21 Slices
Medium 9780870819018

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.)

See All Chapters
Medium 9780870819018

6. Derivation—Verb Medials and Concrete Finals

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

In this chapter, we discuss both medials and concrete finals. There are close parallels between these two morpheme classes. Many Arapaho concrete finals contain a lexical element and an abstract element that corresponds to the derivational suffixes described in chapter 5. The TA concrete final /xoh/ contains the element /xo/ ‘to convey s.o.’ and the causative /h/. The element /xo/ appears in other concrete finals such as AI /xotii/ ‘to convey s.t.’. Similarly, medials are lexical forms, which are often followed by abstract finals. Thus, complex Arapaho verb stems prototypically show an overall structure of LEXICAL INITIAL + LEXICAL “MIDDLE” + ABSTRACT FINAL.

Note, however, that the lexical element involved in a concrete final normally occurs in strict relationship with a single abstract final element—it does not freely combine with other verb finals. Thus, /xoh/ is effectively a single, fixed unit—a TA concrete final—and /xotii/ is similarly an AI concrete final (both are examples of what Valentine 2001:326 calls “binary” concrete finals). In contrast, medials freely combine with a wide range of other abstract finals, as well as with concrete finals, as for example the medial /et/ ‘ear’:

See All Chapters
Medium 9780870819018

14. The Noun Phrase

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

In the following section, we will examine the larger noun phrase, consisting of multiple words beyond the simple noun word. The additional forms common in noun phrases include independent adjectival modifiers, demonstratives, and pseudo-verbal presentational forms.

Prenoun-noun combinations show many similarities to preverb–verb stem combinations in Arapaho, and similarly, noun initial and final combinations resemble verb initial and final constructions. As seen in chapter 4, many common lexical items consist of these combinations.

However, it is also fairly common for these kinds of modifier + base noun constructions to be used even when they do not form fully lexicalized expressions. This seems to occur with common semantic pairings, and primarily with /ecex/ (‘little’), /eebet/ (‘big’), colors, and a few other prototypical adjectival modifers.

Adjective-type roots can also be expressed independently of the noun word when they are particularly salient. Contrast the following with examples 3–5 above:

See All Chapters
Medium 9780870819018

20. Numbers, Counting, Times, and Dates

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

The grammar of numbers, times, and dates is quite complex in Arapaho because except in the case of simple counting, number roots occur in verbal forms. There are numerous derivational suffixes used with number roots to form verbs indicating quantity, ordinal numbers, clock time, and so forth. Although some are familiar primary derivational forms, others are unique to the number verbs.

The simple count numbers are:

The numbers show clear traces of a quinary counting system, and this is reinforced by the fact that /niit/ is a common root for ‘one’ in the language (/niiteiyookuu/ ‘to stand in line, to stand one-by-one’, nííto’ ‘first’)

The teens series is formed by the addition of the II derivational final /iini/ to the number roots, thus forming verbs—but often without initial change. Formerly, the count form for ‘ten’ was added prior to this, and some people still do this today:

The succeeding decades are formed by adding the II derivational final /yoo/ to the count number roots. Once again, verbs are thus formed—but again without initial change for most speakers. The intervening numbers are formed in the same way as the teens:

See All Chapters
Medium 9780870819018

12. Usage—Imperatives and the Imperative Order

Andrew Cowell University Press of Colorado ePub

Commands and requests are complicated in Arapaho, both morphologically and socially. Additional details on the social issues in particular can be found in Cowell 2007. Morphologically, Arapaho has not only direct and indirect imperative forms, as described in chapter 2, but also two command/request forms, which we will call “future” and “suggestive” imperatives, that use non-affirmative order verb inflections but are restricted to use only with second person addressees and thus function as imperatives.

Arapaho has a number of invariable imperative particles. These include:

Most of these can be—indeed, usually are—used as independent, complete sentences. A few (kookoh, honóoyóó) seem to be used only in conjunction with other imperatives:

These lexical imperative forms seem for the most part to carry special moral injunctions, as in ‘wait (and think about the rules of Arapaho life)!’. There are equivalent, regular verbs for saying ‘wait!’ (/AI cowouuwutii/, /cowouubeihi/, TA /toyoohow/) or ‘watch out!’ (TA /oonoyoohow/, TI /oonoyoohoot/), and these are often heard, but they are value-neutral. In addition, lexical imperatives tend to be used alone as complete clauses, whereas imperative forms of regular verbs often are used in complex clauses involving complements, subordination, and so forth.

See All Chapters

See All Slices