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Grammar - Nouns
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There is no inflectional morphology involved with nouns anywhere. Nouns have one form only and don't inflect for case, gender or number. There are no definite or indefinite articles.



Grammatical case is expressed by word order, logic and a topic marker when necessary. In unmarked word order, the subject precedes the verb:

uma janzu

mother cook

mother is cooking

Direct objects follow the verb:

uma janzu lanki

mother cook rice

mother is cooking rice

Indirect objects can either follow or precede the direct object:

uma janzu lanki wa

mother cook rice i

mother is cooking rice for me

uma janzu wa lanki

mother cook i rice

mother is cooking rice for me

There is no separate marking for indirect objects. The difference between direct and indirect objects is left to logic and context:

yu pau wa apa

he give i money

he gave me money

*he gave me to the money

When one of the constituents is topicalized and moved to the front of the sentence thus breaking the basic unmarked SVO-order, there is the option to mark this constituent with the marker be which is placed directly after it:

lanki be uma janzu

rice top mother cook

it is rice mother cooked

*the rice cooked mother

apa be yu pau wa

money top he give i

it was money he gave to me

*the money gave him to me



There is no overt distinction between nouns with an intrinsic masculine or feminine load:

uba - father

uma - mother

wana - woman

bua - brother

The roots bu for "man" and  wana  for "woman" are used to make new words with this load in order to indicate the sex of a being when necessary:

ume - sheep

bume - ram

waname - ewe

These roots usually are prefixed, but sometimes they occur at the end of words too:

uva - spouse

vabu - husband

vawana - wife



Number and definiteness is derived from the context or expressed with quantifiers or deictic markers:



the/a car/cars

nia wi

car many

many cars

nia sun

car two

two cars

nia yo

car all

all cars/every car



Collective nouns are characterized by the ending in the root  nyo meaning "collection, many of". Please keep in mind this is a closed class and not a suffix which can actively be applied to nouns in order to pluralize them. Examples of words containing this root are:

unyo - people, ethnic grouping

Majaranyo - the Hungarian people

penyo - forest

jinyo - band

Some words without this root nyo have an intrinsic collective meaning and are a mass noun on their own:

aso - water

shum - grains

apa - money

Also note substances like elements in general have no separate collective form altough in many instances they do express mass nouns:

vungu - gold

ninia - helium

kwengu - silk

fangu - iron

Mass nouns too can be modified by quantifiers or other nouns in order to denote a more specific amount:

binso yem - three (glasses of) beer

seo na aso - a cup of water

simbe chu vungu - a piece of gold