Sapporo TV Ainu Radio Lessons
Broadcasted on June 4 2006
(There) is a stone.
(There) are stones.
Words in the Sentences
アン an To be; to exist (singular)
オカイ okay To be; to exist (plural)
スマ suma Stone
Ainu is grammatically similar with Japanese in many aspects, but there are notable differences. Using different verbs to mark the plural is one of it.
A Japanese sentence "魚がいる" (sakana ga iru, "there is/are fish") may mean there is one fish or more. Ainu makes this differenciation from using plurals not on the noun, but the verb. If there were only one fish, the Ainu verb would be an
, if two or more, the verb would be okay
There are a number of such verbs, and here is a short list of them.
オマン oman パイエ paye To go
エク ek アルキ arki To come
アフン ahun アフプ ahup To enter
ソイネ soyne ソイエンパ soyenpa To go outside
サン san サプ sap To appear (in front of something or on the beach), To move down (on the river, etc)
ホプニ hopuni ホプンパ hopunpa To wake up, to rise, to fly (a bird or such)
ホシピ hosipi ホシッパ hosippa To return, to come back
But not all Ainu verbs have distinct plural forms, such as シノッ sinot
"to play, have fun" applies to both singular and plural subjects. And while Japanese has two different verbs "to exist, to be there", such as いる iru
for animate subjects and ある aru
for the inanimate subjects, Ainu makes no distinction between them.
from the last lesson can be used as kane an
and kane okay
to make the continuous sense of these verbs.
Another notable feature is that the subject can be omitted in both Ainu and Japanese. The original lesson does not mention this, but it should be noted for non-Japanese speakers. There has to be some subject in English such as "it" or "there", but this is not necessary in Ainu.
As it has been emphasised in the previous lessons, Ainu accent falls on the second syllable. It is suma
, not su
1. There is a deer.
2. There are a lot of people.
アン an To be; to exist. (singular)
ユク yuk Deer
アイヌ aynu Person
オカイ okay To be; to exist. (plural)
ポロンノ poronno Many, a lot
Answers from Lesson 9
[spoiler]１．シタ マ カネ アン sita ma kane an
２．ウナルペ シト カネ アン unarpe sito kane an[/spoiler]