Unnamed Language

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LinguoFranco
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Unnamed Language

Postby LinguoFranco » 2018-09-01, 18:30

This conlang is primarily an experiment in phonotactics, phonology, and morphology, but unlike most of my projects, I intend to stick with this one.

The language has a pretty simply syllable structure, being (C)V(V), with the VV sequence representing a single long vowel. It is mora-timed and syllables are considered "light" or "heavy" depending on whether or not the vowel is short or long. It has an SOV word order and is head-marking. I haven't decided on what alignment it has, but I'll probably go with ergative or accusative. Below is the phonemic inventory:

/m n/
/p t k ʔ/
/s z ʃ ʒ ɬ ɮ h/
/j w~ʋ l ʍ/

/a aː e eː i iː ə ɨ ɨː o oː u uː/

No word or syllable can end with a consonant, so if this were to occur (via loanwords or some other means), then /a/ is added after it.

All verbs end with the suffix '-li', which is dropped when conjugating.

kohali- to see
muːneli- to travel
saːkali- to ingest


Below is a conjugation table for the present tense:

S. D. P.
1. - ʍe -wa - ʍeːɮa
2. - ʒo - ʒoma - ʒoːɮa
3. - mɨː - mɨːma - mɨːɮa
4. -ka -kama -kaːɮa

So, if I want to say, "We see him", the conjugated form of 'kohali' would be /kohaʍeːɮamɨː/.

As you may have noticed, there is a dual and plural number for pronouns, and this also extends to nouns. To make a noun plural, add the suffix -ʔo. I have not yet decided on an affix for the dual form yet.

What do you think so far? It's a bit simplistic, but I'm experiment more with sounds than grammar, just to see what sounds and their arrangements appeal to me.

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Dormouse559
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Re: Unnamed Language

Postby Dormouse559 » 2018-09-06, 22:01

LinguoFranco wrote:As you may have noticed, there is a dual and plural number for pronouns, and this also extends to nouns. To make a noun plural, add the suffix -ʔo. I have not yet decided on an affix for the dual form yet.

Does dual mark any set of two, or is it limited, say, to natural pairs?

LinguoFranco wrote:What do you think so far? It's a bit simplistic, but I'm experiment more with sounds than grammar, just to see what sounds and their arrangements appeal to me.

I like the looks of it. Definitely get the point of your experiment from my own experience. The symmetry in the vowel system suggests possibilities for vowel harmony, if that strikes your fancy.
N'hésite pas à corriger mes erreurs.

LinguoFranco
Posts: 3
Joined: 2018-09-01, 14:14
Location: South Carolina

Re: Unnamed Language

Postby LinguoFranco » 2018-09-11, 16:47

Dormouse559 wrote:
LinguoFranco wrote:As you may have noticed, there is a dual and plural number for pronouns, and this also extends to nouns. To make a noun plural, add the suffix -ʔo. I have not yet decided on an affix for the dual form yet.

Does dual mark any set of two, or is it limited, say, to natural pairs?

LinguoFranco wrote:What do you think so far? It's a bit simplistic, but I'm experiment more with sounds than grammar, just to see what sounds and their arrangements appeal to me.

I like the looks of it. Definitely get the point of your experiment from my own experience. The symmetry in the vowel system suggests possibilities for vowel harmony, if that strikes your fancy.


I haven't thought about the dual number being used for natural pairs instead of any set of two. Which one occurs more commonly in natlangs?

What are the possibilities for vowel harmony? I've experimented with it in the past, and while I'm still open to it, I was not really too keen on Finnish style harmony. The vowels are actually copied from Romanian, just with a length contrast added.

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Dormouse559
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Re: Unnamed Language

Postby Dormouse559 » 2018-09-11, 21:10

LinguoFranco wrote:I haven't thought about the dual number being used for natural pairs instead of any set of two. Which one occurs more commonly in natlangs?

I don't know. I haven't researched the dual all that deeply, but my sense is that there's plenty of room for variation. Hebrew does something like my above suggestion, restricting the dual to natural pairs and some other nouns (time words, I think). Slovene, on the other hand, only uses its dual for things that aren't natural pairs; natural pairs get the plural. As I understand it, some Modern Arabic varieties have a moribund dual whose usage is optional. I'm sure there are some languages that apply the dual to almost anything.

LinguoFranco wrote:What are the possibilities for vowel harmony? I've experimented with it in the past, and while I'm still open to it, I was not really too keen on Finnish style harmony. The vowels are actually copied from Romanian, just with a length contrast added.

I'm thinking of height harmony. You could have a mid group of /e ə o/ and a high group of /i ɨ u/, with /a/ as a neutral vowel. The details of where harmony happens are up to you. The Wikipedia page on harmony includes brief descriptions of several not-Finnish languages, which makes it a good place to start looking for ideas.
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