Øynduyska – VI (Verb Morphology)

The continuing adventures of Øynduyska!

 

VERBS

Overview
Øynduyska’s verbs may be divided into a number of distinct classes, which in turn may be grouped into two large categories: strong and weak. There are in addition a small number of irregular verbs, and the modal verbs, which are defective.

Verbs inflect for the number (and, marginally, person) of their subject, for tense (aorist and preterite), and for mood (indicative and subjunctive). However, the use of periphrastic constructions is extensive, and is perhaps of greater significance than explicit modal and temporal morphology.

 

Strong Verbs
Strong verbs are those in which many forms are distinguished chiefly through vowel alternations. The accumulation of sound changes has to a considerable extent obscured the underlying patterns of these alternations, although certain discernable tendencies do remain.

Strong verbs may show up to seven stem forms: for the aorist indicative, the aorist subjunctive (shared with the infinitive), the preterite indicative singular, the preterite indicative plural, the preterite subjunctive, the past participle, and the infinitive. For some classes, however, a number of these forms are merged. The present participle, meanwhile, also shows a distinct form, but this is predictable, produced from the infinitive form by shortening of certain long vowels, and fronting of certain low vowels. Strong verbs show few suffixes: the suffix -að distinguishes the aorist indicative plural from its singular and is also found in the present participle, while the suffix -a marks the aorist subjunctive, the preterite indicative plural, the past participle, and the infinitive.

The following table displays some of the classes of strong verbs, though there is considerable irregularity:

Infinitive slita – to open sth. gently or quietly shøtha – to dash, to dart swinga – to vibrate, to sway breaka – to break (intr.) grąva – to carve sth., to dig sth.
Aorist Indicative Singular slied sheoth sweng break graąv
Preterite Indicative Singular slát sháth swang brach gróv
Preterite Indicative Plural slyit shuwth swong brąyg gróv
Preterite Subjunctive sliyt shyith swyng brąch gróv
Past Participle slita shótha swunga bróka grava

 

Weak Verbs
In contrast to strong verbs, weak verbs form their preterite by means of a suffix. Weak verbs may in turn by divided into three main classes, in addition to a number of irregular verbs.

Weak verbs have only two significant principle parts. From the aorist indicative singular, the infinitive and the aorist subjunctive are formed with the suffix -a, and the aorist indicative plural and the present participle are formed with the suffix -að. A slight anomoly arises with a small subset of Class I verbs, the ‘i-stems’: these place -i- before any suffix added to the aorist indicative singular form. Thus tell ech, “I tell (so.)”, but telliað wi, “we tell (so.)”.

Class III and Class IV verbs display past participles identical to their aorist indicative singulars. Class I and Class II verbs, however, display additional vowel changes – usually minor in Class II, but sometimes substantial in Class I, where the final consonant may also change.

Preterite indicative singulars are then formed from the part participle through suffixation: with -t for Class I and Class IV, with -d for Class II (or a zero suffix for verbs ending in ), and with -i for Class III. From the preterite indicative singular may in turn be formed in all classes the preterite indicative plural in -að, and the preterite subjunctive in -ay.

The following table demonstrates the essential weak verb forms:

  Class I Class I (i-stem) Class II Class III Class IV
Infinitive ðencha – to imagine, to depict tellia – to tell so., inform gressa – to graze, to eat lightly girda – to prepare, make ready plucka – to pluck, pick, steal
Aorist Indicative Singular ðench tell gress gird pluck
Preterite Indicative Singular ðącht tawt grésd girdi pluckt

 

Morphological Summary

The following table displays all verb forms for five verbs: the strong verb swinga, the weak verb plucka, the irregular auxiliary verbs stąnn (“to stand, to be”) and hebba (a tense and voice marker), and the copula, senn.

Infinitive swinga

/swɪŋgə/

plucka
/plʊkə/
stąnn
/stɑːn/
hebba
/hebə/
senn
/seːn/
Aor.Ind.

1st sing.

sweng
/sweŋg/
pluck
/plʊk/
stá
/staː/
hebb
/heb/
em
/eːm/
Aor.Ind.

2nd sing.

sweng
/sweŋg/
pluck
/plʊk/
stá
/staː/
hav
/hæv/
ir
/ɪr/
Aor.Ind.

3rd sing.

sweng
/sweŋg/
pluck
/plʊk/
stá
/staː/
hav
/hæv/
is
/ɪs/
Aor.Ind.

1st pl.

swengað
/sweŋgað/
pluckað
/plʊkað/
stąmm
/stɑːm/
hebbað
/hebað/
yra
/ʏrə/
Aor.Ind.

2nd pl.

swengað
/sweŋgað/
pluckað
/plʊkað/
stáð
/staːð/
hebbað
/hebað/
yra
/ʏrə/
Aor.Ind.

3rd pl.

swengað
/sweŋgað/
pluckað
/plʊkað/
stáð
/staːð/
hebbað
/hebað/
si
/siː/
Aor.Sub.

1st sing.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/

/sɔː/
Aor.Sub.

2nd sing.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/

/sɑː/
Aor.Sub.

3rd sing.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/
bia
/bɪə/
Aor.Sub.

1st pl.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/
bem
/beːm/
Aor.Sub.

2nd pl.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/
bi
/biː/
Aor.Sub.

3rd pl.

swinga
/swɪŋgə/
plucka
/plʊkə/
staða
/stæːðə/
hebba
/hebə/
bi
/biː/
Present Participle swingað
/swɪŋgað/

 

pluckað
/plʊkað/
staðhað
/stæðað/
hebbað
/hebað/
wesað
/weːzað/
Pret.Ind.

1st sing.

swang
/swæŋg/
pluckt
/plʊkt/
stóð
/stɔːð/
hąd
/hɑd/
was
/wæs/
Pret.Ind.

2nd sing.

swang
/swæŋg/
pluckt
/plʊkt/
stóð
/stɔːð/
had
/hæd/
wast
/wæst/
Pret.Ind.

3rd sing.

swang
/swæŋg/
pluckt
/plʊkt/
stóð
/stɔːð/
had
/hæd/
was
/wæs/
Pret.Ind.

1st pl.

swong
/swoŋg/
plucktað
/plʊkt/
sto
/stoː/
habhfað
/hævað/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Ind.

2nd pl.

swong
/swoŋg/
plucktað
/plʊkt/
sto
/stoː/
habhfað
/hævað/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Ind.

3rd pl.

swong
/swoŋg/
plucktað
/plʊkt/
sto
/stoː/
habhfað
/hævað/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

1st sing.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

2nd sing.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

3rd sing.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

1st pl.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

2nd pl.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Pret.Sub.

3rd pl.

swyng
/swʏŋg/
plucktay
/plʊktaɪ/
stóth
/stoː/
hadday
/hædaɪ/
wár
/waːr/
Past Participle swunga
/swʊŋgə/
pluck
/plʊk/
stóða
/stæːða/
had
/hæd/
beon
/beɞn/
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3 thoughts on “Øynduyska – VI (Verb Morphology)

  1. Hans says:

    So the “Aorist” ccontinues the Germanic present? Now you made me curious to what its functions are. And I assume the role of the present tense has been taken over by some originally progressive formation?

  2. Not to spoil things for you, but “aorist” isn’t really a great word, just the best that sprang to mind. It’s still mostly a present tense, though it is also used for the future. Most present-tense things employ a periphrastic progressive, however, yes. And indeed, the preterite is no longer the default past tense either.

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