Author Topic: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."  (Read 1148 times)

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Offline Kame Ayyo’koti

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Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« on: June 08, 2014, 11:01:29 am »
Karyu Pawl posted a sentence that I'm struggling to understand the structure of:
Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng.
Is to-Tsenu broken-heartedness which appears that Va’rul her will-leave.
Tsenu is broken hearted (lit. has broken-heartedness) that Va’ru appears to be about to dump her.


I know a "describes" things with relative clauses, and fwa nominalizes clauses.
What confuses me: Does «lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng» describe «yawnyewla», since a is there?

The only other way I can make sense of it is if a is similar to "because." Maybe it confuses me because I can't think of a way we would say a sentence structure like this in English.

I guess it makes sense to me if I think of it like this: The event/situation that "appears that Va’rul her will-leave" is something that her heartbreak is showing or telling her, or is metaphorically "what it looks like." Try thinking of it with the word "who" instead of "which." Phrases like "tutan a stä’nì fayoangit" make me think of «a lam fwa...» as something it's doing, if that makes any sense.

Maybe I'm just reading it wrong (or I'm just tired), I dunno... what are your thoughts about it?
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Offline Tìtstewan

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2014, 11:32:53 am »
Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu has a broken hearth / broken-heartedness which appears that Va'ru will leave her.

The purple part describes the blue part (even the word yawnyewla). In a way, one could say, that a means "because" in this sentence as mentioned.

This is also possible:
Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fì'u a Varul pot txìyìng
[Lu Tsenur yawnyewla] [a lam fì'u] [a Varul pot txìyìng]
[Tsenu has broken-heartedness] [which appears a thing] [that Varu will leave her.]

Purple part describes broken-heartedness, the navy part describes thing

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Offline Plumps

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2014, 11:57:18 am »
Yup, that’s how I understand it.

In a way it’s kind of a Na’vi style because it works a bit different than English.

It’s all because of the structure of the “have” clause. If there was a Na’vi adjective for “broken-hearted” we would probably use taluna/taweyka in the instance of a. But since yawnyewla is a noun, it makes more ‘sense’ in a way to describe that noun further by a rather than taluna.

Maybe there is a difference in meaning? Perhaps a concentrates more on yawnyewla and taluna on the fact that she’s broken-hearted? Perhaps it doesn’t matter and is just a matter of style… who knows? ;)

Offline Tìtstewan

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2014, 01:41:37 pm »
Hmm, I guess it has a different meaning.

Lu Tsenur yawnyewla taluna lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng.
OR
Lu Tsenur yawnyewla ta lun a lam fì'u a Va’rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu has broken-heartedness from the reason that appears a thing that Varu will leave her.

This would imply one, that the fact that Va'ru will leave her, she has broken-heartedness which somehow does not fit well with lam fwa.
The following example would make more sense with taluna,

Lu Tsenur yawnyewla taluna Va’rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu has broken-heartedness because (from the reason that) Varu will leave her.

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Offline `Eylan Ayfalulukanä

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2014, 11:35:12 pm »
a constructions take a little getting used to, and I can't even pretend that I fully understand them.

That said, K. Pawl's example sentence makes good sense to me. The message here is it APPEARS that Vaʼru is leaving. Since lam is intransitive, you use the fwa subordinator particle rather than futa.

The taluna example makes perfect sense as well. But the most 'normal' way of saying this in Na
vi would be K. Pawl's example.

One of the hardest thing that a good Naʼv i speaker must do is learn to 'think like a Naʼvi'. I do not excel at it :( but it is very slowly getting better.

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Offline Blue Elf

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2014, 02:38:09 pm »
Karyu Pawl posted a sentence that I'm struggling to understand the structure of:
Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng.
Is to-Tsenu broken-heartedness which appears that Va’rul her will-leave.
Tsenu is broken hearted (lit. has broken-heartedness) that Va’ru appears to be about to dump her.


I know a "describes" things with relative clauses, and fwa nominalizes clauses.
What confuses me: Does «lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng» describe «yawnyewla», since a is there?
Yes. -a- is attributive affix, which is used with adjectives (here -a- point to noun, you you're always sure what word is described by adjective), but it can also start clause, which describes the noun (so again it point to noun).

Note, that construction Lu X-ur (lu + dative) is somehow special, so a here works more like that than which. We have more examples, like:
 Lu oeru sngum a .... -> I'm afraid that .... (more literally: I have worry which is that ....)
 Lu oeru yayayr a ... -> I'm confused by ... (I have confusion which is that ....)
Or you can put source of worry/confusion into topical. More info here
Oe lu skxawng skxakep. Slä oe nerume mi.
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Offline Wllìm

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2014, 09:59:34 am »
Interesting, I didn't know that a could be used for such things :)

[...]

Note, that construction Lu X-ur (lu + dative) is somehow special, so a here works more like that than which. We have more examples, like:
 Lu oeru sngum a .... -> I'm afraid that .... (more literally: I have worry which is that ....)
 Lu oeru yayayr a ... -> I'm confused by ... (I have confusion which is that ....)
Or you can put source of worry/confusion into topical. More info here

Is this "special" use of a only allowed then with lu + dative? In other words, would it be possible to use sngum a, yawnyewla a and so on without lu X-ru? Something like:

Oel lawk oeyä sngumit a ...
I talk about my worry that ...


Or, to use the original sentence:

Tsenul lawk sneyä yawnyewla a lam fwa Va'rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu talks about his broken-heartedness that Va'ru will leave her.

This sentence seems quite logical to me, given that "Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng." is correct.

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2014, 11:06:16 am »
Or, to use the original sentence:

Tsenul lawk sneyä yawnyewla a lam fwa Va'rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu talks about his broken-heartedness that Va'ru will leave her.

There is missing the a lam fwa part in the translation.
Tsenu talks about her broken-heartness that Va’ru appears to be about to dump her.
more lit.: Tsenu talks about her (own) broken-heartness that appears a/the thing that Va'ru will leave her.

I think this is one way how one could interprate a.
Note, that construction Lu X-ur (lu + dative) is somehow special, so a here works more like that than which. We have more examples, like:
 Lu oeru sngum a .... -> I'm afraid that .... (more literally: I have worry which is that ....)
 Lu oeru yayayr a ... -> I'm confused by ... (I have confusion which is that ....)
Or you can put source of worry/confusion into topical. More info here
It's just enough to say that a is that/which/because* without confusing people.
* Lu oeru sngum a .... -> I'm afraid that/because...
* Lu oeru yayayr a... -> I'm confused because of...
But I would be careful, because there could appear the confusion with taweyk/taluna.

Oel tse'a tuteti a tok fìtsengit.1 - lit.: I see the person which/that is here.
Oel omum fì'ut a ngal tok fìtsengit.2 - lit.: I know this thing that you are here.
 '-- Oel omum futa ngal tok fìtsengit.2 - I know that you are here.

Both examples have the same structure:
Oel tse'a tuteti a tok fìtsengit.1 -> ...tuteti a tok fìtsengit. <- the purple part describes the blue word and a is used as connector for it.
Oel omum fì'ut a ngal tok fìtsengit.2 -> ...fì'ut a ngal tok fìtsengit. <- same here too.

I personally would not make this too complicated...

My favorit example:
Oel tse'a kemit a soli nga tsatseng.1 lit.: I see the action that you did there.
kemit is bescribed by a soli nga tsatseng. but also it refer to the blue part.

It's important, that a does not separate a sentence like a conjuction do. As mentioned, a just connect a main clause with a subordinated clause1 or descriptions2.


PS. Could someone check my stuff here? It's kinda hot here for a clear brain...

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Offline Tirea Aean

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2014, 11:17:01 am »
Technically, there is nothing special about this use of a

my thoughts on a: http://tirea.learnnavi.org/posts/2013-03-11-four.html

basically, the stuff after a is talkng about yawnyewla.

Tsenu has broken-heartedness.
what kind of broken-heartedness?
The "Va’ru appears to be about to dump her."-> broken-heartedness.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2014, 11:23:04 am by Tirea Aean »

Offline `Eylan Ayfalulukanä

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2014, 03:34:54 pm »
Interesting, I didn't know that a could be used for such things :)

[...]

Note, that construction Lu X-ur (lu + dative) is somehow special, so a here works more like that than which. We have more examples, like:
 Lu oeru sngum a .... -> I'm afraid that .... (more literally: I have worry which is that ....)
 Lu oeru yayayr a ... -> I'm confused by ... (I have confusion which is that ....)
Or you can put source of worry/confusion into topical. More info here

Is this "special" use of a only allowed then with lu + dative? In other words, would it be possible to use sngum a, yawnyewla a and so on without lu X-ru? Something like:

Oel lawk oeyä sngumit a ...
I talk about my worry that ...


Or, to use the original sentence:

Tsenul lawk sneyä yawnyewla a lam fwa Va'rul pot txìyìng.
Tsenu talks about his broken-heartedness that Va'ru will leave her.

This sentence seems quite logical to me, given that "Lu Tsenur yawnyewla a lam fwa Va’rul pot txìyìng." is correct.

This construction is dubious for another reason-- it is in passive voice, or very nearly so. At best, passive voice is contraindicated in Na'vi. You can talk about talk in a general sense with lawk, but here Tsenul is saying something about something without actually saying it, which is what passive voice is. This is better stated with direct speech as:

Tsenul plltxe san lu oeru sngum a lam fwa Va'rul pot txìyìng sìk.

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Offline Kame Ayyo’koti

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2014, 03:47:59 pm »
Interesting, I didn't know that a could be used for such things :)
When I studied these things, I didn't really think of them as related. I studied them individually and treated each "type of a" as it's own construction, like this:

  • First I studied a used with adjectives, since these are the simplest: Lu tsatseng lora yayo aean.
  • I studied a as used to "describe" nouns, by creating relative clauses: Tsatutan lu taronyu a palulukanit tspolang.
    These can be confusing, so I made a big post about them here.
  • Then I looked into fì’u + a constructions, used to nominalize clauses: Omum oel futa zìya’u nga kelkune.

It probably would've confused me to think about them as versions of the same thing, even if they are. ;D What matters to me is how each is used/works.

Is this "special" use of a only allowed then with lu + dative?
What I understand from Blue Elf's post is this: It's different this time, because for some things there is no verb for it nìNa’vi, such as "to feel-broken-hearted" or "to feel-pride." If these were transitive verbs, you could use futa to say what you feel them about, such as with omum:
Oel omum futa Va’rul pot txìyìng.

Na’vi has no verb for "to be-broken-hearted," and no adjective "broken-hearted" either. So the only way to say you "feel broken-hearted that/about something" is to say "I HAVE brokenheartedness that/about something...". (Na’vi doesn't have the verb "to-have" either, so it uses the construction lu X-ru to express "to have." It's something else that also confused me, but it made sense once I got used to it.)

So, if the word you must use is a noun, you say it with lu X-ru Y, and you use a to describe why/what it's about:
Lu Tsenu-r yawnyewla a Va’rul pol txìyìng.
Is to-Tsenu/Tsenu has broken-heartedness that/about Va’rul will-soon-leave her.
So I suppose this is just the way Na’vi constructs phrases like these. :-\

In other words, would it be possible to use sngum a, yawnyewla a and so on without lu X-ru? Something like:

Oel lawk oeyä sngumit a ...
I talk about my worry that ...

I'm not confident about this yet, but I would guess Yes: You can use a in that way. That phrase makes sense to me when I read it. But I'd wait until someone who knows Na’vi better can verify that for us.
Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit a Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a.

Remember, even if this is grammatically correct, that doesn't mean the Na’vi would say it that way. If there's more than one way to say that, the Na’vi might prefer one over another.
"Your work is to discover your world, and then with all your heart give yourself to it."

Offline `Eylan Ayfalulukanä

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2014, 02:57:57 am »
Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit furia Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a.

fu

Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a a fìʼuri Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit.

I think that this is a good place for using the topical, and there are a number of other ways this could be expressed.

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Offline Tirea Aean

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2014, 10:05:19 pm »
Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit furia Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a.

fu

Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a a fìʼuri Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit.

I think that this is a good place for using the topical, and there are a number of other ways this could be expressed.

Nah, It would have to be:

Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit a sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya'a.

fu

Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya'a a sngumit oe new livawk.

fu

Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a a fìʼuri Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit.

You can't use furia the way you did, but your second sentence was correct.

But I see absolutely no real reason why it's not right to say what I said, or what Wllìm said. sngum a and yawnyewla a are not special, really. It's standard usage of a if I ever saw it. :-\ :)

EDIT: I just realized. Maybe they are special? Would using alu be better than a in my first two here?
DOUBLE EDIT: I don't know. I think these as is would feel natural to a Na'vi, who normally says stuff like lu oeru sngum a... and lu oer yawnyewla a...
« Last Edit: June 11, 2014, 10:11:17 pm by Tirea Aean »

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2014, 08:11:17 pm »
I am curious to know why furia is wrong in the first sentrence.

I don't think there is anything special about sngum a or yawnyewla a. I'm just trying to avoid something that sounds like passive voice.

If any word here might have a special rule associated with it (and none that I know of), it would be lawk.

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2014, 06:42:38 am »
I am curious to know why furia is wrong in the first sentrence.
Because:
       Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit furia Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a.
       Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit fì'uri a Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a.
       I want to talk about my worriy for this thing that bad people destroy the hometree.

vs
       Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit a sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya'a.
       I want to talk about my worry that bad people destroy the hometree.

...your worry this thing == bad people destroy the hometree.
vs
...your worry == bad people destroy the hometree.

I don't know how furia make sense there. Also, a thing describe sawtutel, and how is this thing (in topical) connected with the first sentence part?

As a fì'uri =/= fì'uri a, furia, so

       Sawtutel akawng Kelutralit skaya’a a fìʼuri Oe new livawk oeyä sngumit.
       Bad people destroy the hometree that (is) for this thing: I want to talk about my worry.

Bad people destroy the hometree == the thing (the topic of your worry) you want to talk about.

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2014, 12:00:51 pm »
passive voice would be more like this calque example:

*tsa'u lolu rawnun (that thing was found)

The passive voce in English is the verb BE and then the past tense of whatever verb. This is done for the sake of leaving out the subject, but including any objects.

/off-topic

I agree with Tìtstewan
« Last Edit: June 13, 2014, 12:06:20 pm by Tirea Aean »

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2014, 04:55:00 pm »
So the problem with furia in that sentence was not so much grammar, but poor semantics? (Is semantics even the right term?)

To me, the 'this thing that' construction isn't so strange. It specifies and compartmentalizes the idea that the skypeople were going to destroy hometree. Even the idea that 'thing' can be implied in furia isn't applicable here, even though 'skypeople' are animalte, because I was referring to the concept of skypeople destroying hometree, and not so much the skypeople themselves.

This is very clearly a case where I failed to communicate meaning clearly. I was not 'thinking Na'vi enough'.

As far as passive voice goes, this is really subtle. TA's description makes quite a bit of sense. Now, just to catch myself doing in the future. I guess the most important thing here is there are two verbs, the second would be that there is only an object. The only other common construction that one regularly sees two verbs would be a modal construction, and those are usually 'giveaways' in that there is a limited set of modal verbs, and the <iv> infix in the controlled verb.

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2014, 05:17:29 pm »
So the problem with furia in that sentence was not so much grammar, but poor semantics? (Is semantics even the right term?)

Nah, it's grammar. It's grammatically unnecessary and wrong. The thing to put there is a. Just because furia isn't a subject or object like fula or futa, doesn't mean it can be plopped in if its meaning translates to grammatically/semantically correct English.

Quote
To me, the 'this thing that' construction isn't so strange. It specifies and compartmentalizes the idea that the skypeople were going to destroy hometree. Even the idea that 'thing' can be implied in furia isn't applicable here, even though 'skypeople' are animalte, because I was referring to the concept of skypeople destroying hometree, and not so much the skypeople themselves.

Right

Quote
This is very clearly a case where I failed to communicate meaning clearly. I was not 'thinking Na'vi enough'.

Probably thinking very English-ly with the translation in mind influencing what your Na'vi says.

Quote
As far as passive voice goes, this is really subtle. TA's description makes quite a bit of sense. Now, just to catch myself doing in the future. I guess the most important thing here is there are two verbs, the second would be that there is only an object. The only other common construction that one regularly sees two verbs would be a modal construction, and those are usually 'giveaways' in that there is a limited set of modal verbs, and the <iv> infix in the controlled verb.

Right. The easiest way to spot Passive in English is almost surely one of these:

Transitive verbs:

Object is verbed
Object is being verbed
Object was verbed
Object was being verbed

Intransitive verbs:

It is verbed
It is being verbed
It was verbed
It was being verbed

with any past-tense verb in place of verbed. And Object is any noun which could be a direct object of the verb. Notice how it's the object first and treated as if it's a subject. The point is to emphasize the action and object and remove the real subject who did the verb from the equation altogether.

Modals are most easily spotted whenever verbs like can, cannot, must, want, try, etc. are used and directly tied to a second verb.

(Any further discussion about passive and modals should result in a split with all that stuff in its own thread to prevent further derailment of this thread about the "yawnyewla a" and/or "lam fwa" constructions)

EDIT:

As for furia, there is a time and place.

Na'vi has a topic-comment system, where sometimes you want to make such a statement. If you want to make a whole phrase or sentence into the topic (as opposed to a single word, which would just be that word in topic case), put furia {the phrase/sentence} and then the comment.

Furia {topic or idea to be commented on that generally consists of more than one word} {comment about said topic/idea is the rest of the sentence.}
« Last Edit: June 13, 2014, 05:27:50 pm by Tirea Aean »

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Re: Help me understand: "yawnyewla a lam fwa..."
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2014, 06:12:33 pm »
(Any further discussion about passive and modals should result in a split with all that stuff in its own thread to prevent further derailment of this thread about the "yawnyewla a" and/or "lam fwa" constructions)
Please continue here:
http://forum.learnnavi.org/advanced-grammar/passive-in-navi/
 :)



As for furia, there is a time and place.

Na'vi has a topic-comment system, where sometimes you want to make such a statement. If you want to make a whole phrase or sentence into the topic (as opposed to a single word, which would just be that word in topic case), put furia {the phrase/sentence} and then the comment.

Furia {topic or idea to be commented on that generally consists of more than one word} {comment about said topic/idea is the rest of the sentence.}
This.

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