Contrastive Case (CONTR)

-ja[e]tta

The contrastive case, in short, draws a contrastive comparison with the subject. It topicalizes a noun, about which a statement is then uttered about a different noun (the subject) which is implied to be a thing with which the contrastive noun shares little or no commonality. Unlike the adverbial case -jat, which can draw attention to similarities, the contrastive case draws attention to differences. 

It can typically be translated into English as as compared to, or as contrasted by, or simply than.

Hänåohänåmin mirijatta.
hänåohänåimin mirijaetta
dogNOMbigdogis.PRES.PLAIN catCONTR
The dog is [bigger] than the cat.
(Lit: dogbigdogis catcomparedto)
(Imp: As compared to the cat, the dog is a big dog)
Hänå’ohänåmin mirijatta.

Duojjiŋ seipuhuõhõn tjatta.
duojjinn seipuhuõhõn teijaetta
personlanguageACC 1NOMspeechdo.PRES.GNOM 2CONTR
I [speak] Duojjin, unlike you.
(Lit: Personlanguage Ispeechdo youcomparedto)
(Imp: I [speak] Duojjin, which is contrastive to you, who does not speak Duojjin)
Duojjiŋ sei’puhuõhõn teijatta.

Duojjiŋ seipuhuõhõn hjeivåsojat tjatta.
duojjinn seipuhuõhõn hjeivaisojat teijaetta
personlanguageACC 1NOMspeechdo.PRES.GNOM goodnessCOMPADV 2CONTR
I [speak] Duojjin [[better]] than you.
(Lit: Personlanguage Ispeechdo gooderly youthan)
(Imp: As contrasted by you, I [speak] Duojjin [[better]])
Duojjiŋ sei’puhuõhõn hjeivåsojat teijatta.

Verbal Derivation Implication

When a contrastive noun is derived into an active verb, it typically means to contrast, or to differentiate, or to distinguish.

Mirin teihänåjättähin.
mirin teihänåjaettaihin
catACC 2NOMdogCONTRdo.PRES.PLAIN
You are [differentiating] the dog [from] the cat.
(Lit: Cat youdogcontrasting)
(Imp: You are dogcontrasting the cat)
Mirin tei’hänåjättähin.

Hänån heidjattanen.
hänån heideijaettainen
dogACC 3NOM3.INCONTRdo.PAST.PLAIN
S/he [differentiated] it [from] the dog.
(Lit: Dog s/heitcontrasted)
(Imp: S/he itcontrasted the dog)
Hänån hei’djattanen.

Kirin seistuttajaettåar.
kirin seistuttajaettaajar
treeACC 1NOMplantCONTRdo.FUT.PLAIN
I will [distinguish] the plant [from] the tree.
(Lit: Tree Iplantcontrastwill)
(Imp: I will plantcontrast the tree)

When a contrastive noun is derived into a stative verb, it typically means is/am/are different than.

Hänåmirijattamin.
hänåmirijaettaimin
dogNOMcatCONTRis.PRES.PLAIN
The dog is different than the cat.
Dogs are different than cats.
(Lit: dogcatcontrastiveis)
(Imp: The dog is catcontrastive)
Hänå’mirijattamin.

Jiirakørajattamõn.
jiirakørajaettaõmõn
womanNOMmanCONTRis.PRES.GNOM
Women are different than men.
(Lit: Womanmandifferentis)
(Imp: Women are mancontrastive)
Jiira’kørajattamõn.

Page Published March 28, 2017
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