Friday, 25 July 2014

Moten Words for the Day

Yeah, words, plural. These two verbs are best explained together, so you get two for the price of one today ;).

iteo|l /ite̞o̞ʎ/, verb: “to please, to like, to be fond of, to love”

igizej /iɡize̞j/, verb: “to please, to like, to enjoy, to love”

Both verbs will usually be translated as “to like” in English, but they have both their quirks:

  • Both verbs have the opposite orientation from English “to like”, i.e. the subject of those verbs is the thing liked, while the object is the person doing the liking. It may sound weird, but that’s basically how the Spanish equivalent of “to like”: “gustar”, works (the French equivalent “plaire” works the same way).
  • Depending on the nature of the subject (i.e. the thing liked), those two verbs represent different nuances of “liking”. And interestingly, it looks like their semantics criss-cross each other:
  • Used with an animate subject (usually human, but animals are possible too), iteo|l refers to liking or loving as a friend, to enjoy someone’s company. But when used with inanimates (objects, concepts, events, activities, food, etc.), it takes on a stronger sense, one closer to “to be fond of”.
  • Igizej works exactly the opposite way: when used with an inanimate subject, it indicates simple enjoyment, while when used with an animate subject, it denotes a strong, usually sexual, attraction to that person.

I know it’s a bit weird, but Moten is weird that way. Subject animacy is actually quite an important concept in the language, influencing the meaning of verbs or even whether certain verbs can be used at all with a specific subject, while being totally unmarked in any way.


from Tumblr

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