I am trying to see if I can come up with new prepositions according to my thoughts on getting rid of prepositions (for a conlang).
First, prepositions are "before things" traditionally, but I think of them as "after" things. Don't know if that is important. But you have prepositions after verbs, and after nouns.
- I worry about stuff.
- I listen to music.
- I cope with my condition.
- The age at which you are allowed to vote.
- The grass on the hill.
- The tree over by the rock.
It appears as though you first need to convert the "after noun" form into an "after verb" form:
- The grass, where the grass is on the hill.
- The tree, where the tree is over by the rock.
The template/pattern is basically, a preposition shortens such a complex expression like those last statements (with the "where" clause) into a discrete word or word sequence.
But you can take it further, where the "after verb" preposition is broken down into a verb + complement:
- on ~ arrive attach
So we have:
the grass, where the grass is arrive attach the hill the grass,̶ ̶w̶h̶e̶r̶e̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶g̶r̶a̶s̶s̶ ̶i̶s̶ ̶a̶r̶r̶i̶v̶e̶ ̶a̶t̶t̶a̶c̶h̶ the hill the grass *on* the hill
- on: where the x is arrive attach
So then it seems you can "expand" prepositions into this where clause + verb + complement, and the preposition is just shorthand for that sort of long phrase. Just a thought. Somehow I have a feeling that prepositions are a complex and arbitrary shortener for complex phrases, which is perhaps support for why Lexical and Functional Prepositions in Acquisition: Evidence for a Hybrid Category says prepositions aren't as fundamental as nouns/verbs/adjectives, and why they are so awkward.
So in thinking about that, I am wondering if languages have "freely open" classes of prepositions. In English I saw here that, at least in past versions of English, prepositions were an open class (though I don't know of examples). But what about old English, or other languages, are there any examples where they are just as open as nouns/verbs/adjectives? Or at least more open than they are in English?
So I try to make up prepositions, working backward from the long "template" sentences above:
- Start with "where the eating is fixed to the table."
- Go to "I want to eat, where the eating is fixed arrive the table."
- Prepositionize: "I want to eat affixed the table."
Something like that perhaps? Where "affix" is a preposition? Or am I doing it wrong?
- "where the singing is to the sky."
- "I want to sing, where the singing is to the sky."
- "I want to sing skyward."
No, that is an adverb. So can there be prepositions after verbs and it not be an adverb?
- "where the crawling is under the ground."
- "I want to crawl, where the crawling is move below arrive the ground."
- "I want to crawl mogrunderward."
How about "after noun" prepositions using the template?
- where the bug is just within the bounds of the garden.
- the bug, where the bug is just within the bounds of the garden.
- the bug, where the but is just join enter the bounds base the garden.
- the bug jentrabase the garden
I don't know, I am trying to create new prepositions, even though it feels clunky (and English doesn't seem to really allow it that much).
Are there languages which allow you to do this sort of thing? Is so, what are a few examples to demonstrate the scope, so I can wrap my head around it better. If not, why not?