Monday, September 12, 2005

Lesson 3: Evidentiality and the particle Abé

Naboovian uses a device termed "evidentiality particles." They are short words that start off a sentance to tell the listener how the speaker knows what they know. They often take the place of such phrases as, "gossip has it" and "I heard it from a reliable sorce." A nice handy chart:

Sa- the speaker felt/feels/sees/saw it themselves
Sé- the speaker's opinion or thoughts
Si- the speaker knows this from gossip/hearsay
Su- this is a guess, the speaker doesn't know what they're talking about
Soé- this is obvious, common knowlege, or a fact
So- a trusted source told the speaker this

To exemplify:
terrothidavas ila. He died. (no evidentiality)
Sa terrothidavas ila. He died (I was there)
Sé terrothidavas ila. He died (he could still be alive, it's just my opinion.)
Si terrothidavas ila. Gossip has it that he died.
Su terrothidavas ila. I think he died...I didn't take his pulse, so I don't know.
Soé terrothidavas ila. He died. (his corpse is right there in front of you)
So terrothidavas ila. He died. (his wife told me)

Sa and Soé are the most commonly used.

Abé is an emphasis particle. Since Naboovian has no word for "a,an" or "the," (those being articles) Abé seves the purpose of "the" in cases where it is needed. It is also used to draw attention to something, for example, the word for "the Force" (this being a SW conlang), is "Abé abé Letulaya." The two "abé's" indicate that it is of special importance. However, it is important that you don't overuse abé. Use it sparingly.