2.4.  Morphosyntax.  There are two basic word types in Coeur d'Alene: predicates and particles.  The predicates are inflected forms that can stand alone as full sentences or can be marked for use as subordinate clauses or in determiner phrases.  The particles form a small, closed class of words which cannot be inflected.  They function as determiners, subordinators, connectives, and other modifiers of the predicates.  Here, as in the preceding section, morphological analyses are given in double slashes.


2.4.1.  Predicates.  Coeur d'Alene words are constructions built on roots with bound affixes.  Several layers of derivation result in intransitive and transitive stems that are then available for inflection.  Roots and intransitive stems.  Where inflection is null, as in the third person intransitive, the full predicate may have the form of the bare root:   ʔácq   'he went out',  c̕iʔ   'it's a deer'.   

While what appear to be 'free' roots may occur in predicate positions, no roots may occur as predicative words by themselves:  Every predicate must be a fully inflected word.  If no other overt person or number inflection occurs with the root and it functions as a predicate, it must be assumed that the predicate includes the phonologically null third person absolutive.
The demonstratives are predicative words in Coeur d'Alene.  The basic forms of the demonstratives are as follows:
xʷiʔ      'here'                                        prox1
ciʔ        'there near you'                        prox2
ɬuʔ       'there near third person'           prox3  


     More complex derivation of a predicate proceeds with the addition of one or more members of a small set of intransitive suffixes, or reduplication, or lexical affixation, or a combination of the three, to form intransitive stems.  The examples given here are also zero‑inflected third person intransitives:
x̣áy̕x̣iʔt             //√x̣iy̕+x̣iy̕‑t//           /big+aug‑stat             'it's big'
ʔácqeʔm           //√ʔacqeʔ‑m//           /go.out‑mdl              'he took out (something)'
ʔentxʷiʔ               //ʔen‑t‑√xʷiʔ//             loc‑loc/prox1              'he is here'


As an example of the possibilities of derivation, the root √x̣es 'good' also serves in the formation of the stems //√x̣es=y̕qs// 'moose', //hn√x̣es=itkʷeʔ// 'good water; whiskey', //√x̣es‑p// 'be fortunate' and //√x̣es‑t‑ il̕š// 'be cured', which involve lexical, locative, and grammatical affixes.    Transitivity.  All Coeur d'Alene roots are intransitive.  Transitive constructions are built on intransitive stems (including bare roots) by the addition of the suffix ‑t transitive.  This suffix is usually preceded by one of a number of modifiers used to indicate directive (‑n‑; also known in the literature as control), or applicative (‑ɬ‑, ‑ši‑, ‑túɬ‑) constructions.  The causative transitive marker ‑st(u)‑ is complex and includes a ‑t  that may reflect historical development from the independent transitive suffix (see Doak 1993:88‑ 90).  Examples of transitive stems of increasing complexity include the following:
//√gʷič‑t‑//                           /see‑t                                      'see something'
//√t̕ek̕ʷ‑ši‑t‑//                      /fall‑b‑t                                  'put something down for'
//√nič̕=ax̣n‑n‑t‑//                /cut=arm‑d‑t‑                        'cut someone's arm'
//√c̕el̕‑p=ičt‑stu‑//              /fear‑invol=hand‑ct               'frighten someone (with hands)'
//√puʔs=cin‑min‑n‑t‑//       /blow=mouth‑rel‑d‑t‑           'tell someone a joke'  Stem formation rules.  The derivation of a stem may include any or all of the levels indicated in the following diagram.  Intransitive stems (subscript i) are basic to transitive stems (subscript t).  Affix types in the diagram refer to those listed in §2.2.2; bracketed levels include prefixes and suffixes if both occur within the category.
[[[[[[√root]redup]‑intraff]=lexaff]‑loc/dir/derv]i‑tran]t  Inflection.  To form a full word, a stem must be properly inflected.  Proper inflection includes specification of the subject in intransitive constructions, or subject and object in transitive constructions, and specification of control, voice, mood, tense and aspect.  Voice and aspect are indicated with affixes or reduplication as part of the stem, or with proclitics or particles.  Person and number are indicated with affixes attached to the periphery of the stem or with proclitics.  Number may also be indicated by suppletion or reduplication.  Other intransitive voice and aspect markers are stem internal, one occurring as an infix, the others immediately attached to the root.  Reflexives, reciprocals, and the continuative and customary affixes are the outermost affixes on the stem.  Person and number.  In all but the third person, the pronominals mark person as well as number.  Number may be indicated also by the use of singular or plural roots (see Kinkade 1981), or by augmentative reduplication (see §  Intransitive arguments.  Intransitive subjects are proclitic: čn  'first person singular'; č 'first person plural'; kʷu 'second person singular'; kʷup  'second person plural'.  The third person intransitive subject is zero.   
čn nkʷinm        'I sang'
kʷ ʔíɬn             'you ate'
∅ ʕʷúst            'he got lost'
č gʷič               'we saw'
kʷup x̣est         'you folks are good'

Intransitive arguments are discussed fully in Doak 1997.  Transitive arguments.  The third person transitive object is also zero.  Other intransitive objects are suffixes immediately following the transitivizer: ‑sel/‑mel  'first person singular object'; ‑eli  'first person plural object'; ‑si/‑mi 'second person singular object'; ‑ulmi 'second person plural object'; m‑ initial variants refer to forms used primarily in causative constructions.  The transitive subjects are suffixed following the objects: ‑n 'first person singular subject'; ‑(me)t  'first person plural subject'; ‑xʷ  'second person singular subject'; ‑p  'second person plural subject'; ‑s  'third person subject'; ‑m/‑t  'nontopic subject'.  Some examples:
x̣íɬcelm            //√x̣iɬ‑t‑sel‑m//                   'I was abandoned'
x̣atáx̣nces        //√x̣et=ax̣n‑t‑sel‑s//            'he hit me on the arm'
míɬšicexʷ         //√miɬ‑ši‑t‑sel‑xʷ//             'you rested (the baby) for me'
gʷíčɬcn            //√gʷič‑ɬ‑t‑si‑n//                'I found it for you'
číɬšitelɩs          //√čiɬ‑ši‑t‑eli‑s//                'he gave us (something)'
nič̕kʷúpɬn        //√nič̕=kʷup‑ɬ‑t‑n//       'I cut wood for him'
níč̕ntulmit        //√nič̕‑n‑t‑ulmi‑t//              'you folks got cut ' or 'someone cut you folks'

Transitive arguments are described in greater detail in Doak 1997.  Genitive pronominals.  Genitive marking on intransitive constructions includes the prefixes hn‑  'first person genitive'; ʔin‑ 'second person genitive'; and the suffixes ‑et  'first person plural genitive'; ‑mp 'second person plural genitive'; and ‑s  'third person genitive':
sčɬúsɬusmis    //s‑č√ɬus+ɬus‑min‑s//        'his eyes'
ʔisp̕ér                //ʔin‑s√p̕er//                           'your leftovers'
ʔul hnpípeʔ        //ʔul hn√pipeʔ//                      'it belongs to my father'


     Third person plurality, of subject or object or both, is indicated with the enclitic ‑ in word final position in either intransitive or transitive constructions:  níč̕mlš   'they cut',  cqípntlš   'follow them',           púlustmlš   'they killed them',  číɬceslš  'they gave it to me'.  Suppletion.  In Coeur d'Alene, root pairs indicate a distinction between action performed on or by one versus more than one entity.  A small sample of suppletive pairs includes the following:   
nept            'pl. enter'                                  n̕uɬxʷ               'one enters'
čem̕             'take hold of pl. objects           čen̕                   'take hold of large object'
c̕el̕               'pl. long objects stand up'       c̕el                    'one stands'
ʕigʷ             'throw pl. objects'                    čičmin              'throw one object'
q̕ʷec            'pl. are enduring, solid'            čay                   'one is enduring, solid'
gʷexʷ          'pl. objects hang'                     šar                   'one hangs'
leč̕               'pl. are fierce'                           c̕el̕                    'one is fierce'
p̕iɬ              'persons sit'                             ʔem                  'one sits'


The semantics of the root require that there be agreement in number with an associated pronominal:  for example, the form *čn nept  is not acceptable since a plural root cannot take a singular subject.  Voice and mood.  The various transitive voices are discussed in §
Antipassive/middle/causative.  intransitive ‑m.  The ‑m suffix, when used with one class of roots, renders the intransitive subject a causative agent.  Compare:  čn ʔácq   'I went out',  čn ʔácq‑m   'I took something out'.   Other examples include antipassive and middle interpretations:   čn p̕íc̕‑m  'I pushed',  kʷu míɬ‑m   'you took a rest',  čn láx̣ʷp̕‑m  'I rushed out', čn √kʷín‑m  'I took some',  čn √c̕aʕ̕ʷ‑m  'I promised '.
Reflexive: sut.  čn q̕ʷélncut   'I burned myself'.
Reciprocal: wišt̕ápntweš   'battle',  scuw̕n̕tw̕íš  'boxing'.
Interrogative:  ni.  ni k̕ʷn kʷ m̕ey̕m̕íy̕m  'will you tell a story?'
Imperative: ‑š singular intransitive imperative; ‑ul plural intransitive imperative; ‑∅ (replacing subject) transitive imperative.   xʷúyš  'go!',  xʷúyul  'go (pl)!',  níč̕nt  'cut it!'  Tense and aspect.  The unmarked, default tense in Coeur d'Alene is interpreted as either present or past, depending on discourse context.  Various aspects, however, are marked; these include the following:
Future: č, ususally accompanied by s‑ intentional:   n k̕ʷn čtuʔ-swínš  //čeɬ tuʔs√winš//  'do you want to go wardance?',  lut xʷe česqíɬn //čeɬ s√qiɬ‑n‑t‑n//  'I couldn't wake him',  č hisgʷíčɬtm  //čeɬ hn s√gʷič‑ɬ‑t‑m//  'I want to find it for him',  č čiʔspítmš  //čeɬ čn ʔic s√pit‑mš//   'I'm moving (changing residence)'.
Completive: unmarked.  čn xʷúy   'I went',  gʷíčn  'I saw it'.

The continuative and customary aspects are marked via stem prefixes.
Continuative:  y̕c‑.  This prefix does not occur on transitive stems.  It may be used with simple intransitive stems or with genitive agent constructions.   čiʔcxʷúy  //čn y̕c√xʷuy//  'I am going',  hiʔcgʷíčm  //∅ hn y̕c√gʷič‑m//  'I am seeing him'.    In the intransitive continuative, the ‑m suffix marks a patient subject when used with certain roots; the addition of ‑š creates a continuative antipassive:   y̕c√gʷíč‑m  'he is being seen',  y̕c√gʷíč‑m‑š   'he's seeing (something)'.
Customary:  ʔec‑.   Often occurs with ‑st(u)‑ in transitive constructions, taking m‑initial object suffixes (see
§  The customary construction is also used to indicate causative transitives.   čn̕cxʷúy  //čn ʔec√xʷuy//  'I go',   ʔecgʷíčsn  //ʔec√gʷič‑st(u)‑n//  'I see him'.
Stative:tčís‑t  'it's long',  es‑t   'he is good',  čn picxʷ‑t   'I lost interest'.
Involuntary/inchoative:pčn √ɬáx̣ʷ‑p   'I escaped',  čn n√p̕ic̕‑p  'I started to push it',  √yér+yer‑p   'wagon'.  The inchoative ‑p complements the inchoative infix ‑ʔ‑ discussed in §
Resultive:  ʔu.   ʔu čn nás  'I am wet',  ʔu xʷéqʷ  'he is clean',   
Already:  t̕iʔ .   hoy kʷun t̕iʔ č̕éʔmp   'it's already dark',  xʷiʔ t̕iʔ t̕áx̣o  'he has died'.  Control.  Predicates are marked noncontrol stem‑internally, either by reduplication or suffixation.  Noncontrol predicates indicate accidental events or success after effort.  Control is unmarked. 
Noncontrol/resultive intransitive: +C2 reduplication.   nt̕ék̕ʷk̕ʷ  //hn√t̕ek̕ʷ+kʷ//  'he fell down'.
Noncontrol:nun.  ‑nun is used in both intransitive and transitive clauses:  c̕el̕pnúnn  //√c̕el̕‑p‑nun‑n‑t‑n//  'I succeeded in frightening him',  kʷup česmiˑpnúnms  //kʷ‑p čeɬ s√miy‑p‑nun‑m‑s//  'you are to learn about him'.   Both noncontrol suffixes may occur in a single construction:   peɬɬnúnn  //√peɬ+ɬ‑nun‑n‑t‑n//  'I made it thick'.


2.4.2.  Particles.  Determiners.  There are three definite determiners that correlate phonetically and deictically with the three demonstratives (§, and one oblique/indefinite determiner.   
xʷe                   det1
ce                     det2
ɬe                     det3
ʔe                     oblique         


Determiners introduce clauses adjoined to the main predicate to specify participants:  
déx̣ʷnc xʷe čsúpses     'His tail fell off'
ʔečɬíp xʷe hiˑsíleʔ        'My grandson hunts'


x̣emínčs xʷe česčšípnc xʷe ʔe sčíčeʔ    
he.likes det1 he.will.chase.it det1 obl horse
'The horse likes to chase'


ɬuʔ niʔt̕ék̕ʷus ɬa stqʷíl̕kʷup
prox3 lay.in.fire det3 fire
'He lay in the fire'  Subordinator/Specifier.  The particle he is used to form subordinate and descriptive genitive constructions.  
st̕únɬc̕eʔ he sqel̕tč
mule(deer) spec meat
'corned beef; mule deer meat'


x̣est he skʷíctm    
good spec morning
'(It is a) good morning'


ʔeníˑs č‑nɬámqeʔ he cétxʷs
they.went dir‑bear spec his.house
'They went to Bear's house'


In negative constructions, he immediately follows the negative predicate to introduce another, often nominalized, predicate which is being negated:
lut he s‑x̣ést
neg spec nom‑good
'It tasted awful; It's not good'  Connectives.  The connectives hiɬ and ɬ may function as subordinators as well as connectives.  ɬ may be a reduced form of hiɬ.
čn cʔəmúˑˑt ɬ ʔacx̣ən    
I sit.there conn I.watch.it
'I sat there and I watched'


kʷu tgʷeʔ Lynn ɬ kʷup ʔáccqeʔ
you with Lynn and you.folks go.out.pl
'You and Lynn went out'


ni kʷup ʔáccqeʔ xʷe Lynn hiɬ kʷu ʔé
Q you.folks go.out.pl det1 Lynn conn you person
'Did you go out with Lynn?'  Other particles.  Particles are used to connect predicates, functioning as prepositions and to indicate mood (such as the question particle ni) and aspect.  Some elements analyzed as particles here may actually be proclitic and some may be roots.  All need further study.  Only a sampling of particles is provided here.
  twe  'with'. 
k̕ʷey̕ ʔicʔíttš xʷe Shirley twe Reno.
'They were still sleeping, Shirley and Reno'



            t: 'to' 
xʷúyš t xʷe Cataldo.
go loc det1 Cataldo
'Go to Cataldo!'


ciʔ ɬ xʷe q̕ʷádəl̕qs t xʷiʔ líˑmt ...  
that conn det1 priest conn this thankful
'That Blackrobe, he was thankful ...'


            tel̕  'from'.
tel̕ ceníl ɬ n̕ídusn
from him conn I.bought.it    
'I bought it from him'


            tgʷel̕  'because; for'.   It is possible that /gʷeʔ/ is an independent form, perhaps a root, that may take take locative and other morphology; this form may be analyzable as //t‑gʷeʔ ɬ//, with locative and connective:
n̕ídusn tgʷel̕ kʷu ʔé
I.bought.it because you person
'I bought it for you'


Aspectual particles:
pinč 'always'.   pinč hicgʷənítm xʷe pus  'I always call the cat'.

cmiʔ  'used to'.  cmiʔʔecgʷíčsn   'I used to see it'.

n  hypothetical; 'if ... then'.  n gʷenícexʷ   'If you call me ...'


Grammatical sketch

Adapted from the first two chapters of Coeur d'Alene Grammatical Relations by Ivy Doak, 1997





Ivy Doak
Timothy Montler