The Dailies. March 9, 2023

The Dailies. March 9, 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?


6 thoughts on “The Dailies. March 9, 2023

  1. More Beldreni words. This time I’ve been thinking of the great journey north in the spring.

    gari (v) ‘break’ – a word with old roots that’s still in use
    aggar (n) ‘road, path’ – a common word, synonymous with the even more common ; used to have a connotation of being an arduous, not too well-ordered road, but that’s pretty much lost these days. Often used in street names, in fact!
    walu (n) ‘danger, peril’
    walim (adj) ‘dangerous, perilous’
    walgar (n) ‘dangerous road’, ‘perilous route’; particularly in use for the route one takes during the Great Journey North in spring and the Great Journey South in autumn. Variant: waggar
    walgardaumuyo ‘the leader for a travel party on dangerous route’, daumuyo being a common word for ‘leader’ I’ve mentioned before, from dau, ‘front‘ + muyo, ‘walker’. Variant: waggardaumuyo. I’ve come up with what I think is a neulogism in English to represent the same meaning: “waychief”

    Now for a synonym of the last one!

    duzhe is a loanword from Akuveran, the language of the Akuver people, who in winter mostly live in the west, especially in the citystate of Aounden. In Akuveran duzhe means pretty much ‘team’; as a loanword to Beldreni it means something similar, a group of people who’ve come together for a specific purpose, but with a connotation of that purpose being limited in time. So a master craftsman and his yeomen and apprentice workers wouldn’t be called a duzhe when they do their regular work, for instance. We might think of the phrase “project team” as something of an equivalent.
    However, duzhe is even more often used in Beldreni to signify a travelling party.
    And there are two common compounds using the word:

    alduzhe (n) a travelling party on the Great Journey North (=Alet) in spring
    anduzhe (n) a travelling party on the Great Journey South (=Anet) in autumn

    And then you just put –daumuyo or (in a familiar or neutral-familiar register) –daka at the end: alduzhedaumuyo, anduzhedaka, or the other way around.

    Such a leader is pretty much always chosen by consensus among the adults who travel together, though in an unusually large party some might elect to have others speak for them (usually older kinsmen, in that case). It’s rarely decided by factors like rank and seniority, instead it’s perceived character, trustworthiness, experience, ability to keep the peace etc that tends to weigh over – as well of course as simply things like personal connections and chemistry within the group. There are often quite a few discussions beforehand until a satisfactory person can be chosen.

    The position should not be mistaken for that of a guide: perhaps someone has been chosen as waychief in part because they have particularly good knowledge of a section of the route, but they might also simply rely on somebody else in the party to provide that expertise.

    Very often a second person is chosen to be the leader’s trusted helper and second-in-command, and it might be that person who keeps track of most of the day-to-day factors of the journey. Not uncommonly these two partners are a husband-and-wife team.

    A waychief isn’t meant to make all the myriad small decisions on a journey themself. Most things are decided by discussion and consensus, but it’s considered prudent to have one person who get the deciding vote if there is an impasse, who can represent the party towards other groups, and who can take the lead if there is not much time to talk first.

    Tos Alet to, alduzhedaumuyo baho leinos sati wai.

    On that Great Journey North, my father was the waychief/leader of the travelling party.

    EDITED TO ADD: Also! I don’t yet have specific words for travelling by sea, but the leader of a ship – the ship captain – is called a zhekadaumuyo, literally a ‘ship leader’. Simple enough!

    1. Ack! I love all of these! The nuances, the worldbuilding, the details, the ship leader and waychief and all of it! I also really like the way they distinguish which kind of migration it is. Feels right from a diachronic tendencies view.

    2. Okay, you’ve probably told me previously, but do most of the cultures travel in family groups or is there some other structure to who tends to travel together? Is it a mix?

      1. Great question! Sorry for the lateness of my reply.

        I will focus on the North-East Continent only, but the pattern would be similar for the South-West Continent, although it’s perhaps a little bit more complex because the shape of that continent is more narrow in the middle part, leading to fewer possible land routes/a greater deal of crowding on the way. (On the other hand I think their sea journeys are easier.) I’ll also primarily focus on the journey north in spring.

        First, the size and membership of a travelling party would always vary on the route itself, and while I’ve been talking above of one waychief, in fact there might be separate leaders for separate long stretches of the journey. Or you might only decide on the leader for one stretch and once that part is over, you get the group together and decide who will lead the next leg of the journey. During a spring journey, the group would grow and shrink the most in the first month or so, when they travel through densely populated areas in the south, the ones inhabited in wintertime, where there are many well-kept roads as well as many carts you can buy/trade, and river boats you can lend/buy/buy passage on. Similarly, once you have passed through the arduous middle stretch and start to reach the northern summer territories, the party might change as people leave the main route to find their own lands, and more rarely you run into neighbours and even family members who took a different route there but is now ready to join you in the final stretch. So the middle part, going through the still mostly-unpopulated area* in the middle of the continent on the north-south axis, is always the one where the travelling party changes the least. The most common reason for a change in number during this part is due to someone (most often an old person) falling seriously sick and dying. A travelling party might also split in half if there is a longer illness going on, one party deciding to stay and look after the sick ones and the other to continue. To continue might seem like a callous choice, but it can be a necessary one: at least some people of your family might need to reach your own farmlands in time to prevent squatters from taking it. (Such land-theft should be prevented by internal clan justice but that can be complicated and take time to sort out.)

        Sea road tangent: For a journey north you’d need to travel upriver in this area, but if you’re able to afford seagoing passage, you would often start by going on a boat downstream and then get on a ship by a coastal town. On the western coast, the winter cities Perildar and (especially) Lokasto will be absolutely swarming with ships in the harbour during springtime.

        Going by sea can be dangerous of course but it cuts down on travel time a LOT. Also you don’t have to carry your stuff on your own or have donkeys (who need food/time to graze themselves) carry it for you. Those who do live on the coast or have connections to those who do will often have at least one family member use the sea road. BUT the winds need to be right and you might need to wait a few months for that. More than that, the shipbuilders and sailors par excellence on this continent are the Salme people, and they will naturally prioritize their own journeys to their summer home, the Alme archipelago, westward of the continent and up north. So even if you’re connected or can gather money enough to be guaranteed a passage, you might need to wait a long time either in a coastal town for a ship to take you north or on the Alme archipelago for a new ship to take you back east to the continent (northern side naturally). For those who can’t quite afford it, or might just afford it but haven’t been able to get promise of a reserved seat, it’s chancy to go downriver to the coast where you might have to wait for months in vain when you could have gotten quite far traveling by feet at the same time. Still, every spring there will still be thousands who take that risky chance.

        The eastern coast doesn’t have the Alme archipelago as distraction, but building strong seaworthy ships and manning them with experienced sailors is still expensive, so again, many people will not be able to buy passage or will have to wait a long time to get one. /sea road tangent

        For the land road which most people take, two conflicting factors influence travel party size – the need to travel safely (mostly from other travellers; you don’t need a large party to be able to fight off wild animals) versus the need to feed everyone in the party. In times of greater insecurity, the travelling parties will swell in number and thus unavoidably slow down the journey, especially in the hard middle stretch where you leave farmed areas and it will take a lot of time to hunt and forage (and if you travel slowly, you will also need to seek out roads where not too many other people have been yet).

        People do bring sheep and other edible domestic animals with them, but that can only help so much. In times of greater peace and security, the travelling parties will shrink. But I’d say even then it’s common to have either one big extended family or two family groups with close interpersonal bonds during the middle part of the journey. I think you’d aim for at least twenty adults/near-adults who are reasonably strong and healthy in a group, and most every ordinary travelling group would also include children and the elderly as well. In times of higher unrest, whether that’s due to food scarcity, clan feuds, or other types of conflict, the parties will double in size from that rough peaceful estimate.

        It’s common for clan members to travel together, but also not uncommon for a travelling party to feature people of different clans, especially if they’re joined by marriage and strong friendships. Sometimes you even see people of different ethnicities in the same travelling party. This is rarer though, apart from the very first weeks of the journey. Language is seldom a problem due to the multilinguistic cities, it’s more that you would rarely travel towards the same area since the summer territories are divided by ethnicity, being as they are owned by clans and organized by clans and tribes.

        (I have recently decided that tribes – conglomeration of clans – also exist. The clan is still the more important unit, though. More on this in a future comment.)

        *Considered too cold in the winter to live in permanently, although people go there on hunting parties and for logging. Probably considered too hot in the summer.

        1. I wish I had long intelligent comments here, but I’ll just settle on, this is an amazingly well thought through bit of worldbuilding and I love it very, very much.


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