[PW] Stumped my local library ...

Morin, Chris (Library) Chris.Morin at nashville.gov
Thu Mar 24 14:35:26 PDT 2016


The various 'counting words' in Chinese, which function as articles for each word, have a multitude of meanings. For example, you have a number preceding the counting word.
Yi kou ren. Would translate literally as One mouth of persons for one person.  Er kou ren would be two people. Yi ge wenti, one question.  Er ge wenti, two questions.

Does that help?

Christopher Morin | NPL | 615-862-5859	


-----Original Message-----
From: Project-Wombat-FM [mailto:project-wombat-fm-bounces at lists.project-wombat.org] On Behalf Of Peter Zilahy Ingerman, PhD
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2016 3:53 PM
To: list at project-wombat.org
Subject: [PW] Stumped my local library ...

(This is for me personally ... no urgency whatsoever, but perhaps someone will know?)

German, Spanish, French (e.g.) all have both definite and indefinite articles.

In each of them, the indefinite article is also the word for "one".

English, however, has a word for "one" that is distinct from the indefinite article.

Are there any other languages (not necessarily Indo-European) that have indefinite articles that are distinct from the word for "one"?

Peter
(a lurker for a long time!)
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