Mirad Grammar/Syntax

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Syntax[edit]

Overall, Mirad is an SVO language, that is, the normal word order is Subject + Verb Predicate + Object, much like English and all of the Romance languages.
The subject and object consist of nouns or pronouns with or without modifiers. The verb predicate consists of a conjugated verb form with or without adverbial modifiers, which may precede or follow based on considerations below.

The Subject[edit]

A subject is the entity that is responsible for the action or state in the verb predicate. That entity consists of modified or unmodified zero or more nouns or pronouns. The subject can be a noun phrase, which can include modifiers like deictic adjectives, quantifiers, or descriptive adjectives preceding a noun or nouns heading up a prepositional phrase.
Some rules:
  • Modifiers of a noun or noun phrase precede that noun or noun phrase:
  • Deictic adjectives and possessive pronouns come in first place among the modifiers:
Hia via toyb....this beautiful woman
Ha aa desiun....the first letter
Yata ifwa twed hu toja zojub....our beloved father who died last year
  • Quantifiers come after any deictic adjectives or possessive pronouns, but before the noun they modify:
Hua ewa pati....those two birds
Hya ha gla jubi....all the many days
Iyta gla yafoni....her many abilities
  • Prepositions precede their complement:
Za ata tam....in front of my house
  • Prepositional phrase modifiers follow the noun they modify:
ha domep zo yata tam....the street behind our house
saxam yub bi et....a factory near you
  • Relative clause modifiers follow the noun or noun phrase they modify:
Has hu at voy teste....the thing (that) I don't understand
Ha glo doymi hu zoybese....the few towns that remain
  • A subject noun can consist of a clause, infinitive, or gerund:
Van it upo se vala.....That he will come is certain.
Ser yiva se ser iva.....To be free is to be happy.
Hia uvteuden yefe poser.....This weeping must stop.
  • The subject can consist of pronoun or linked pronouns:
Et ay at....You and I
Away et....Only you
Glati....many people
  • Adverbs often precede what they modify, but this rule is somewhat loose.
Gey et....even you
Deuzen fiay....singing well
Voy aken....not winning

The Verb Predicate[edit]

The verb predicate consists of a subject (implied or explicit) followed by a conjugated verb form or a series of conjugated verb forms, modified or not by adverbs.
Rules:
  • The adverbs vay (indeed), vey (possibly, may), and voy (not) usually precede the verb:
Aata tam voy osexwa.....Our house was not destroyed.
Vey mamilo.....It may rain.
Et se vay fia deuzut.....You are really a fine singer.
  • Other adverbs and come either before or after the verb, depending on emphasis.
Dalu yug!....Speak softly!
Et dale gra ig.....You speak too fast.
It glaxag ake.....He often wins.
Glaxag it ake.....Often he wins.
It ake glaxag.....He wins often.
  • Yes-no questions are formed by preceding the verb predicate with Duven...?, which means Say whether..., Is it true that..., without any word order change in the verb predicate:
Duven it gaj tejeye?....Is (it true that) he still living?
Duven et te ha dud?....Do you know the answer?
  • Questions words requiring fill-in-the-blank words like When?, Where?, Who?, etc. start out with the question word, followed by the verb predicate in unchanged word order:
Hoj et taja?....When were you born?
Hoyen et se?....How are you?
Hos se eta dyun?....What is your name?
Hom et tambee?....Where do you live?
Hot kobia ata dyes?....Who stole my book?
  • Question words that are adverbs, as well as pronominal question words that are the subject of a stative predicate, can appear at the end of a sentence:
Et taja hoj?....When were you born?
Et se hoyen?....How are you?
Eta dyun se hos?....What is your name?
Et tambee hom?....Where do you live?
  • Verbs can be serial:
It deuze, daze, ay duzare.....He sings, dances, and plays an instrument.
Eku ey pilu!....Play or get lost!
Iyt eka oy oka.....She played but lost.
  • Verb predicates can have an implied, unexpressed subject:
Mamilo.....(It) is going to rain.
Upu!....(You) come!
Se ama him.....(It) is hot here.
Voy se yeva jayevder hes.....(It) is not fair to prejudge someone.
Von jwosu.....Don't (you) be late.

The Object[edit]

The object in a sentence can be noun or noun phrase, a pronoun, an infinitive, a gerund, a prepositional phrase, or a clause. Sometimes, an object consists of both a direct object and an indirect object.
Rules:
  • Transitive verbs can take a direct object:
Ha yepet teupixa at.....The dog bit me.
Yovobu hati hu fyuxe et.....Forgive those who hurt you.
Biu hia yibdren.....Take this telegram.
  • Some transitive verbs can take both a direct and indirect object. Many common transitive verbs imply a directional proposition, and so that preposition need not be expressed in the indirect object, but in such cases the indirect object comes before the direct object:
Buu at hua nyem.....Give (to) me that box.
Du it doler.....Tell (to) him to be quiet.
Xu at ha avun bi pier.....Do (to) me the favor of leaving.
  • Stative verbs like ser (to be) can be followed by a complement consisting of a noun, pronoun, adjective, infinitive, gerund, or clause object.
His se fis.....This is a good thing.
His se gla fia.....This is very good.
Ha akut sa et.....The winner was you.
Se fia aker.....It is good to win.
Se uva van iyt pia.....It is sad that she left.
  • Intransitive verbs cannot take an object:
At yexa hum je ewa jabi.....I worked there for two years.
Yat tambee yukomay.....We live comfortably.
Hia voli agse ug.....These plants grow slowly.
  • Verbs of communication can take an entire clause as a direct object:
At ta van et upo.....I knew (that) you would come.
Duven et te ha tam hu se itas?....Do you know which house is his?
At da it ham hu et tambee.....I told him where you live.
Tuu at haj hu et puo.....Inform me when you arrive.
It voy da ven et upo.....He did not say whether he would be coming.
At javefyunda von it jwosu.....I warned him not to be late (= lest he be late).

Prepositional Constructions[edit]

Use of Simple Prepositions[edit]

Mirad has the following simple prepositions, which are monosyllabic, and stand directly before their substantive complement:
Simple Prepositions
ab....on eb....between ob....off ib....away from ub....toward
ayb....above eyb....among oyb....under
be....at bi....of, from bu....to
bay....with bey....by, via boy....without
za....in front of ze....in the middle of zo....behind zi....at the right of zu....at the left of
zya....throughout zye....through
ja....before je....during jo....after ji....since ju....until
gab....plus gob....minus
gal....times gel....like gol....divided by
ogel....unlike
gar....to the power of gor....to the root (negative power) of
ay....and ey....or oy....but
av....for ov....against
vyel....about, than, as
Examples:
  • boy uvteuden....without moaning
  • av hyea tesdud....for whatever reason
  • ewa gal ewa....two times two
  • poper zya Europam.....to travel all over Europe.
  • iwa gar se yuwa....three squared is nine
  • yekea dyes vyel Mirad....looking for a book about Mirad
The preposition be (at) is used as an all-purpose locator:
  • be ha mimkum....at the beach
  • be ha domep....in the street
  • be ha meb....on the mountain
  • be Fransam....in France
The preposition be is used in many idioms, where ha (the) is omitted:
  • be dropek bay....at war with
  • be obem bi....at the bottom of ( = at bottom of)
  • be nem bi....in place of, instead of, in lieur of
  • be tam bi....chez, at the house of
  • be zam bi....in front of
  • be sinibar....on television
  • be dud bu....in response to
  • be tam....at home
The preposition bi can be used for from, indicating origin, or of, denoting possession or origin.
Examples:
  • Ata twed zoypa bi yex gwa.....My father returned from work early.
  • Ha yabtom bi London se humep.....The tower of London is that way.
  • His se ha dyes bi hua twob.....This is that man's book ( = the book of that man).
The proposition to (to) can often be omitted after a verb where the to-ness is embedded in the verb. This omission is possible only when the verb is followed immediately by the object of destination:
Examples:
  • Buu at hua drar....Give me that pencil (or: Buu hua drar bu at.)
  • Pu tam!....Go home! (but: Pu izay bu tam!)
  • At peye zedom.....I am going downtown. (or: At peye bu zedom.)
The preposition vyel is used for two purposes:
  • about, concerning, relative to as in Hia dyes vyel moltun se yika.....This book about physics is difficult.
  • than, as after comparative adjectives as in ga aga vyel huas....bigger than that one.
Do not confuse bay and boy, both of which can sometimes be translated by with in English.
  • bay denotes accompaniment as in Duven et po bay at?....Will you be going with me?
  • bey denotes means as in It pyexa at bey muf.....He hit me with ( = by means of) a stick.

Use of Complex Prepositions[edit]

The above simple prepositions can be used with adverbs to form more complex prepositions. The following chart shows adverbs which ban be joined with simple prepositions to create complex prepositions:
Complex Prepositions
ADVERB + bi + be + bu OTHER
yab....up yab bi ha sem....up from the table yab be ha abmas....up on the roof yab bu ha abtem....up to the attic yab ayb ha mays....up over the fence
yob....down yob bi ha abmas....down from the roof yob be ha mimkum....down at the beach yob bu he obtim....down to the cellar yob oyb ha sem....down under the table
yeb....in yeb bi ha mamil....in from the rain yeb be ha tam....inside the house yeb bu ata tim....into my room yeb av vafil....in for wine
oyeb....out oyeb bi ha miltim....out of/from the bathroom oyeb be ha abzamas...out on the balcony oyeb bu ha mesabab....out to the porch oyeb av etyal....out for lunch
yub....near yub bi yata tam....near(by) our house yub be eta kun....near at your side yub bu ha ujnod....near to the endpoint.. yub bay tod....near with family
yib....far yib bi him....far from here yib be mom....far out in space yib bu ha byum....far to the goal yib yob bu ha obem....far down to the bottom
yuz....around yuz bi ha mir....around the world yuz be ha zom....around in the back yuz bu ha zam....around to the front yuz boy tof....around without clothes
yiz....beyond yiz bi Meir....beyond earth yiz bu hyua kum....beyond to the other side
yez....along yez bi ha mas....flush with the wall yez kum bi at....alongside me
yan....together yan bay yat....together with us
yon....apart yon bi hus....apart from that
zay....forward, ahead zay bi at be ha pesnad....ahead of me in line zay bu eta byun....ahead to your goal
zoy....back, backward zoy bi yex....back from work zoy be tam....back at home zoy bu tistam....back to school zoy av gas....back for more
zey....across zey bi ha aybmep....across the bridge zey be ha ogela kum....across on the other side zey bu ha ogela kum....across to the other side zey ov yat....opposite us
iz....directly, straight iz bi yex....straight from work iz be ha zenod....right at the midpoint iz bu sum....right to bed iz yub bi him....right near here

Using Prepositions as Clausal Conjunctions[edit]

Some simple and complex prepositions can introduce a dependent clause, but must be followed by the positive particle van. This rule does not apply to ay (and), ey (or) and oy (but), because they are already properly conjunctions. This chart shows some examples:
Prepositions as Clausal Conjunctions
PREPOSITION CLAUSAL CONJUNCTION EXAMPLE
ja....before ja van It tojo ja van et puo.....He will die before you arrive.
je....during je van....while Je van et tuxeya, at tujeya.....While you were studying, I was sleeping.
jo....after jo van Yit xo ifonpop ja van yit tadso.....They will go on a honeymoon after they get married.
av....for av van....so that
av von....lest...not, so that...not
Egxu av van et su jwabwa.....Rehearse so that you will be prepared.
Yexu jestay av von et ujoku.....Study hard so you won't fail.
ov....against (gey) ov van....(even) though, despite the fact that It igpa gey ov van it ta van it so gwaa.....He (or she) ran even though he knew (that) he would be late.
oy....but oy (no van)...but At fa per oy yofa.....I wanted to go but couldn't.
Note that av van and av von are followed by a clause where the predicate verb is in the hypothetical mood (-u), reminiscent of the subjunctive in the Romance languages.

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