The Dailies. January 29, 2023
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
10 thoughts on “The Dailies. January 29, 2023”
So technically, while the Kofu (War Clans) are on their east coast, there are other countries they actually have dealings with and the big one is Lehwam, which was one of the original five settlements when humans and dragons migrated to that world.
‘uk – a suffixed clitic meaning high or waxing, used for the period of the month or “sun-track” when the celestial body in question is waxing. This tends to be inclusive of the final full moon or equinox.
‘i – a suffixed clitic meaning low or waning, used for the period of the month or “sun-track” when the celestial body in question is waning. This tends to be inclusive of the final new moon or equinox.
Technically, these come from old proximity / distal markers.
Can you explain “suntrack” as a concept?
Is there one ‘uk and one ‘i per month, or several? (If there is more than one celestial body involved…)
Definitely! So in Lehwa (not Lehwam, I keep accidentally tacking the m on there because of another word), they keep a lunar civil calendar that they call the Divine Cycle. It’s technically based on the calendar they brought with them from their originating homeworld, and other surrounding cultures also have a Holy Year (just it’s their ceremonial not civil calendar and it only has the original sixteen months, not the additional four added by Lehwa).
Lehwa treats the sun the way all the countries east of it (who use an astronomical solar calendar) treat months, as something to note astronomically but not of any calendrical import. It’s known as the suntrack, the farmer’s calendar, or the eastern year to them, and is marked on their calendar, but moves around within their cycle. What’s of import to them is their twenty months, starting the day after the new moon and ending on the new moon.
So the suntrack is split into two: Shan’uk and Shan’i, high or waxing sun and low or waning sun. Each month is split into two, e.g. Lehwamat’uk and Lehwamat’i. The full moon ends the high or waxing half of the month and the new moon ends the low or waning half.
The first month was added as a month of civil recognition of the founding of the current iteration of their country. The second month (the former first month) and the last month are the Rising Dragon and the Falling Dragon and were added shortly after landing on their new world. They are considered sacred months, as they are tied to events concerning one of their gods. The Mountain Lights month interrupts the sequence of months and is basically whichever month their mountain lights show up in, which is every 519 days, since the cause of them is on an annual cycle tied to their originating world, not the world they’re on. But since Lehwa has some settlements and cities at a high enough elevation to be affected by the lights (destructively), they track the month and make it a whole solemn holiday where they receive the judgment of the gods, if they’re religious, and shelter in place so nobody dies, even if they’re not.
This planet only has one sun and one moon, and I’m absolutely cheating. It’s exactly the length of Earth’s, but with sufficiently different calendrical systems that I can just map it to real world data without getting bogged down in the physics.
Wait, I’ve got to think this over.
So with a solar year, the sun only waxes once, from the winter solstice to the summer solstice, and only wanes once, from the other way around?
And with a lunar year, each month is split in half with a waxing and waning period, but they are named differently depending on how the sun is doing at the same time? Which would be less predictable than with a solar year naturally.
The Mountain Lights thing sounds really dramatic and chilling! No wonder they would mark it out special in the calendar.
So each month has its waxing and waning, but the names for the months stay just based on the moon’s waxing and waning. The sun-track’s waxing and waning is noted separately. You have Lehwamat’uk and Lehwamat’i, regardless of whether the first month occurs in Shan’uk or Shan’i.
And yeah, exactly so on the solar year!
I do delight in giving people complications based around technology they don’t really understand or control anymore.
Oh right! You did say it was noted separately but I guess I needed the confirmation. At first I got the impression that suntrack was something that changed much more frequently than just once for every turn of the seasons.
It hit me that since the city of Meren, where my main Beldreni-speaking character lives, is situated on the northern shore of Onemada, the largest known lake in the world, perhaps the language should have a few piscine words, too. Also words for marine fishing, as the marine fishers and sea merchants the Salme people are pretty important in the worldbuilding. They’re the ones that discovered the South-East Continent a few generations back.
dao (n) fish in general, esp in the sea and fish who can live in both saltwater and freshwater
hanke (n) freshwater fish; sometimes also used for other types of freshwater seafood
daole (v) fish as a verb, in general and in the sea. Often used for freshwater fishing as well.
hankekale (v) fish as a verb, in freshwater (less commonly used in most varieties of Beldreni). Kale means ‘works’ (v)
daolío (n) fisher, fisherman/woman (in general and in the sea)
min hanke fisher, fisherman/woman (in freshwater). Plural: mindao hanke
Note: Dao is a homonym for the optional plural marker in Beldreni, -dao (changes to -tao after a toneless stop). This usually doesn’t lead to any confusion, but if you put the plural form to ‘fish’, you get daodao, which is also one way of saying ‘many’ (though more often spelt dadao). So I imagine it’s common to draw a doodle of several fishes together to playfully indicate ‘lots and lots’ of something in writing.
Mandette to, pō ki daolan mashte! I want to fish in the ocean next Summer!
Onemada ho hanke to hanke ilmana ru! The fish of Onemada is the best fish!
So not only do I love the words, I adore the dadao thing. That’s just delightful!
It wasn’t something I had planned out, I liked using dao for fish and then I thought about optional plurals and the reduplication thing and thought, “wait a minute, I bet they’d use this as a rebus thing” 😀
If the Beldreni had been the ones to invent the alphabet on the North-West Continent maybe they’d even have used a fish symbol to mean plurals in general! But they borrowed it from much older written cultures.
What a happy accident! The best kind, really. I wonder if they ever use it on signage or something of newer iconicity. But I do like seeing how old scripts get reused with new languages.