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4. Derivation—Nouns

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

The second-most important word category in Arapaho, after the verb, is the noun. In this chapter, we examine first the internal structure of the noun stem. The stem consists of one or more lexical roots and sometimes various derivational suffixes. In many cases, the noun stem is modified by lexical prenouns, although the analytic distinction between a prenoun and an initial root of a complex noun stem is not always clear. Next we discuss abstract grammatical initials, preverbs, and proclitics that occur with nouns. Finally, we discuss derivation of nouns from verbs.

Note that in this chapter, we have included underlying pitch accents in the analyses as much as possible: a special effort was made to verify all the underlying forms, in order to show the relationship to surface pronunciations.

The noun stem, like the verb stem, is often internally complex. In addition to single-morpheme stems, there are stems that contain both an initial and a final element and also modified stems that have one or more adjective-like “prenouns” affixed to them. Moreover, some of the initial and prenoun elements are themselves derived from independent verb or noun stems. There are also noun stems that contain lexical derivational finals—“dependent nouns”—that cannot occur independently and are not obviously related to another independent noun. Note that from a broad perspective, as argued by Ives Goddard (1990), all of the multi-morpheme nominal forms can simply be considered to be compound noun stems consisting of two elements, an initial and a final. The finals may be either independent or dependent. The initials are likewise often derived from independent forms. Nevertheless, in the following, we examine separately the different subcategories of compound nouns listed above for the sake of greater clarity.

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8. Derivation—Reduplication

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Reduplication is extremely common in Arapaho. It occurs as both an obligatory process and an optional one, depending on the circumstances, and produces a number of related semantic effects on the verb. Although primarily occurring on verb stems and preverbs, it also occurs with adverbial particles (which are largely derived from preverbs) and occasionally with pronouns (which are morphologically verbs).

Reduplication is produced by adding the derivational final /:n/ to the consonant (if present) and first vowel of the initial syllable of a preverb or verb stem, and then adding this element to the base preverb or verb stem. Abstractly, this takes the form:

(C)V1(V2) > (C)V1:n-(C)V1(V2)

Reduplication is applied prior to addition of /h/ in surface pronunciation for vowel-initial forms—in other words, the reduplicated form functions as a verb initial, not a preverb. The /n/ drops before following consonants, as always with this derivational final (see examples 6b, 9, 12, 24, 26, etc., below for examples with vowel-initial bases). Examples include:

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21. Variation in Arapaho

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Extensive study of variation between Northern and Southern Arapaho has never been done, and given the state of Southern Arapaho today, it is largely too late to carry out such an investigation except by using existing published and recorded sources. Salzmann (1956a, 1963) remarks on a few differences, including phonological (Northern [s] is equivalent to Southern [ʃ]), prosodic (northerners are said to speak with a faster tempo), and lexical (he lists variant neologisms). In preparing this grammar, the two authors examined a number of Southern Arapaho texts in manuscript, and no notable differences were found in morphology, and of course Alonzo Moss Sr. has had the opportunity to hear Southern Arapaho on numerous occasions in his younger years. There were a few lexical items that Moss did not recognize in the manuscripts, but it is unclear whether these were specific to the southern dialect or whether they were simply items that have become obsolescent since the texts were recorded in the early 1900s. It would of course be surprising if there were not a few lexical differences, even within traditional vocabulary. It should also be noted that the Southern Arapaho apparently once spoke the Arapahoan language Nawathinehena (nowoo3iineheeno’) and switched to Arapaho proper during the nineteenth century (Goddard 2001:76), but no clear linguistic evidence of this language exists today.

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5. Derivation—Verb Finals

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Arapaho verb stems always consist of at least an initial root and a final element, the latter of which is usually abstract (in a few cases, certain verbs have a null abstract final). It is common for medial elements, and also concrete (lexical) finals, to occur as well, but discussion of these will be delayed until chapter 6. The combination of initial and final elements produces the verb stem. The initial roots contribute much of the lexical meaning to verb stems. Prototypically, they refer to either actions or states (/tew/ ‘to separate from a whole’, /be’/ ‘red’). The finals serve to indicate the stem class of the verb (AI, II, TA, TI). There are several different finals used to form each stem class, however, and the contrasting finals contribute important elements to the meaning of the stem itself, as well as licensing particular semantic categories of NPs that may serve as objects of the verb. The stems are thus best thought of as constructions whose meaning is the product of both lexical and non-lexical elements.

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1. Phonology

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Arapaho has twelve consonants, four vowels (with contrastive length), and three diphthongs (also showing contrastive length). Arapaho also has a complex pitch accent system, with a related system of vowel syncope. The pitch accent system involves underlying accent on morphemes, intermorphemic shift in pitch accent at the word level, and grammatical shifts in pitch accent related to inflectional and derivational forms such as plurals, locatives, iteratives, and participles. Finally, Arapaho has two forms of vowel harmony, with non-parallel effects and distribution.The twelve consonants, with their standard Arapaho orthographic correspondents (which will be used in this book), are:The phoneme /b/ has a voiceless allophone /p/ preconsonantally and finally. The phonemes /c/, /k/, and /t/ are normally unaspirated but are aspirated preconsonantally and finally. Aspiration of syllable-initial consonants occurs prior to syllable-final /h/ when the intervening vowel is short, as in the grammatical prefixes cih- and tih-. In this same environment, /b/ is not only aspirated but also sometimes devoiced virtually to /p/, as in héétbih’ínkúútiinoo ‘I will turn out the lights’. (Salzmann 1956a provides more detailed phonetic analyses of the behavior of the consonant phonemes.)

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