Monday, December 21, 2015

Ćwarmin: Some Verb Morphemes and 'Mandatorily Suffixed Verbs'

There are a bunch of morphemes that can be used with verbs to mark a variety of meanings. Some of these interact with object definiteness in what exact meanings they convey. Parentheses at onsets give parts that can be left out due to morphophonological processes with regards to the verb root, parentheses at the other end are parts that are left off to form the new verb root.

The suffix -(v)ara-/-(v)ərə- signifies attempting to do something. Thus kuvara means 'attempt to open', lesivərə means 'attempt to catch fish', śaŋikara means 'attempt to appear' (if it has a complement) or 'attempt to impress' (if it only has a recipient).

The suffix -iŋe- or -uŋo- signifies doing something clumsily or without any knowledge as to how to do it. Thus kuvuŋo would signify attempting to open something very clumsily.

-um(u)- or -im(i)- suggests doing something very lightly or gracefully or easily.

-osos(o)-, -esəs(e)- implies doing something very productively. -ris- and -rus- mark doing something over a long span of time. -nimin- and -numun- signify struggling to complete something.

-sesk(e)- and -sosk(o)- signify doing something unintentionally, and -kinś(i)- and -kuns(u)- signify doing something badly.

There are a handful of verbs that can only appear with some set of these and never without such a suffix. The root *Karća- would signify 'aim', but it always has some suffix. Often -ara, since aiming is an attempt. However, a bad aim is also permitted - karćuŋo. Karćumu signifies aiming well, and karćanumun, with a definite object signifies repeated aiming at a goal; when intransitive or with an indefinite object it signifies habitually missing.

Another verb is *merk?-, improve. It only ever appears with -vərə (mergvərə), -imi (merćimi), -esəse (merkesəse) and -sesk(e)- (meskeske, due to metathesis). The verb 'merkiŋe' is attested in one regular saying - simply stated 'inki (inkic) merkiŋi' - no one improves (things) by accident. This is used as an expression that exhorts to learning skills.

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