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Case Summary


We’ve now seen all the cases used by Láadan. Case is nothing more nor less than the relation of a noun phrase to the verb—and sometimes to the Subject. However, if you are, perhaps, still uncomfortable with the idea of case, the following summary will illustrate and, hopefully, clarify:

Subject

who/what performs the action of the VERB

–Ø

Bíi wida Méri anath wa.

Mary carries food.

bebáa

Báa wida bebáa anath?

Who carries food?

radal, rawith

Bíi wida rawith anath wa.

No-one carries food.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida hi anath wa.
Bíi wida Méri hi anath wa.

This/that carries food.
This/that teacher carries food.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida beye anath wa.
Bíi wida Méri beye anath wa.

Someone/something carries food.
Some (one) teacher carries food.


Identifier

no VERB; identifies the SUBJECT as something

–m

Bíi Méri hothulem wa.

Mary is a grandparent.

bebáam

Báa Méri bebáam?

Who/what is Mary?

ram

Bíi Méri ram wa.
Bíi Méri hothul ram wa.

Mary is no-one/nothing.
Mary is anything but a grandparent.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi Méri him wa.
Bíi Méri hothulem hi wa.

Mary is this/that.
Mary is this/that grandparent.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi Méri beyem wa.
Bíi Méri hothulem beye wa.

Mary is something/someone.
Mary is some grandparent.

úmú

Bíi wida Méri anath úmú thulana wa.

Mary carries food that is soup.


Object

who/what receives the action of the VERB

–th

Bíi wida Méri anath wa.

Mary carries food.

bebáath

Báa wida Méri bebáath?

Mary carries what? What does Mary carry?

radal, rawith

Bíi wida Méri radaleth wa.

Mary carries nothing.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri hith wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath hi wa.

Mary carries this.
Mary carries this food.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri beyeth wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath beye wa.

Mary carries something/someone.
Mary carries some food.

úthú

Bíi wida Méri úthú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries what the boss requests.


Manner

how the VERB is done

–nal

Bíi wida Méri anath dozhenal wa.

Mary carries food easily.

bebáanal

Báa wida Méri anath bebáanal?

How does Mary carry food?

ranal

Bíi wida Méri anath ranal wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dozh ranal wa.

Mary carries food in no way.
Mary carries food using otherwise than easily.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hinal wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dozhenal hi wa.

Mary carries food thus (in this/that way).
Mary carries food in this/that easy manner.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyenal wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dozhenal beye wa.

Mary carries food somehow.
Mary carries food in some easy manner.

únalú

Bíi wida Méri anath únalú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food how (in the manner that) the boss requests.


Instrument

what the SUBJECT uses in doing the VERB

–nan

Bíi wida Méri anath dimodenan wa.

Mary carries food with (using) a bag.

bebáanan

Báa wida Méri anath bebáanan?

Using what does Mary carry food?

ranan

Bíi wida Méri anath ranan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dimod ranan wa.

Mary carries food using nothing.
Mary carries food using something other than a bag.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hinan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dimodenan hi wa.

Mary carries food using this/that.
Mary carries food using this/that bag.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyenan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dimodenan beye wa.

Mary carries food using something/someone.
Mary carries food using some bag.

únanú

Bíi wida Méri anath únanú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food using what the boss requests.


Associate

who/what accompanies the SUBJECT in doing the VERB

–den (neutral)
–dan (pleasure)

Bíi wida Méri anath laneden wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath lanedan wa.

Mary carries food along with a friend.
Mary carries food along with (pleasurably) a friend.

bebáaden
bebáadan

Báa wida Méri anath bebáaden?
Báa wida Méri anath bebáadan?

With whom/what does Mary carry food?
With (pleasurably) whom/what does Mary carry food?

raden
radan

Bíi wida Méri anath raden wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath lan raden wa.

Mary carries food along with no-one/nothing.
Mary carries food along with someone/something other than a friend.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hiden wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath hidan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath laneden hi wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath lanedan hi wa.

Mary carries food along with this/that.
Mary carries food along with (pleasurably) this/that.
Mary carries food along with this/that friend.
Mary carries food along with (pleasurably) this/that friend.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyeden wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath beyedan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath laneden beye wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath lanedan beye wa.

Mary carries food along with someone/something.
Mary carries food along with (pleasurably) someone/something.
Mary carries food along with some friend.
Mary carries food along with (pleasurably) some friend.

úndenú

Bíi wida Méri anath údenú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food along with whom/what the boss requests.


Goal

where the VERB is done to, at or toward

–dim

Bíi wida Méri anath áathamedim wa.

Mary carries food to church.

bebáadim

Báa wida Méri anath bebáadim?

Whither carries Mary food? Where does Mary carry food to?

radim

Bíi wida Méri anath radim wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath áatham radim wa.

Mary carries food to nowhere.
Mary carries food to elsewhere than church.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hidim wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath áathamedim hi wa.

Mary carries food to this/that place.
Mary carries food to this/that church.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyedim wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath áathamedim beye wa.

Mary carries food to somewhere/someplace.
Mary carries food to some church.

údimhú

Bíi wida Méri anath údimú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food to where the boss requests.


Source

where the VERB is done from

–de

Bíi wida Méri anath bethede wa.

Mary carries food from home.

bebáade

Báa wida Méri anath bebáade?

Whence (from where) does Mary carry food?

rade

Bíi wida Méri anath rade wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath beth rade wa.

Mary carries food from nowhere.
Mary carries food from elsewhere than home.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hide wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath bethede hi wa.

Mary carries food from this/that place.
Mary carries food from this/that home.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyede wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath bethede beye wa.

Mary carries food from somewhere/someplace.
Mary carries food from some home.

údehú

Bíi wida Méri anath údehú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food whence (from where) the boss requests.


Place

where the VERB is done

–sha

Bíi wida Méri anath wethesha óobe wa.

Mary carries food along the road.

bebáasha

Báa wida Méri anath bebáasha?

Where does Mary carry food?

rasha

Bíi wida Méri anath rasha wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath weth rasha óobe wa.

Mary carries food nowhere.
Mary carries food elsewhere than along the road.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hisha wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wethesha hi óobe wa.

Mary carries food at this/that place.
Mary carries food along this/that road.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyesha wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wethesha beye óobe wa.

Mary carries food somewhere/someplace.
Mary carries food along some road.

úshahú

Bíi wida Méri anath úshahú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food where the boss requests.


Time

when the VERB is done

–ya

Bíi wida Méri anath náaleya wa.

Mary carries food at night.

bebáaya

Báa wida Méri anath bebáaya?

When does Mary carry food?

raya

Bíi wida Méri anath raya wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath náal raya wa.

Mary carries food nowhen. Mary never carries food.
Mary carries food elsewhen than at night.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hiya wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath náaleya hi wa.

Mary carries food at this/that time.
Mary carries food on this/that night.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyeya wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath náaleya beye wa.

Mary carries food somewhen/sometime.
Mary carries food on some night.

úyahú

Bíi wida Méri anath úyahú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food when the boss requests.


Beneficiary

on whose/what’s behalf the VERB is done

–da (neutral)
–daá (accident)
–dá (coercion)
–dáa (duty)

Bíi wida Méri anath wíithameda wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíithamedaá wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíithamedá wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíithamedáa wa.

Mary carries food for (neutral/voluntary) the clergy.
Mary carries food for (accident) the clergy.
Mary carries food for (coercion) the clergy.
Mary carries food for (duty/obligation) the clergy.

bebáada

Báa wida Méri anath bebáada?

For whom (on whose behalf) does Mary carry food?

rada

Bíi wida Méri anath rada wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíitham rada wa.

Mary carries food for no-one/nothing in particular.
Mary carries food against (opposed to the interests of) the clergy.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hida wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíithameda hi wa.

Mary carries food for this/that.
Mary carries food for this/that clergy.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyeda wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath wíithameda beye wa.

Mary carries food for someone/something.
Mary carries food for some clergy.

údahú

Bíi wida Méri anath údahú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food for whom/what the boss requests.


Purpose

purpose for which the VERB is done

–wan

Bíi wida Méri anath duthawan wa.

Mary carries food in order to heal.

bebáawan

Báa wida Méri anath bebáawan?

Why (for what purpose) does Mary carry food?

rawan

Bíi wida Méri anath rawan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath dutha rawan wa.

Mary carries food purposelessly.
Mary carries food to hinder healing.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hiwan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath duthawan hi wa.

Mary carries food for this/that purpose.
Mary carries food for this/that healing.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyewan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath duthawan beye wa.

Mary carries food for some purpose.
Mary carries food for the purpose of some healing.

úwanú

Bíi wida Méri anath úwanú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food for the purpose the boss requests.


Cause

because of what the VERB is done

–wáan

Bíi wida Méri anath éeyawáan wa.

Mary carries food due to illness.

bebáawáan

Báa wida Méri anath bebáawáan?

Why (because of what) does Mary carry food?

rawáan

Bíi wida Méri anath rawáan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath éeya rawáan wa.

Mary carries food from no cause.
Mary carries food because of something other than illness. Mary carries food despite illness.

hi, hizh, hin

Bíi wida Méri anath hiwáan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath éeyawáan hi wa.

Mary carries food because of this/that.
Mary carries food because of this/that illness.

beye, beyezh, beyen

Bíi wida Méri anath beyewáan wa.
Bíi wida Méri anath éeyawáan beye wa.

Mary carries food because of something/someone.
Mary carries food because of some illness.

úwáanú

Bíi wida Méri anath úwáanú dibóo hu wa.

Mary carries food because the boss requests.

Word Order

The upshot of the foregoing is that it is possible to have a simple sentence with many case phrases.

Bíi wida Méri anath dozhenal dimodenan lanedan áathamedim bethede wethesha óobe náaleya wíithamedáa duthawan éeyawáanwa.

Mary carries food easily with (using) a bag with (pleasurably) a friend to the church from home along the road at night out of duty to the clergy to promote healing because of illness.

You may notice that the order of the case phrases in the English feels awkward. The standard word order in Láadan is different than that in English, but it seemed more transparent to transpose the Láadan case elements in order, despite the awkwardness of the English.

Regarding the Láadan standard word order in active sentences (Passive construction in Láadan is different and has its own future lesson) is as follows:

• Type-of-Sentence Word. May have Mood Suffix applied.

• Verb Phrase

∘ optional Auxiliary

∘ (plural) Verb —OR— (plural) Verb Complex —OR— Identifier’s Ø-Verb

∘ optional Negative

• Case Phrases. It is axiomatic that any Case Phrase can contain a relativized verb and/or be expanded into a possessive phrase—and that any Case Phrase may be followed by a quantifier or other postposition as needed.

∘ Subject

∘ Identifier —OR— ∘ Object

∘ Manner

∘ Instrument

∘ Associate

∘ Goal

∘ Source

∘ Place

∘ Time

∘ Beneficiary

∘ Purpose

∘ Cause

• Evidential

The above is the standard order of Case Phrases (linguist-speak: the “unmarked order”). In natural case-languages, the order of case phrases is quite fluid. When, as we hope, Láadan goes out into the world and becomes a living language, the native speaker will have reasons—ranging from emphasizing one Case Phrase over another to poetic needs such as meter or rhyme, and so on—to reorder the Case Phrases. This grammar is in no way sufficiently advanced to cover these eventualities.

You may have noticed some groupings of similar cases in the above list. Since almost all cases relate to the expression of the Verb (with the remainder relating to the Subject), the broad groups are:

1) Subject, Identifier/Object;

2) Manner (the case most purely related to the Verb);

3) Instrument, Associate (the English “with” pair);

4) Goal, Source, Place, Time (the four “locatory” cases);

5) Beneficiary, Purpose, Cause (the “motivational” set).

Cased Quantifiers

Quantifiers—like “woho” (#All), waha” (#Any), “menedebe” (#>5), “nedebe” (#2-5)—and numbers—like “rano” (#0), “nede” (#1), “shin” (#2), “thab” (#10), “thabeshin” (#20)—do not formally take case suffixes. However, informally, it would be perfectly understood to say “wohosha” (everywhere), “menedebedim” (to many— ambiguous as to whether to many places or to many people), “nedebedá” (for the benefit of few, by coercion), “nedenal” (singly; one-by-one), or any of a number of other cased quantifier formations. With the exception of “nedenal”, all of these are shorthand for longer phrases involving “with” (person) or “dal” (thing) or “hath” (time) or “hoth” (place). If there should be any confusion, the more fully-expressed phrase would likely be necessary to resolve the ambiguity.