888 reputation
48
bio website overpunch.com
location Sydney, Australia
age 27
visits member for 2 years, 5 months
seen 6 hours ago

I am a computational linguistics PhD candidate. But before that, long before that, I fell in love with languages.

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Sep
15
comment Why does きいろ mean yellow rather than green?
I understand that some researchers reconstruct 乙類 /i/ is as a retracted front vowel [ɨ]. Are there no sound changes which could take an 甲類 /i/ to a 乙類 /i/ or vice versa? There is also the fact that 木 /ki/ alternates with /ko/ in some compounds while 黄 does not.
Jul
3
comment Why the き and さ in the 送り仮名 of 大きい and 小さい?
Not sure why someone downvoted this. Sjiveru's comment is good too.
Jun
11
comment Can 一応ね be understood to mean “…just socially.”?
In my idiolect, 'Whatever' or 'Whatever, man' is dismissive, in the sense that the speaker doesn't care about the topic at hand. I'm not sure it renders 一応, which expresses that the speaker's judgment is tentative or 'for now'.
Jun
4
comment Proper usage of 四字熟語 in Japanese
That's amusing.
Apr
4
comment Why is topology called 位相幾何学?
@Popopo: Euler referred to early topological concepts as constituting a geometria situs (geometry of place) as opposed to physical geometry which accounts for lengths and distances, and the Japanese is a precise calque of this.
Apr
3
comment Why is topology called 位相幾何学?
The first morpheme in topology is Gk. τόπος 'place', which corresponds to 位 (position). I would suggest that 相 in this context means 'aspect', 'behaviour', and not 'mutual' (its other sense). In Chinese, the two senses of 相 have different readings (xiang4 vs xiang1). Putting it all together, the term 位相 refers to the disposition of place -- that is, how the place is arranged; in other words, its topology.
Jan
31
comment What suffix do you add to a verb to make it perfective or imperfective?
The progressive is an aspect (reflects the state of the action around the event) rather than a tense (situates the event relative to now).
Dec
10
comment Don't get the meaning of the sentence “意味ありげな笑いを浮かべた”
For me, "a knowing smile" is another natural translation.
Dec
7
comment Syllable final -t in early modern Japanese?
Right, I see. Is there evidence that they were pronounced in MJ in that way? Usually (as is the case with loanwords into modern Japanese) foreign phonology gets levelled very quickly.
Dec
6
comment The surname 粂 【くめ】
Then explain why the period didn't lead to the creation of hundreds of novel kanji for use in names.
Dec
5
comment The surname 粂 【くめ】
True enough. So why is this the only exemplar of its type? The Chinese notion of 方块字 excludes the idea of writing more than one character in a single block.
Nov
22
comment Are there any common grammatical errors made by native Japanese speakers?
Thanks for that. As the link says, 申し訳ありません is incorrect in the same way that 危ありません is incorrect, but the descriptive tendency is probably because 申し訳 also occurs as a standalone noun while 危(あぶ) does not. Also, I would never have thought 申し訳のう to be the correct combining form.
Nov
22
comment Are there any common grammatical errors made by native Japanese speakers?
That point about 申し訳ない is interesting. So is 申し訳ありません prescriptively incorrect? I could have sworn we had been taught it.
Nov
17
comment What are the differences between じ and ぢ, and ず and づ?
There's also the use of ぢ to write 痔, which has an interesting history... ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E7%97%94#.E6.A6.82.E8.A6.81
Nov
8
comment How to translate: “Keep/leave something”. So, how to express intention to leave something unchanged
I'm not the downvoter, but I think ~ておく is only appropriate when the agent performs the action, and not when the state is simply allowed to persist.
Nov
7
comment Are there rules for when 'e' becomes 'a' in compound words?
The compound words all have the structure X of Y, but it seems unlikely that any historical genitive particle like tsu or ga could have yielded a vocalic i. Incidentally, I wonder if there's any evidence linking tsu to the fossilised Korean genitive particle s (e.g. 바닷가 bada-s-ga)...
Nov
6
comment Are there rules for when 'e' becomes 'a' in compound words?
You mention that a+i > e2 > Modern e, and that the original root ends in a. What is the i which yields modern e when the word occurs free and not in a compound?
Nov
6
comment Are there rules for when 'e' becomes 'a' in compound words?
Here's a list of examples.
Oct
10
comment Obligatory zero particle
@istrasci: From Martin "A Reference Grammar of Japanese" §2.3: "In standard spoken Japanese these two particles are obligatorily suppressed... where we would expect N ga wa/mo and N o wa/mo we find only N wa/mo: the opposition of the prime cases of subject vs. object are neutralised." This might be a development in the language, a register difference, or else the grammar might be plain wrong.
Oct
10
comment Obligatory zero particle
True enough, but I think をも is a fossilised form in the modern language.