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183222Re: Further info on tense marking for nouns

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  • Douglas Koller
    Oct 1, 2011
      > Date: Fri, 30 Sep 2011 19:25:51 +0100
      > From: ray@...
      > Subject: Re: Further info on tense marking for nouns
      > To: CONLANG@...

      > Yes, indeed. Also I've been skimming through the other
      > stuff. Two things strike me:

      > 1. It's not purely temporal affixes that may be attached to
      > nouns in some languages; such suffixes may also indicate
      > aspect and/or mood.

      > 2. The scope of nominal TAM may be:
      > (a) limited to the nominal constituent itself;
      > or
      > (b) extend over the whole clause.

      > I had always assumed nominal scope was limited to (a) above;
      > probably because that's how I first came across and, in the
      > few languages I've (vaguely) entered with nominal temporal
      > inflexions, it appeared to work that way.

      > It would appear that I was wrong in thinking nominal TAM was
      > always so limited, and that John and Patrick were right in
      > that its scope may be found extending over the whole clause.

      Sorry that I'm a Johnny-come-lately to this one. This seems to tie in to a "THEORY" thread from a week back. It seems that John is simply taking one of the "accidents" (valence, voice, aspect, polarity, tense, mood) normally applied to verbs and glomming it onto a noun. In my case, GĂ©arthnuns does this with polarity (affirmativity/negativity). Back in the early days (read, high school) when I had limited linguistic knowledge under my belt and tried to explain to others the fact that I wasn't actually negating nouns (i.e.: "Douglas-nom/neg pres.-aux indef.art-pl./neg. snake.lip-acc.pl./neg. eat." does not mean "No Douglas eats no snake lips.", it simply means "Douglas doesn't eat snake lips."), people got confused, as did I. In fact I was negating the clause and marking it on the nouns. I have the negativity or affirmativity marked on every noun and adjective in a given clause. To change polarity mid-sentence, requires a relative pronoun or some sort of coordinating or subordinating conjunction.

      It's green, not blue => It-nom/aff. pres. green-nom./aff. but blue-nom./neg. be

      I assumed the tense thing would work similarly.

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