Ancient Meitei/Basic Nouns

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Gender[edit | edit source]

Ancient Meitei (Old Manipuri) has nouns of only two genders. An Ancient Meitei noun is either masculine or feminine. The names of menfolk and male deities are always masculine. The names of womenfolk and female deities are always feminine. A group consisting of people where both men and women are assembled together, is grammatically masculine (showing the signs of male dominated ancient society).

Furthermore, the grammatical genders are not always related to the actual real life genders. Non living objects are usually masculine but they can also be feminine. One can sometimes, but not always, infer the gender of a noun from its ending. If the noun ends with "ꯄ" ("-pa") or "ꯄꯥ" ("-pā" / "-paa"), then it is usually masculine. If the noun ends with "ꯄꯤ" ("-pi" / "-pee"), then it is usually feminine. For example, the term for man is "ꯅꯨꯄꯥ" ("nupa") and the term for woman is "ꯅꯨꯄꯤ" ("nupi").

Number[edit | edit source]

In Ancient Meitei, most nouns can be either singular or plural. Ancient Meitei also had a dual number exclusively for pronouns. It is not necessary to learn the dual number right now, as the general plural number is enough.