|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᓐ᙮||chiwaapimin||you see me|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᑎᓐ᙮||chiwaapimitin||I see you|
The it in the second example above is called a theme suffix. The difference between these two examples is that the theme suffix -it appears in ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᑎᓐ chiwaapimitin ‘I see you’ and not in ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᓐ chiwaapimin ‘you see me’
There are three transitive animate theme suffixes, which follow the TA verb stem: -it, -aa ,and -ikw / -iku. it is used only when first persons (ᓃᔨ niiyi ‘I’, ᓃᔮᓐ niiyaan ‘we’) are actors and the second persons (ᒌᔨ chiiyi ‘you’, ᒌᔮᓂᐤ chiiyaaniu ‘we including you’, ᒌᔨᐧᐋᐤ chiiyiwaau ‘you all’) are goals. -aa and -ikw/-iku are used in all combinations with third persons.
|Northern Dialect||English||Actor||Rank||Goal||Prefix||Theme Suffix|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᓐ||chiwaapimin||you see me||2||>||1||ᒋ||chi||–|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᑎᓐ||chiwaapimitin||I see you||1||>||2||ᒋ||chi||it|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᓈᐧᐋᐤ||chiwaapiminaawaau||you all see me||2p||>||1||ᒋ||chi||–|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᑎᓈᐧᐋᐤ||chiwaapimitinaawaau||I see you all||1||>||2p||ᒋ||chi||it|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᓈᓐ||chiwaapiminaan||you see us||2(p)||>||1p||ᒋ||chi||–|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᑎᓈᓐ||chiwaapimitinaan||we see you||1p||>||2(p)||ᒋ||chi||it|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒫᐤ||chiwaapimaau||you see her||2||>||3||ᒋ||chi||aa|
|ᒋᐧᐋᐱᒥᒄ||chiwaapimikw||she sees you||3||>||2||ᒋ||chi||ikw|
|ᓂᐧᐋᐱᒫᐤ||niwaapimaau||I see her||1||>||3||ᓂ||ni||aa|
|ᓂᐧᐋᐱᒥᒄ||niwaapimikw||she sees me||3||>||1||ᓂ||ni||ikw|
|ᐧᐋᐱᒫᐤ||waapimaau||she sees him (the other)||3||>||3′||–||aa|
|ᐧᐋᐱᒥᑰ||waapimikuu||he (the other) sees her||3′||>||3||–||iku|
[for the plural third persons combinations see the complete conjugation tables]
The theme suffix it appears in independent and conjunct verb forms. The theme suffixes aa and iku/ikw appear in the independent verb forms, but generally not in the conjunct forms.
When the actor of a TA verb ranks higher than the goal on the person hierarchy, we can speak of a “direct” relationship. When the goal outranks the actor on the person hierarchy, then we speak of an “inverse” relationship. The theme suffix aa is thus also called the Direct suffix , while the theme suffixes it and iku/ikw are called the Inverse suffixes.