Just a relatively short post before the month ends . . . slä nìsìlpey pum a nga’ aylì’fyavit lesar.
flrr (adj.) ‘gentle, mild, tender’
This word can be used for both people and things.
Keng tsamsiyu zene flrr livu ayevenghu.Tìng mikyun
‘Even a warrior must be gentle with children.’
Flrra tompa zerup.Tìng mikyun
‘A gentle rain is falling.’
nìflrr (adv., nì.FLRR) ‘gently, tenderly’
Zene fko ’ivampi prrnenit nìflrr frakrr.Tìng mikyun
‘One must always touch a baby gently.’
tìflrr (n., tì.FLRR) ‘gentleness, tenderness’
Hufwa mefo leru muntxatu txankrr, mi lu munsnar hona tìflrr a na pum meyawnetuä amip nìwotx.Tìng mikyun
‘Although the two of them have been mates a long time, they still have all the adorable tenderness of new sweethearts.’
ngä’än (vin., ngä.’ÄN—inf. 1, 2) ‘suffer mentally or emotionally, be miserable’
Note that ngä’än refers to an emotional state of being; it may or may not be accompanied by physical pain.
Srane, skxir tìsraw si nìtxan, slä ke ngerä’än oe kaw’it.Tìng mikyun
‘Yes, the wound is very painful, but I’m not in the least suffering emotionally (i.e., my mental state is fine).’
Tìsraw letokx sì tìngusä’än pxìm täpare fìtsap.Tìng mikyun
‘Physical pain and mental suffering are often interrelated.’
Snafpìlfyari leNa’vi krra smarit fkol tspang, tsranten nìtxan fwa po ke ngä’än nìkelkin.Tìng mikyun
‘It’s important in Na’vi philosophy that the prey not suffer unnecessarily when it’s killed.’
kelkin (adj., kel.KIN) ‘unnecessary’
nìkelkin (adv., nì.kel.KIN) ‘unnecessarily’
sängä’än (n., sä.ngä.’ÄN) ‘bout of suffering; episode of depression’
Ngeyä tsasängä’äntsyìpìri set frawzo srak?Tìng mikyun
‘Have you recovered from being down for a while?’
THE SUFFIX –NAY
When –nay is added to a noun, it creates a new noun that is related to the original by being a step down in some relevant hierarchy—size, rank, accomplishment, etc. This isn’t as complicated as it sounds. Take a look at these examples (and note that when –nay is added to a noun ending in n, one of the n’s drops, as expected):
ikran ‘mountain banshee’
ikranay ‘forest banshee, lesser banshee’ (smaller cousin to the mountain banshee)
’eylanay ‘acquaintance (with the potential of becoming a friend)’
eyktanay ‘deputy, general, one step down in rank from leader’
karyunay ‘apprentice teacher’
This suffix is not productive, and the exact meaning of –nay nouns is not always predictable. So such words and their meanings must be learned individually.
Note also that unlike most other suffixes, -nay receives the main stress: ikraNAY, ’eylaNAY, eyktaNAY, tsulfätuNAY, karyuNAY.
THE “ADJi-a N a-ADJi” STRUCTURE
In English we sometimes hear things like, “She’s a beautiful, beautiful woman” as a way of saying “She’s an extremely beautiful woman.” Something similar occurs in Na’vi, where the structure is more common than in English:
Lu po lora tuté alor.Tìng mikyun
‘She’s an extremely beautiful woman.’
In speech, the second occurrence of the adjective is stressed more than the first: lora tuté ALOR.
In the above example, we’re using this double-adjective structure in a noun phrase: lora tuté alor, ‘an extremely beautiful woman.’ Can we also use it for sentences like, “That woman is extremely beautiful”? Yes, but it’s awkward:
Tsatuté lu lora pum alor.Tìng mikyun
‘That woman is an extremely beautiful one.’
That’s not a problem, however, since we already have a number of ways to intensify a predicate adjective: lor nìtxan, lor nìtxan nang, lor nì’aw, etc. So using the double-adjective structure for sentences like this last example isn’t necessary.
Finally, some nice proverbial expressions from the LEP:
Fwa kan ke tam; zene swizawit livonu.Tìng mikyun
Literally: ‘To aim is not enough; one must release the arrow.’
Meaning: ‘Intent is not enough; it’s action that counts.’
Txìm a’aw ke tsun hiveyn mì tal mefa’liyä.Tìng mikyun
Literally: ‘One butt can’t sit on the backs of two direhorses.’
Meaning: ‘You can’t take both positions or sit on the fence; you need to decide.’
That’s it for now. Vospxìayvay!