Saim wrote:Am I the only one who actually finds Esperanto kind of... well, hard?
Never really tried to learn it or anything, but it seemed pretty simple. That doesn't necessarily mean easy, though, and the verb tables on Wiktionary made me dizzy because, although consistent and thus quickly memorisable with just a little bit of motivation without much effort needed, I still haven't really grasped what participles are or how they work in practice...
Saim wrote:Also what kind of "easy language" allows the cluster /sts/ and differentiates /d͡ʒ/ and /ʒ/, /x/ and /h/? It's not hard for me because I've learned these distinctions studying all the other languages I have experience with but it would be for speakers of a great number of the world's languages.
Yeah, although the difference between /x/ and /h/ is easy to hear in most cases, the former being just an allophone of the latter in Finnish makes it always sound like a "H-sound" at least to me as a Finn, which I imagine would become a problem in Esperanto since it does in Spanish. On the other hand, though, in Persian for example they're clearly different, so I don't know if there's some kind of subtle difference in how the /x/ and /h/ of Spanish and the /x/ and /h/ of Persian are pronounced or if it's just a matter of mental preparation for the perception of the sounds as distinct?
vijayjohn wrote:'yes' in Esperanto is jes
...because in Finnish, "jes" is like an exclamation, you can say "jes!" when you succeed at something or whatever, but as a general affirmative thing (whatever the correct term is), it sounds ridiculous; some people do use it that way, but it's not common and sounds really Englishy.
IpseDixit wrote:I've always found it sad that the most successful conlang in the world seems to be such a noobish creation (and also quite aesthetically jarring to be honest, but YMMV).
Saim wrote:Of course this is subjective, but when it comes to the orthography there is a practical consideration: what was the need to make up letters for this language? And who thought of using "x" of all letters (mi sxatas, sagxeco) as a replacement for this rare diacritic?
I personally like <Ĉĉ>, <Ŝŝ>, <Ĝĝ> and <Ĥ>, but <ĥ> is ugly because it's asymmetric in the most annoying way; same with <Ȟ> being ok but <ȟ> being ugly. <Ĵĵ> is alright, it looks nice next to any vowel except <Ii>. <Ŭŭ> looks nice after other vowels but awful before them in most cases.
Saim wrote:Speaking of yeah, I was shocked (around a year ago I think) when I found out that it's related to the ja that's so common in other Germanic languages (and has been adopted in Hungarian and some Slavic languages)
Finnish "jaa" is probably derived from that as well, but it's really formal and archaic. "Ai jaa" or "aijaa" is common, though, being something like "oh really?" but not exactly, probably from some Swedish way of saying "oh yeah" or something.
vijayjohn wrote:Besides, grown-up immigrants loved it so much when I said anything in their native languages that they would offer to find me a girlfriend or wife from their respective countries.
I rarely feel the feel of being forever alone anymore, but reading this made me feel it because that's one of the things I'll never experience. It's not like I'd actually want to be in a romantic or sexual relationship with anyone to begin with, but still.
I was going through random stuff in the Greek dictionary I have and noticed that Bulgaria is Βουλγαρία, transliterated as Vulgaría. It made me laugh due to the thought of it as Vulgar+ia, like a place of vulgar people or vulgarity or whatever; googling it, there have been tons of people presumably making that same association because a children's film
where a fictional country called Vulgaria exists, and a film called Vulgaria
has been made, among other things.
This, then, reminded me of how I used to think that garden gnomes had something to do with Bulgaria. I'm not sure if I thought they were invented there, but at least I thought that Bulgarians wore red hats that made them look like garden gnomes.
Also, Swabia sounds like the name of an African country. I know it's a region of Germany and the reason it sounds African is that there are Swaziland, Zambia, etc. but it still sounds like one to me and I find it funny (and at least one person
on Reddit that actually thought it was).
For months, one of my goals in life has been to write a novel set in a fictional African country called Swabia in which the plot centers around the interaction between its native people and Esperanto-speaking colonists that begins as trade but eventually escalates to the latter genociding the former as uncivilised violent barbarians. Decades later, archaeologists and linguists study the monuments and other things made by the indigenous people and discover that their language was really unique and that their culture was actually one of the most advanced in the world, and that they had somehow managed to survive as peaceful people even though their neighbours had wars and raided each other, etc.
Something like that, anyway, but the reason I haven't started writing it is that I don't know where the begin and that I'd actually want it to be good. The important bit is that I just really like the idea of Esperanto-speaking colonists. I mean, it's the most European language imaginable and European colonialism was like taking a huge shit on the entire world, and the little exposure I've had to the Esperanto community has given me the impression that they'd never do anything to ever hurt another person intentionally... but that's sometimes the kind of people that do the most damage if they get to a position of power, as proven over and over again by communism and religions.
Of course, the problem with the story would be that it simply wouldn't be historically plausible no matter what kind of alternative history twists could be made up, since Esperanto is a conlang invented in the late 19th century... oh well, maybe it wouldn't be a conlang in the story, or it would've been invented much earlier or whatever. Still, one day, I'm going to write something like that. It'll probably end up being just a short story because I'm a shitty writer with very little motivation (and most of my motivation goes into music rather than writing, so...) among other problems like having no clue on how to get into Esperanto enough to write anything in it and making the dialogue in it trivial enough to not need to be understood but still meaningful enough for those that understood it, but well...Why do I have so many ideas for stories when I can't write shit.
Osias wrote:why to design a language with irregular forms/rules on purpose?
Because it's more naturalistic, and conlanging is all about coming up with languages that have whatever you want in them, often including naturalism?