Some verbs that look like VAI verbs in their word structure can nevertheless take a second role (an object or a goal). Some can be used as intransitive verbs, or as transitive verbs.
- VAI with explicit goals that can be animate or inanimate
- VAI with explicit goals that can be only inanimate
|ᒥᓂᐦᐧᑫᐤ᙮||minihkweu.||‘S/he is drinking.’|
|ᒥᓂᐦᐧᑫᐤ ᑏᔫ᙮||minihkweu tiiyuu.||‘S/he is drinking tea.’|
|ᒥᓂᐦᐧᑫᐤ ᒎᒎᔑᓈᐳᐃᐦ᙮||minihkweu chuuchuushinaapuih.||‘S/he is drinking milk.’|
There are some VAI with explicit goals whose goals can be either animate or inanimate, and only be third persons.
|ᐱᒥᐸᐦᐧᑖᐤ᙮||pimipahtwaau.||‘She runs carrying it.’|
|ᐱᒥᐸᐦᐧᑖᐤ ᒥᔥᑎᑯᔫ᙮||pimipahtwaau mishtikuyuu.||‘She runs carrying the stick.’|
|ᐱᒥᐸᐦᐧᑖᐤ ᐅᑕᐧᐋᔒᒻᐦ᙮||pimipahtwaau utawaashiimh.||‘She runs carrying her baby.’|
Such verbs conjugate like regular VAI.
|ᓂᐲᐅᐦᑖᐤ᙮||nipiiuhtaau.||‘S/he wets it.’|
|ᓂᐲᐅᐦᑖᐤ ᐅᑳᓂᒌᒻ᙮||nipiiuhtaau ukaanichiim.||‘She wets her (own) sweater.’|
Some VAI like ᓂᐲᐅᐦᑖᐤ nipiiuhtaau in the example above, can take an inanimate noun as a goal or object (the inanimate noun ᐅᑳᓂᒌᒻ ukaanichiim). Such VAI verbs with explicit inanimate goals are sometimes called by linguists “pseudo-transitive verbs” or VTI 2. If they make their passive or unspecified actor forms like VTI verbs, in -kanuu, we call them VAI+O. Other verbs, still make their unspecified actor form in -nuu, like regular VAI but nevertheless can take an inanimate goal, like ᒦᒎ miichuu below.
|ᒦᒎ᙮||miichuu.||‘She eats it.’|
|ᒦᒎ ᐧᐃᔮᓯᔫ᙮||miichuu wiyaasiyuu.||‘She eats meat (inanimate).’|
They have corresponding VTA forms if an animate goal is used. For example:
|ᒧᐧᐁᐤ ᐋᐃᐦᑯᓈᐤᐦ᙮||muweu aaihkunaauh.||She eats bannock (animate)’|