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DAY 26: More translation!

tseata - v. to be named

Boy. Okay. Male person, which I think is the same as "he" in this case, plus young.
lisits - adj. young


tseatatu lisitsthoha yustisklaresskeraabsha ota shaus-hypishatu ymsha
There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.

Tomorrow, I'm going to write one or more of these sentences out in the script.
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DAY 25: More translation!

In the spirit of the challenge of the month, I'm translating my favorite opening line of a novel ever.

"There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it."

I spent some time agonizing over the grammar on twitter last night and arrived at the following:
[to be called](past) [boy](nom) [Eustace Clarence Scrub](acc) [and] [almost][deserve](past) [copula](acc)

(The copula at the end is the "equative" verb I got the other day.)

I'm not sure if there is a distinction between 'boy' and 'he', in the sense of 'male person'... ah, but a boy is a YOUNG male person, so yes, there is.

Vocab I need is thus:
v. to deserve
adv. almost
n. boy, young male person
v. to be named, to be called, to have the name of... do we even have a simple verb for this in English...???

I'll do those in order so I have time to figure out what to do about that last one. For today:
hypisha - v. to deserve
shaus - adv. almost

Oh yes, and I want to put Eustace-Clarence-Scrubb into apfyma transliteration.

yustis-klares-skerab is probably a good attempt. >.>
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DAY 24: Numbers

Thanks to doing a thing on Lyn's blog in a comment, I have something to start with!

One, two, and three are pa, shi, and suat. Making them instance-counters - i.e. once, twice, thrice - was adding 'th' to the end, for path, shith, and suath. (This comes from the time-pronoun ending being hyth.)

Now, four through eight.
lats, fy, sof, sash, kys

For the time-counters:
lath, fyhyth, sofyth, sashyth, kyshyth
(that's s+h not sh)

Now there's ordinal... buhhh. Prefix or suffix? Probably suffix, it's... closest conceptually to 'case'. Maybe -ta
pat, shita, suata, lasta, fyta, softa, sashta, kysta
...Sure, that works. XD

Now, how to do the numbers after eight... (It's a base eight system, you see.)

Tentatively, I'm going to say it is of the structure "twice ten five" for twenty five, which would be shithkysfy.

I'll do the other orders of magnitude later; one through eighty three is enough for now.
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DAY 23: Adjective stuff and stuff

I was looking through that list of first-lines-of-novels and realized that I don't have a way of handling comparatives! That is, if one has an adjective 'good', then one also has 'better' and 'best'. Blue, bluer, bluest. Wet, wetter, most wet. I forget what 'better' is but 'best' is superlatives.

least: ialy-
less: ash-
more: iko-
most: aupfo-

And then I forgot to actually do this yesterday so... another thing for today. I grabbed a random sentence from that syntax test page Lyn linked to.

They opened all the doors and windows.

This brings up the question of how to combine two objects rather than two clauses. I think they're just listed without a conjunction.

[open][past] [every][door][acc] [every][window][acc]

Also of note: the subject is dropped, as the original sentence uses 'they' as an indefinite-but-assumed-from-context subject.

pfiles - v. to open
estsu - n. door, doorway, entrance
syfysh - n. window, impassable opening, ventilation hole

pfilestu tsaetsusha tsasyfyssha
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DAY 21: More vocab!

Note: I actually looked at my verb affixes and changed my equative verb to 'ym'

Today we are going to do the last piece of vocab in my sentence, as well as decide what to do with the subject of an object clause. Vocab first, though.

conductor, an object or material which allows a certain thing to flow freely through it. The English etymology comes from 'leader/guide', which is not the direction I want to go with it. Diving into etymology a bit gives the source of 'pipe' as the same as "peep", originally meaning a chirping noise and then going through the word for a wind instrument. And of course 'conduit' is the same root as conduct. The wind-instrument origin makes sense, but I'm considering alternate sources. Most everything related in English sources back either to pipe or to duct, both of which source from Latin, either the wind instrument or to-lead... aha! Channel/canal. So what we want for 'conductor' is really like 'channel' - either used as a noun, meaning something which allows a thing to flow through it, or as a verb, meaning the act of flowing through something. I want it to be etymologically related to the word for 'stream' meaning a natural flowing body of water, similar to how channel and canal are related.

hesfos - v. to flow through something, n. something which allows a flow through itself
etsfosh - n. a stream, creek, or river.

The verb 'to direct the flow of something', which is what we actually use 'channel' as a verb to mean, is etymologically unrelated and in fact is more like 'duct', so would etymologically be more related to 'conduct' - but is not the word we want in this sentence.

sushtyf - v. to direct the flow of something
shostif - v. to guide/direct, b. a guide/leader

(Ah, I also need a verb 'to be' which is more like 'to exist in a state'... *looks at generator* tof, let's say tof.)

And last but not least, what to do about case... Is it too much to put two cases together? ....oh!! No that's perfect, I'll fuse them like I did with outosha. nom+acc iiiis... ha+sha dammit that-- HASH okay done.


khesetofao thyfha osha keuthash bouiryymao elekeutitsashyitsasha outosha iryymao hesfosfashyasha

*keuthash is t+h not th

Although technically they don't have spaces. ;D I'll write it up in the proper script later today.
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DAY 20: More vocab

Today I will do light and luminous as they are related words, and any other words that spawn from the etymology.

Also, I'm going to take a stab at an equative verb.

First: light. This probably comes from 'a source of light', which I will call shyithe. Light as in the thing given off by a light was, I believe, back-constructed to shya, but is rarely used by itself. Rather, the source is usually combined in the word as a prefix, as in sunlight or starlight.

For this, conductor-of-light, 'shya' is left alone, which would sound strange to a native speaker of apfyma but be understandable.

Luminous, on the other hand, means giving-off-light. Our word for it is an adjective construction from the Latin root word for light (probably through French though I'm not bothering to check the etymology right now). So I could easily transform it to an adjective with the adjective ending, shyaitsa, which I believe became shyitsa. So, shyitsa is an adjective describing the object as giving off light.

Now, the equative verb. I think it will be 'me'.

My sentence so far is thus:
khese[is]ao thyfha osha keut?? bouirymeao elekeutitsashyitsasha outosha irymeao [conductor]fashyasha

Hey, I could totally finish it tomorrow!
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DAY 18: Translation

It may be that you are not yourself luminous, but that you are a conductor of light.

This is a quote from a Sherlock Holmes story which I do not recognize but I love it so I'm using it.

Grammatical breakdown:
[it](nom) (dub)[is](pres) [that] [you](??) (neg)(sub?)[is](pres) [yourself](mod)[luminous](acc)
[but]-[that] [you](??) (sub?)[is](pres) [conductor](gen)[light](acc)

(English is the worst, FYI.)

Reorganizing to the right order and replacing vocab/attaches I already have:
khese[is]ao thyfha osha keut(??) (neg)iry[is]ao [yourself]itsa[luminous]sha outosha iry[is]ao [conductor]fa[light]sha

Just for kicks, replacing the unknown vocab with Xs to make it look more like words:

khesexxao thyfha osha keutxx xxiryxxao xxxxxitsaxxxxxsha outosha iryxxao xxxxxfaxxxxsha

Nyargh. Since I missed yesterday, today I'm ALSO going to make a list of all the vocab still required and fill in the missing grammatical things.

"is" (being used as an equative verb assigning a descriptor to a noun)
conductor (thing which allows the flow of something through itself)
light (the shining kind)

In addition, I need a "negative" prefix, probably derived from/related to the word for "no". I also need to decide what case the object-phrase (is that called a predicate phrase?) "subject" gets.

So "no" is, I think, "abu", and I'm gonna make the negative prefix "bou".

Now then, "yourself". Your self, the self which belongs to you. Now, how would they do this... It functions as a recursive reference to the pronoun, so it definitely has the pronoun in it, which in this case is 'keut'. It gets a modifier attached to it to give it the recursive meaning, which in English is "self" and means, basically, an individual entity...

Maybe evolved from the same root as the -ary suffix? So like... ele. I like that.

yourself: elekeut
himself: eletho
herself: eletso
itself: elethyf

And I just realized I managed to completely overlook the pronoun "I". Uuugh.

I: hy
myself: elehy
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DAY 16: People-place words.

There are five distinct "types" of affary: Shussary, Pfoary, Khitary, Tikkary, and Khuulary. The first four are named due to the environment they live in, which informs (is informed by?) their appearance and abilities in terms of magic. The fourth is a melanistic variant and not a proper ethnic group of its own.

Shussary are a coastal/island people; their name is probably related to the ocean or the waves.

Pfoary generally live in a sort of shrubland/plains region; their name, I think, comes from "grassland" or "plateau".

Khitary are in the temperate-to-boreal mountains, likely named for mountains or ice. Probably mountains.

Tikkary live in the least comparable environment to Earth; the closest approximation is "jungle". The word they're named for would probably roughly translate to jungle but really describe the treetop ecosystem of a forest of a particular kind of "tree".

Khuulary are named for the Eclipse, a "daily" event where the gas giant which their world orbits eclipses the sun for some time. This is the darkest period of time.

From these, I have:
shussa: ocean waves (can be waves from rivers or ponds when appended with "small")
pforath: grassy plateau
tepfora: rocky plateau
tekko: rock
khitye: snow
tikaffe: "jungle canopy"
khuu: dark (adj), darkness (n)
tokhuyth: the Eclipse
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DAY 15: Pronouns again and I forgot yesterday

Right, so columns first. These parts go first in order in the word, too.

query: yshi
this: pfo
that: ro
that (nearby): rota
every: tsa
any: opfsi

I eliminated "some" and "no" as "no" will be a general negation prefix and "some" is part of the plurality suffix. I'm still not 100% sure about the "query" pronouns; that might be done via mood instead.

person: sypf
thing: bish
place: tath
time: hyth
method: pfoh

"adjective" was basically the determiner thing that Clare asked about before so I axed it. "amount" is also axed because they can all be replaced by other pronouns on the table.

I don't know what to do with reason, yet.

(I'm literally just randomly generating lists of syllables and picking ones I like for these, haha.)
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DAY THIRTEEN: Prooonooooooooounnnnnnsssssss.

"Why are you dreading pronouns so much," you ask?

Well. Because when you think pronouns, you're thinking like: he, she, it, they, you.

I'm thinking those, plus theeeeeeeeese:

ADJ which this that some no every any
PERS who someone noone everyone anyone
THNG what this that something nothing everything anything
PLCE where here there somewhere nowhere everywhere anywhere
TIME when now then sometime never always anytime
WAY how thus somehow nohow all ways anyhow
REAS why
AMT some none all

So, yeah. Gwargh. Let's start with the easy ones.
he: tho
she: tso
it: thyf
you: keut

Case and plurality endings get stuck on them as per normal nouns. For the Giant Table of Doom, I'm taking the "stick things onto things" principle and stealing a page out of Japanese. They'll consist of two parts, kind of like a spreadsheet address. The first part is the column info, the second is the row.

Tomorrow... tomorrow I'll make up the bits for the columns. The rows if I'm feeling ambitious.
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DAY ELEVEN: Test out my grammar so far (sans actual vocab)

For a grammatical test run, I asked twitter for a random sentence, which [ profile] lynthornealder did me the courtesy of providing.

Makenzie wrapped the shawl around her shoulders and thanked the old woman.

The first thing I realize is I haven't defined the sentence order! I have VSO/VOS in my notes, so I'll start with that since this is, after all, a test.

This sentence has one interesting feature which I haven't addressed yet: combined clauses. There are two sentences here, really, that are combined into one sentence as they share a subject. This works easily for an SVO or SOV structure, but for verb-first, it gets a little more complicated. Tentatively, let's replace the second subject with a pronoun; probably a unique pronoun that means 'the person referenced before', which I will call [pRef] until I do pronouns.

So now we look at the first clause: Makenzie wrapped the shawl around her shoulders

Makenzie is the subject and is nominative. 'wrapped' is the verb and is probably recent-past, since I feel like that's what would be used as narrative-past. 'the shawl' is what is being acted on and is accusative. Which brings us to 'around her shoulders' - this one is gonna be fun!

The concept of 'around' is indicated by the locative case with a "direction". So you'd think those go onto 'shoulders' - but no! The genitive is on the thing being possessed, not the possessor, so 'shoulders' gets stuck with the genitive case and the pronoun functioning as 'she' gets the direction and locative! Also, shoulders is plural.

Thus, referencing my lists of affixes, the first part looks something like this (with missing vocab represented in brackets and English):

[wrap]ittu [Makenzie]ha [shawl]sha [shoulder]bifa[she]lyfe

So far, so good! Next, we do the same for the second part: and thanked the old woman

The verb is 'thank', also near-past tense. The subject is implied and replaced with [pRef]. 'woman' is the object - accusative - and being modified by the adjective 'old'.

[thank]ittu [old][woman]sha [pRef]ha

Before I put them together, I'm going to come up with the back-reference pronoun and also the conjunction. *thinks* I think the pronoun can be used with any case, indicating it is the same thing that was previously used for that case. So e.g. if you wash and dry the dishes, you wash the dishes and [you] dry them. How about ky? Yeah. And conjunction is gonna be ota.

So, final, largely vocab-less grammar for this sentence!

[wrap]ittu [Makenzie]ha [shawl]sha [shoulder]bifa[she]lyfe ota [thank]ittu [old][woman]sha kyha

One notable point: the backreference pronoun moves to the end of the clause as it is not new information and thus less significant.

edit: Just for fun, transliterating Makenzie into Apfyma and then romanizing it back gets you Makem'sy
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DAY NINE: Verbs. And verbs.

Here, let's start off with what I already in my notes for verbs.

tense: distant past, past, present, near future, future
aspect: progressive, perfect, periodic, success
mood: indicative, generic, subjunctive (used for indirect dependent clauses), dubitative, potential/speculative, imperative, interrogative
static, dynamic

adding the noun-conversion suffix to the root (or reflexive+root) creates the infinitive/gerund analogue.

(verb):modifier prefix:modifier

Now let's cut to me laughcrying hysterically for ten minutes.


Read more... )
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DAY SEVEN - Pluralize ALL the things!

First off, scratch my previous plural endings, they no longer exist. Instead, I'm going to do a couple of different plural infixes! This is entirely due to Becka and Lyn reminding me that you can do the thing.

So, there's the form of plurality which I was thinking of, indicating quantity. Lyn did an interesting thing with hers and combined it Part of a group, the entirety of a group. Which is an interesting concept, bringing up multiples versus collectives. I think I will have 'collective' a.k.a. 'group of' be a prefix, then have two... no, three different plural infixes.

The plurals go between the noun and the case (and before the direction infix), so [word][number]{direction}[case]. The three different magnitudes of plurality will loosely align with "a couple", "some", and "a lot". The first one just means two, maybe two-or-three, can sometimes be used as meaning a generally small number; the second is used mostly as a general plural; the last is used for very large quantities.

Now I have to make them up haha...hah...

a couple: -bi-
some: -oro-
many: -pey-

collective: lyri-
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DAY SIX - Name the language

I didn't really have time to do any real work on my conlang today so I figured I could do one small task to at least do something.


Apfyma. The terms for the dialects are thus Shussyma, Pfoyma, Tikkyma, Khityma, and... shit. I forgot the fifth group.

So that makes the word for "people" affary. (I've been saying 'ari but I realized I'm using y not i when I say it so it's actually 'ary according to my transliteration which is going to read terribly to English readers, damn.)
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DAY FIVE - Noun modification

Right, so we have suffixes for noun cases as of yesterday, which led to my train of thought going to adjectives and nouns-acting-as-adjectives.

When you have a word modifying a noun, it gets attached to the beginning. e.g. [book][store][case], a store of the variety that sells books. This got me thinking of my possessive methods; the possessive form of a word usually attaches to a word syntactically like an adjective. "Suzie's book", for example, has the book as the word, and the modifier as "Suzie's". THEREFORE, I have decided that the possessive suffix gets added to the word being attached at the beginning as a modifier. e.g. [book][gen-case][Suzie][case]

In addition, there's a suffix that you can attach to a noun to mark it as an adjective before attaching it to the noun you want to modify it with. This happens a lot for, say, colors.

I think... adjectives will all end in that suffix "normally", as well. Now the question is, do I want it to start with a consonant or a vowel...? Time to look at my alphabet again~

Okay, a decision has been made. The suffix for adjective construction is going to be -vcv, with the last v being dropped if the noun it modifies starts with e i or y. The actual suffix... is going to be -itsa. Actual adjectives sometimes end in a different vowel, so they could end in e.g. -itse

Additionally, for the 'locative' case, there needs to be an indication of... directionality, so to speak. I decided last night that this gets inserted between the noun and the case suffix... so I guess now I need to come up with what they are, eh?

Directionality infixes
near/around: -ly-
towards: -ap-
away from: -kho-
above: -yre-
below: -ush-

That's enough for today, I think.
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DAY FOUR: Start redoing all my grammar rules!

I like the idea of agglutinating languages, still, but I think I have too many... things. So. Starting with nouns: what do I need? Singular, plural. Subject and object can be differentiated by form and/or position. That, I think, is the core.

So. What do I want...? I like the locative case a lot, "place (relevant to) where the thing is done". A form similar to ablative; indicating means, method, process, the like, similar to saying "by way of" in English. Two object forms, "done to" and "done for", loosely speaking (like accusative and... dative?). Subject, the doer. Possessive... hmmm! You know. I think I might rather like instead having the "ablative" combine with a reverse of the genitive. That is, instead of having the owner be a modifier of the thing, the thing is the modifier of the owner. I will... tentatively put it down.

That's five cases, which seems enough. Now then... ah, blast, I forgot about vocative, a.k.a. the "hey you!" case. Hmm... I'm (tentatively) not going to use it.

NOW THEN. I think... case will be a... suffix? Ach. Suffix or prefix, I can't decide.

After much thought, I have settled on suffix. Therefore, five case endings, plus plural forms. I think they will all follow the form of (fricative)(vowel), let's see what that gives us... ah! Let's do this.

nominative: -ha
accusative: -sha
genoablative: -fa
locative: -fe
dative: -she

nominative: -hao
accusative: -shao
genoablative: -fau
locative: -fea
dative: -shei

These probably vary with the major dialects. Yay. I'm not touching that yet.
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DAY THREE - How do sounds change if grammar or etymology creates Forbidden Consonant Combinations?

First off, I have no linguistic basis for this method of constructing rules and to that I say TORPEDOES BE DAMNED, FULL SPEED AHEAD.

So, first we'll do fricative/affricate combinations, to which I have made an amendment. Fricatives do not follow fricatives or affricates. This has the value of consistency; fricative sound into fricative sound. So.

Fricative to fricative, the first one is dropped. i.e. s+sh goes to sh, h+f goes to f, etc. Affricate into fricative... After staring at my consonants for five minutes and thinking, I've decided the fricative is dropped.

All right. Now I have that s, ts, r, and l cannot be followed by k, kh, sh, or h. s and ts plus sh or h are already handled under the fricative rules. Again, I have sat and stared at my consonant chart for several minutes while thinking. The result of this is... ah...


I am redoing my consonant sound rules! HURRAY! Ignore everything you just read!

- silent vowel after a stop when the stop is followed by another consonant
- fricatives can follow ANY consonant
- r, l and m cannot precede a consonant - perhaps they cannot end a syllable at all
- affricates that follow a consonant tend to turn into their corresponding fricative. pf->f etc.

Also, I'm going to reverse the silent consonant to preceding a front vowel when the prior sound is a vowel; I like the sound flow generally going back-to-front rather than front-to-back.

*brushes hands off* I think that does it for now. Tomorrow, we will start ~grammar~.
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DAY TWO: Define possible syllable structure and phonetics.

The syllable structure itself, at least, I'm happy with - (C)V(V)(C) - so I'm keeping that. Onwards to my phoneme notes...

"add ‘h’ between two vowels when the first one is a front vowel"
Right... I think this was an arbitrary decision and I have no idea where I was going with. Looking at it now, I am left wondering why the first vowel is the one that matters? Would it not make more sense to have a... breath-stop or whatever the heck that's supposed to be before a specific kind of vowel...?

Let's look at my vowels, first. I have six vowel sounds, which are all unique letters: ah, eh, ee, ih, oo, oh, loosely speaking, which I romanize as a e y i u o, respectively. The "front vowels" are e, i and y. Playing with the sounds aloud, I like the idea of having a "silent consonant" stuck in before front vowels, so I'll change 'first one' to 'second one'.

"add ‘i’ between two consonants when the second is a fricative"
Well now that I've identified these as 'silent consonant' and 'silent vowel' it's easier to understand what I'm doing here. Now the question is, why fricative, and do I like it?

The available fricatives are f, th, s, sh and h. There are... a lot of fricatives, considering I only have fifteen consonants. I mean, I did that on purpose, but I'd forgotten. >.> That makes having a special pronunciation case for fricatives seem like a poor idea. On the other hand, going from, say, a stop to a fricative doesn't sound the way I want, so maybe I will keep this one. I'll give it a test run when doing vocab construction.

fricatives can’t be next to other fricatives or affricates
Geez, self, way to prevent yourself from putting half your consonants next to each other. >.> I'm going to keep this, though.

no alveolar + (velar, alveolar-palatal, or glottal)
.Okay, my alveolar column has s, ts, r, and l. Velar has k and kh, alv-pal has sh, glottal has h. This seems reasonable enough, no reason not to leave it.

r can't go before a consonant
Sure, why not!

This leads me to "what if word construction/etymology breaks a pronunciation rule?" which leads to SOUND CHANGES.

I shall do sound changes tomorrow.
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So the challenge of Languary is to do one thing on your conlang each day in January with the goal of translating an entire sentence by the end of the month. It's geared mainly towards new conlang projects but what the heck! I missed Lexember and my grammar needs resuscitation, so here we go.

DAY ONE: Reorganize and collect my notes to assess what I actually have.

- I've got my alphabet (and a base writing system now, too, huzzah). Plotted it out on consonant and vowel charts, too, as well as pronunciation guidelines for the vowels.
- There's a note here about doubled consonants sounding the same as single and I'm not sure what I was thinking when I put it there... I guess that you could have doubled consonants? Probably as artifacts...?
- No diphthongs, no vowel combos, they're pronounced distinctly.
- I have a few positive/negative/neutral sound associations. Not sure why I went with that alignment; English has emotion and size associations, mostly, I think. I'll want to expand or elaborate on this before I start making more vocab.

- There are syllable and phoneme structure rules here but I have no memory of what I was thinking when I made them, so I need to reasses and possibly redo them. That'll be tomorrow's task.

- Word and sentence rules based on an agglutinating system. They're rigidly overcomplicated and a mess; I'm going to start from scratch here. That'll take at least a week.

- I have a small vocabulary based on the current grammatical system which I'll likely need to tweak dramatically once I finish redoing the grammar. That's for last.


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