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Many languages have a CASE SYSTEM.What is a CASE SYSTEM
Example of Case System:a set of affixes (almost always suffixes) that markthe relations that NPs bear to their governors.CASE SYSTEM occurs in Australian Language, Pitta-Pitta.Each case is represented by a single form.There is one complication.The subject of an intransitive verb is unmarked.The subject of a transitive verb is marked by a suffix–lu (the ergative case) that marks instruments.
CASE SUFFIXES SUFFIXES SENTENCESNominative -Ø The dog ran away (INTRANSITIVE SUBJECT)Ergative / -lu The man hit the dog with a stickinstrumental (TRANSITIVE SUBJECT and instrumental)Accusative -nha The dog bit the man (direct object)Dative / pergressive -ku The dog is fond of the man, The dog swam through the floodPurposive / possesive -nga The woman’s dog went for the paperlocative -ina The dog swam in the creekallative -inu The dog went to the creekablative -inya The dog name back from the creekcausal -la The dog hid from the policeman
The nominative is used for nouns in isolation and for the subject of an intransitive verb. It characteristically expresses the role of neutral patient, including entities that ‘locomote’ (with ‘go’, ‘come’, etc). These might seem to have agent subjects, but the mover is also the moved and the activity does not extend to an external entity. karna karnta-ka man go-past The man went
The ergative marks the subject of a transitive verb. It expresses the role of agent. It also encodes the role of instrument.karna-lu pithi-ka piyawarli-nha parnkuparnku-luman-erg hit past dog-acc walking:stick-erg (insr)The man hit the dog with a stick.
The accusative marks the direct object expressingthe characteristics role of affected patient.karna-lu pithi-ka piyawarli-nha parnkuparnku-luman-erg hit past dog-acc walking:stick-erg (insr)The man hit the dog with a stick.
The dative function of –ku is restricted.It marks the complement:yatha ‘to like’tiwa ‘be jealous of’wapa ‘to look for’wantili ‘to wait for’ karna yatha-ya piyawarli-ku man like-pres dog-dat The man likes the dog.
The pergressive function:‘through’‘across’‘along’ karna yurta-ka ngarraru-ku man swam-past flood-dat (pergressive) The man swam through the flood
Exampe of purposive: karna karnta-ka kupi-nga man go-past fish-purp The man went for (to get) fishExample of possesive: karna-nga piyawarli pantyi-ya man-purp dog ail-pres The man’s dog is sick
It indicates location in general. Adverbs are used to give specific orientation of oneentity in relation to another. karna nhangka-y kunti-ina kukuina man sit-pres house-loc behind The man is (sitting) behind the house
It indicates destinations.-inya ablativeIt indicates ‘from’, i.e. source. karna karnta-ka Mount Isa-inya Dajarra-inu man go-past Mt Isa-abl Dajarra-allative The man went from Mt Isa to Dajarra
It marks causes ‘sick from (drinking) whisky, and entitiesthat are to be avoided.Example:Bad spirits – not just bad whisky! karna wilakana-ya yampi-la man hide-pres m:in:law-causalThe man is hiding from (sc. to avoid) his mother-in-law
LATINCase System of Latin : a.Suffixes express case b.Number c.Gender class d.Irregularities, etc
Notes :-The cases are distinguished on the basis ofdifferentiation in a single paradigm.-The vocative is marked by a separate form onlyin the second declension singular.-There is SYNCRETISM (neutralisation) betweenthe nomative and vocative.
Nominative : marks the subjectVocative : used to address someoneAccusative : marks direct object and the object of some prepositionsGenitive : correspons to ‘s and of in EnglishDative : marks indirect object of dare ‘to give’ and the complement of a score or so of verbsAblative : marks a number of distict roles
Adjective and determiners agree with theirhead nouns in number, case and genderThe adjective used in the sentences belowdecline like puella, servus, or bellumaccording to the gender of the noun theymodify
Rex bonus dat unum servum puellae(The good king gives one/a slave to the girl)Regis servus iit ex Britaniā in Italiam(The king’s slave went from Britain to Italy)Illa puella manet in Italiā cum amicis(That girl is staying in Italy with friends)
English, like the other Indo-Europeanlanguages, once had a case system like theLatin. Old English had a case system almostidentical with that of modern German (thesystem was almost identical not the forms,although the forms were very similar tothose of German)
During the middle this period these werelost (very careless) except for the sibilantending of the genitive (cognate with the –isof Latin regins in the paradigms above) westill have this, but it is not case makeranymore. It is derivational affix that isadded to noun phrases to producepossessive determiners.
The dog’s boneThe man down the street’s dogThe man over there’s dogWe write the genitive or possessive ‘swith an apostrophe to distinguish itfrom the plural –’we’ means educatedpeople over 35
With pronouns there is a two-way casedistinction: nominative versus oblique(non-nominative). This distinction is madesuppletively, i.e. by using different stems.Me supplies the oblique case of I, him ofhe and so on
nominative obliqueFirst person singular I meThird person singular he him she her it itFirst person singular we usSecond person plural you youThird person plural they them
In text book English the nominativeforms are used for subject and theoblique forms for all otherfunctions. In real English thenominative forms are used incertain other constructions, eg:between you and I.
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