Lecture 9: Infinitive Verbs and Participles Feb 6, 2010 21:31:31 GMT -6
Post by Hooligan on Feb 6, 2010 21:31:31 GMT -6
Hello again students —
Here is the next lecture.
PART 1: VERBS AND THEIR INFINITIVES
Here is the next lecture.
PART 1: VERBS AND THEIR INFINITIVES
Introduction to Talossan VerbsPART 2: THE PARTICIPLE FORMS
Apart from some small groups of words like conjunctions and interjections, we have now reached the point in the course where we have discussed almost all of the parts of speech in Talossan with one major exception — verbs. From here until the end of the course, we will be concentrating mainly on verbs.
In English, a verb takes on a different form when it is used with different subjects and in different tenses. For example, you would use the word "talk" when saying "I talk to him", but you would add an "-s" to the word, and make it "talks", when saying "he talks to me". Similarly, when the talking took place in the past, the word "talk" becomes "talked" for all subjects ("I talked to him", "they talked to me", etc.). On the other hand, when the talking will not take place until the future, the phrase "will talk" is used for all subjects ("I will talk to him", "he will talk to me").
These different forms that a verb can take are called "conjugations", and when you change a verb into its proper form for the sentence it is in, you are "conjugating the verb."
The English verb "talk" is fairly regular, but English has plenty of irregular verbs. Consider how, rather than becoming "speaked", the verb "speak" becomes "spoke" in the past tense.
The English speaker will find some good news and some bad news when it comes to Talossan verb conjugation. The bad news is that where English has a great many different subject/tense combinations in which the same form of a verb is used ("I talk", you talk", "we talk", "they talk"), this is not true in Talossan. In most cases, a Talossan verb will take on a different form for each subject/tense. For example, here are the different present-tense conjugations of the verb parlarh (= to talk):
As you can see, while English would use the same form ("talk") for all of the subjects "I", "you", "we", "y'all", and "they", in Talossan this is not the case. The "we" and "they" subjects share the same conjugated form (parlent) but each of the other subjects has its own individual form.
- éu parléu (= I talk)
- tu parlás (= you talk)
- o parla, a parla, ça parla (= he talks, she talks, it talks)
- noi parlent, os parlent, as parlent, ça parlent (= we talk, they talk)
- voi parletz (= y'all talk)
This should not be too scary. As I say, the English verb "talk" is very regular in English, but English speakers are quite used to verbs that conjugate into different forms for different subjects and tenses. In fact, some of the most-used verbs in English are the most irregular. Consider how "I am", "you are", and "he is" are the present-tense conjugations for the verb "to be". Consider further how this same verb, in the past-tense, also takes irregular (and differing) forms for various subjects ("I was", "you were", "he was").
The English speaker will need to get used to conjugating each verb to match the subject for which it is being used, and the tense (present, past, future) that it needs to convey. As I say, that's the bad news.
The good news, though, is twofold. First, the rules that determine how to form the various conjugations for regular verbs are quite easy to learn. Second, Talossan does not have nearly as many irregular verbs as English does. Sure, it has some, and yes, some of these are among the most important and most-used verbs in Talossan, but in the end, there are not very many irregular verbs.
For the remainder of the course, we will slowly be introducing the different conjugated forms of a verb. For example, in the next lecture, we will go over the rules to conjugate verbs in the present tense. The conjugations of parlarh (= to talk), above, illustrate those very rules. The form parlarh itself is known as the "infinitive" form, which we're about to discuss. All of the regular verb conjugations in Talossan simply exchange the -arh word-ending of the infinitive form for some other ending (as we saw above, the present tense endings are -éu, -ás, -a, -ent, and -etz).
In this lecture, we will discuss only three forms of the verb — the infinitive form, the past participle (which we have touched on earlier), and the present participle. In later lectures, we will move on to discuss how to conjugate verbs in the past tense, the future tense, the subjunctive mood (don't worry if you don't know what that means yet), the perfect aspect (again, don't worry if that's a term you aren't familiar with yet — none of this is scary), and so forth. By the time we are done, you will know how to create even a very complicated compound verb phrase.
The Infinitive Verb Form
"Infinitive" is a long fancy word that you could simply take to mean "the basic root form of the verb". In English, the infinitive form is typically given by simply preceding the dictionary-entry verb with the word "to". That is, "to talk", "to speak", and "to eat" are all considered English infinitive forms.
As you can see from those English examples, this form of a verb does not indicate any present, past, or future sense. It also does not indicate any particular subject (I, you, he, she, they). As I said, it is the basic root form of the verb.
The Talossan infinitive verb form is very easy to recognize when you see it. If you see a Talossan word that ends with -arh, you are almost certainly looking at a Talossan infinitive verb. For example, risguardarh (= to look), vidarh (= to see), parlarh (= to talk or speak), üscüdarh (= to listen or hear), scríuarh (= to write), and lirarh (= to read).
There are some infinitive verb forms that end with -irh rather than -arh. The two of these that should be mentioned here are tirh (= to have) and irh (= to go). Remember, though, that these verbs are irregularly pronounced, so that even they — just like all the other infinitive verbs, that end in -arh — all end with a syllable rhyming with the English word "posh".
Since the infinitive form does not convey any information about the subject that is performing the verb, and also does not convey any information about the time (present, past, etc.) when the verbal action is performed, you might think that the infinitive form is not very useful, and not often used. That, however, is not true. Simply read through this lecture (or any English text) slowly and you will see plenty of instances where the verb form "to X" is used.
You will find that (in both English and Talossan) the infinitive form is typically found used in two cases:
We are going to speak about each of these cases separately.
- After another verb (which means it is appearing in a "compound verb" combination or phrase). For example, "I like to cook", and "They want to eat early."
- To refer to a verbal action as a noun. For example, "To read is to live".
In a phrase such as "He likes to be praised", the verb "to be" appears in the infinitive form. Notice, however, that it is "dependent" on the preceding verb. And that verb, "to like", has been conjugated to match the subject ("He") and the tense (present tense). The point here is that the infinitive form should only be used once any subject and time has been established by the use of a conjugated form of another, preceding, verb.
The most common mistake made by English speakers who are new to Talossan is to simply look up the verb in the Översteir, and use it, unconjugated. Remember that if you fail to conjugate a verb, you get the infinitive ("to X") form, and so to write a sentence such as éu esperarh menxharh, you are saying "I to hope to eat". In such a phrase, remember that the first verb (in this case, esperarh, meaning "to hope") must be conjugated. Only the second verb in the phrase is proper in the infinitive form (in both Talossan and in English).
From this, you would likely conclude that this example sentence ("I hope to eat") should be éu esperéu menxharh. You would be close, but not exactly right. We're missing one thing, and it's the same thing that would be missing in English if the sentence were written "I hope eat". Yes, we're missing the word "to", which is called a "linking preposition".
English uses only the word "to" as its linking preposition. Talossan actually has two words that can be used. The first of these is à (= to), and the second is da (= from). The preposition à (in its form àd or àð before vowels) is used to introduce a positive infinitive ("to do something") while da introduces a negative infinitive ("to not do something"). For example, començeveu à menxharh (= I began to eat ), and ceßeveu da menxharh (= I quit [from] eating). As another example, consider esteveu à naxharh (= I used to swim) and esteveu da naxharh (= I used to not swim; i.e., I used to avoid swimming).Historical Note: Historically, à was always used as the linking preposition for any infinitive verb that begins with a consonant, and da (in its elided form d') was always when the infinitive verb begins with a vowel. However, these rules have come to be considered semantically improper and unsupportable in modern Talossan.In Talossan, you should always use a linking preposition to introduce a dependent infinitive...well, almost always. As it turns out, there are eight specific verbs after which you should not use a linking preposition to introduce an infinitive. Don't be too scared by this, though — believe it or not, this is exactly the same kind of exception you're already very used to making in English, probably without knowing you're doing it. You see, English has exactly the same kind of quirk: consider how "I want to eat" and "I like to eat" both use the linking preposition, but "I can eat" and "I must eat" both do not.
The eight Talossan verbs that (after appearing properly conjugated in a compound verb phrase) should not be followed by a linking preposition, but instead should be directly followed by an infinitive form are:
For these constructions that do not use linking prepositions, the word non is used to negate the infinitive. For example, éu volt non menxharh (= I want to not eat). Compare this with éu non volt menxharh (= I do not want to eat) and with éu non volt non menxharh (= I do not want to not eat).
- amarh (= to like to, to love to). For example, éu améu menxharh (= I like to eat), not éu améu à menxharh.
- fóstarh (= to be obliged to). For example, éu fost menxharh (= I should eat), not éu fost à menxharh.
- irh (= to be going to [i.e., "will"]). For example, éu véu menxharh (= I am going to eat ), not éu véu à menxharh.
- laßarh (= to allow to). For example, se laßéu menxharh (= I allow myself to eat), not se laßéu à menxharh.
- pevarh (= to be able to [i.e., "can"]). For example, éu put menxharh (= I can eat), not éu put à menxharh.
- restarh (= to continue to [i.e., "still, keep, yet"]). For example, éu restéu menxharh (= I still eat ["I am still eating", "I keep eating"), not éu restéu à menxharh.
- sâparh (= to know to, or to know how to). For example, éu säp menxharh (= I know how to eat), not éu säp à menxharh.
- velarh (= to want or desire to). For example, éu volt menxharh (= I want to eat), not éu volt à menxharh.
Remember that when we discussed pronouns, we noted that the infinitive form of a verb is one form to which an object pronoun can be attached in inversion. For example éu volt menxharh-en (= I want to eat it).
When a verb is used as a noun, this is called a "gerund". In English, the present participle form of a verb (the form typically ending with "-ing") is often seen used in such a way ("My favorite activity is reading").
In Talossan, the infinitive form is the form that is used as a gerund. For example, v'actività favorì c'e lirarh (= my favorite activity is reading [i.e., my favorite thing to do is to read]).
Notice that here is one case where it is okay (but not required) to allow the noun to appear without an accompanying article. It is not improper to supply the article, though: v'actività favorì c'e el lirarh, although typically, you would only provide a gerund with an article if it appears at the head of a noun phrase, as in el lirarh c'e v'actività favorì (= reading [i.e., to read] is my favorite activity).
When you do wish to supply a gerund with an article, it may be most proper to choose the partitive article del (equivalent to "some", or representable in English as the "null article" [that is, simply omitted]). That is, v'actività favorì c'e del lirarh.
Talossan verbs have two participle forms — the past participle (which is used almost exactly as it is in English), and the present participle form (which is not used in as many ways as English uses it).As always, I am available to answer questions about this lecture if anyone has any.
The Past Participle
We have seen the past participle before. We noted that the English past participle typically looks just like a past-tense form, which ends in "-ed". For example, "served" is both a past-tense form ("I served the dinner") and a past participle form ("The dinner was served").
Unlike English, in Talossan, the past participle form does not match the form of any past-tense conjugation (we will discuss the past tense in an upcoming lecture). Notice, though, that the past participle of an English verb is not always the same form as the past tense form of that same verb. This is shown in the pair "I ate the dinner" and "The dinner was eaten".
In the previous lecture, when discussing adjectives that have feminine forms, we noted that the Talossan past participle can either end in -at (and if so, it becomes feminine by becoming -ada) or -escu (which has no feminine form).
Okay, so now that you know that the past participle form of a verb such as parlarh (= to talk) would be either parlat (of masculine or mixed-gender subjects) or parlada (of feminine gender subjects) or parlescu (gender-neutral), all that remains is to answer the question, "when should the past participle form be used?"
Luckily, the answer is that the Talossan past participle form should be used in exactly the same circumstances and same word position as it is used in English. Also, just like in English, a past participle can be used as an adjective.
To provide examples of both, consider the sentence el crust c'esteva brenat (= the pie was burned). In this sentence, the past participle serves (with a form of the Talossan "to be" verb, estarh) in a compound verb phrase ("was burned"). Now consider améu del crust brenat (= I like burnt pie), in which the same past participle is now an adjective, describing the condition of the pie.
As we noted in the previous lecture, almost every adjective ending in -at is a past-participle. And a past participle does not need to be listed in the Översteir for it to be usable as an adjective — feel free to conjugate any verb to its past participle form and use it as an adjective.
As for the use of a past participle in a compound verb phrase, you will find that almost every compound verb phrase employs at least one past participle form -- sometimes more than one. For example, in the phrase téu estescu raplamandat (= I have been reprimanded), both "to be" and "to reprimand" have been conjugated into the past participle forms.
In other words, the Talossan (and English) past participle is among the most-used parts of speech, so you should become very familiar with it.
As we've noted, there are some (but not all that many) verbs in Talossan that conjugate irregularly. Some (but not all) of these verbs have irregular past participle conjugations. For example, if estarh (= to be) were a completely regular verb, it would have both of the past participle forms estat (which would become feminine as estada) and estescu. But estarh is irregular, in that only estescu is proper. The forms estat and estada are improper past participle forms in Talossan. (We will discuss irregular verbs in a bit more depth later; for now, just note that you should not count on every single Talossan verb always taking the -at and -ada and -escu ending to become a past participle, just as you could not count on the same thing as regards the "-ed" ending in English, as we saw with examples like "eaten" and "burnt").
Here are the twelve Talossan verbs that have irregular past participle forms:
creatarh (= to create) creat (fem. creada) credarh (= to believe) creut and the regular form credescu estarh (= to be) The regular form estescu must be used
(estat is improper)
façarh (= to do or to make) In addition to the regular form façat (fem. façada),
the forms fäts and facescu can be used.
irh (= the verb of motion; to come/go) venescu moártarh (= to die) moart and mortescu sâparh (= to know or to know how to) Only the regular form säpescu may be used
(säpat is improper)
scríuarh (= to write) scriut starh (= to be standing) Only the regular form stanescu may be used
(stat is improper)
tirh (= to have) tenescu vidarh (= to see) víut and the regular form videscu viénarh (= to be just about to / to have just) viénat (fem. viénada) and venescu
The Present Participle
In English, the present participle is the form of a verb that typically ends with "-ing". For example, "going" and "eating" and "running". In Talossan, the word ending is -ind (which, as discussed in an earlier lecture, has an irregular pronunciation, being pronounced as if it were spelled -ant).
While the past participle is among the most-used parts of speech in Talossan, the present participle is actually among the least-used! This is quite different from English.
In English, the present participle is used in a great many ways, most commonly to indicate a simple present, ongoing action ("I am eating"). This same sense in Talossan, however, would not be created with a participle, but simply with the present tense conjugations (which we will discuss in detail in the next lecture). That is, where English would say "I am eating", Talossan would simply say éu menxhéu (= I eat). Feel free (and encouraged, as an English speaker) to read and hear éu menxhéu as "I am eating" for that is truly what it is. [Note that Talossan does not use the simple present tense in the way English does, to indicate a habitual state — the phrase éu menxhéu el pesc means "I am (currently) eating fish" and éu sint à menxharh del pesc (literally "I am to eat fish") means "I (habitually) eat fish". This use of "to be to" is the "imperfective aspect" and will be discussed in a later lecture.]
We have also seen that where English uses the present participle as a gerund ("I hate reading"), Talossan uses the infinitive form instead (haßéu el lirarh = "I hate [the] reading").
So, if Talossan does not use the present participle to indicate ongoing activity the way English does, and also does not use it as a gerund as English does, your question must be "what is it used for in Talossan?" The answer is that the present participle can be used as an adjective (just like we saw the past participle could be, in examples like "the burnt pie").
That is, it would be proper to use a present participle form in phrases such as el brüs cunstagnind (= the impending doom) and els vints desilinds (= the swirling winds).
As shown in the foregoing example, the Talossan present participle should be pluralized (by the addition of -s) when it refers to a plural noun. Unlike the past participle, however, there is no separate feminine form for the present participle — use the -ind ending when describing both masculine and feminine nouns, as in la fru timnind (= the gossiping woman).
The eight verbs that have irregular present participle forms are listed below:
credarh (= to believe) credent irh (= the verb of motion; to come/go) viénind or vand moártarh (= to die) moarind pevarh (= to be able to) povind scríuarh (= to write) scríind starh (= to be standing) stanind tirh (= to have) tischind viénarh (= to be just about to / to have just) venind
Verbs that are extended from these irregular verbs share the same conjugation. For example, rescríind is proper for "rewriting".