If you went one day for a driving lesson, and were instructed to engageforward gear in reverse, you would either think that the world had gonemad, or possibly that you were driving a space vehicle of the future!
Yet this is certainly the case in Volapük, which actually has aFUTURE IN THE PAST TENSE; that is, we look at events as they WOULD BE orWOULD HAVE BEEN in the past!
All this is done by placing two dots above the O and U of the normal future tense, thus: Ö and Ü. Look at these examples:
Äkredom, das öreinos = He believed that it would rain
Äcedob, das üfinükol bü mudel = I thought thatyou would have finished (completely) before Monday
As you can see, it is simply the FUTURE IN THE PAST!
Hard facts, in other words, and nothing at all to do with stargazing,which has to do very much with an IF ONLY state of mind. By appending -ÖVto the normal form of the verb, we bring into being the CONDITIONAL; thisis very much dependent on the IF or IF ONLY state of things. Look at thesenext examples:
If stom binonöv koldikum, ba nifosöv = If only the weatherwere colder, perhaps it would snow
If ikömomöv, agivoböv ome givoti = If he had come, Iwould have given him a present
Certainly not hard facts, but very much depending on whether one thinghad happened!
We are already very familiar with the appendage -LI? which asks a question;however, in Volapük there is also a -LA which indicates somewhat remotepossibility or serious doubt. Just take a look at the following examples:
No sevof, va okömom-la = She doesn't know whether he will come(but it's very doubtful indeed!)
Sagoy, das elogoms-la sneki = One says that they have seen a snake(tell me another!)
This is just to get you used to a concept which is by and large strangeto us in English; by seeing how it functions in Volapük, however,you will soon see the way it works, and when. Just now to sum up:
When to use the FUTURE IN THE PAST:
Make sure that vou are dealing with an event in the past, which looksforward to some time in the future: if you judge that such a future eventwould be happening beyond doubt, simply prefix Ö- onto the verb; if,on the other hand, you judge that such a future event would already havehappened, prefix Ü- onto the verb.
When to use the CONDITIONAL:
Make sure that whatever is in question is so much dependent on somethingor someone else, that its fulfilment comes into the IF ONLY category. Justsimply take any form of the verb in whatever tense and add -ÖV toit.
You will be meeting all the above in the serialized story which follows.Enjoy it!
Here is the vocabulary for the first part of our story. It will getyou used to reading a whole text in Volapük without continually searchingthrough the dictionary. You will allso be able to see how the various pointsof grammar fit into the whole. As usual, speak all the words out loud!
ad = to, into atos = this (idea, notion) baicedön = to agree betikön = to consider bofik = both büdön = to command cedü = in the opinion of cif = a chief, a head dil = a part dilod = a share dilön = to share dukötön = to cut through dugön = to lead et = that (= demonstrative) feitön = to fight fikulikum = more difficult fot = a forest, a wood frutidön = to make use of geridön = to bequeath (in will) gidik = equitable, fair gidid = responsibility gidöfön = to be right and proper givön = to give ibä = for (= because) ini = into (= motion) jevod = a horse kalkulön = to calculate, to work out kikodo? = why? kildil bal = one third kin? = what? which? (in particular) kiöpio? = whither? (= to where?) kis? = what? which? (in general) laf = a half lienetik = mad logedön = to glance at lülogön = to look at ma = according to mod = a method, a way nek = nobody nemögik = impossible neveütik = unimportant nim = an animal od (add on case ending) = each other primön = to begin, to start ret = (the) remainder sagön = to say sapan = a sage, a wise man säkäd = a problem seimik = a certain... seväriko = sternly sököl = following sötön = to 'ought' to do spikön = to speak stunükölo = in amazement stunükön = to amaze, to astonish suämön = to amount to täno = in that case tästum = a last will and testament tikamagot = an idea, a concept timil = a short time tuvedön = to solve, to resolve vedön = to become ya = already züldil bal = one ninth
HERE'S THE FIRST PART OF A STORY THAT LISABET LIKES TO TELL
Man seimik igeridom sones kil oka jevodis degvel, ed in tästumokik ibüdom, das ösötoms dilön nimis ma mod sököl:on bäldikün ögetom lafi jevodas; son telid ögetomkildili bal jevodas; son kilid ögetom züldili bal jevodas.Ädugoms jevodis ini yad, ed äprimoms ad kalkulön; postimil älogedoms odis stunükölo.
Blod bäldikün älülogom votikanis bofik, ed äsagom:"If no evedob-la lienetik, laf degvela binon jöl e laf, ab no kanobsdukötön jevodi."
"Atos binos neveütik," blod telid äsagom, "ibäkildil bal degvela binon lul e kildils tel, e binos nog fikulikum ad dilönjevodi ad dils kil, ka ad dils tel!"
E cedü blod kilid, züldil bal degvela ya äbinönnemögik.
"Nek kanon frutidön jevodi lafik," blod bäldikünäsagom. "Dilod obik suämon jevodis jöl e lafiki; if olsnu vilolsöv givön obe i lafi votik et, kludo jevodis zül,atos binonöv te gidik -- täno kanolsöv dilön odes reti!"
Ab blods votik no äkanoms baicedön.
Blod bäldikün äbetikom gididi oka as cif famüla,ed äsagom seväriko: "No gidöfos pro obs ad feitön!Golobsöd lü sapan fota!"
1) Translate the above episode into ENGLISH.
2) Answer the following questions in Volapük:
3) Finally, write a résumé of approximately one thirdof the length of the original episode.