The Dailies. November 18
Did you work on your language today? Create any new rules of grammar or syntax? New progress on a script? New words in your lexicon?
On the other hand, do any excavating or reading or enjoying stuff you’ve already created? Do you have any favorites to share?
How did you conlang today?0
4 thoughts on “The Dailies. November 18”
I haven’t done much conlanging lately; my life has been a chaotic maelstrom of disruption and anxiety lately. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about; I’m here to talk about what conlanging work I have done!
Today I more-or-less finished the house I have been building in Minecraft for a few days, and I decided to give it a Firen appellation. I started with “Bee’s home on the hill”, but Firen didn’t have a word for “hill” yet. And rather than just coining a word that means exactly the same as the English word, I decided to choose a different base scale. Thus:
bůs, “large hill/mountain”, “A hill which is large enough to dominate the landscape”
zobůs, “Hill” (from zo, little)
funbůs, “Mountain (as in a proper mountain visible from miles around)” (from fun, big)
The full translation is He ko Tudduse Zobůstao, gloss: home POSS bee-ANIM little.hill-SPE.
The definition I chose for bůs is partially inspired from the geography of the town I grew up in. There was a very large hill parallel to the river, which had a name (Prune Hill) and the city was built partly on its slopes. There wasn’t much development on the very top of the hill, so it sort of divided the city into north and south parts. It wasn’t anywhere close to tall enough to be a mountain, but it was tall enough to deserve a name. In essence, it was a bůs, a term for which English doesn’t have a concise analogue.
Portland (the largest city near me nowadays) also has something similar, though somewhat larger, in the form of the West Hills that divide the Willamette and Tualatin river valleys. They are almost prominent enough as a whole to deserve to be called a “mountain range”, yet none of the hills could possibly be considered mountains in their own right. It straddles the line between the concepts of “hill” and “mountain”.
Because of these influences, and the geology I have in mind for Ailhaotnůṙ, (it’s dominated by mountain ranges and valleys between them) I decided that the speakers of Firen would consider hills and mountains to be more or less similar, and thus one root is used for both. Perhaps in a derived language, one or more of these three words will fuse into indivisible roots, hiding to some extent their simple derivations.
And that is far more mileage than I expected to get out of that one coinage. I think I get more verbose when I’m tired (and it is rather late here). Hopefully I didn’t cross over into rambling.
I love it! I’m always a sucker though for starting out with a non-English standard of a concept.
I love hearing about the origin for the bůs definition! It makes good sense for me. Love how you incorporate the landscape of the speakers into the semantics.
I haven’t been posting because I’ve been reading and studying in a major attempt to understand some concepts necessary for protolanging what I do have of Akachenti. That said, I have been making progress while studying up on Georgian in particular and ergative, TAM, and sound change concepts in general and I’m thinking I might try to do some of the swadesh list for Lexember.
I’ve come to the conclusion that despite received wisdom that pronominal clitics give rise to pronominal affixes, there may be a strong possibility in Akachenti that pronominal clitics and case suffixes on incorporated nouns gave rise to the verbal pronominal prefixes. The pronominal suffix slot is pretty clearly derived from an agentive suffix, which very much was derived from a pronominal clitic. Still working on it all though, as I still haven’t successfully fleshed out the standalone pronouns or what they used to look like.