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Re: [Lambengolmor] Re: "Subjunctive"

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  • David Kiltz
    ... Ben, I m not sure what you mean by one conditional and two subjunctives . Spanish (like every West-Romanic language, including, e.g. French) has a
    Message 1 of 12 , Oct 4, 2002
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      On Thursday, October 3, 2002, at 10:03 PM, Ben Echols wrote:

      > Hans wrote:
      >
      > H> If you want to see a working system with one conditional and two
      > H> subjunctives, look at Italian.
      >
      > Another example is Spanish. It has one conditional verb tense and two
      > subjunctives.

      Ben, I'm not sure what you mean by "one conditional" and "two
      subjunctives". Spanish (like every West-Romanic language,
      including, e.g. French) has a category "subjunctive" and one
      "conditional". Both occur in two forms:

      Conditional 1) compraría
      Conditional 2) habría comprado

      Subjunctive 1) (que) compre
      Subjunctive 2) comprara or comprase (note: the first goes back to the
      Latin pluperfect and is also sometimes used as such, especially in
      South America).

      Germanic languages mostly employ the subjunctive for conditionals often
      with an extra auxiliary (e.g. English _would_ or German_würde_).
      So, for conditionals, where they are distinguished from subjunctives,
      we see periphrastic or agglutinative formations. Note that the Romanic
      languages' conditional is really a periphrastic formation (e.g.
      comparare habebam etc.).

      No explicit marker for the conditional is needed in Quenya. Cf.
      VT42:33, in the bottom most paragraph, starting from _lá karita i
      hamil..._.

      David Kiltz
    • Hans
      [OK, folks, let s bring this back to Tolkien s languages. CFH] ... I m sorry, David, but I have to disagree. The German würde is a modern development,
      Message 2 of 12 , Oct 4, 2002
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        [OK, folks, let's bring this back to Tolkien's languages. CFH]

        --- In lambengolmor@y..., David Kiltz <dkiltz@g...> wrote:

        > Germanic languages mostly employ the subjunctive for conditionals often
        > with an extra auxiliary (e.g. English _would_ or German_würde_).

        I'm sorry, David, but I have to disagree. The German "würde" is a
        modern development, following the general tendency of replacement of
        the older, strong inflections by analytical (or, as you call it,
        periphrastic) constructions. German still has two genuine subjunctives
        (I'm afraid they'll vanish within the next hundred years, though), "er
        komme/ er käme" in the case of the verb "to come". Most of the forms
        of subjunctive I are very similar to forms of indicative present
        tense, ok. But some are different, and it's interesting that one of
        the differences has parallels in other languages: "be it so" is "so
        sei es" in German, different from indicative "so ist es". In Italian,
        you would use "sia" for "sei".

        > Note that the Romanic languages' conditional is really a periphrastic
        > formation (e.g. comparare habebam etc.).

        That's not true for Italian. The conditional is much used to express
        wishes politely (not unlike German or English or some other languages!),
        but forms like "vorrai" (I would) are real inflections, not periphrastic
        constructions or agglutinations.

        > No explicit marker for the conditional is needed in Quenya.

        That's true, unfortunately. A language lacking a word for "if"
        certainly doesn't need a conditional.

        Hans
      • Ben Echols
        [I m letting this through, but in general, follow-up messages of this sort, basically simply acknowledging a correction, will not be accepted on this list. Any
        Message 3 of 12 , Oct 4, 2002
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          [I'm letting this through, but in general, follow-up messages of this
          sort, basically simply acknowledging a correction, will not be accepted
          on this list. Any such response should be made in conjunction with
          offering new information on the question at hand. Otherwise, make your
          acknowledgments privately. CFH]

          I never learned the other conditional. I am sorry for the mistake, I know
          about the two different ways to do subjunctive. I am not a native speaker
          of spanish, however I have been taking spanish classes for 4 years and
          have been to spanish countries. But thanks for the information, you learn
          something new everyday. :)

          Ben Echols
        • Hans
          ... Er... yeah, I m afraid this is a well-deserved rebuke. [I wouldn t call it a rebuke , just a reminder that posts to this list are, according to the
          Message 4 of 12 , Oct 4, 2002
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            --- In lambengolmor@y..., "Hans" <gentlebeldin@h...> wrote:
            > [OK, folks, let's bring this back to Tolkien's languages. CFH]

            Er... yeah, I'm afraid this is a well-deserved rebuke.

            [I wouldn't call it a "rebuke", just a reminder that posts to this list
            are, according to the guidelines, supposed to deal in some manner with
            Tolkien's languages. That by no means excludes discussion of grammatical
            features of other languages for purposes of comparison or illustration
            or even speculation; but each such discussion should touch on Tolkien's
            languages at some point. When we start _debating_ the grammatical
            features of other languages, and comparing them to one another, we're
            drifting off course. CFH]

            Quenya may not have a conditional, but it's well known that JRRT thought
            of a subjunctive once. Now the English subjunctive II is almost identical
            with forms of past tense, and the German forms are close, too (though
            with umlaut). Interestingly, the Quenya word glossed as a subjunctive
            ("should flow", IX:247) coincides with an (augmentless) perfect,
            "ullier", forms usually translated by JRRT with past tense. Of course,
            that's one of the cases of later reinterpretations. In "Lost Road",
            the word "ullier" was glossed "poured" (V:51). Nonetheless, there
            can't be much doubt JRRT thought of a subjunctive later: the Adunaic
            forms in the Notion Club Papers were meant to be translations of the
            "Avallonian" ones, and the respective word _du-phursâ_ is glossed
            "so-as-to-gush" (IX:247, again), and that's certainly not an
            indicative mood.

            Hans
          • David Kiltz
            -I m sorry if this is drifting away from Quenya but my response will (hopefully) set some things straight. This will ultimately be beneficial for the
            Message 5 of 12 , Oct 6, 2002
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              -I'm sorry if this is drifting away from Quenya but my response will
              (hopefully) set some things straight. This will ultimately be
              beneficial for the discussion of the Quenya forms.

              On Friday, October 4, 2002, at 09:54 PM, Hans wrote:

              > --- In lambengolmor@y..., David Kiltz <dkiltz@g...> wrote:
              >
              >> Germanic languages mostly employ the subjunctive for conditionals
              >> often with an extra auxiliary (e.g. English _would_ or German_würde_).
              >
              > I'm sorry, David, but I have to disagree. The German "würde" is a
              > modern development, following the general tendency of replacement of
              > the older, strong inflections by analytical (or, as you call it,
              > periphrastic) constructions. German still has two genuine subjunctives,
              > "er komme/ er käme" in the case of the verb "to come".
              <snip>

              Hans, but that's exactly what I said. Germanic languages (such as
              German, even Modern German ;-) do use the subjunctive. In addition,
              formations with an auxiliary arise. (Certainly with the idea of
              disambiguating). I don't see how this is not "Germanic" although it is
              a younger formation (which I never denied).

              >> Note that the Romanic languages' conditional is really a periphrastic
              >> formation (e.g. comparare habebam etc.).
              >
              > That's not true for Italian. The conditional is much used to express
              > wishes politely (not unlike German or English or some other
              > languages!), but forms like "vorrai" (I would) are real inflections,
              > not periphrastic constructions or agglutinations.

              1) Your analysis of the form is factually wrong. Even Italian _vorrai_
              is ultimately _velle_ (or rather Proto-Romanic _volere_) + habui. The
              only difference between Italian and Spanish is that Italian uses the
              perfect as second part, Spanish the imperfect. By "really" I meant
              "originally".

              2) The semantics are irrelevant to the question of periphrasis or not.
              I never said they weren't employed like that.

              >> No explicit marker for the conditional is needed in Quenya.
              >
              > That's true, unfortunately. A language lacking a word for "if"
              > certainly doesn't need a conditional.

              Well, Tolkien writes that "if this uncertainty [i.e. a conditional
              proposition for the future] is emphasized Quenya can say _nauva_ "will
              be". So, Quenya does not require a specific marker if the semantics of
              the sentence are clear.

              It would be interesting to see whether the _-uva_ forms are a "pure"
              future tense or rather some kind of prospective.

              David
            • Lukas Novak
              David Kiltz wrote: DK It would be interesting to see whether the _-uva_ forms are a pure DK future tense or rather some kind of prospective. I have been
              Message 6 of 12 , Oct 6, 2002
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                David Kiltz wrote:

                DK> It would be interesting to see whether the _-uva_ forms are a "pure"
                DK> future tense or rather some kind of prospective.

                I have been having this impression for already a long time. More
                specifically, I suspect that the -uva formation is originally
                prospective/optative and only one of its usages evolved into pure
                future. I imagine that Tolkien might have been inspired by the origin
                of Greek future tense or English usage of the auxiliary "will" -
                originally a modal verb.

                Lukas
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