Gevey modifiers

Modifiers are words that qualify, explain or further describe an object or action. Unlike Ramajal adjectives, a modifier in Gevey can never be used as a complement to a principle verb in a clause or sentence. Modifiers will follow the object or action that they qualify, or in the case of accusative nouns, go between the dissociated noun complex and the noun stem.

Modifiers are made up of three parts:

root + infix + suffix

The root is contiguous with object or action roots and stems - indeed, both object stems and action stems can act as modifier roots (though modifier roots cannot become object or action stems without modification).

The infix denotes the purpose of the modifier. Depending on the infix used, a modifier can act on an object or an action, or act in a manner similar to the compliment in an Ramajal clause, or can be used for comparison or fitness purposes.

Gevey modifier infixes:

simple -ix- large
compliment -uetl- is large
equalitative -oud- as large as
comparative -agj- larger
superlative -ast- largest
hyperlative -aevd- largest of all
diminutive -amb- not large enough
selective -ar- just large enough
excessive -oil- too large
active [verb infix] (action modifier)

The suffix is a combination of the status and number suffixes of the object on which the modifier is acting: -e, -em, -ec, -a, -am, -ac, -o, -om, -oc, -u, -u, -uc or, for active modifiers, -ei (the infixes used by active modifiers are described below).

Modifier lists

An object (or action) can have more than one modifier associated with it. In such cases the second and subsequent modifiers need to follow the appropriate coordinating conjunctions, harmonising with their object's number and status (or their action's tense and conjugation):

Some dialects - including the Valley dialect - allow modifier roots to be listed (taking into account any necessary stem alterations) with only the final root taking an infix and suffix, though many native speakers consider this to be lazy and restrict its use to more informal registers of speech.

Multiple objects

Similarly, one modifier can be used with more than one object. The trick here is to use the appropriate coordinating conjunctions, and to remember that the modifier needs to agree in number with the total number of objects it affects:

Active modifiers

Active modifiers adapt the action or description of a verb. They will almost always follow the verb they act upon, and will harmonise with it according to the verb's tense and conjugation type.

Active modifier infixes:

Tense Conjugation type
primary (type A) secondary (type O) tertiary (type I)
Future -an- -on- -in-
Present -as- -os- -is-
Past -at- -ot- -it-
Historic -atj- -otj- -itj-

Active modifiers can be listed using coordinating conjunctions. Each modifier in the list will need to harmonise with its verb (though again, some dialects allow just the roots to be listed in more informal registers of speech, with only the final modifier taking the active infix and suffix). Where the verb is in the incidental or stative voice, the modifier can be inserted between the auxillary and participle; otherwise the modifier follows the verb.

To add intensity to an active modifier (for instance, more slowly), the modifier can be repeated (or concatenated with itself using an appropriate coordinating conjunction). Note that active modifiers do not have comparative or superlative forms, thus if intensification is not enough, it is often more appropriate to reconfigure the clause to add the modification to the subject.

Using modifiers

As explained above, the main role of modifiers is to modify an object or action - for example tuusrhe salizhe (black dog), tuusrhe salizhe strhimase vitaseh (the black dog runs quickly). However, modifiers are capable of more than just this:

The key to this flexibility comes from the use of the various modifier infixes and through the use of the appropriate copula verb. Gevey uses a number of different copulas for assigning, adapting and comparing modifiers to objects, of which the following four are the most common:

A peculiarity of Gevey is that when comparing objects, the language requires both objects being compared to be in the same object phrase - often, but not always, the subject phrase. The format of the phrase is object1 compared-to object2 - petju noest brjicnu, rjapte noest bixve ken, tcegmu tet ëzeku ten - with the modifier contrasting the qualities of object1 against the standard of object2. The coordinating conjunction 'noest' is most commonly used with comparative modifiers, though other conjunctions (such as 'tet' in the above examples) can also be used.

This page was last updated on Tecufintuu-31, 530: Tincuu-28 Gevile