An explanation of Ithkuil Frames

Sep 17th, 2018
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  1. [2018-08-18, Uhailalepš server, #learn room]
  3. [10:41 PM] Ilmen:
  4. Aibal tu ailil êpail îţkuil. — It should be tı (Affective Case), not tu; furthermore you need to make a frame/clause to contain the Instrumental phrase, otherwise the language is the instrument of the desire and not of the speaking
  5. Obal tı áılalov (teı) ôpaıl ⁻Iţkuıl. = I want that [(I am) able to speak using Ithkuil].
  6. You could also use îbal ("aspire to")
  7. What Ithkuil's grammar calls a "frame" is called a "clause" in standard linguistic terminology; it's like a complete sentence but embedded in another one, as in "I know [he did it]" and "the man [I saw yesterday]"
  8. In Ithkuil such clauses ("frames") are made by shifting the position of the stress on the formative
  10. [10:50 PM] aţnou'ad âgwadd:
  11. So a frame/clause is marked by the first word in it changing stress?
  13. [10:50 PM] Ilmen:
  14. Yes
  16. [10:50 PM] aţnou'ad âgwadd:
  17. Where does a clause end? Or is that inferred through context?
  19. [10:51 PM] Ilmen:
  20. A clause can then be terminated by the special suffix -öt’ (or its variants)
  21. The official grammar seems to say that the -öt’ suffix is optional if the context is clear enough. As for myself, coming from Lojban, I can't stand the idea of leaving it out if other stuff is coming after (it would then be ambiguous whether the following stuff is contained in the clause/frame or not)
  22. :stuck_out_tongue:
  23. For example if you say "I learned [he'll come] tomorrow"; the "]" parallels the -öt’ suffix in showing where the clause ends
  24. so here "tomorrow" is when you learned that thing
  25. if you remove that "]", the "tomorrow" applies to "he'll come"
  26. well "I learned he came yesterday" better demonstrate the possible ambiguity
  27. In English the sentence is ambiguous
  28. In Lojban, and hopefully in Ithkuil as well, it cannot be ambiguous
  30. [10:59 PM] aţnou'ad âgwadd:
  31. Ah, I see, frames aren't as complicated as I thought, haha
  32. Thanks for the explanation :smile:
  34. [11:06 PM] Ilmen:
  35. There's a small further complication with participant clauses (headless relative clauses), which, instead of referring to the event as a whole, refer to a participant in that event, marked with the special suffix -et’
  36. So in order to say "the man I saw yesterday" in Ithkuil, you will say "[saw-FRAMED I man-et’ yesterday]"
  37. the -et’ indicates the referent of the whole frame will be the man
  38. I'd translate that in real Ithkuil, but I've to first figure out how to say "yesterday" :3
  39. żalûč’ıenš is what I need I think
  40. Iuxhamt tı âkàla qu ża’al(öt’)ûč’ıenš = learn I [come he yesterday]
  41. Iuxhamt tı âkàla t’öquwa ża’alûč’ıenš = learn I [come he] yesterday
  42. In the second one, "yesterday" applies to "learn", because it's out of the frame: it has been closed by the -öt’ (here t’ö-) prepended (or appended) to the last element of the frame, here the pronoun "qu"
  43. Now, let's translate "the man I saw yesterday has come".
  44. Âkal óxula tı eqalet’ ża’al(öt’)ûč’ıenš.
  45. come-OBL FRAMED[see-IND I-AFF man-et’-OBL yesterday-SML]
  46. (Here obviously -öt’ is optional, because nothing follows, so there can't be any ambiguity)
  47. So, the main verb is "come", its argument, the one who comes, has the INDucive Case, it's the man who participates in the seeing event, so the frame's main verb is "see", it bears the Framed stress position and bears the INDucive case which is actually the case of the referent of the whole clause/frame, referent which is marked with the -et’ suffix, here the man.
  48. Now let's see what happens if you remove the -et’ suffix
  49. Without it, the clause is no longer a relative/participant clause, but a normal event clause, referring to the whole event instead of one if its participants
  50. So removing the -et’ yields the following reading: "[my seeing a man yesterday] came."
  51. Which is metaphorical at best
  52. (Especially with the Inducive case on a non-volitional event)
  53. ———
  54. Was that explanation clear and helpful?
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