A note on the word
|A note on the word|
|Release date||December 31, 2011|
In his comment in the previous post, Plumps noted that yora'tu ‘winner' surprised him; he expected *yora'yu.
He's right—it is surprising. As you know, the general rule for forming an agent (the one who does the action) from a verb is to add the suffix –yu:
In contrast, -tu is generally added to non-verbs:
Those are the general rules, and they apply perhaps 95 percent of the time. But –tu can be unpredictable. You've already seen examples of that:
In frrtu ‘guest,' it's not clear what –tu has been added to, since there's no word *frr in modern Na'vi (although it may be an archaic form); the verb for visit is frrfen, so frrtu replaces the expected *frrfenyu.
And there are places where you expect –tu but find –yu instead: ‘warrior' is tsamsiyu, not *tsamtu. (Compare: tsulfä ‘mastery'; tsulfä si ‘to master'; tsulfätu ‘master of an art, craft, or skill—not *tsulfäsiyu.)
The words for ‘winner' and ‘loser' are further additions to the list of oddly behaved –tu words:
- yora'tu (n., yo.RA'.tu) ‘winner'
- snaytu (n., SNAY.tu) ‘loser'
|1||Frauvanìri lu yora'tu, lu snaytu.||For every game, there's a winner and a loser.||1|
The bottom line is that –tu words are sometimes unpredictable. The –tu suffix is not productive, so don't try to coin these words yourself—you need to find them in the dictionary.