Grammar » 39 » Comparing People and Things

Qualities and characteristics of people and things can be compared by using the roots of the describing words followed by the endings -nitsak- (it is more... than) or -nippâk-  (it is the most...) :

takijuk It is tall; the tall one
takinitsak It is taller; the taller one
takinippâk  the tallest one
piujuk It is good; the good one
piunitsak It is better; the better one
piunippâk the biggest one

When -nitsak and -nippâk are added to a stem ending in -t, they change the final t to n.  When this happens, the law of double consonant applies, so the consonant sounds in the endings are shortened:

tâttuk It is dark.
tânnisak It is darker.
tânnipâk the darkest one
naittuk It is short.
nainnisak It is shorter.
nainnipâk the shortest one


When talking about you, me or we, the endings above are followed by -u / -ngu (to be) and then a verb ending:
takinnisauvutit You are the tallest.
anginnipânguvunga I am the biggest.
To make a comparison, we then tack on the affix -mit to the person or thing to which a comparison is being made:
Makusimit takinitsauvunga. I am taller than Mark.
Amaguk Kimmirmit anginitsak. The wolf is bigger than the dog.


Keep in mind that when using personal pronouns to make comparisons, they don't follow a regular pattern:
uvanga me
uvannit than me
Uvannit takinitsauvutit. You are taller than me.
ipvit you
ilinnit than you
kinali ilinnit takinitsauvâ? And who is taller than you?
ilitsik the two of you
ilitsinit than the two of you
Ilitsinit nainnisauvuguk. We two are shorter than the two of you.