WW #24: But I Repeat Myself

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This week’s theme is reduplication.

Muipidan uses partial reduplication to mark noun plurals (e.g. lilihmük’ide [ˈli.lɪˌm̥y.kʼɪ.də] “apples”, from lihmük’ide [ˈli.m̥ʏˌkʼi.də] “apple”), but nouns can also be fully reduplicated to indicate either “a diverse group of X” (e.g. lihmülihmük’ide “assortment of apples”) or “X and the stuff associated with X” (e.g. kaseykaseytede “kitchenware”, from kaseytede [ˈka.zɛjˌte.də] “spoon”).

Kharulian doesn’t do much with reduplication, but in an earlier post we met the “days of Christmas” construction, used to name time periods and events, which sometimes has a reduplicative character. Let’s see another example: anghwémiil alnaghwemira [anˈɣʷe.miːɫ aɫ.na.ɣʷeˈmi.ra] “friendly debate”, literally “the arguers are arguing”.

Nitherian uses partial reduplication on verbs to mark habitual actions; for example, vimo [ˈvi.mo] “he is hot (right now)” can become vivimo [viˈvi.mo] “he is (always) hot”; tsesosa opa [tseˈso.sa ˈo.pa] “I’m eating a banana” can become tsezesosa opa [tse.zeˈso.sa ˈo.pa] “I (like to) eat bananas”. But this kind of reduplication is also used to form habitual subject nouns: vovoslo [voˈvo.ɬo] “sailor” from vosloslo [voˈɬo.ɬo] “to sail”; chachnpya [tɕaˈtɕn̩.pja] “cadet” from chnpya [ˈtɕn̩.pja] “to be trained as a soldier”.

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