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Lesson 20: Goal Case

Vocabulary

ban

to give

–di (variant: –dim)

Suffix (CP): Goal Case

dúu–

Prefix (verb): try in vain to VERB; fail to VERB

edin

cousin

–hel

Degree Marker: to a trivial degree; slightly; hardly

no–

Prefix (verb): to finish VERBing; to complete VERBing

olin

forest

sheb

to change

weth

way; path; road

wida

to carry

Goal Case

[(Aux) Verb (Neg) CP–S (CP–O) CP–Goal]

The Goal Case marks a Case Phrase as the object toward which the action is directed. To mark a Case Phrase as a Goal, use the ending “–di.” As always, insert “e” to separate consonants if necessary.


You will notice that a sentence such as “Bíi eril sháad le wethedi wa,”listen to this pronounced meaning “I went to the road,” is exactly like “Bíi eril sháad le wethede wa,”listen to this pronounced meaning “I came from the road.” You can only tell the direction of the motion verb by the case ending on “road.” Speakers of some languages are not comfortable keeping the vowels “i” and “e” separate, because in their languages they are only one sound. In such a situation, and if no other information is available in the sentence to make things clear, it is correct to use “–dim” as an alternate form for the Goal Case Phrase. Such a speaker could say “Bíi eril sháad le bodim wa,”listen to this pronounced for “I went to the mountain.”

Examples

Bíi thad sháad Máyel wa.listen to this pronounced

Michael can go/come.

Bíi thad sháad Máyel bethedi wa.listen to this pronounced

Michael can go/come (to the) home.

Bíi thad sháad Máyel nudi wa.listen to this pronounced

Michael can come hither.

Here we see the deixis on “sháad” disambiguated in favor of “come” rather than “go.” You may not recognize the rather archaic form “hither.” It’s Goal Case in English and means “to here” (“nudi” in Láadan). There are a few other English Goal Case forms: “thither” means “to there” (“núudi” in Láadan); “whither” means “to where” (“bebáadi” in Láadan); “nowhither” means “to nowhere” (“radi” in Láadan).

English is persnickety about needing to know whether someone or something is “coming” or “going.” In reality, this is a distinction without a difference. Láadan doesn’t make the distinction and works just fine, as a language, without it.

Bíi eril om le shoneth wa.listen to this pronounced

I taught peace.

Bíi eril om le shoneth nedi wa.listen to this pronounced

I taught (to) you peace.

Bíi eril om le nedi wa.listen to this pronounced

I taught (to) you.

Bíi eril nohom le wa.listen to this pronounced

I finished teaching.

Bíi eril dúuhom le shoneth nedi wa.listen to this pronounced

I failed to teach you peace.

With any communication verb (“om” in this case), the one doing the communicating is the Subject (“le” here), the thing being communicated (here “shon”) is the Object, and the one to whom the Object is being communicated (here “ne”) is the Goal. These case assignments remain even when one or more of the case phrases are omitted (as in the first and third examples above). Other verbs we already know that would fall into this category are “bédi” (to promise), “di” (to speak), “lalom” (to sing), and “mime” (to ask).

Bíi aril wida le bal belidedi wa.listen to this pronounced

I will carry bread to the house.

Bíi aril wida le bal belid edinethodi wa.listen to this pronounced

I will carry bread to the cousin’s house.

Bíi aril wida le bal belid edinetho nethadi wa.listen to this pronounced

I will carry bread to your cousin’s house.

Notice that “bal,” above, does not have an Object Case suffix; there is no ambiguity since bread cannot carry me anywhere.

Notice also how the Possessive interacts with the Goal Case. The Goal Case suffix moves to the end of the possessive phrase: first to “edinethodi,” then to “nethadi.” “Belid” is without a case suffix after the first example in this set.

Bíi ril sheb le wa.listen to this pronounced

I change.

Bíi ril shebehel le wa.listen to this pronounced

I change trivially. –or– I hardly change.

Bíi ril nasheb le wa.listen to this pronounced

I begin to change.

Bíi ril nosheb le wa.listen to this pronounced

I finish changing.

Exercises

Translate the following into English.

1  

Bíi aril mesháad edin wehehátha bode nudi wa.listen to this pronounced

2  

Báa wida omid berídaneth bebáadi?listen to this pronounced

3  

Bíi dubel ebalá baleth wehedi wáa.listen to this pronounced

4  

Bíi nahom sherídan netha Láadan Másha bedi wa.listen to this pronounced

5  

Bíi eril meban lezh wolaya wobabíth dená lethodi wa.listen to this pronounced

6  

Bíi ul dúuhim ra héena eshonátho nezhedi wa.listen to this pronounced

In #1, “sháad” would clearly be translated “come” because the movement from the mountain is to here.

In #4, we notice once again that personal names do not receive Case suffixes.

Incorporate the second noun as a Goal; translate into English before and after.

7  

Bíi aril mina ábedá mudath wa.listen to this pronounced

weth

8  

Báa eril eb hothul bezhetha mazheth?listen to this pronounced

bebáa

9  

Bíi rilrili medoth len shonáth wa.listen to this pronounced

woliyen woholin

10  

Bíi ril thad wida withid obath wáa.listen to this pronounced

woyom wohoth

11  

Bíi eríli mesháad onida wáa.listen to this pronounced

meworahíya wohud

12  

Báa eril bel háawith bebáatha nemeth?listen to this pronounced

wohu wohurahu

In #11, the word “rahíya,” from “ra–” (not–, non–) + “híya” (small), means “large.”

Translate the following into Láadan.

13  

Whither is the grandchild taking the fragrant flowers?

14  

The teacher asked, “Whither is the beautiful plant traveling?”

15  

I said to her, “Clearly, the plant is going nowhere.”

16  

The parents gave their baby milk.

17  

I wish Steven would carry the tired cat to the park.

18  

The laughing worker sold the farm to them (few).

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Answers

1  

The storekeeper’s cousins will come hither from the mountain.

2  

Whither is the horse carrying the aunt?

3  

The baker is trying to take the bread to a store.

4  

Your niece is beginning to teach Marsha Láadan (teach Láadan to Marsha).

5  

We (few) gave a red bird to my assistant.

6  

The peace-scientist’s heart-sibling hopes not to fail to travel to you (few).

 

7  

The farmer will move a pig.

Bíi aril mina ábedá mudath wethedi wa.listen to this pronounced

The farmer will move a pig to the road.

8  

Did their grandmother buy/sell the car?

Báa eril eb hothul bezhetha mazheth bebáadi?listen to this pronounced

To whom did their grandmother sell the car?

9  

We (many) may follow the peace-maker.

Bíi rilrili medoth len shonáth woliyen woholinedi wa.listen to this pronounced

We (many) may follow the peace-maker to the green forest.

10  

The man can carry the body.

Bíi ril thad wida withid obath woyom wohothedi wáa.listen to this pronounced

The man can carry the body to a safe place.

11  

The families came/went long ago.

Bíi eríli mesháad onida meworahíya wohudedi wáa.listen to this pronounced

The families long ago came/went to the large stones.

12  

Whose child took/brought the pearl?

Báa eril bel háawith bebáatha nemeth wohu wohurahudi?listen to this pronounced

Whose child took/brought the pearl to the open gate?

 

13  

Báa bel hóowith mewohaba womahinath bebáadi?listen to this pronounced

14  

Bíi eril mime omá wa, “Báa im woháya wodala bebáadi?”listen to this pronounced

15  

Bíi eril di le bedi wa, “Bíi sháad ra dala radi wi.”listen to this pronounced

16  

Bíi eril meban thul laleth áwith bezhethadi wáa.listen to this pronounced

17  

Bíi wil wida Thíben wohóoha woruleth heshehothedi wa.listen to this pronounced

18  

Bíi eril eb wohada wohalá ábedeth bezhedi wáa.listen to this pronounced

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