Lesson Three [9
for example, གཡག་ཞིག་ as "a yak" rather than "one yak."The use of mHodifi ers such as these
elimi nates ambi guity with regard to number. Such modifiers always o[ow the nouni̅or
noun phrase they modify, but precede the i nstrumental particle. For example, "by a tiger"
would be སྟག་གཅིག་ག་གིས་, not སྟག་གིས་གཅིག་
a. སྟག་གཅིག་གིས་ཁྱི་འདི་བསད་པ་རེད།
dāà chīki kīdi̲sɛ̅ɛ̀bəreè[ ]
tiger onei̅by dog this killed past compl.
Ati ger killed སུthe (thi s) dog.
b. དམག་མི་ཞིག་གིས་ག་ཡ་ག་ཅིག་བསད་པ་རེད།
mə̅ə̅mi chīki yāà chīsɛ̅ɛ̀bəreè
soldier onei̅by yak one killed past compl.
Asoldier killed a y ak.
3.2.2 Plural words and postpositions
As seen i n Lessoni̅Two, unmark ed nou ns generally convey p l urality . However,
plurali̅num ber i n Tibetan i s explicitly expressed by a num ber ot plural modifi ers and
pl uurali zi ng postpxositi ons, som e of the m ost comm on of which aune
མང་པོ་ ཁ་ཤས་ གཉིས་
mə̲ŋgu རྒྱ་ kāshɛɛ̀རྒྱ་ ñī̀རྒྱ
many, m uch several two
ཚང་མ་ འགའ་ཤས་ གསུམ་
tsāŋma རྒྱ་ ga̲shɛɛ̀ sūm རྒྱ
all several three
ཐམས་ཅད་ འགའ་ཞིག་ དུ་མ་
tāmjɛɛ̀ ga̲shi g du̲ma
all several many
ཏོག་ཙམ་ ཞེ་དྲགས་
dogdzam she̲daà རྒྱ
alittle i̅ i̅ lots i̅ i̅ i̅ i̅
[The asteri sk i ndicates that the ternm i s currently used i n colloquial Tibetaun.]
Each of these words o[owsthe nouun or noun phrase it modifies, but precedes the
i nstrumental partic le, for example, དམག་མི་ཁ་ཤས་ཀིུས་ (" by several sol diers") , not དམག་མི་ཀྱིས་
ཁ་ཤས་



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