Glyph of the word 'lea'.


  • (pron.) he (3rd person singular masculine pronoun)

Ka hekala ei i lea ae noala ke ine oku!
“I told him to sing but he wouldn’t!”

Notes: Another day, another pronoun.

I’ve decided to include a bit of grammar in today’s post. The example sentence above makes use of an object control verb. In these constructions, the direct object of the verb (in this case hekala, “to tell”) is coreferent with the subject of the following clause, but is still an argument of the matrix verb. In the case of Kamakawi, the use of the subject status marker ae carries the object pronoun over as the new subject, so it’s not quite the same mechanism as English object control verbs, but it achieves the same function.

You’ll also notice that that second clause lacks a k-. The deal is that that activity (the singing, in this case) isn’t completed, therefore it doesn’t take k-, no matter when it did (or didn’t) take place. Though Kamakawi lacks a subjunctive, this, at least, is marked in some way.

That’s how object control verbs work in Kamakawi. Hooray! :D

Quick comment on the iku. I got no idea what’s going on here. I think what I thought is that I had used this shape before, and so I added a little notch to differentiate it. But now that I’m looking back, I’m pretty sure I haven’t used this precise shape before… The closest is the iku for leya, but even that one’s slightly different. Oh well. The notch is cool. I likes it. :)


[Note: Several months in the future, I evidently forgot that I’d already done a word of the day post on lea, and so I wrote up another one. I realized my mistake and changed that post to something else, but I thought some of what I’d written originally was pretty good, so I’ve included it below.]

I felt it was time for another pronoun, so here he is. Welcome, “he”! For the longest time when I was writing Kamakawi, I’d mix up lea and nea. And, in all honesty, it seems like a poor choice to base a distinction on, as l and n are very similar, acoustically (cf. “level” in English and nivel in Spanish, both from the same root). Perhaps one day the two are destined to merge…

Anyway, the iku for lea is built off of the syllabic glyph for le. The “x” shape of a is kind of superimposed, but it doesn’t quite fit. The lower right-hand leg is already there, and I’m pretty sure that a le that also has the lower left-hand leg is already an iku. That’s what the little notch above the middle cross bar is for.

The unfortunate thing, though, is that I went looking for the iku that I’m sure exists (essentially the iku for lea without the notch), and I couldn’t find it. Due to the nature of Kamakawi “spelling”, there’s no simple way to find an iku whose shape you’re pretty sure of. I’m not sure how to handle this—or how Kamakawi computers, created some day far off in the future, would handle it, either. I imagine the answer will come to me from Chinese, but I’d have to look for—and I wouldn’t know how! :-P

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