Partitives in Lilitika 2014-11-19 15:26:28
Head Curator of Lilitic Antiquities

Partitives in Lilitika

There are three categories of partitives in Lilitika:

(a) constructions where a set, general term exists; these are usually vague cases such as "some of the people" or "half of the night"
(b) constructions where a reference must be made to a specific quantity or fraction, e.g. "three of the walnuts" or "ten percent of the battery"
(c) constructions where a reference must be made to a subset which is distinguished by some attribute, e.g. "the wisest of the philosophers" or "the oldest (parts) of the tree"

Simple partitives

The first type is relatively boring: the dictionary simply contains a list of determiners (which, like many determiners in Lilitika, look like adjectives) that can be dropped in. For example: pensí means "partial." So, to say "some of us," all one need write is:

pensípartial sai1-PL.F.Ø

However, there is an exception: in Classical Lilitika, when it becomes commonplace to omit the subject pronoun (in favour of a more inflected verb), this retains an adjective form, not an adverb form as with many other words, e.g.

pensípartial égereiago-1.PL.PST
Some of us went.

This gets weird when using Ketalán's nominal-mimicking postfix adjectives:

égessingo-1.PL.PST pensapartial-F.Ø
Some of us went.

(which resembles a singular noun in the nominative case.)

Exact quantitative partitives

The second type is a little more erratic. Like many IE languages, Classical Lilitika falls back on a genitive in this case, but using the -úu numeral/counting noun suffix always spelled out in full:

si1.SG.GENkarsaifriend-F.PL.Ø lénúantwo-NUM-F.PL.GEN
Two of my friends.

However, Archaic Lilitika does something slightly scarier: it requires some kind of determiner (the, my, these, some, etc.) and places the count before that:

lénítwo-ADJ saní1-F.SG.GEN karsaifriend-F.PL.NOM
Two of my friends.

Qualitative partitives

These never changed from the archaic pattern of using word order:

zithuripurple-having si1.SG.GEN khríméahair-F.SG.Ø
My purple hair.
Thet comment   8453.624 tgc / 2014.883 ce