Saturday, 24 November 2012

Numerals, part 1

The Kareyku numeric system is very odd. Not because of the names of the numerals, which are quite regular and in accordance to the language constraints, but because the counting defies any formal explanation, or at least, for all of them but the last too. The system is mainly decimal, and a historical analysis points towards the hands having been used at some point. The numerals are as follows:


So, as can be seen here we have a clear sequence of groups of 2 or 4, that is tiri, kana, and then hatiri and hakana, which mean roughly "other 1" and "other 2" respectively. The last two number I have said had explanations in that 9 is clearly the word naka, "close, almost", and number 10 is haru "complete, perfect". One could consider this to be evidence of an older 4-based or 8-based system supplemented with a newer decimal system, but it nonetheless strikes as quite weird.

The numerals are used preceding the noun or object they modify:

naka vineru, nine men

hakana taro, four fathers

hasoka nakem, seven trees

And present no irregularities or variabilities.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Detransitive suffix

You've read right, I meant a suffix that "detransitivizes" the verb if that has any sense at all. Bear with me, what I mean is that all Kareyku verbs are naturally transitive or ditransitive, but what if you need an intransitive verb? Well, you would use this crafty suffix to reduce the arguments to zero. The suffix, of course, takes all evidentials (and it will) and transitions, its form is an -l- inserted before the corresponding transition and we can see some examples:

We have our always useful verb qappa- "eat", normally we would use a transition;

qappata, he eats

But this actually means literally "he eats (something)", it implies that he's eating something, like a fish, meat, vegetables (yeah, right!) or something. When we use this suffix, though, we get;

qappalta, he eats

In this other case I'm just stating that he eats. It can mean "he eats (everyday)" or "he eats" (i.e. "he can eat"), it means all the other uses that are intransitive. So for example;

kolto marilta, he comes here

Of course we can inflect it for time, so one would treat the -ta as a normal transition, thus;

kolto marilten, he didn't come here

pokolto marilteyos, he shall come home

We can even further inflect it for the desiderative form:

taro mariltaltech, "father doesn't want to come"

Let's leave the entry with a final weird sentence:

pole nakem lau lopalkas, "I live on top of a great tree"

Monday, 12 November 2012

Familial terms, part 2

Now it's the turn of the parents. We have two main terms for the parents, respectively taro and kami for father and mother. The history of the term "kami" seems to have come from an older root "kam-" of uncertain origins, which has been relegated to other compounds related to the "mother". For instance the word for the maternal grandfather is "kemu"while the maternal grandmother is "hanta". The word for grandmother "hanta" also seems to use some kind of old productive compounding, since the word incorporates a suffix similar to that of the mother-in-law, kata.

The term for both parents is okomi, which means the pair of the mother and father. Again as it so happens in Kareyku the more idiomatic term for the father is "oko" almost as "papa", which in turn might be related to the term "sekko" which is the paternal grandfather.

Another term with which a father may refer to his son is awo, "blood", and many other similar expressions remarking the bond of blood that a father and offspring share.

odan, inwa, ikanu awo
"you, my son, are my blood"

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Suffixes revisited: The Desiderative Suffix

The Desiderative is properly a mood, not a tense, in Kareyku it is an infix that's attached to the verb and precedes the transition. This suffix is a reworking of a previous suffix I've mentioned, I'll make sure to straighten the whole thing up. In any case, the suffix is -tal- and we have some examples:

qappaka, I eat

qappatalka, I want to eat

This is how the Desiderative form works, pretty simple. If you want to negate the verb, you simply apply the negative transitions and you are done:

qappatalke, I don't want to eat

yeppatalke, I don't want to serve

This applies for all transitions and evidentials, of course;

inech yeppatalken, "yesterday I didn't want to attend you"

And we can even further apply other moods or voices, such as the passive;

kolla tokeytaltas, "the country wants to be protected"

Having set free this infix, I thought of reworking it into something much more useful such as this Desiderative form. In this way, nothing has been lost but a useful tool has been created to form such sentences as;

kollakume tokeytaltach, "for the sake of the country he wants to be protected"