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Cary Marcous

Due – October 12, 2009

Problem Set #4
I. Apinayé is spoken in Brazil, in the Tocantins region, near Tocantinópolis among
six villages. It is a language spoken by approximately 1,260 people.
II. List and gloss all the morphemes in the data (you don’t have to
give full lexical entries).

ratʃ adj ‘big’

ratʃ adv ‘a lot’

kukrɛ verb ‘eats’

kra noun ‘child’

ape verb ‘works’

kokoi verb ‘monkey’

punui adj ‘bad’

punui adv ‘badly’

metʃ adj ‘good’

mi noun ‘man’

piŋetʃ adj. ‘old’

piŋetʃ adv. ‘a long time’

III. Adjectival morphemes consistently fall at the end of the sentence; Adverbs
directly follow the main verb of the sentence, but precede the noun.
a. Destroy
Explanations: In the context of 19,“completely destroy” destroy
would be a verb, and makes sense as such. However, as in 70, “the obvious
destroy” and in 59, “their destroy” – that it can’t be possessed or described
with an adjective undoubtedly indicates that destroy is not a noun in those
ANSWER: Destroy can only truly be a verb or an adjective. It cannot
correctly be said to be possessed, nor can their be multiple destroys.
However, a thing can be described as “destroyed” and a thing can be – past
tense verb- “destroyed”
b. Destruction
Explanations: destructioned, completely destruction, destruction
an apple, etc – in all of these instances, destruction fails to be a verb. In the
first example, destruction is conjugated, which cannot really be done. In the
second example, again, we have an adverb, which necessarily describes an
occurring action. In the third context there is an object receiving the action,
destruction, which is also impossible.
ANSWER: Destruction can be a noun. Because of its ending, it
cannot effectively be a verb because it can’t be conjugated and still be
meaningful. Similarly, you cannot describe something by saying it is
“destruction”. It can be possessed, and it is quantifiable.
c. Sympathy
Explanations: In context 3, sympathy is a verb because it is
conjugated into the past tense. In context numbers 21, 31, and 51, it is also
a verb because it is described with an adverb, given an object, and given a
helping verb – respectively.
In cases such as contexts 12, it is an adjective. It is being
intensified as a descriptor.
ANSWER: Sympathy can only be a noun. One cannot perform the act
of sympathy unless they “sympathize” nor can one have the quality of
sympathy unless they are “sympathetic”. It makes sense to say “their
sympathy,” however.
d. Suspicious
Explanations: In context #4, suspicioused would be a verb in the
past tense or an adjective. In 13, it would theoretically be an adjective
because of the intensifier, and the same with 22. In 42, as it is quantified, it
is technically a noun, but doesn’t work as such. In 32 and 52, it is a verb. In
62 and 73, it isn’t a noun because it can’t be possessed and also because it
is unable to be described with an adjective.
ANSWER: Suspicious can only effectively be an adjective.
Unless the ending ‘-ly’ is added, to make an adverb.
e. Very
ANSWER: Very could technically be an adjective, if one were to
say “the very [idea]” but this situation is outdated. Truly, very is more of an
adverb. It cannot be quantified, and holds no meaningful action in its
definition. It can only intensify a word.
f. Owe
In 7, it could be either a verb or an adjective. In 25, it is possible
one could “completely owe” something. In this case, it would be a verb. A lot
of owe or their owe would mean ‘owe’ was a noun as it is abundant and/or
because it is someone’s possession. This is not possible.
ANSWER: Owe can be a verb, as in it can have a subject and
an object. X owes Y to Z. It can also be an adjective, as it can describe
a noun “The owed sum”, for instance, describes the sum.
g. Hair
Explanations: In a context such as “she is hairing it”, it would be
a verb, but this makes no sense. In 63 and 74, it is a noun, and makes sense
as such.
ANSWER: Hair can only be a noun, unless “-y” is added to it as
a suffix, in which case it may become an adjective.
h. Slice
ANSWER: “Sliced” could either be a past tense verb or an
adjective (ie “she sliced the bread” or “there was some sliced bread on the
table”) In one situation, it has an object, and it is being done to something. In
the latter situation, it is a state of the bread, and describes it. Therefore, it’s
an adjective. Slice can effectively be a noun as well, though. “Their slice” is
the slice that belongs to them. “A lot of slice” doesn’t make sense, but would
insinuate that it’s a noun in this instance as there is more than one of it. This
would need to instead say “A lot of slices”.
i. Block
ANSWER: Block may be a noun, a verb, or an adjective. It
may be said that it is “their block,” as in the block belonging to them. It is
also quantifiable as in “a lot of blocks”. Alternatively, it can be an action as in
“completely block” – one can “completely block” an intersection with their
truck. Or, it can be a “blocked intersection,” so that ‘block’ now describes the
state of the intersection, making it an adjective.
j. Cry
ANSWER: Cry can be either a verb or a noun. “Their cry” is a perfectly
acceptable English sentence. Just the same, one could have “cried”. You cannot assign an object
to the verb ‘cry’ as in “crying it” (context #56), but you can certainly cry. A cry can be described
and heard, so it takes form as a noun. It can also be performed, and thus it is a verb as well. You
cannot, however, describe something as “very cry” and so it cannot be an adjective. Also, it
cannot describe an action, so it cannot be an adverb.

3. Northern Tepehuan
I. It is spoken in Mexico by approx. 6,200 people.
Initial Syll. Redup. Initial ‘a’ Redup. Initial Vowel + ‘x’ Prefixation (no

Singular Plural

Class I:

Plural: N  (Initial Syllable) N

toʃi totoʃi
kʌli kʌkʌli
mara mamara
tova totova
ʃiʌgi ʃiʃiʌgi
sukuli susukuli
dʌgi dʌdʌgi

Class II:

Plural: N  a + N
aduni aaduni
adatomali aadatomali

Class III:

Plural: N  (Initial Vowel)x N

odai oxodai
uyi uxuyi
oyi oxoyi
ayi axayi
Class IV:

Plural: N  N
obai obai
uʃi uʃi
aaʃi aaʃi

III. Semantically, one can note that only animates undergo the process of initial
syllable reduplication but this rule is hardly valuable in that no particular sorts of animates are
confined to this behavior, and not all animates receive this treatment. Nouns that remain the
same in both forms seem to be generally semantically unrelated, as with nouns of class
II. Class III nouns more consistently are inanimates and thus do seem to be somewhat
semantically motivated.
Phonologically, a great deal of possibilities might exist as to the motivation
behind plural formations in the data. All nouns exhibiting CV behavior in syllable initial
undergo syllable initial reduplication. That is, nouns beginning with consonants
followed by a vowel in the first syllable reduplicate that first syllable,
prefixing the word with it. The reason behind nouns staying the same in both singular and
plural forms seems unclear, and not generally phonologically motivated. The only possibility
would be that it is related to their being two syllable words that start with vowels.
Excluding this group, all other words beginning with a vowel seem to fall under
the 3 rd class, which would be a phonological motivation.

4. Kiowa
I. Kiowa is spoken in the West Central region of Oklahoma, U.S.A.;
It’s spoken by approx. 1,100 people, and decreasing.
gyát – you (talk/wake up/are busy)
gyàt – I (write/read/dig/cook)
yá – I (talk/wake up/am busy)
gyá – she (writes/read/digs/cooks)
bát – you (write/read/dig/cook)
èm – you (go/stand up/eat)
à – I(go/stand up/eat)
án – she (talks/wakes up/is busy)
Ø – she (goes/stands up/eats)
Class I:
tay(yá/gyát/án) - wake up
yay(yá/gyát/án) - be busy
to:za:nma(yá/gyát/án) - talk
Class II:
pɔ ttɔ(à/èm/Ø) - eat
phɔ(à/èm/Ø) - stand up
bá:nma(à/èm/Ø) - go
Class III:
tkhɔ:mɔ(gyàt/bát/gyá) - read
piɔ:mɔ(gyàt/bát/gyá) - cook
guttɔ(gyàt/bát/gyá) - write
hi:nmɔ (gyàt/bát/gyá) - dig

III. It’s hard to see any true semantic relevance as far as classification goes.
There may be some degree of assimilating the prefixes in such a way that it is easy to
make the phonetic transition between the prefixes and the stems.