Why is plural not generally referred to as a grammatical gender like male, female and neuter? It seems to be in most ways the same sort of category and causes similar mutations in subject and object and pronouns.

· · Web · 1 · 0 · 1

@oakreef I'd have said "because plurals inherit their grammatical gender from the singulars" but that's hilariously untrue of Irish, at least :P

@seachaint Yeah they do in some languages and both in the others. But even in, say, French, where you have male plural and female plural that doesn't really answer the original question so much as just changes the wording to be why aren't plural male and plural female considered to be two further gender categories.

@oakreef Yea, and I was grappling with this when compiling a proposed set of rules for a neuter pronoun based on "ea" - what mutations to use? The mutations available are "male, female, plural", so I take your point well that it's funny that only two sets are considered "genders"

@seachaint I asked someone who knew a bit more about the history of the language once what prepositional forms the neuter pronoun used back in Old Irish and they said that they used the same as the male ones. Don't know about the mutations though.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
🍏Abhlach🍎

Personal server of https://abhlach.ie/@oakreef