOM fish-ACC
           The woman buy a fish.

           Toshi itoshe-i (a noki) tamein (raterisan).
           toshe-i itoshe-i-0  a   noke-i  tamei-n   rateris-n
           buy-II  fish-II-NOM REL talk-II woman-ACC slave-ACC
           The fish (that talks) buys a (slave) woman.
           The (talking) fish buys a (slave) woman.

           PASSIVE

           I toshe itoshe tamein.
           i    toshe-0 itoshe-0 tamei-n
           PASS buy-IV  fish-NOM woman-ACC
           A fish is bought by the woman.

           I toshe itoshe.                      <= so awesome :)
           i    toshe-0 itoshe-0
           PASS buy-IV  fish-NOM
           A fish is bought.

Reflexives & Reciprocals

Eg: BASIC SENTENCES, for comparison

    Tarei kanei tamein.
    tare-ei kanei-0 tamei-n
    see-III man-NOM woman-ACC
    The man sees the woman.

    Tarei kanei na tamei.
    tare-ei kanei na  tamei-0
    see-III man   and woman-NOM
    The man and woman see.

    REFLEXIVES

    Tarei-ei kanei.
    tare-ei-ei       kanei-0
    see-III-REFL.III man-NOM
    The man sees himself.

    Tarei-ei kanei na tamei.
    tarei-ei-ei      kanei na  tamei-0
    see-III-REFL.III man   and woman-NOM
    The man and woman see themselves.

    RECIPROCALS

    Tarei-ein kanei na tamei.
    tare-ei-ein       kanei na  tamei-0
    see-III-RECIP.III man   and woman-NOM
    The man and woman see each other.

    Tarei-ein kanei na tameilh.
    tare-ei-ein       kanei na  tamei-lh
    see-III-RECIP.III man   and woman-ERG
    The man and woman saw each other.
  • In English, the same "reflexive" forms are also used as intensifiers. In Lhenazi, a different form is used: enath soul:
Eg: Nokei-ei tamei.
    noke-ei-ei        tamei-0
    talk-III-REFL.III woman-NOM
    The woman talked to herself.

    Nokei tamei enath.
    noke-ei  tamei-0   enath-0
    talk-III woman-NOM soul-NOM
    The woman herself talked.

Tense & Aspect

Tense and aspect are marked on nouns, not verbs. While not typical of Indo-European languages, the phenomenon of TAM-inflected nominals is well established and not typologically marginal (Nordlinger and Sadler, p2).

In the table below, each cell shows the noun suffixes for Subject/Agent vs Patient (in the nominative/accusative portion of the table) or Agent vs Subject/Patient (in the ergative/absolutive portion of the table).

In some cases, the suffixes by themselves are ambiguious. In these cases, an extra word precedes or follows the verb to disambiguate.

Tense Aspect Align.
Perfective Habitual Perfect Inceptive
Future -sh / -n -sha / -n
(mia + V)
-sha / -n
(V + eme)
-sh / -n
(tim + V)
NOM
ACC
Present -0 / -n -0 / -n
(mia + V)
-0 / -n
(V + eme)
-sh / -n
(V + eshat)
Past -lh / -n -lh / -na -lh / -ka -lh / -k ERG
ABS

All the example sentences below use the same three words, so you can focus only on the differences that are significant to tense and aspect: sheme to cook, tei she (class III), and ro it (class IV). Note that the verb agrees with the class of the nominative or absolutive noun, depending on tense.

Tense Aspect Align.
Perfective Habitual Perfect Inceptive
Future tarei teish (ron)
she will see (it)
mia tarei teisha (ron)
she will see (it)
tarei eme teisha (ron)
she will have seen (it)
tim tarei teish (ron)
she will begin to see (it)
NOM
ACC
Present tarei tei (ron)
she sees (it)
mia tarei tei (ron)
she sees (it)
tarei eme tei (ron)
she has seen (it)
tarei eshat teish (ron)
she begins to see (it)
Past tare teilh ron,
tarei tein

she saw (it)
tare teilh rona,
tarei teina

she saw (it)
tare teilh roka,
tarei teika

she had seen (it)
tare teilh rok,
tarei teik

she began to see (it)
ERG
ABS

A few other tenses and aspects are created paraphrastically.

Near future and near past adds a relative clause to regular future or past tense setences, with some to be near relativizing the verb:

  • sheme a some teilh ron she was cooking it (recently or yesterday)
  • shemei a some teish ron she will be cooking it (soon or tomorrow)

Progressive aspect adds a relative clause, with lho now and -rae to be at relativizing the verb:

  • shemei a lho-rae tei ron she is cooking it
  • sheme a lho-rae teilh ron she was cooking it
  • shemei a lho-rae teish ron she will be cooking it

Questions

Questions are marked by a question-word immediately following the verb. If the question can be answered with a yes or no, then use the ia question-word; otherwise, use the sia question-word.

Yes/No Questions

Add ia, pronounced [jɑ], directly after the verb.

  • nokei tei she talks
  • nokei ia tei? does she talk?

Answers to Yes/No Questions

The words ia and oan take the same tense/aspect endings as the subject of the question:

  • nokei ia tei? does she talk?
    • ia yes (she does)
    • oan no (she does not)
  • nokei ia tein? did she talk?
    • ian yes (she did)
    • oanan no (she did not)
  • nokei ia teish? will she talk?
    • iash yes (she will)
    • oanash no (she will not)

Content Questions

Include the question particle sia and the appropriate tha- question word in-situ.

  • nokei tei ron she talks to it
  • nokei sia thai ron? who talks to it?
  • nokei sia tei thain? what/whom does she talk to?
  • nokei tei ron, tei-zrei thirer-na ezorei. she talks to it because she is its friend.
  • nokei sia tei, thae thirer-na? why does she talk to it?

Clarifying Questions

Include the question particle sia, then follow the word in question with ia.

  • nokei tei ron she talks to it
  • nokei sia tei ia ron? is she the one who talks to it?

Clauses

Relative Clauses

  • relative clauses: postnomial; relativizer a, which takes nom/erg suffixes (∴ relative pronoun?)
    • if a patient exists in the relative clause, it precedes the clause's verb
Eg: NOUN PHRASES

    toshei tamei shiten
    toshe-ei tamei-0   shide-n
    buy-III  woman-NOM book-ACC
    the woman buys a book

    tamei a shiten toshei
    tamei-0   a   shide-n  toshe-ei
    woman-NOM REL book-ACC buy-III
    the woman that buys a book

    tarei kanei tamein
    tare-ei kanei-0  tamei-n
    tare-III man-NOM woman-ACC
    the man sees the woman

    EXAMPLE SENTENCES

    Toshei tamei a kanein tarei shiten.
    toshe-ei tamei-0   a-0     kanei-n tare-ei shide-n
    buy-III  woman-NOM REL-NOM man-ACC see-III book-ACC
    The woman that sees the man buys a book.

    Toshei tamei an tarei kanei shiten.
    toshe-ei tamei-0   a-n     tare-ei kanei-0 shide-n
    buy-III  woman-NOM REL-ACC see-III man-NOM book-ACC
    The woman that the man sees buys a book.

    Toshei tamei shiten an tarei kanei.
    toshe-ei tamei-0   shide-n  a-n     tare-ei kanei-0
    buy-III  woman-NOM book-ACC REL-ACC see-III man-NOM
    The woman buys the book that the man sees.

    RELATIVIZED SUBJECT

    Tarei kanei tamein a raterisan toshei.
    tare-ei kanei-0 tamei-n   a-0     rateris-n toshe-ei
    see-III man-NOM woman-ACC REL-NOM slave-ACC buy-III
    The man sees the woman that buys the slave.

    RELATIVIZED DIRECT OBJECT
    Tarei kanei tamein an tare rateris.
    tare-ei kanei-0  tamei-n    a-n   tare-0 rateris-0
    see-III man-NOM woman-ACC REL-ACC see-IV slave-NOM
    The man sees the woman that the slave sees.

    RELATIVIZED INDIRECT OBJECT
    Tarei kanei tamein ae..? (need to decide how ditransitive verbs work first)
    The man sees the woman that the slave kicked dirt at.

    RELATIVIZED OBLIQUE
    (need to decide how oblique phrases work first)

    RELATIVIZED POSSESSOR
    Tarei kanei tamein meinae lhainei emikenei.
    tare-ei kanei-0 tamei-n   mei-a-0          lhaine-ei e-ikenei-0
    see-III man-NOM woman-ACC POSS.III-REL-NOM laugh-III POSS.3.SG-son-NOM
    The man sees the woman whose son laughs.

    — examples modified from Describing Morphosyntax (p335)

Coordination

  • join things with na and
    • when joining multiple verbs within a clause, only the last one agrees with the noun
    • when joining multiple nouns, only the last one takes a Nom/Erg suffix
    • when joining independent clauses, na follows the second verb
      • if the agent is the same in both clauses, it is dropped entirely in the second clause
  • isomorphism among the instrumental, comitative, and coordinating operators is extremely common in the world's languages — Describing Morphosyntax (p339)
Eg: NOUNS

    kanei na tamei
    man and woman

    MULTIPLE AGENTS

    Nokei kanei na tamei raterisen.
    noke-ei  kanei na  tamei-0   rateris-n
    talk-III man   and woman-NOM slave-ACC
    The man and woman talk to the slave.

    Noke kanei na tameilh raterisen.
    noke-0  kanei na  tamei-lh  rateris-n
    talk-IV man   and woman-ERG slave-ABS
    The man and woman talked to the slave.

    MULTIPLE PATIENTS

    Noke rateris kanei na tamein.
    noke-0  rateris-0 kanei na tamei-n
    talk-IV slave-NOM man   and woman-ACC
    The slave talks to the man and woman.

    Nokei rateriselh kanei na tamein.
    noke-ei  rateris-lh kanei na  tamei-n
    talk-III slave-ERG  man   and woman-ABS
    The slave talked to the man and woman.

    MULTIPLE VERBS

    Tare na nokei kanei.
    tare na  noke-ei  kanei-0
    see  and talk-III man-NOM
    The man sees and talks.

    COORDINATING CLAUSES

    Tarei kanei, nokei na tamei.
    tare-ei kanei-0, noke-ei na  tamei-0
    see-III man-NOM talk-III and woman-NOM
    The man sees, and the woman talks.

    Tarei kanei, nokei na.
    tare-ei kanei-0, noke-ei  na
    see-III man-NOM  talk-III and
    The mans sees, and he talks.

Unsorted Topics

Negation

oan immediately follows the verb:

  • nokei tei she talks
  • nokei oan tei she does not talk

Imperatives

Like future/perfective, but with zo immediately following the verb:

  • nokei ioteish you will talk
  • nokei zo (ioteish)! (you) talk!
    • nokei zioteish! (common contraction when oteish is not dropped)
  • nokei zoan (ioteish)! (you) don't talk!
    • zoan is, unusually, pronounced as [zwɑn] because of analogy with negation particle oan [wɑn]

Ditransitives

  • anei a-onei kanei tei ron she gives it to the man
    • literally, something like she gives, that the man has it, it

Derivations

  • verb ⇒ noun that results from the verb: an(e)<verb>o.
    • Not always an obvious "result"! But most fit the phrase, "When you <verb>, you get a an(e)<verb>o."
    • Not all verbs have a recognized associated result-noun; in such cases, neologisms can be created and meaning determined by context.
    • The result-noun is always class IV.
    • Examples:
      • ale to screamanalo help
      • azethe to conjureanazetho conjured object
      • ekeke to repeatanekeko skill
      • iameshe to marryaniamesho spouse
      • iase to singaniaso song
      • kate to askanekato answer
      • kazeme to createanekazemo creation
      • krize to hitanekrizo bruise
      • lhaine to laughanelhaino smile
      • namore to Sacrificeanenamoro spirit (synonym of osath)
      • neshe to be grateful, thankfulanenesho emotional peace
      • noke to talkanenoko conversation
  • noun ⇒ around surrounding the noun: moi(z)<noun>o.
    • The result-noun is always class IV.
    • Nouns that are already class IV do not add the final -o.
    • Examples:
      • meikazi oceanmoimeikazo beach
      • nosokos housemoinosokos grounds (of a house)
      • xeshan rivermoixeshan river bank
  • noun ⇒ entrance to the noun: lhein(a)<noun>o.
    • The result-noun is always class IV.
    • Nouns that are already class IV do not add the final -o.
    • Examples:
      • ikath morninglheinikatho sunrise
      • nosokos houselheinanosokos threshhold
      • xeshan riverlheinaxeshan river mouth

Emotions

In Lhenazi, you do not have emotions. Emotions are seen as magical, and thus they actively have you.

  • atei-oneth otrith I am scared
    • literally, fear has me
  • atei-oneth emotrith mathaxonath I am scared of the dark
    • literally, the darkness's fear has me

Other Stuff

Clause-level adverbs immediately follow the verb, unless they are adverbs of degree. In that case, they precede the verb, like adjectives of degree precede their nouns:

  • ilhei oan iokei amizoran you don't know my name
  • ilhei oan kema iokei amizoran you don't even know my name (adverbs follow negation, imperatives, or question particles)
  • elhitei tei she is sick
  • ita elhitei tei she's just sick (ie, it's nothing serious)

Sources