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I've been working for the better part of today and last night on wrapping my head around conditionals and the subjunctive tense for Helfametl.

I'm wondering how each of you address the subjunctive and conditionals in your language-- Do you have a separate tense for each? Do you use aspect or mood? Syntax? How do you differentiate between factual and hypothetical situations?

I think I've finally settled on two subjunctive tenses and two conditional tenses, that have 8 different possible combinations - each with its own nuance; plus a conditional particle or two. These will cover "I hope --", "I wish --", "I might --", "I could --", "If I were to -- ", "If I --", "I would --" and a couple other nuances.

I'm still not sure how to cover "I ought to --" or "I should --".

Any suggestions?
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:iconmbrsart:
mbrsart Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I haven't really addressed whether Hra'anh has a subjunctive or not, but for should, would, could, etc., I've decided on suffixes. The only one I currently have is -lak, which translates to "should". But I'm going to work on the other conditionals over the weekend. I'm going to be listening with iteration to the Conlangery podcast episodes on Tense, Aspect and Mood.
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:icondassovietcanuck:
DasSovietCanuck Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2012  Student Writer
Sythen has a number of moods which one can add onto a verb to alter the meaning of the phrase slightly. For example "Sog jikiirae jae" would translate to "I'm fine," but adding the prefix aana to the verb (making the phrase sog aanajikiirae jae) would translate out to "I wish I was okay."

Very simple, like much of sythen, due to the fact that much of the complexities were removed when the language was standardize from the various trade and pidgin tongues of the Great Circle.

Therefor the standard means of forming a sythen verb is (optional mood)-standard verb tense-verb route-verb end (that differs if the verbs are -eq, -iq, or irregular like kiir up there)-(optional adverbs(s))

So to finally get around to answering your question... sythen has three moods that indicate the speaker's interpretation of how likely something happening is - zaa (unlikely to happen), tenaa (could happen, 50/50), and kaa (likely to happen).

For conditional phrases, these are used by adding in -ni- within the verb's mood prefix (zaani, tenaani, kaani) - so you have something like:
"Babaan calokiirono reth kaanijinularino kwuverat't"
Sick will-be-(2ps) you likely-if-eat-(2ps) leaf-those'plural
You'll likely become sick if you eat those leaves
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:icontlhakujunkan:
tlhakujunkan Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Most of my languages show moods and aspects through affixation. For example, ra cel indicates hypothetical situations with a positive and negative prefix like this:

chẁll-ia [ʃʊɫja] – “what if it is?/In case it is...”
chgh-ia [ʃxja] – “what if it isn’t?/In case it isn't...”

The subjunctive is a mutation of this prefix and can be used to give advice, like in this example:

allia l thli [aɫjalʲɛθli] – “if I were you” (where /all(a)-/ is the positive subjunctive prefix and /ẅ/ as the negative).

In this language /nil-/ is the simplest way to express "ought/should," though there is another more proper way to do it by using "need" (without any emphatic affixes) and the verb in the passive. This literally comes out to "need to be X."

tllchchdh thli
need-go-PASS you (you need to be gone) "You should go."

Ra cel also differentiates between factual and non-factual information, but only in gossip. There are words which start a phrase that indicate whether the phrase is a direct quote, something overheard, and outright rumor.


My other languages tend to use some level of periphrasis to indicate all of the above.
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Mine is similar in that the distinction between the alternate (possible) and hypothetical (impossible) situations is whether or not the prefix is negated or not.

Side note: I love the way "allia l thli" sounds :) very pretty~

I think this weekend I'm going to tackle all of the new tenses I've come up with and also make all my other tense conjugations clean and pretty XD
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:icontlhakujunkan:
tlhakujunkan Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you, and good luck with your fixing up! I don't know about you but sometimes messing with grammar too long makes my head kooky.
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
haha, I feel the same way XD Thanks!
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:iconjailatte:
JaiLatte Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I do believe you mean the subjuntive mood and the conditional mood. And its funny because I've actually just added this to my new conlang last night!
I use 5 moods which I will try to explain:

Subjuctive - When it is unclear the action has taken place or is gathered
from indirect sources.
Conditional - When reffering to a hypothetical action that has not taken place yet.
Imperative - When expressing a commanding action.
Hortative - When encouraging another party to do the action or participate in the action.
Debative - When suggesting that someone should do an action.

That is how would explain it. Debative can be use for "I should.."

Yddenĕss mady arymnĕssanya.
Food-dat mood.indicator-debative buy-PERF.
(You) should buy food.
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes, I mean mood XD I think was thinking more in terms of French, which has the Subjunctive as a tense (French class was the first time I heard of the subjunctive in high school, so it fixed in my mind as a tense, lol). I'm still not sure whether the way I have it constructed would be considered a mood or a tense, etc.

My imperative is simply a particle added to the end of the sentence and doesn't interact with the actual verb at all.

I have two different conditionals that are used in conditional sentence structures (if/when statements)- alternative (when it is a possible action) and hypothetical (when it is an impossible action). I'm thinking I might just use an idiomatic phrase for "ought to".

I like that you distinguish between encouraging that someone do something and suggesting they do something!
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:iconjailatte:
JaiLatte Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ahhh, I never got that far in French in school.

Ahhhh. That's interesting! I take it that its not a verb final language then?

Ahhh, that's a cool idea! Well you do what you can. With my new language I've noticed any additions will have to fall in rules that I set up early on. So I got those moods in there fast before it was too late. XDDD

Thank you! It's quite handy. :)
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
It's actually an SOV language, for the most part. Some things can be tacked onto the end (adverbs or a few particles). : )
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:iconjailatte:
JaiLatte Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ahhhh, I see I see! Very neat!
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:iconemperorzelos:
EmperorZelos Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012
:P i have a special system where the verb is turned into an adjective that means "must be object/subject of verb" or "should" etc depending, and then it just uses the predicate system ontop of that
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
That's an interesting idea, changing the part of speech! :)
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:iconemperorzelos:
EmperorZelos Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2012
myep, it was inspired by latins Gerundive =)
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:iconkeyanadrake:
keyanadrake Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Professional Writer
Um, you'll have to explain in simpler terms what you mean, because I suspect I don't quite understand what you're saying.

But, there are few tenses in Ranqa. In general, when speaking in an informal context with people of the same social and/or spiritual ranking, there is a "now and near future" tense and a personal past tense. There are other tenses but they pertain exclusively to being used in holy books, history books or in formal situations where you speak as if you're talking about all the people and not yourself (a broader scale than personal stuff). In formal situations, you have an "all time" which is also used as a "no time" tense. There is an historical past tense, but that only applies to entire large groups of people not individuals. There's also an uncertain tense, which is for stories or pertaining to things that are massive that may or may not have happened. Like... you'd use this tense when writing or speaking formally about fables or the creation stories, e.g. Hansel and Grettle may or may not have actually happened but we pretend it may have happened in the past to tell the story.
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Sorry XD

So this [link] is what I meant by conditionals, and this [link] is what I meant by subjunctive.

I like that you have tenses used only in certain contexts, it reminds me of the pass simple in French - used only in books. Is there a past tense used for personal history? Or is the history of the crowd more socially important in your conculture?
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:iconkeyanadrake:
keyanadrake Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Professional Writer
For personal informal speak there are only two specific tenses, the "now and sometime in the future", and a personal past tense. If you're talking about something that happened before you were born and it's not appropriate to use formal tags, you'll talk about someone else's personal past as a reference. The language is more focused on the present and the future. Formality, ritual or myth focus on the past, individual thought focusses on the future or the present. Kind of like, we don't talk about what happens in the bathroom to other people because it's wtmi and rude, they don't talk so much about their individual past informally. It's just bad form.

Conditionals very certainly exist in Ranqa. There's a suffix-like thing you add to the middle of words and contexts (-r- [it's an r-tap sound]) that turn a sentence into a verb sentence from one state to the other, like, ka [ka:] and ko [kQ] which is "beginning" and "end". You add the -r- to make it Karko, which means "from beginning to end" it becomes a process/movement. If you match these types of movement sentences, you can make a sort of formula, like... "if you do that, you'll die",
Rena-a-ma ana maan-a-karko ara" which translates basically as, "continuing as you are, will end your life". It doesn't translate directly as an if/then statement into English, but it's got the same vibe behind it.

Subjunctives... from what I can understand of the wiki... not so much. My verbs and tenses are separate. Verbs are verbs, the tenses are altered using tags at the beginning, middle or end of a sentence or word (depending on context and subject), or a vowel-change in the main subject noun. Like... "Aka" is usually a present tense tag at the beginning of a spoken informal sentence. "Ana", is often in the middle and denotes a nowness as well. Past tense is usually added at the end as a tag, like "ako" or "ko" (though, ko can also be at the beginning if it's a thing that always will be, past present and future). Urg, gods that sounds overly complicated. XD
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh, I really like how you applied a sort of positional frame in your sentences for the tenses!! Very cool! I also like how you approached the conditional idea as a formula of sorts - it really does get to the heart of the "vibe" of a conditional sentence :)
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:icontolomer:
Tolomer Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Tereseket has 4 tenses:
-Future
-Past
-Present
-Hypothetical (The verb changes if the action isn't actually going to be done)

Other than that, "would be" statements are just future tense with "felemeset" (lit: almost) infront of the verb. e.g. "I almost will speak" in literal English.

As for "Should/ought to" in most languages I've dealt (namely romance languages) the verb "To ought to" is dealt with as a regular present-tense verb and doesn't take on any special qualities...
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:iconradishes:
Radishes Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
It sounds so clean and nice to work with =_= I'm jealous, haha. I have:
-Past, Present, Future
-Past, Present, and Future perfect
-Past, Present, and Future perfect progressive
-Alternative (isn't happening but is possible) past, present, and future
-Alternative Conditional (hard to explain, but kind of like ... if this other possible thing happened, then this is the possible result) past, present & future
-Hypothetical (isn't happening and isn't possible) past, present, and future
-Hypothetical Conditional (if the other impossible thing were happening, then this is the impossible result) past, present, and future
-Intentional (I am going to --) past, present, and future

I may have just come to the realization that I'm a verb junky =_=;;

Shoot me now. I'm really liking the idea of "ought to" as just being a verb on it's own and not a tense XD
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February 18, 2012
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