The Dailies. April 29

The Dailies. April 29

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?


2 thoughts on “The Dailies. April 29

  1. I started on Jafren (which is a provisional name in Firen for the language, it literally means “stone speech”) which is the divine language used by the Sůṙjafia, who are (as I mentioned here long ago) beings which were created directly by the Grey Aspect, whose lives are sustained by magical flames, and who have unparalleled mastery over geomantic magic, which they use to animate their stone bodies. Their language also comes directly from the Grey Aspect, which is why I referred to it as “divine” above.

    I’ve had the basic idea of it for a long time, but only just now started to actually do anything with the concept. Basically, the Sůṙjafia have a series of air tubes in their bodies, which can function as resonance chambers like a pipe organ using their magical fire to push the air through. I decided that they should use a pentatonic scale, with a range of two octaves, and thus they can produce eleven notes.

    (The Sůṙjafia are highly specialized and not all of them have the same ‘vocal’ structure, so I chose to be conservative with the number of notes so that even a Sůṙjafi with a very rudimentary vocal system can produce the whole range, allowing them to put that finesse into their primary purpose. Those who specialize in diplomacy with mortals have very elaborate vocal systems which can produce a wide range of tones. even being able to sort of mimic human speech, enough so to be understandable at least. They can also write of course, but not all mortals are literate.)

    I decided that the language should have some similarities with logical languages. It has a simple, strict, and unambiguous syntax that looks rather unlike most naturalistic languages’ grammars. It’s too late now to do a full write-up here, but I’ll copy the current basic sketch out of my notes:

    • Main clause structure for declarative statements is:
      • DECLARATIVE EVIDENTIAL verb arguments… STOP
    • The structure of a yes-no question is:
      • QUESTION FACTUALITY verb arguments… STOP
    • The structure of a wh-question is:
      • QUESTION VALUE pronoun verb arguments… STOP
        (where ‘pronoun’ must be one of the arguments)
    • The structure of a command is:
      • IMPERATIVE INTENSITY verb arguments… STOP
    • By default, a verb is present tense perfective aspect. Other tense-aspect-mood combinations are expressed as particles immediately preceding the verb.
    • Verbal arguments are expressed in order of agentivity, with non-agentive arguments bearing case markers.
      • Specifically, noun orders may be:
        • Subject (intransitive)
        • Agent, Patient (transitive)
        • Donor, Recipient, Theme (ditransitive)
      • All of which are entirely unmarked for case and solely expressed through word order. There are about 20 cases for everything else, but there are no cases for morphosyntactic alignment.

    Capitalized terms are function words, lowercase terms are placeholders for general vocabulary.

    I hope to do much more work on this language in the near future, but I have to go to sleep now.


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