10.22. Conversion of sumti tcita: JAI

The following cmavo are discussed in this section:



tense conversion



indefinite place

Conversion is the regular Lojban process of moving around the places of a place structure. The cmavo of selma'o SE serve this purpose, exchanging the first place with one of the others:

Example 10.162. 

mi cu klama le zarci
I go-to the market.

Example 10.163. 

le zarci cu se klama mi
The market is-gone-to by-me.

It is also possible to bring a place that is specified by a sumti tcita (for the purposes of this chapter, a tense sumti tcita) to the front, by using jai plus the tense as the grammatical equivalent of SE:

Example 10.164. 

le ratcu cu citka le cirla vi le panka
The rat eats the cheese [short-distance] the park.

The rat eats the cheese in the park.

Example 10.165. 

le panka cu jai vi citka le cirla fai le ratcu
The park is-the-place-of eating the cheese by the rat.

The park is where the rat eats the cheese.

In Example 10.165, the construction JAI+tense converts the location sumti into the first place. The previous first place has nowhere to go, since the location sumti is not a numbered place; however, it can be inserted back into the bridi with fai, the indefinite member of selma'o FA.

(The other members of FA are used to mark the first, second, etc. places of a bridi explicitly:

Example 10.166. 

fa mi cu klama fe le zarci

means the same as

Example 10.167. 

fe le zarci cu klama fa mi

as well as the simple

Example 10.168. 

mi cu klama le zarci

in which the place structure is determined by position.)

Like SE conversion, JAI+tense conversion is especially useful in descriptions with LE selma'o:

Example 10.169. 

mi viska le jai vi citka be le cirla
I saw the place-of eating the cheese.

Here the eater of the cheese is elided, so no fai appears.

Of course, temporal tenses are also usable with JAI:

Example 10.170. 

mi djuno fi le jai ca morsi be fai la djan.
I know about the [present] is-dead of that-named John .

I know the time of John's death.

I know when John died.