Introducing: žeŋ

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Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Mon 02 Apr 2012 6:02 pm

Here is the phonology in IPA:
(capital letters are only used for emphasis - never at the start of sentences or proper nouns.)
a [a]
ä [ɑ]
b
d [d]
ð [ð]
e [ε]
f [f]
g [g]
h [h]
i [ɪ]
k [k]
l [l,ɫ]
m [m,ɱ]
n [n]
o [o,ɒ]
p [p]
r [ɾ]
s [s]
š [ʃ]
t [t]
ŧ [θ]
u [ʌ]
ü [y]
v [v,β]
w [w]
y [i]
z [z]
ž [ʒ]
ε [u]
ŋ [ŋ]
ə [ə]
χ [x,χ]
Sentence structure (syntax?) - SVO with the indirect object before the verb and after the subject.
Syllable structure - any combination at all will work as long as it doesn't have a double letter in it (except if [b]one
of the letters has a diacritical mark).

Some basic verbs and adjectives to start:
abit - to live/inhabit
amy - happy
bowsy - good
sə - to be
av - to have
oχ - to see/look at/watch
wiχ - to say/speak/talk
fasty - fast/quick
dwa - 'should'
iga - 'must'
ŧiŋəχ - to think
mse - to know
muldy - much/many

And the personal pronouns:
singular plural
1 meh nos
2 tuh tos
3 il/el/al ils/els/als/los
4 gε gεs
'los' means if the group of people has males and females in it
4th person singular is 'someone', plural is 'one'.

Verb endings coming next post :)
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby linguoboy » Mon 02 Apr 2012 8:22 pm

Kshaard wrote:Here is the phonology in IPA:
(capital letters are only used for emphasis - never at the start of sentences or proper nouns.)

Any notes on distribution of allophones? (Without it, this really can't be called a "phonology". Right now it's just a list of phonetic values for orthographic symbols.)

Kshaard wrote:Sentence structure (syntax?) - SVO with the indirect object before the verb and after the subject.

There's a lot more to syntax than just sentence structure. SVO is simply your default word order (and in light of what you say here, it's perhaps better abbreviated to S-IO-V-DO). What about the placement of modifiers? Relative clauses? Agreement? Sequence of tenses?

Kshaard wrote:Syllable structure - any combination at all will work as long as it doesn't have a double letter in it (except if one of the letters has a diacritical mark).

Why should diacritics make a difference? They don't correspond to any consist pronunciation feature.
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Tue 03 Apr 2012 9:45 am

Diacritics as in:
a to ä
d to ð
s to š
and so on...
The idea of the spelling is that one symbol has one sound, and one sound has one symbol. <d> is a different symbol than <ð> but I don't consider it a different letter. <dd>, for example is two symbols with one sound, which does not agree with the 'law' of my language above. <dð>, though, is perfectly fine to have in a word because it is two different symbols with two different (although very close) sounds.

What you call 'a list of phonetic values for orthographic symbols' can be used by simple substitution to figure out what any would will sound like. So what else do I need to include in the phonology?
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby linguoboy » Tue 03 Apr 2012 2:09 pm

Kshaard wrote:What you call 'a list of phonetic values for orthographic symbols' can be used by simple substitution to figure out what any would will sound like. So what else do I need to include in the phonology?

For starters, some symbols are associated with more than one value, e.g. "o [o,ɒ]". How do I know when to use [o] and when to use [ɒ]?

But even in the other cases, it's highly unlikely that these symbols are pronounced exactly the same in every position where they appear. That would make žeŋ unlike every other known human language. For instance, does t really represent the same sound in abit, fasty, and tos? If these were English words they would all show different variants: Except in very precise speech, final t in abit would be unreleased [t̚], glottalised [ʔ], or (when a vowel follows) flapped [ɾ]. Initial t in tos would be aspirated [tʰ]. If English is your native language, you are probably importing these pronunciations into your conlang without even realising it.

And then what about prosody? You haven't said a word about stress. Does žeŋ have it? Is it distinctive? Does it affect the quality of unstressed segments? What about pitch?

If you really can't think of what more to put in a phonology, you should read a few. Why not start here?
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Wed 04 Apr 2012 6:54 pm

Just use whichever pronunciation sounds most comfortable (unless it conflicts with another phoneme, in which case, use the second most comfortable pronunciation). As for stress, you can put it anywhere you like in the word. It doesn't make any distinction in the meaning so, as for pronunciation, use the most comfortable sound.

So, verb forms!

The verbs which I have listed so far are in both the present tense and the infinitive. How you can tell if a verb is infinitive is if it comes straight after the main verb in the sentence. This as a present tense is in what I call 'short time', as in 'I am living' rather than 'I live' which is in 'long time'. To form the long time in žeŋ you put a <z> on the end of the infinitive. This <z> will always be voiced, even after an unvoiced consonant so <abitz> is pronounced [abɪtz̩] with the <z> being syllabic.

To put a verb into the past tense, put a <p> on the infinitive before the <z> if there is one. The <pz> form is used mostly for 'used to' verbs. So for example: I used to live. - meh abitpz. If it's an 'ed' verb, most of the time in žeŋ it will be just like 'abitp' For the future tense, instead of <p> you put an <f>. For the conditional (i.e. would), put <ž>. For the imperative, which I know is not a tense but I will get onto later, put <ü>. And the rarest tense, what I call 'the future of the past', which is, for example, 'He would go on to become the greatest king the land had ever seen'. For this, put <ŋ>.

The imperative in žeŋ is not only used for second person commands, but also for 'let's' or 'let there' (as in 'Let there be light'), so to avoid confusion, a command needs a visible subject. 'tuh səü bowsy' would mean 'Be good (singular)' and 'nos səü bowsy' would mean 'Let's be good'. The imperative with 'meh' is used for memos and the like, for example, 'Don't forget to buy eggs' written on a sticky pad on the fridge.

To form the negative of a verb (i.e. not or don't) put an <n> between the tense marker and <z> if there is one. Simple as that.

The most unique feature of žeŋ verbs, in my opinion, is the <k>. This goes after all the other endings and indicates when a verb has a 'that' (french 'que') which is neither functioning as a pronoun or an adjective directly connected to it. This most often shows a subordinate clause, but also fairly regularly shows a subjunctive like: 'I think that it will be easy', so, 'meh ŧiŋəχ al səfzk yzy'.

A <v> stuck to the start of a verb makes it into a passive verb (as in 'He just got eaten!')

<ðe> (which means 'towards') on the front of a verb makes it a different verb but kind of 'moving towards' the action of the verb, so:
dεrh - to sleep
ðedεrh - to fall asleep
sə - to be
ðesə - to become
mse - to know
ðemse - to learn
etc.

New vocabulary:
yzy - easy
kom - like
kon - if
ədŧ - with
fera - to do
eym - to like
eymo - to love
klm - to understand (forms the best sounding word in the language: vklmpnzk)
itš - to hear/listen
lgloly - okay
osəmy - epic/awesome (colloquially)
malty - big
yεŧy - young/new
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Sun 22 Apr 2012 4:28 pm

Ok, time to revise the phonology:
1) Stress could fall on any syllable, although if in doubt, put it on the first syllable.
2) Voiceless plosives are slightly aspirated by default, but if it's before another consonant, do not aspirate it.
3) <l> is [l] unless syllabic (which is fairly common in žeŋ) when it is [ɫ].
4) <y> is [j] if before another vowel and [i] if before a consonant.
5) The thing about <v> sometimes being pronounced [β] is complete rubbish, I don't know what I was thinking when l typed that bit. :lol:
6) <o> is pronounced [ɒ] at the beginning of words, and [o] elsewhere.
7) Never voice <s> or <t> etc. or devoice <z> or <d> etc. lf you find something like 'səpz' written, don't be afraid to syllab-ise (?) the final <z> just in order to voice it.

Onto adjective forms now...
You might have noticed that all adjectives end in a <y> which is (mostly) true. You might have also noticed that l have put no 'negative' adjectives in the vocabulary. This is because you can easily form them from the positive. Below is the chart of the endings:
Positive superlative - it
Pos. comparative - al
Pos. - y
Negative - ε
Neg. com. - yek
Neg. sup. - εä
There is no word for 'than' in žeŋ simply because you don't need one:
'il səz dul amal el.' means 'He is much happier than her.'. 'dul' means 'very', or in this case 'much' because of the adjective being a superlative.

Anyway, l'm a bit short of time so that is the end for now.
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Wed 02 May 2012 4:47 pm

Ok, onto numbers.

There are much much more things classed as articles in žeŋ than in English, so this, that, one, some of, all of, etc. are all classed as articles, as are numbers:
0 or no - noly
1 - vona
2 - tova
3 - tira
4 - karo
5 - kwyo (even though it is straight before a vowel, <y> stays a vowel if it's after <w>)
6 - ses
7 - syn
8 - eχt
9 - non
10 - tiva
11 - tivavona
12 - tivatova
20 - tovary
21 - tovaryvona
30 - tirary
100 - šen
101 - šenvona
110 - šentiva
200 - tovatse
1000 - ŧaε
2000 - tovanuχ
10000 - tivaŧaε
100000 - šenŧaε
1000000 - mylyo
2M - tovakon
1B - tovyo
2B - tovakonkon
When writing numbers, two of the same letter cancel one of them out.
12,497,855 - tiva-tovakon-karotse-nonry-syn-ŧaε-eχtse-kwyory-kwyo or, normally, tivatovakonkarotsenonrysynŧaεeχtsekwyorykwyo
And that's all the numbers you'll ever need to know.
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Wed 02 May 2012 4:49 pm

Now for the longest post ever.

Nouns effectively have two visible cases: normal (unmarked) and genitive (s on the beginning of the word) which makes the noun into an article, at least as far as I'm concerned. If the noun starts with an unaccented s already, which is rare but certainly not unheard of, add <sə> on the beginning.
E.g. |streb = street| & |səstreb = street's|
To make a noun plural, put an s on the end. So:
|streb = street|, |strebs = streets|, |səstreb = street's| & |səstrebs = streets'|

Every single noun needs an article in front of it and here is a list of some of them:
l (that is a lowercase L) - indefinite
ra - definite
es - this or these
üt - that or those
dey - some of the
yoŧ - all of the
kräŧ - most of the
+ possessives and numbers

Articles come before the noun and form compounds when there is two of them together:
"smeh" is "my"
"deysmeh" is "some of my"
"deysmehtivaeχt" is "some of my eighteen"

To make a noun from a verb, you use the suffix <tš> (or <otš> if the verb ends in a t) for a thing that does that verb, so:
ŧiŋəχ - to think
ŧiŋəχtš - brain

ðeklm - to calculate/figure out
ðeklmtš - calculator

If the <tš> suffix is already taken for that verb to mean something else and the thing is mechanical, use the suffix <šin> (or <ošin> if the verb ends in an š) which is a word in itself meaning machine:

wiχtš (talker) - tongue
wiχšin (talk-machine) - telephone

itštš (hearer) - ear
itšošin (hear-machine) - radio

etc.

If it is a person who does or is doing something, use <or> (or <sor> if the verb ends in an o).
goror - maker
Can't think of any more examples but you get the idea.

Sorry for the super-long post but I explained all l had to.
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Kshaard » Sun 03 Jun 2012 7:05 pm

Okay, I'm back.

I know that no-one will read this but whatever. I'm on this forum for the kicks.
All names in žeŋ have four parts to them so here is how someone's name is formed in žeŋ if they are a native žeŋan, and an example name to go with it:
First name (zdef, English equivalent Steve or Stephen)
Middle name (aŋder, English equivalent Andy or Andrew)
<m> followed by the first letter of the next name (only m if the next name starts with m) (mp)
Father's name if a boy, mother's name if a girl (pert, English equivalent Pete or Peter)
The name of the city/town/village they were born in (ksän)

So on official documents and such-like, his name would be printed as: zdef aŋder mp pert ksän.

If rendering a foreign name in žeŋ, use the way they pronounce their own name (or the closest possible in the situation) in the same order as they would spell it. So an Englishman called John would be <džon> and an American called John would be <džän> or however else you Americans pronounce stuff these days.

Next post is about prepositions...
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Re: Introducing: žeŋ

Postby Dan_ad_nauseam » Sun 03 Jun 2012 9:28 pm

So you have two given names, a patronymic/matronymic, and a place of origin surname. That's an interesting combination suggesting northern European associations.
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