RESOURCES FOR LEARNING GE'EZ: THE CLASSICAL LANGUAGE OF ETHIOPIA

RESOURCES FOR LEARNING GE'EZ-- THE CLASSICAL LANGUAGE OF ETHIOPIA

May 19, 2013

27: Indicating Existence and Possession (Contd.)


27.1: The Preposition «ba-» (by, with, in) has several important functions. Much like the preposition «la-» (of, to, for) [see: 12.6], this preposition has a distinct set of pronominal suffixes:


Singular
Plural
3rd m.
bo
bomu
botu

3rd f.
bon
bāti
ቦቶ
boton
ቦን
bontu

2nd m.
bəki
ብክ
bəkəmu

2nd f.
bəka
ብክ
bəkən

1st c.
ብየ
bəya
ብነ
bəna


27.2: The negative particle with this preposition is the enclitic አል «al-»,  thus forming: አልቦሙ (albomu = not in them) አልብነ (albəna = not in us) etc.

27.3: The most important function of this preposition is that (with the 3rd m. sing. suffix) it indicates existence (there is…, there are…), just like the particle yeš in Hebrew, īt in Aramaic and thamma in Arabic. The following noun may sometimes decline in the accusative.

ቦ፡ቤት፡በዘሀገር።
bo bet ba-za-hagar
There is a house in this city.

አልቦ፡አብያት፡በዘሀገር።
al-bo abyāt ba-za-hagar
There are no houses in this city.

ቦቱ፡ከዋክብት፡በስመይ።
botu kawākəbt ba-smay
There are stars in the sky.

አልቦቱ፡ኮከበ፡በስመይ።
al-botu kokaba ba-smay
There is no star in the sky.

27.4: Also, note these examples:

ዘረከበኒ፡ወባሕቱ፡ኢዜነወ፡ሊተ፡ስሞ።
bo za-rakabani wabāḥəttu i-zenawa lita semo
There is someone who found me but he did not tell me his name.

አልቦ፡ዘሰምዐ፡ቃላቶሙ፡አመ፡ቦኡ፡ሀገረ።
albo za-samʿa qālātomu ama boʾu hagara
There was no one who heard their voices when they entered the city.

ቦ፡ዘጐዩ፡እምቤት፡ኀበ፡ደበዩ።
bo za-gʷayyu əm-bet xaba dabayu
There were those who fled from the house where they were hiding.

27.5: Another very common function of this preposition is that it indicates possession. The possessed object is usually declined in the accusative case, like the object of a verb.

ብነ፡ቤተ፡ዲበ፡ድብር።
bəna beta diba dəbr     
We have a house on the mountain.

ብየ፡ማየ፡ወአልብከ፡ማየ።
bəya māya wa-albəka māya.
I have water and you have no water.

ንግሥት፡አልባ፡አግብርተ፡በጽርሓ።
nəgəšt albā agbərta ba-ṣərḥā.
The queen has no servants in her chamber.

ቦቱ፡ካህን፡ክርታሳኖ።
botu kāhən kərtāsāno.
The priest has his scrolls.

አልቦሙ፡አራሚያን፡ሃይማኖተ።
albomu arāmiyān hāymānota.
The infidels have no faith.

1 comment:

  1. I think it is ደብር not ድብር. Thank you for this lovely website, and your efforts to preserve Ge'ez.

    ReplyDelete

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