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The Qualificative in TswanaE.S. M%to(Dept. of Mrican Languages VBS)qualificative as aproblematic.Itiii)The current definition of aword which qualifies a Substantive isimmediately raises questions such as:i) Must the Substantive necessarily be theretoo, already identified, standing qualified,for us to identify a qualificative?In NATURAL speech, when do we identify ourwords, before or after uttering them, beforeor after structuring them syntagmaticallY?If before, then a choice has already beenmadebythe time the words are uttered insuch relationship that one qualifies andthe other is qualified. On what basis wassuch advance selection made?We see an object in the distance. We tell itscolour - white. We still don't know what it is. Comingcloser we name it - an elephant.It appears here that our choice of colour (Qua-lificative) came before and independently of our namingthe object we saw, before supplying the Substantive. Wemay even identify and name the object (the Substantive)before determining and utteri.g its colour.89The question is: on what basis does a baby chooseTswana mma (mother) and weeks or months after, -~<monate (sweet)? There seems no relationship between thechaise of the naming word and that of the qualifying word,nor between the circumstances of their choice.Since, however, we teach language from books, itis possible to place words deliberately in certain rela-tionships in order to make a pre-conceived point. Let ustherefore examine the following paradigm of qualificativesin terms of our definition:SubstantiveQualificativea..kgomoe tshwanaa cow - blackb.pitsee tilotsanaa mare - blackandwhite-spottedc.kgomoe e gangwangea cow thatis milkedse na namanee(JUilk cow)thishaving no calfd.e e gangwanEe e tladitsengwhich is milked, ite se nskgamelohaving no calf,thatnamane ehas filled the paile.kgomoeo e gangwangthe cow there thatis milkedf.kgomoele e gangwangthe cow yonder thatjaanongis being milked nowpoints:1.2.Attention must be invited to a few importantThe qualificatives above qUalify Substantivesand we knew a Qualificative and a Substantivebefore hand so to place them.SaDIecontain one word, some more, up to threewords even by conjunctiVe standards.c, d, e,tare c1ause5~The Qualificative clause of (c} is identicalwith the substantival clause of ( )d •905.The first lexical item~!-7in the Qualifica-tive of (c) is identical with the last ite$ ofthe same Qualificative. Conjunctivists wouldrender the first one conjunctively, referringto it as the demonstrative element of therelative concord and the last one disjunctivelyrecognising it as a Demonstrative, thus:eeRangwang esenanamane e6.A very ticklish problem arises here, why oneDemonstrative is a formative and the other aword. These are the points on which consensUsis hard to reach regarding the word. This kindof irregularity occurs currently in Zulu too,for example, in the word-group lomuntu (thisperson) and by transposition umuntu 10. Thefirst 10 (this) is treated as a prefixal for-mative and the next one as a word. This goesto show that the near boundary of a word isblurred by a lack of clarity as to what aprefix is. Hence, when a word is placed beforeanother it may be treated as a prefix, even ifin the next breath it appears again as a word,and a separate unit at that.What we have seen above, however, is that a Qua-lificative is not always a word although a qualifyingword, if we can identify it, will always be a Qua1ifica-tive.This places a high premium on the proviso in" . t" into Qualifica-current grammars that the c1ass1f1ca 10ntives, Substantives and other '-ives' (six in all) is. t' hip and thatbased on function and grammat1cal rela 10ns ,there is yet another classification, into word-classes,dThe classification intobased on the form of the wor s•• d t b an exercisethe six '-ives' is therefore adm1tte0e91in syntax. It is highly doubtful that it can pass as anexercise in word-identification. For as long, however,aa the two exercises run concurrently a string of wordscan always drop into the same slot as a word, and so long__y we refer to both as a word.D. T. 001e1'Warns agains~ this, saying,It•••all relatives, strictly speaking, are relative clauses".Thismeans that currently, because a functional conceptea Qualifieative) and a lexical concept (a Relative) areboth defined as a word, a clauae is a word and a word isa clauseinTswana, in Southern Bantu. The idea of deSllusllurethat, \lIn language there are only differences"ia relevant here. If there is no difference between aRelative and a clause there are no two linguistic issues.One must disappear. How then do we identify the qualifi-aative word? Or any other word?The late Prof. D. Ziervogel of the Universityof South Africa gives a reaum~ of the views of variousauthorities on the word generally and we may learn fromhilll.D. Ziervogel sees a turning-point with the pub-lication or O. M. DOke's Textbook of Zulu Grammar in1927, where O. M. Doke, rollowing Daniel Jones's (London)idea or phonetics, determines the Zulu word and by impli-cation the Bantu word phonetically; the criterion beingstress on the penultimate syllable as signal of its farboundary. We might add here that A. G. Nkabinde2sees"Ooke'a identification of the word according to itscapability of being pronounced alone as well as thepresence of a lIlainstress ••• as a conjunctive techniqueof word-identification". D. Ziervogel goes on to statethat this lIlethodwas critieised by G. P. Lestrade andothers. but tbat the conjunctiVe word has come to stay.He adde. "Tortay there ia no linguist of note who regardsthe word as diSjunctive".' He warns, however, that the92problem is the extent to which the word may be so conjun-ctivised. We have hinted above that the problem of whichprefix inheres to which stem remains to be solved, whichis the crux of the problem of the near boundary of theword. We must now find that it is possible that from theextreme where,It •••the divider (of words) is themeaning or shade of meaning with which words are invested,not concord ••• nor yet accentIt,in which casemorphemes being meaningful units could also claim theirright as words, and are in fact doing so, a turning-pointOccurred in1927to the opposite extreme where it wasnot always known how much not to prefix. Is this whyfor instance a Relative (a word) can, strictly speaking,thatis,when its 'prefixes' are credited with their ownstanding and identity, be viewed as a clause? Thequestion arises too, to what extent


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