questions

vocabulary for this lesson

Verb roots
c’én see k’ádik rain
súku unlucky wássa bad
wíkis hurt bís stay
báya crack acorns Ɂý general movement
wóno die pe eat
noun roots
màko: fish sỳ: dog
hýbo: home
verb suffixes
-de question -da question
-jem plural -ja: dual
-ni 2nd person on questions -di at
noun suffixes
-m subject -sa dual
-se plural
pronouns
mihani did you mysemde did they
méne who hésakkàn how much, how many (only with noun suffixes)
homo which, where, whither (depending on suffixes) hétyn what (before verb or noun roots)
hési what (before noun or verb suffixes) hòmmá what, when, whatever, where (depending on suffixes)
Part 1. asking and answering questions

c'én can be interpreted to mean “s/he saw it." or "s/he sees it.”

c'éde makes it a question, “Did s/he see it?” What is the part in c'éde that makes it a question?

Besides answering that -de is the part that makes it a question, you may also have noticed that the -n in the non-question disappeared. Words with -de (and lots of other suffixes too) replace the -in/-n suffix.

How about this one?

If c'éjem means “You (plural) saw it.” and

c'édejem means “Did you (plural) see it?”, what is the part of the Konkow word that makes it a question?

As you probably said, there is a suffix -de that makes the two examples above into questions.

Here's a third one:

If c'éja:n means “They (two) saw it." and

c'édaja: means “Did they (two) see it?”, what parts makes that one a question?

You probably saw that instead of -de, the question suffix is now -da. This particular suffix is one that changes the vowel to whatever the following vowel is. If it comes at the end of the word, though, it will always be -de.
k'ádikde? Did it rain?
másipde? Did he finish that chore?
súkude? Was he unlucky?
mìn wássati wíkistidè? Did he hurt you badly?
There is a special form of the 2nd person suffix: -ni, which only occurs after the question suffix. Usually the question suffix itself is not present in that case, since the -ni makes it clear that it's a question.

Example:

hubo:di bísni? Did you stay at home?

Exercise 1.
Change the following sentences into questions, but inserting -de (or -da, etc.) in the right place.
Remember these points:
  • -de on the verb replaces the verb-final -in/n .
  • -de occurs before the number suffixes (-ja: dual and -je plural) and person markers on the verb (-s, first person, etc.) Otherwise, it goes on the end of the word.
  • If there is an auxiliary, it goes on that word instead of the main verb.
  • You would normally leave the -de out in 2nd person forms because the 2nd person suffix has a special form -ni used only for questions.
Statement Question
báyan. He cracked acorns.
______________ bájade ?
Did he crack acorns?
sólja:m. You (two) sang.
______________ solja:ni ?
Did you (two) sing? __jen. They went. ______________ Did they go? m_k'i s_• wó•non. His dog died. ______________ Did his dog die? nisem mako pejen. We ate the fish. ______________ Did we eat the fish?

Statement Question bájan. He cracked acorns bájade ? Did he crack acorns? sólja:m. You (two) sang. solja:ni ? Did you (two) sing? __jen. They went. __jede ? Did they go? m_k'i s_• wó•non. His dog died. m_k'i s_• wó•node ? Did his dog die? nisa:m mako peja:n. We (dual) ate the fish. nisa:m mako pedaja:s ? Did we eat the fish?

Part 2.

If there is an auxiliary verb (like ha “be,do”) in the sentence, the question suffix will occur on that word instead.

Here are some examples:

test

1st person questions
nihades pen?* Did I eat?
nísamadája:s pen?* Did we eat? dual
nísemadejes pen? Did we eat? plural
2nd person question
mihani pen? Did you eat?
3rd person questions
mymade pen? Did he,she,he eat?
mysemade pen? Did they eat?
Notice that in the second question above, the question suffix and person and number suffixes are all on the auxiliary, not on the main verb “eat”, and also the verb-final -n/in is back on the verb. “Did I eat? with an auxiliary might look like this: ni pédes ? *The auxiliary verb ha attaches to the first word of the sentence, in this case the pronoun (see lesson 5, Part 3). The h of ha disappears after a consonant. If we separate all the components and write the missing h in parentheses, the first word of each of the two sentences above would look like this:
nihadas
Did I do it?
ni
1st.​person.​subj.​pronoun
-ha
do
-da
question
-s
1st.​person.​suffix
   
nisa:m(h)adaja:s
Did we do it?
nisa:
1st.​person.​pronoun
-m
subject
-(h)a
do
-da
question
-ja:
dual
-s
1st.​person
   
Exercise 2. and 3.

Review in the box above how pronouns with the auxiliary verb ha attached to them can be parsed.

Now it's your turn: separate the components of the two sentences below. Remember that ha is in both of them, but the h gets deleted after a consonant.
mihani pen? mi-ha-ni pe-n
mihani pen ? mi-ha-ni pe-n
Did you eat?
mysemade pen ? myse-m-(h)a-de pe-n
Did they eat?
Exercise 3. Turn the second sentence in Exercise 2 into a question without the auxiliary. (That means the question suffix and person and number suffixes now go on the verb for “eat”.)
Part 3.

Who, what, when, where, how questions

These are questions that can't just be answered with yes or no, but need more complex answers.
méne who
hésakkàn how much, how many (only with noun suffixes)
homo which, where, whither (depending on suffixes)
hétyn what (before verb or noun roots)
hési what (before noun or verb suffixes)
hòmmá what, when, whatever, where (depending on suffixes)

Most of these question words usually have auxiliary verbs with them. Examples from the texts: hétynade mómim? How is the water? "hétyn-(h)a-de móm-im?" how-be-question water-subject? ʔac'è, hómohàdehan ʔýk'o:n, ʔàmammájdym! Now, where did he go, that man? ʔac'è, hómo-hà-de-ha-n ʔýk'o:-n, ʔàma-m-májdy-m now, where-do-Q-do-verb.final go-verb.final, that-descriptive-man-subject There are very few simple examples of question words in Ultan's writings. But in the interest of learning how to ask questions, here are a few useful questions from the writings that you might want to ask:

hétynani ? How are you?
hesihani mejin ? What did you give them/him?
**************** **************
*********** ***************
hétynani ? How are you?
hesihani mejin ? What did you give them/him?
menemmani han ? Who are you?
hòmmá:dihàde míʔatisàm. When did all this happen?
hési ʔánani, hómma: ?! What did you say?
ʔómonakwètepa ʔýk'o:n ? Wherever might they be going?
What did you give them?
   
What did you say!?
   
When did all this happen!?
   
Wherever might they be going?
   
What did you give them?
   
What did you say!?
   
When did all this happen!?
   
Wherever might they be going?
   
See some more in Exercise 4. And here are some simple questions we can make up (and hope they are correct) based on what we have learned from these lessons: (The h of ha doesn't disappear after the -m when ha is used as the main verb.)
menem háde? Who is he?
menem átide ? Who did that?
menehani c'en? Who did you see?
hómonakni ʔýk'on ? Where are you going?
Maybe you can make up some more!
*****lesson title*****
*****lesson info*****
use these extras for reference and to practice what you have learned
*****lesson title*****
*****lesson info*****
use these extras for reference and to practice what you have learned
*****lesson title*****
*****lesson info*****
use these extras for reference and to practice what you have learned
*****lesson title*****
*****lesson info*****
use these extras for reference and to practice what you have learned