An Interpersonal Auxiliary Language

CCIAL Syntax


Certain adverbs appear immediately before the modified word. These adverbs include polarity and direction of comparison. This restriction doesn't apply to adverbial phrases. The negative polarity adverb is no; positive polarity is unmarked.


Simple Noun Phrases

A simple noun phrase ends in a noun or pronoun, which may be preceded by any number of modifiers. Each modifier may be a determiner, a genitive phrase, a quantity word, a participial verb, or another noun or pronoun (attributive case). The word order in simple noun phrases tends to be:

Determiner/GenitivePhrase   QuantityWord   Participles   Noun/Pronoun


The determiners include:

Word Tag Description Notes
ho Def definite only when needed
co Cor correlative
ko CQ content question
ito Prox proximal demonstrative
eso Medi medial demonstrative
alo Dist distal demonstrative
toto Uni universal quantifier precludes quantity words
algo Exi existential quantifier precludes quantity words
nullo Nul nullar quantifier precludes quantity words

A noun phrase is definite if modified by ho, an ordinal number, or a superlative or if no quantity word appears. A noun phrase modified by a quantity word and no determiner, ordinal number, or superlative is indefinite.


A partitive construction consists of a part quantity preceded by a genitive noun phrase designating the whole from which the part is selected. Partitives are semantically indefinite.

Superlatives and Ordinals

Superlatives and ordinal numbers may simply appear as modifiers of the whole; in this case any quantity word designates the cardinality of the part. However, if the whole is modified by a quantity word, the superlative or ordinal construction must be used. This consists of the noun phrase for the whole in the genitive case followed by an optional quantity word designating the cardinality of the part followed by the superlative or ordinal number, which takes a gendered pronoun ending instead of the appositive ending.

Compound Noun Phrases

A compound phrase consists of a simple noun phrase preceded by 1 or more phrases conjoined using one of the following particles:

Phrase Conjunctions
Word Tag Description
? Agg phrase conjunction (aggregation)
? Alt phrase disjunction (alternative)

These particles always follow a phrase in the locative case.


The verb is preceded in the clause by its arguments and adverbs. The alignment is accusative and dative. Some roles are marked using postpositions; these include:

Case Postpositions
Word Tag Case Usage
le Dat dative recipients, beneficiaries
bi Ins instrumental instruments, passive & inanimate agents
go ? ??? language used

Subjects and Grammatical Voice

Both passive prefixes demote the original nominative argument to an optional instrumental one. The Passive 1 prefix promotes the originally accusative or absolutive argument to nominative while the Passive 2 prefix promotes the dative argument.

The case of the subject, whether explicit or implicit, is either nominative or absolutive where the verb is either univalent or has the Passive 1 prefix; otherwise, it must be nominative.

The subject in a clause preceded by a same-subject (SS) clause is omitted and implicitly the same as the subject of that preceding clause; otherwise, it's optional in an imperative clause (implicitly 2nd person) and required in a non-imperative clause.

Usage of the Cases

The cases marked by locative plus postposition have the following usages:

Infinitive Constructions

Certain auxiliary verbs are always coreferential with their complements, which appear as infinitives preceding the auxiliary. Any polarity modifies the last auxiliary. The coreferential auxiliary verbs include:

Coreferential Auxiliaries
Word Tag Description
? NN natural necessity
pot·e NP natural possibility
? ? "begin" process phase
? ? "pause" process phase
? ? "resume" process phase
? ? "finish" process phase
? Cont continuative
? Iter iterative

Clause Chains

Sentences consist of clause chains. Each clause in a chain is either final (imperative or indicative) or non-final (foreground, conditional, or background). Non-final clauses are marked for switch-reference. The main clause chain consists of a final clause preceded by any number of foreground clauses, each marked by a conjunction. Each clause in the main chain may be preceded by a background clause (sometimes 2). In a conditional sentence, the main chain will also contain a conditional clause.

Foreground Clauses

A subchain of foreground clauses preceding a conditional clause is part of the condition. Likewise, foreground clauses preceding an imperative clause are also imperative. The conjunctions are interpreted as follows:

Background Clauses

Background clauses are used as correlative clauses (instead of embedded relative clauses), depictives and adjunct clauses, and complement clauses.

Correlative clauses are distinguished by the presence of the correlative determiner which modifies the head noun; the referent is represented in the matrix clause by the correlative pronoun CP.

Complement Clauses

Complement clauses are background clauses which appear instead of the matrix clause's accusative and/or dative arguments. The aspect of the complement clause may depend on the particular matrix verb:

In a benefactive construction, "give" is used as the matrix verb while in a malefactive construction, "take" is used. The dative object represents the person helped or hindered. The accusative object is replaced by the clause representing the action taken; this clause has imperfective aspect.

A purpose construction is like a benefactive or malefective except that the accusative object is also replaced by a background clause; this represents the purpose, has prospective aspect, and appears before the action clause.

Adjunct Clauses

While complement clauses replace arguments, adjunct clauses appear in addition to the host clause's arguments. The aspect of the adjunct clause determines the temporal relation between it and the following host clause:

Adjunct Clause Aspect
Aspect Relation
retrospective host event after adjunct event
imperfective host event during adjunct event
prospective host event before adjunct event
aoristic adjunct event during host event

Indicative Tense

If the time of the situation is adequately specified by some other means, such as a temporal adverb, the tense/aspect of the final verb is omitted, so past and future verbs appear as if present. Whether marked or not, the tense/aspect of the final indicative clause acts as absolute tense.


The tense/aspect of an imperative clause acts as aspect. The time of an aoristic imperative is immediate future; otherwise, the time of an imperative is definite future.

If the nominative argument of an imperative is omitted (assuming it doesn't follow a same subject clause), it defaults to 2nd person with number unspecified.

More Syntax


Polar questions are indicated by the presence of the polar question particle PQ at the end of the clause chain, following the tense particle.

Content questions are indicated by the presence of a content question word such as the content question determiner CQ.

Comparatives and Equatives

All comparisons involve a scale of comparison, a direction of comparison, a subject of comparison, and a standard of comparison; there may also be a degree of comparison. The standard of comparison may be explicit or implicit.

An explicit comparison uses a background clause in which the verb is the relational d·e, the subject of comparison is the subject of the clause, and the standard of comparison is the location. The following host clause contains the scale and direction of comparison.

An implicit comparison doesn't use the background clause; the subject of comparison appears in the same clause as the scale and direction of comparison.

The direction of comparison is an adverb modifying the scale of comparison, which is a scalar word appearing as the verb, an adverb, or a noun modifier.

page started: 2014.Dec.07 Sun
current date: 2014.Dec.20 Sat
content and form originated by qiihoskeh

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