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6. Derivation—Verb Medials and Concrete Finals

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

In this chapter, we discuss both medials and concrete finals. There are close parallels between these two morpheme classes. Many Arapaho concrete finals contain a lexical element and an abstract element that corresponds to the derivational suffixes described in chapter 5. The TA concrete final /xoh/ contains the element /xo/ ‘to convey s.o.’ and the causative /h/. The element /xo/ appears in other concrete finals such as AI /xotii/ ‘to convey s.t.’. Similarly, medials are lexical forms, which are often followed by abstract finals. Thus, complex Arapaho verb stems prototypically show an overall structure of LEXICAL INITIAL + LEXICAL “MIDDLE” + ABSTRACT FINAL.

Note, however, that the lexical element involved in a concrete final normally occurs in strict relationship with a single abstract final element—it does not freely combine with other verb finals. Thus, /xoh/ is effectively a single, fixed unit—a TA concrete final—and /xotii/ is similarly an AI concrete final (both are examples of what Valentine 2001:326 calls “binary” concrete finals). In contrast, medials freely combine with a wide range of other abstract finals, as well as with concrete finals, as for example the medial /et/ ‘ear’:

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8. Derivation—Reduplication

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Reduplication is extremely common in Arapaho. It occurs as both an obligatory process and an optional one, depending on the circumstances, and produces a number of related semantic effects on the verb. Although primarily occurring on verb stems and preverbs, it also occurs with adverbial particles (which are largely derived from preverbs) and occasionally with pronouns (which are morphologically verbs).

Reduplication is produced by adding the derivational final /:n/ to the consonant (if present) and first vowel of the initial syllable of a preverb or verb stem, and then adding this element to the base preverb or verb stem. Abstractly, this takes the form:

(C)V1(V2) > (C)V1:n-(C)V1(V2)

Reduplication is applied prior to addition of /h/ in surface pronunciation for vowel-initial forms—in other words, the reduplicated form functions as a verb initial, not a preverb. The /n/ drops before following consonants, as always with this derivational final (see examples 6b, 9, 12, 24, 26, etc., below for examples with vowel-initial bases). Examples include:

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14. The Noun Phrase

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

In the following section, we will examine the larger noun phrase, consisting of multiple words beyond the simple noun word. The additional forms common in noun phrases include independent adjectival modifiers, demonstratives, and pseudo-verbal presentational forms.

Prenoun-noun combinations show many similarities to preverb–verb stem combinations in Arapaho, and similarly, noun initial and final combinations resemble verb initial and final constructions. As seen in chapter 4, many common lexical items consist of these combinations.

However, it is also fairly common for these kinds of modifier + base noun constructions to be used even when they do not form fully lexicalized expressions. This seems to occur with common semantic pairings, and primarily with /ecex/ (‘little’), /eebet/ (‘big’), colors, and a few other prototypical adjectival modifers.

Adjective-type roots can also be expressed independently of the noun word when they are particularly salient. Contrast the following with examples 3–5 above:

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10. Proclitics

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Proclitics have been introduced in passing earlier. Note that the Arapaho person markers can be analyzed as anaphoric clitics. However, they can also be analyzed as part of the morphological word in Arapaho due to their unique behavior in taking e/o vowel harmony and their requirement of epenthetic /t/ prior to vowel-initial stems (similar to other grammatical preverbs that require epenthesis, such as /eti/ FUT). On the other hand, the proclitics covered here show neither of these features; they also can be attached to particles (including adverbials) as well as nouns and verbs; they always occur prior to the person markers when both are present; and they do not inhibit initial change when occurring with verbs (nor do they take initial change themselves). They thus are analyzed as not part of the morphological word but rather as proclitics. Here, we cover the most important of these proclitics, including their syntax, morphosyntax, and phonology.

The following list gives the most important proclitics (whose presence is indicated by use of ‘=’ rather than the hyphen in this grammar). When a proclitic interacts with verb stems to require a certain verbal order or mode, this is given in brackets. Many additional examples of these proclitics are given in the relevant sections on the various inflectional orders.

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16. The Verb Phrase—Noun-Verb Agreement

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

In this chapter, we examine the ways in which different types of verb stems are used in Arapaho for functional communicative purposes, and the ways in which NP marking on the verb stem can be manipulated for the same purposes. Topics include proximate/obviative marking, alternation between different primary verb stems for reasons of NP saliency and emphasis, and derivation of secondary stems for the same reasons.

As seen in chapter 3, the person hierarchy in combination with the direction-of-action markers determines the shape of TA inflections. The grammatical categories of subject and object are certainly present, but they do not control the inflectional system. Similarly, the semantic roles of agent and patient, although clearly specified by the overall TA inflection, are not fundamental in the determination of which participant will be marked explicitly on the verb using a person marker. For example, a second person will always be marked finally on the verb due to the rules of the person hierarchy, whether the second person is subject, object, agent, or patient. The direction-of-action markers then indicate whether that person is subject or object:

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