Since it is possible for inanimate objects to be the subject of these sentences, it is not feasible to call this a quotative form, i.e., the literal meaning, `the x says it won't y' is not a possible semantic interpretation here. Rather, the meaning `x refuses to y' is to be preferred. Note that thePNG marker attached to maatt- is always 1st person singular in form, i.e., Î¨ -een. It never agrees with the subject---only thePNG of the `quotative' verb agrees with the subjects.
Ë¤ä ÂÀ¾Ô¥Ø¹¨-õ´â uppu varamaatteen-ngadu `the salt refuses to come out (of the shaker)'
Note that the tense of the verb -n- can be past or present:
Future does not occur.
This tendency for the LT quotative verb Í¨ to function as a marker of various morphological and syntactic processes indicates that it is in the process of being grammaticalized, and is not always to be treated as a lexical verb in ST.The LT form is Í¨ en and the AVP form is Í¨ì enru, the change to retroflex ýý nn is predictible. What is not predictible is the loss of the initial vowel Í e, which reinforces the notion that this verb is being grammaticalized. Like aspectual verbs that hve been grammaticalized from lexical verbs, the phonological rules governing their derivation has changed.