Today I got the dictionary and have decided to look through the grammar section. It is fairly big, so I just thought to start with "ablauts" in the grammar section. If none of this makes zero sense, please say so. I'll try to get down what I'm learning as clearly as possible. The Ablauts!
I already knew a bit about ablauts, so today's learning wasn't 100% new for me, like there are three forms; e-ablaut, a-ablaut (A-words), and iŋ-ablaut. Also, each word that takes an ablaut has three forms. For example; slolyá, slolyíŋ, and slolyé. There are also words that are ablauted for some speakers while for another it isn't. For example "ȟóta" and "ȟótA" (the word is "gray" if you are wondering).
Some new information that I'm learning is that the final vowel of an A-word always depends on what follows. There are individual rules. The best way to describe it, I think, is how it is described in the book, so here are the rules:
A-words occur with final e
in two cases: (1)
when they are the last word in a sentence, (2)
when they are followed by a word that triggers e-ablaut.1)
E-ablaut as the last word in a sentence, consider the examples:
Héčhiya yé. > He went there
. (e-ablaut of the verb "yÁ")
Yúte. > She ate it.
Thípi kiŋ pahá akáŋl ȟe > The house stands on a hill. (from "HÁŋ)2)
E-ablaut triggered by the following word.
Words that trigger e-ablaut in the preceding A-word can be divided into three groups: a)
various enclitics, such as: ȟča,ȟčiŋ, iŋčhéye, kačháš, kiló, kštó, któk, lakȟa, -ls, láȟ, láȟčaka, ló, séčA, sékse, sʼeléčheča, so, sʼa, sʼe, šaŋ, šni, and uŋštó. b)
some conjunctions and articles, such as: kiŋ, kiŋháŋ, kʼéyaš, kʼuŋ, eháŋtaŋš. c)
Some auxiliary verbs: kapíŋ, kiníŋ (kiníl), lakA, kúŋzA, phiča, ší, wačhíŋ, -yA, and -khiyA.
Below are examples of e-ablaut triggered by words following an A-word:
Škáte šni > he did not play. [Enclitic]
Škáte sʼa > He plays often. [Enclitic]
Škáte ló > He plays. [Enclitic (marking assertion)]
Okȟáte eháŋtaŋš... > If it is hot... [Conjunction]
Sápe kiŋ > The black one. [Definite article]
Glé kúŋze > He pretended to go home. [auxiliary verb]
The e-ablaut is also triggered by verbs of coming and going but with specific rules *6
. Unfortunately, I am not at the page it is described on, so that will have to wait.
The iŋ-ablaut (pronounced as i by some speakers) occurs only before the following words:
(1) ktA (kte) will
(2) na, naháŋ, and
(3) naíŋš or, and or
(4) yetȟó, familiar command enclitic
(4*2) yé, polite request or entreaty enclitic
Waŋyáŋkiŋ yetȟó > Take a look at this, real quick.
Yiŋ kte > She will go.
Skúyiŋ na wašté > It was sweet and good.
Waŋyáŋkiŋ yé > Please, look at it.
A number of A-words have somewhat irregular iŋ-ablaut form. Most of these words are derivatives of "yÁ" > to go there
. An example is "Mníŋ kte" > I will go there
(from "yÁ") and Gníŋ kte > he will go back
(from glÁ). I will update about ablaut on reduplication later on, when I get to the section in the book.
Sometimes some words lose their terminal vowel, and can happen in the following cases: 1)
A word is closely associated with a verb that follows, as in iwóglag maši > he told me to speak about it
(from "iwóglakA" > to speak about something
and "ši" > tell somebody to do something
) or in "waŋyaŋg wahí" > I came to see him
A word is closely associated with the noun that follows, as in "Lakȟól wičhóȟʼaŋ" > Lakota traditions
A word becomes a non-final member of a compound, as in "maswógnaka" > a tin can
(from "máza" > metal
and "wógnaka" > container
), or "makhíyapȟa" > to hit the ground (from "makȟá" > ground
and "iyápȟa" > to hit something accidentally
) or "itípakhiŋte" > towel
(from "ité" > face
and "ipákhiŋta" > to wipe with
4) in reduplication: as in "sápa" > to be black
→ "sapsápa" > the things are black
5) almost any terminal vowel can be dropped in fast speech. For example, "hená iyúha" > all of those
becomes "heníyuha" and "Táku tókȟanuŋ he?" > What are you doing?
becomes "Tág tókȟanuŋ he?".
Also, some final syllables of a word undergoes an additional change upon the terminal vowel loss. When a word ends with one of the syllables listed just below, the preceding consonant is sometimes changed from voiced to voiceless (z, ž, ǧ
becomes s, š
, and ȟ
) and sometimes from voiceless to voiced (p, k
, and g
). The sound "t" becomes "l". If the vowel of the final syllable is nasalized, the newly voiced stops are often nasalized as well, that is, "p" becomes "m", "t" becomes "n" and sometimes "k" becomes a nasal with the tongue position of "k/g", phonetically written as [ŋ]. Whether the voicing shift place depends on many factors, including speech style. Moreover, "č" changes into either "l
" or "g/k
|-ča||→||-l||→||šíčA||→||šíl áya ||→||to become bad|
|-ča||→||-g/k-||→||šíčA||→||šíkšíča ||→||the things are bad|
|-ǧa||→||-h||→||KágA||→||kaȟší ||→||she told him to make it|
|-ka, (-ku)||→||-g/-k||→||wašʼákA||→||wašʼág-ičʼiya ||→||to make oneself strong|
|-pa||→||-b/-p||→||KsápA||→||Ksab-íčʼila ||→||to consider oneself smart|
|-ta, -te||→||-l/-t||→||Pȟéta||→||pȟel-ókšaŋ yaŋkápi ||→||they sat around the fire|
|-za||→||-s/-z||→||YúzA||→||Yús áya ||→||to lead sb holding him/her|
|-ža, -že||→||-š/-ž||→||owíŋža||→||owíŋš phikíya ||→||to make one's own bed|
A compound that involves lost terminal vowels before word initial vowel can have two or three alternative pronunciations and spellings. There is "slower speech", "transitional form", and "faster speech".
Some examples for slower speech is "masʼóphiye" from the transitional form "maz'óphiye", whilst the faster speech is "mazóphiye". Sometimes the faster speech forms are fully lexicalized, yet in other cases both forms are considered equally correct, like "Lakȟólʼiyapi" and "Lakȟótiyapi".*Notes:
*6 Dakota dialects have different rules for terminal vowel alternation. For instance, the Santee-Sisseton dialect completely lacks iŋ-ablaut. There are also differences as to which words undergo ablaut, as in "yuhá" which is an A-word in all Dakota dialects, but not in Lakota. Dakota variants of entry head words are not marked for ablaut as this was beyond the scope of the present research.*
Well, that's all! I'm gonna go over this a couple more times, and then make some cards for some words. Tomorrow I'll be learning a bit more of "k" and "č", and then move onto the next piece. Word of the Day:
See ya next time!