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Query Details

Query Subject:   Tagalog linking particle
Author:   Rose Thomas
Submitter Email:  click here to access email
Subject Language(s):  Tagalog

Query:   Dear Linguists

Does anyone have any ideas about the syntactic function of the ''adjectival linking'' particle -ng, -g, na in Tagalog? I have noticed that it occurs on numerals, which can only precede nouns in this language, e.g

lima - ng lobo
five - linker balloon
''five balloons''

It has occurred to me that it could be some sort of agreement marker, as the occurrence of agreement on quantifiers is known in other languages (e.g Hebrew and Turkish). It also occurs on adjectives, when they precede the noun, e.g

malayo - ng bayon
far-linker land
''faraway land''

Again this seems compatible with the idea that it is an agreement marker, or perhaps a marker of predication (if we assume that even modifying adjectives still basically have predication as their main function). How would one say ''the land is far'' in this language? Would it also involve the linking particle?

The problem is,though, that it is also possible to put adjectives after the noun in this language, and here the linking particle goes onto the NOUN.

bayon - g malayo
land-particle far
''faraway land''

This does not seem very compatible with the idea that it is an agreement or predication marker. Does anyone have any ideas of how this particle should be interpreted?


Rose thomas

and it has occurred to me that it may be some form of agreement marker
LL Issue: 14.3256
Date posted: 26-Nov-2003


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