Fwd: Re: Fwd: query: associative plurals via noun-verb disagreement

Frans Plank Frans.Plank at UNI-KONSTANZ.DE
Fri Nov 14 11:22:33 UTC 2008

Maltese confirmed by Michael Spagnol, whose 
dialect is mutually understandable with Ray 
Fabri's also in other respects (i.e., he doesn't 
hail from Gozo;  and it's definitely not 
Alemannic interference, because Alemannic 
certainly does NOT have this sort of thing):

>Yes, there is something of the sort. For example:
>1) Omm-i   sejr-a       l-Belt   illum
>mother-1SG going-3SG.F  DEF.city today
>'(my) Mum is going to Valletta today'
>2) Omm-i   sejr-in    l-Belt   illum
>mother-1SG going-3PL  DEF.city today
>'(my) Mum and dad (or and my sister, or her 
>friend, depending on context) are going to 
>Valletta today'
>Another example could be:
>3) Josianne mhux g™ejj-in    jiekl-u
>Josianne    not  coming-3PL eat-3PL
>'Josianne and her husband (boyfriend, or people 
>she's usually with) are not coming for dinner'
>As the subject, one usually selects the most 
>prominent person of the group, such as a leader, 
>or the closest person to the speaker or 
>addressee (e.g. my sister (and her husband) are 
>not coming rather than her husband (and my 
>sister) are not coming for dinner.

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