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By Frans Plank (ed.)

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Sample text

We can see the logic of this system, highly reminiscent of more familiar aspectual split ergative patterns, if we consider case marking in both transitive and intransitive sentences to be assigned in terms of a vector representation — either the transitivity vector AGENT • PATIENT or the temporal vector ONSET • TERMINUS and assume that the semantic representation of the perfective aspect places the single actor of an intransitive clause at the terminal point of the temporal vector, where it is assigned the same case marking as the occupant of the terminal point of the transitivity vector.

B. Ku-tarik satu botol dari peti itu. ' c. Ku-palu-kan pecah pada kunci pintu, tidak juga ada balasan dari dalam. ' Ergative and non-ergative sentences in formal Indonesian 33 d. Ku-lihat ke atas, atap rumah terlalu tinggi. ' e. Ku-cari jalan dari belakang ... " 2. Occasions of foregrounding Unlike active and other non-ergative sentences, ergative sentences do not occur in all kinds of discourse. They have to be avoided in neutral objective descriptions, such as scientific treatises, documentary descriptions, abstracts or reviews, but are used exclusively for subjective account of events, such as personal experiences, opinions or arguments.

7 (7) a. ' kejam maka maksud-ku, aku me-nyakit-i orang lain, cruel then meaning-my I ACT-sick-CAUS people other I can't get on without making (8) a. Aku punya kaca dalam tas-ku. ) Sudah tidak ada lagi. Rupa-rupa-nya sudah mereka ambil tadi di pintu masuk. I have mirror in bag-my. ) already NEG be anymore, probably already they take just-now at door entrance 'I've a mirror in my bag. ) ... It's gone! ' On the other hand, if in a hypothetical clause the speaker is not sure whether what has been supposed or argued corresponds to reality, then the clause is backgrounded.

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