Confirmation on genitive form of pesu

Started by Pamìrìk, December 19, 2021, 09:10:48 AM

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Quote from: PamìrìkIn a grammar discussion today, the question came up regarding how to express the "whose" in "whose vegetables are these?". While we are fairly confident in lu pesur fayfkxen, the discussion came to the genitive of pesu and tupe. It seems logical for tupe to become tupeyä, but when it comes to pesu an interesting question comes up. With every other pronoun we know of- oe, nga, po, fko, and sno, the last vowel is changed to e, and then is added. Is pesu considered a pronoun, and if so, does it become peseyä or pesuä? Or are my assumptions about this -eyä change affecting all pronouns incorrect?

Quote from: Paul FrommerPesu and tupe are marked in the dictionaries as "inter.," i.e. interrogative. But you're right—they're interrogative pronouns. As such, your speculation about *peseyä is perfectly reasonable. However, the genitive of pesu is indeed pesuä.

The reason for this is that the -su/tu- in these pronouns is, as you know, derived from tute 'person.' It's the same morpheme as in the nouns ending in -tu that indicate people: koaktu, reltseotu, snaytu, tiretu, etc. Those nouns all have the standard genitive: koaktuä, reltseotuä, etc. So there's pressure from those forms to keep the same pattern for pesu, since the -su retains something of its noun-y character.

An alternative translation of "Whose vegetables are these?" would therefore be:

Fayfkxen lu pum pesuä?

Hope that all makes sense!

A great window into etymology  :)