The BG Language Creation Guide

#6: Verbs and Verbal Morphology

Many linguists consider verbs to be the core of a language. As you create verb forms, you will also be asked to develop the following morpho-syntactic aspects of your language. As you describe each form, give all the glossed examples that you need to be clear. Note that as you work through these questions, you may find yourself wanting to translate whole phrases rather than isolated words. That is perfectly alright. this is the point where you can begin to play with whole sentences.

NB: There is a tendancy for language creators--even language creators with clever and morphologically complex nouns--to make all the verbs one morpheme long. Try to avoid this. You can be as clever with your morphology when creating a verb as you can be when creating a noun.

The temptation when given a list of questions is to answer one thoroughly then move to the next. this is not possible here. To make a grammatical sentence, you'll have to use all this information at once. So, although you should move sequentially through the questions, you will have to come back at the end of the assignment to create the necessary examples before turning it in.

Here are the verb forms for you to create.

1. be called something (the idea of my name is X)
2. begin
3. catch
4. come
5. die
6. drink
7. eat
8. fly (verb)
9. give
10. have or own (something)
11. hear
12. kill
13. know
14. lie (tell falsehood)
15. live (verb)
16. make or do
17. say
18. see
19. sing
20. sit
21. sleep
22. stand
23. swim
24. take or pick up
25. touch
26. wake up
27. walk
28-30. --- three more verbs of your choice
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Updated 3/4/2011