Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Today, yesterday, tomorrow

1. The formation of adverbs refering to past or present days (as well as past or present years) is quite regular in Tanii:


-lo
-yo
-ro
-lyin
-nyan






a-
alo
day
ayo
night
aro
morning
alyin
evening
anyan
year
si(i)
si(i)lo
today
si(i)yo
tonight
si(i)ro
this morning
si(i)lyin
this evening
si(i)nyan
this year
bii
biilyo
yesterday
biiyo
yesterday night/ last night
biiro
yesterday morning/ last morning
biilyin
yesterday evening/ last evening
biinyan
last year
ko
kolo
day before yesterday
koyo
day before yesterday night
koro
day before yesterday morning
kolyin
day before yesterday
evening
konyan
2 years ago

The only exception is biilyo (yesterday).

Note
: In day-to-day conversation, kolo (day before yesterday) can have a broader sense and convey the meaning of "a few days back".

Ngo Mumbai ho kolo aku.
I arrived in Mumbai a couple of days back.

Another synonym is lonyi-lohin (literally '2-3 days') :

Lonyi-lohin kapyopa, ngo nii mi kapato.
I saw you some days back

Similarly, siinyan-siilo (literally 'this year-today') can be translated as "nowadays".

biinyan means "last year" and konyan "the year before last year" or "two years ago". Taken together, the two words biinyan-konyan convey the meaning of "in past years".


2. For refering to coming days, the formation of compound words is different : here the root -da is used with various prefixes :

D+1
D+2
D+3
D+4
arda
rida
riiboda
riikhiida/riipoda
tomorrow
day after tomorrow
three days hence
four days hence

Further specification (morning, evening, night) is made by adding corresponding words (aro, alyin, ayo). There are 2 exceptions : konda (tomorrow morning) and ri aro (day after tomorrow morning).


morning
evening
night
D+1
konda
tomorrow morning
arda alyin
tomorrow evening
arda ayo
tomorrow night
D+2
ri aro
day after tomorrow morning
rida alyin
day after tomorrow evening
rida ayo
day after tomorrow night
D+3
riiboda aro
3 days hence morning
riiboda alyin
3 days hence evening
riiboda ayo
3 days hence night

Note: arida and arda-rida (literally" tomorrow-day after tomorrow") are used for counting an unspecified number of days. Both can be translated either as "in coming days" or as " in future".

Arda-rida ngo Korea inchi
I will (surely) go to Korea in future.

The formation of adverbs refering to coming years is based on the same general principle (various prefixes + da), but is not regular. For coming months there are no specific words but cricumlocutions : alyinii piilo => literally 'coming month', alyinii piilo barnye nii (lit. 'the second of coming months'), alyinii piilo barhin nii (lit. 'the third of coming months'), etc.


DAY
MONTH
YEAR
+1
konda
tomorrow
alyinii piilo
next month
diirada
next year
+2
rida
day after tomorrow
alyinii piilo barnye nii
two months hence
lonyada
two years hence
+3
riiboda
alyinii piilo barhin nii
three months hence
loyida (lohida ?)
three years hence

Note 1 :
Lonyada could derive from : lo + nye (2) + da.
Loyida might be 'lohida' and thus derive from : lo + hin (3) + da (in Tanii the final n of 'hin' usually drops before l).


Note
2:
The same way arda-rida (literally "tomorrow-day after tomorrow") means "in coming days" or "in future", diira-lonyan (literally "next year-year after next year) can be translated as "in coming years" or " in future". Similarly loyida or lohida (3 years hence) can convey the general meaning of "in coming years".
PB

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tanii beads-8 : small coloured glass beads

Coloured glass beads bought from the plains are very popular among Taniis, as some of their necklaces are composed of several rows of small or medium-sized beads of all sort.

1. Many of them belong to the "bimpu family". Bimpu is a generic term for medium-sized glass beads, especially those that make up bimpu tasan, a necklace composed of as many as 20 types of beads displayed on a dozen or so strands. The shapes vary from cylindrical to roundish. They are differentiated mainly on the basis of their hues:
  • lanchan bimpu : red slightly translucent glass bead
  • ji bimpu : dark blue slightly translucent glass bead.
  • jiji bimpu : green slightly translucent glass bead
  • horpu bimpu : translucent glass bead









jiji bimpu

ji bimpu










lanchan bimpu
horpu bimpu

  • bimpu ami is a special type of glass beads originating from Venice circa 19th century. Black or burgundy in colour with white dots, they are commonly known as "Skunk beads". The Taniis simply call them bimpu ami or "eyed bimpus".









bimpu ami

2. Tado are small, cylindrical opaque yellow beads used to make necklaces known as tado tasan. Two shades are distinguished, each used to make up a specific necklace simply consisting of several strands of these beads.
  • akho tado : bright yellow
  • aper tado : terracotta












akho tado (left) and aper tado (right)








3.
pike tasan is a translucent glass bead of amber hue.


pike tasan
(one
bimpu ami has been inserted in the middle of the row)

4. nyime perun (or peron), literally "Tibetan soja bean" is a small, cylindrical dark blue bead. As the name indicates, they seem originate from Tibet, or more probably, as F├╝rer-Haimendorf suggests, they were probably obtained from Tibet on a regular basis till the Chinese takeover. As he writes in 1962 :

"Most women possess strings of crudely cut cylindrical glass beads of dark blue clour and it could seem that these have also come from Tibet. They are quite different from any beads manufactured or known in India today (...) Today they are no longer popular, and have indeed very little market value. Their place has been taken by smaller and smoother glass beads of similar dark blue colour which have for some years been available in the bazaars of North Lakhimpur." (1962, 68).

Nyime perun

Nyime perun are used to make necklaces known as nyime tasan or ji tasan, consisting of several strands of those dark blue beads ornamented with yellow and red beads.

5. Lebu ralin, despite its name, is not a carnelian bead but simply a glass bright red bead which is set up at intervals to decorate nyime tasan necklaces.





lebu ralin








Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Apatani beads-7 : khiinii miru


Khiinii miru are unetched, spherical black and white banded agates. This type of stone is commonly known as "Sulemani agate", or "Solomon agate", named after King Solomon and originally supposed to be from his legendary mines. They appear to be part of a long established production whose historical center was Western Asia and may date back as far as 2500 BC. Of course, many beads found today on traditional necklaces are not anyway near that old. The pair displayed on the above picture is set up at the bottom of a santer tasan, and contrasts with the overall blue hue of the necklace. From a strictly commercial point of view, these are too worn and damaged to have any value. But their social, cultural and aesthetic value is, of course, a different matter.

In the course of history round banded agates seem to have found their way to the Himalayan cultures, especially the Tibetan one where there have become known as Bhaisajyaguru, "the Medicine Buddha" (Sman-bla in Tibetan) beads. Many of them are probably just a few hundred years old. Both Suleimani and Bhaisajyaguru refer to the same kind of stone, basically black agate with lighter banding. The cult of Bhaisajyaguru being very popular in Tibet (as well as in Mongolia, Tibet, Korea and even Japan), it is likely that the stone was attributed some talismanic or medicinal properties by the popular religion, as for Dzi-beads (see previous post).

Banded agate bead from Himachal Pradesh (for comparison)


Bhaisajyaguru beads from Nepal (left) and Tibet (right). Tibetan stones are often found to have narrower bands. (Source: garudatrading.com)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Tanii beads-6 : Bukhe Ripo

Bukhe ripo bead set up on a carnelian bead necklace, lebu tasan.

Bukhe Ripo are very distinctive beads worn by women, either interspersed with glass or carnelian beads or, if the owner is fortunate to have a collection of bukhe ripo, as a whole necklace made from the stones. Mainly oblong or cylindrical in shape, they are pierced lengthwise. The beads are engraved with geometrical patterns : circles, ovals, squares, zig zags or stripes. Colours range from browns to blacks.

The ultimate origin of those stones appears to be the Indus Valley and Iran, where they have been manufactured for the most part between 2700 BC to 1000 AD. The first ones were made in the context of the Mesopotamian and Indus Valley Civilizations, whereas in the Late Period they were mostly the work of Persians. They are either natural agates- black and browns with white banding, or fossil agate from petrified wood, exhibiting various shades of brown, some with different color inclusions. The stones are etched by hand for creating the very distinctive motifs which usually appear in ivory white (the process of making contemporary etched agate beads can be seen here).

Interestingly, nowadays etched agate beads are found primarily in the Tibetan cultural sphere (viz. Tibet, Ladakh, Tibetan areas of Nepal, Sikkim and Bhutan, etc.), and for that reason they are popularly known as "Tibetan agate beads" (or "Pumtek beads" in Burma). Mostly through bartering exchanges with Tibet (and then through heritage) they have also been acquired by many inhabitants of Arunachal Pradesh. In Tibetan language, they are known as Dzi, which means 'brigthness', 'clearless', 'splendour', and are much valued. For some very fine pictures of those stones, you can visit this very informative blog. A very rich symbolism is also attached to these stones, mainly based on the number of circular motifs or "eyes" (from 1 to 21) which are represented on them (see this link), as well as a number of additional parameters (see this link).

Though the beads have never been manufactured in Tibet, they are considered as precious jewels. They are also believed to provide people with protection, so that someone who owns one one such stone will not let it go easily, nor will usually sell it. The Tibetans (as well as the Monpas of Arunachal Pradesh) find them occasionally in the earth when tilling their fields or taking their animals for grazing. The popular belief attributes a divine origine to the stones, which as such are endowed with talismanic properties and medicinal value. For that reason, Tibetans farmers or herders are often seen wearing one or two Dzi-beads around their neck. The Tibetan/Chinese numerology interferes with the popular belief by attributing a distinctive talismanic value to the stones according to the number of eye motifs. The most sought after (and hence the most expensive stones) are the ones having an odd number of 'eyes' (the best ideally having 9 or 13). Next most popular are those having unusual patterns, inclusions or colors, followed by the beads having an even number of eyes.

Some of them, which are old and authentique artifacts, command high prices, as much as several thousands dollars a piece. But nowadays many glass imitations have also been made, which are not easily distinguishable from genuine stones. And thousands of "fake made-in-China Dzi beads" are offered for sale daily on Ebay. It is likely that many Dzi beads found in modern Tibet and Arunachal are copies, including the one displayed on the above picture. So beware !

modern so-called "Dzi beads"

PB



Saturday, October 4, 2008

Tanii beads-5 : pilya papu or Peking glass beads

Pilya papu, more generally known as "Peking glass" beads, are large round beads of greenish colour. Many of them originate from Poshan in Northeastern China. Most were made to imitate Chinese precious stones, especially jade, and so are found in various shades of green, from dark green to very light, whitish almond green.


A Chinese necklace made of Peking glass beads (for comparison)

Though all are made of glass, the Taniis do not confuse "Peking glass" beads with other beads of similar shape and size such as the so-called "Padre" beads (for eg. santer, see previous post). They also do not normally mix the two types of beads on necklaces. Typically, two pairs of pilya papu displayed in a symmetrical way ornament the middle section of sampu tasan or chank shell necklace.



Sunday, September 28, 2008

Tanii beads-4 : page or Chinese melon beads

Page beads have a very distinctive shape, commonly called "melon-shape" (though pumpkin would be more accurate). They are glass paste beads of various hues, the most common being shades of blue, green and yellow. Quite common in Arunachal Pradesh and Tibet, they originate from further North in China. From the Tang dynasty onwards, China has acquired a worldwide reputation and a leading influence on the art of glass bead making. Though the Chinese did not flood the trading markets with other countries with these beads, glass melon-shaped beads have been found in various cultures as far as New Guinea where, till recently, they were used as trade currency. In making glass the Chinese used lead-barium formula which makes it more brillant, easier to cut and easier to remelt. It also makes much softer and heavier beads than contemporary soda-lime glass produced in Europe.

The Taniis use
page
beads for making various necklaces, interspersed with other beads or forming separate rows. A single strand of Chinese melon-shaped glass paste beads of light-blue hues is known as sampyu page and is one of their favourite necklaces.

Tanii language differentiates at least 8 types, according to the hue, size and appearance :
  • santer page : light blue/turquoise, opaque, big.
  • sampyu page : light blue/turquoise/jade green, opaque, small
  • saro page : dark or light blue, slightly translucent/medium size
  • sankhe page : blue or dark blue, slightly translucent, small
  • horpu page : crystal-like, translucent, medium size
  • bilun page : terracota, brownish yellow, slightly translucent, medium size
  • pike page : amber, brownish, slightly translucent, medium size
  • halan page : light blue, opaque, small

santer page...............................................................................................sampyu page













saro page (left and right)

sankhe page










horpu page



bilun page







pike page


halan page








A strand of old Chinese melon-shaped glass paste beads, of amber hues, from Tibet (for comparison)
.





Saturday, September 20, 2008

Tanii beads 3 : Turquoise-blue glass beads

The Taniis use turquoise-blue round, chunky or cylindrical beads to make large necklaces worn by women known as santer tasan and sampyu tasan. Though imported from Tibet and indeed reminiscent of the true turquoise stones much prized by the Tibetans, they are in fact Chinese glass beads commonly known as "Padre" beads, whose colour is similar to those of turquoises (it can be also turquoise coloured tile beads in some cases). They are very popular among the Tibetans as among most indigenous communities of Arunachal Pradesh.

  • sambyu : medium size light blue beads (top)
  • santer : larger type of light blue beads (bottom)








  • santer page is a blue melon-shaped glass bead of the larger type (santer). On this picture displaying a few old beads the original shape has been abrased and only notches remain visible.




The smallest type of turquoise-blue glass bead is called sampyu. It comprises :
  • - alan : roundish, chunky beads
  • - sampyu peron or sampyu perun : literally "bean sampyu", cylindrical in shape

alan and sampyu perun interspersed on sampyu tasan




  • - sampyu page : melon-shaped bead





An old Tibetan necklace made of melon-shaped turquoise-blue glass beads (for comparison)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Tanii beads-2 : lebu or Carnelian beads

Carnelian and agate beads are used by Taniis to make only one type of necklace, which is also their longest necklace. It is known as lebu tasan and consists mostly of a single row of such beads. Its very typical colour, reddish orange shades, is due to iron oxide contained in the stones which may have bandings. Some of them can also be translucent or opaque. The carnelian and agate beads worn by the Taniis are not always faceted, but those who are are mostly hexagonal. Rectangular beads seem to be rare.

Several shapes and apparences are distinguished :
  • lebu : long hexagonal carnelian or agate bead which gives its name to the necklace. The biggest pair, or the biggest ones, are positioned at the bottom part.
  • gara or garya : short cylindrical non-faceted carnelian or agate bead. Mostly used as spacers between lebu beads.
  • yasi lebu : translucent carnelian or agate bead. Possibly also crystal in some cases.
  • rinyo lebu : diamond shape bead, usually positioned towards the middle section of the row.


lebu

gara/garya







rinyo lebu








yasi lebu


Sunday, August 31, 2008

Tanii beads-1 : sampu or chank shell beads




Among the Tanii's most valued ornaments are chank shell beads, also inaccurately called "conch shell" beads. The Indian chank shell is a large gastropod shell (Turbinella pyrum) found along the coast of India and Pakistan. It has been used as ornament in the Indian subcontinent for 4000 years and is regarded as sacred by both Hindus and Buddhists. Tanii chank shell beads seem to have reached the Subansiri area via Tibet. In the Himalayas and Tibet the shell has numerous sacred associations : symbol of purity, source of benevolent forces, etc.




Turbinella pyrum

The Taniis use the chank shell only as beads or necklace fasteners, not as rituals objects as in Tibet. At the same time it is the only shell used by them as body ornament. Cowrie shells (Moneta moneta) which are sought after for decorating the cane straps of Tibetan swords (chiri) do not serve for making beads nor any necklace part.

1. Beads
Sampu (or sampo) is the generic name for chank shell bead. A single strand of 70 to 80 of such beads makes one typical necklace known simply as sampu tasan.

3 types are distinguished :
  • * sampu/sampo (proper) : these are large, chunky or discoid white beads which make up the middle and lower section of the necklace.








  • * sanje sampu : these are smaller, more cylindrical in shape, and usually flatter; they are positioned at the upper section of the necklace.






  • * hiiku : the biggest ones, hand carved so as to give the beads a helicoidal shape, they are also one of the most valuable ornaments of the Taniis. One single bead can cost upto 15000-20000 Rps. Usually found by pairs, they occupy the lowermost section of the sampu tasan.


2.
Fasteners
Some necklaces are fastened under a chank shell button (sango tape) which is worn on the nape of the neck. They are circular, square or oblong in shape. Square fasteners have rounded corners.

















Long oblong chank shell used as fastener for sampo tasan




Round and square sango tape on various necklaces


The fondness of many Himalayan people for marine shells has lead some scholars to speculate erroneously that the historical cradle of those populations is located near the sea. Although this "sea origin hypothesis" is not backed by any archeological nor historical evidence, it periodically resurfaces (you can find one example here). As a matter of fact the reality appears to be just the opposite. Marine beads fetched high prices in the Himalayas not because they would have always been in possession of the Himalayan peoples, but because they were not, and because they constituted a rarity in the region that could be only acquired by purchase or heritage. It is a well known fact to anthropologists that even in the Pacific islands were marine shells are abundant everywhere, those who are the most sought after and fetch the highest prices are never the ones found locally, but always those coming from distant places, often through complex trade routes.
PB
(Special thanks to Nanku Hage for having
helped me to collect the above pictures at Ziro)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tanii beads-Introduction


Jewelry in the form of necklaces and beads has always been of great importance among the Himalayan people, and the Taniis are no exception. They cherish beads as family heirlooms, especially those they assume to be of Tibetan origin, some of them being enormously valued. Necklaces made with those beads are not only objects of pride for their owners, but also objects of public display : on festive days Tanii women wear up to 7 heavy necklaces of different compositions and sizes. Although originally acquired through barter or trade, necklaces were (and still are) normally passed down from mother to daughters, therefore some of the beads may be quite old. Necklaces are occasionally made for family and friends but generally not for business, although beads coming from Assam, Nagaland or Delhi can be bought from a few commercial stands at Hapoli market.

Most valued beads are thought to have originally come from Tibet. But the Tibetans were involved in the trade, not the manufacture of beads, and in most cases the ultimate origin of those little glass, stone, porcelain or even metal products is quite remote from the Himalayan region. The production centre for carnelian beads has been Gujarat since Harappan times (Kanungo, 2006). Glass beads originated from China (especially the so-called "padre", "Peking" or "melon" beads), or Europe (esp. Venetia). Conch and cawrie shells came from the Indian Ocean, either the Gujarat coast or the Bay of Bengal... Indian and European beads usually crossed first the Himalayas northwards from Western India, Nepal or Bhutan, where they entered Tibet. After that they could be traded or bartered back to the Himalayan southern slopes through transactions with the Tibetans, as were also Chinese beads.

One of the trading points for West Arunachal, through which undirectly a great quantity of Tanii beads and other precious items must have been acquired prior to 1959, was Taksing in Upper Subansiri District. For once every 12 years, the Tibetans and the Monpas of this area used to undertake a great pilgrimage around the Takpa Siri mountain, a near to 6,000 meter sacred peak in the Tsari district of Southeastern Tibet. The pilgrim route known as the 'great ravine circuit' (Rongkor Chenmo) started from Chosam in Tibet, entered the Indian territory at Maja, followed the Tsari Chu valley (an tributary of the Subansiri) then the Subansiri river valley upto Taksing. The whole pilgrimage lasted 3 months, during which around 20,000 Tibetan pilgrims circled the mountain. For 10 to 15 days, in the southern tip of their circuit, they had to cross the territory inhabited by the Tagins. A safe passage and some assistance had to be negotiated from them by agents of the Tibetan central Government which was directly supporting the pilgrimage (Huber, 1999). The agreement to proceeed was obtained through a formal peace treaty and the Tagins were paid yearly tributes of food and various semi-precious goods. In addition, swords, tibetan bells and beads could be acquired through barter from Tibetan pilgrims along the way. From the Tagins the beads passed to the Nyishis, who in turn bartered them to the Taniis.

Today the Taniis possess a wide array of beads, each of which is described by a separate term and often has a story or belief attached to it. In coming posts I will try my best to describe them one by one in a very succinct way, according to the information collected during my recent visit to Ziro. Keep visiting.

References :
- Huber, T., The Cult of Pure Crystal Mountain. Popular Pilgrimage & Visionary Landscape in South East Tibet, New York, Oxford university press, 1999.
- Kanungo, A.K., 2006, "Indian Ocean and the Naga Ornaments", Bulletin of Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association 26 (2006), pp. 154-162. (text in Pdf)

PB

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Ziro from another angle

Click on picture to enlarge

We are all too familiar with GoogleEarth or Yahoo Maps.... A recent release from the Department of Geography at California State University provides another view of the plateau, showing the way Ziro is enclosed in its green mountainous setting and separated from the Brahmaputra valley. Just imagine when people had to travel sometimes down to the plain on foot in search for salt or iron blades...The original picture is larger, and part of a photographic collection entitled Himalaya Atlas of Aerial Panoramas - Vol I. The series offers some fantastic views of the Himalayan barrier from Uttar Pradesh to the Lohit Valley in Arunachal Pradesh. They are not aerial photos in the true sense, but a photorealistic work obtained from computer mapping. One can only regret, perhaps, some of their denominations such as 'Dafla hills' or Miri Hills' which are outdated... Anyway, hats off !

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The imperative mood in Tanii

Understanding the grammar of an oral language such as Tanii is an essential step in order to preserve it in a accurate written form. In this post I have tried my best to introduce one basic point of Tanii grammar in a clear, though non-academic way. This point - the imperative mood - has already been addressed by scholars, both Taniis and non-Taniis: two "Apatani grammars" have been published (Abraham, 1985, Takhe, 1994), and one linguist (Shingo, 2003) deals with Apatani imperative in one chapter of his PhD thesis. The problem is that...the three authors often disagree. So I decided to enquire by myself with NPR and a couple of Tanii friends. Below are the results of our preliminary conversations. But the discussion is still open, and if as a Tanii speaker you find that any correction or addition should be made, please feel free to drop your comment. In particular there may be some dialectical variations of which I am unaware.

The imperative is a mood which is used to express commands, requests or prohibitions. The Tanii imperative is formed by adding a suffix to a verb root.

1. Command
  • a) The most common imperative suffix in Tanii is -to.
No barito !
Stand up !

Diipyokunii atan so linto !
Those who have taken their meals, come here !

  • b) To express politeness, the adverb iche (a little) is added before the verb.
Iche tanto !
Please drink !
  • c) When the speaker commands the addressee to move away from the speaker (for eg. to go and do something), -nge or -he are used instead of -to.
Inka ball mi tunge !
Go and kick that ball !

Harnge !
Run (away) !

  • According to linguist Shingo Imai (2003: 121), -nge is attached to verbal roots having one syllable, whereas -he is attached to verbal roots having 2 or more syllables.

Sukun hokii yasi hange !
(Go and) fetch water from the well !

Dunge !
(Go and) sit there !

Barihe !

Go [there] and stand up !

Gaihe !
(Go and) sing !


The use of -to vs -nge/-he depends on the motion of the adressee in relation to the speaker : -to is used when the addressee's position remains unchanged (1), or when the addressee is moving towards the speaker (2). -Nge or -he is used when the adressee is moving away from the speaker (3).
Note that the distinction between -to and -nge only applies to the motion of the addressee, not to the motion of an object. For example , if one wants to tell someone : "Throw this ball there !", one will have to use the imperative in -to, not in-nge. For in this case only the ball -not the addressee- is moving away from the speaker.

Siika ball mi inso ripato !
Throw this ball there !
  • d) Immediate imperative is formed by adding the suffix -ku (perfective aspect marker) to the imperative form.
Diito !
Eat

Diitoku !
Eat right now !
  • e) When the command affects or benefits to the speaker, the verbal root is suffixed by -pe instead of -to.

  • Mo mi tasan soye mi bito !
    Give one necklace to him !

    Ngii mi tasan soye mi bipe !
    Give me one necklace !
  • Abraham (1985 : 102) argues that if the speaker (or the place of action) is remote from the addressee, -yupe is used in place of -pe. Our own data does not confirm this. At least in Bulla speech, to request someone to give something located in a place remote from the speaker (or to send it) is expressed by adding the suffixes -tula, -tupe, or -liipe to the verb root.
bitula/bitupe/biliipe !
give/send [it to me] !

2. Prohibition
  • Negative imperative, or prohibitive mood, is formed by adding -yo to the verb root :
Diiyo !
Don't eat !
  • It's often followed by the particle -ka, which functions here as an emphatic marker.
Luyoka !
Don't speak !
3. Request
  • Suggesting an action to be done collectivley alongwith the addressee is formed with the suffix -sa :
Ngunu ka Ziro mi kapyodopa busa !
Let us keep our Ziro beautiful !

4. Permission
  • It's a little more complicated matter here. The permissive imperative (used to signal permission) is formed :
    • a) When the permission is given to the addressee, with the suffix -ngetiika. The negative form is -lakema.
    • No lungetiika
      You can speak (you are allowed to speak)

      No lulakema
      You cannot speak (you are not permitted to speak)
    • b) When the permission is given to a third person, with the suffix -kenento (or -kenanto or -kiinento depending on the dialect spoken). The negative form is obtained by replacing -to with -yo (=> -kenenyo)

    • Mo mi lukenento
      Let him speak
    • Mo mi lukenenyo
      Don't let him speak
    • c) When the permission is sought for the speaker, -pe takes the place of -to, => -kenempe (the transformation of n into m before p letter corresponds to the actual pronounciation which is nasalized before m, b, p letters, as in English).

    • Ngii mi (iche) inkenempe
    • (Please) let me go
References
    • - Abraham, P. T., 1985, Apatani grammar, Mysore, Central Institute of Indian Languages.
    • - Takhe K., 1994, The Apatani Grammar, Itanagar, Frontier Publisher & Distributor.
    • - Shingo I., 2003, Spatial deixis, PhD thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the State University of New York for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Department of Linguistics
    • PB