Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Introducing Lapsi

From:Daniel44 <daniel44@...>
Date:Tuesday, November 6, 2001, 15:09
Hei koiki, (Hi everyone)

After a year's work, I've finally made some real progress with my own
version of an IAL: Lapsi.

Lapsi is an agglutinative, Finno-Ugric type language. In fact, it is very
similar in places to Finnish (my main inspiration) and the name 'Lapsi'
comes from the Finnish word for 'child' (Lapsi is essentially the offspring
of Finnish).

I chose Finnish as a role model for an IAL as I know that many people have
spoken of Finnish's many obvious pluses, including writer Tolkien and
linguist Marco Pei. A recent EU survey suggested that Finnish children
learned to read and spell their language more quickly and easily than
children from any other native language in the European Union.

Finnish's (and therefore Lapsi's) primary advantages include:

1. Regularity of grammar and spelling
2. Phoneticity
3. vowel-rich
4. distinctive

Vowel rich languages have an advantage as an IAL, because, generally
speaking,  they are easily to pronounce - especially for native speakers of
non-European languages.

Any successful IAL also needs to have character IMO. Esperanto has
character. In the past, I have been critical of Eo, but the more I have
actually taken the time to look at it, and study it, the more I have grown
to love it. Esperanto estas una bela lingvo.

Lapsi started as a language called 'Uusisuom'. Though I have retained a lot
of the original vocab, much of the grammar has changed to simplify the
language still further and make it more user-friendly.

First, here is an example of Lapsi:

'Kalmenensta tulinne jalinajen jo tohtoren, puhtaa soikentin yhti kohtatto
uusi halomaanella.'

'From the cities came the teachers and the doctors, to speak to the people
in one voice of their new world.'

Kalmena - city (from the word 'kalmo' meaning town and 'ena' ending meaning
'big' or 'large')
en - plural ending
sta - 'from' suffix
tulinne - they came (from the verb tultaa - to come)
jalinaja - teacher (lit. 'one who makes/causes to learn)
jo - and
tohtori - doctor
puhtaa - to speak inf.
soika - person
tin - 'to'
yhti - one
kohta - voice
tto - 'by' (instrumental)
uusi - new
halomaa - world (lit. 'sky country')
ne - their
lla - about, of, concerning, on

Lapsi is a very regular language:

haltaa - to want (all infinitive verbs end in -taa)

halan - i want (-an ending for 1st person singular)
halat - you want (or halatte when speaking to more than one person)
halaj - he/she/it wants (Lapsi doesn't have gender distinction, like
halamme - we want
halanne - they want

Past tense is indicated by changing 'a' to 'i' e.g: 'halin - i wanted,
halimme - we wanted)

Future tense is indicated by use of the verb 'lehtaa - to go'. E.g: 'lehan
haltaa - i will want'.

Conditional tense is indicated with the infix -isi- eg: 'halaisin - i would

Pronunciation is largely identical to Finnish (except perhaps 'y' which is
pronounced like 'ui' in 'suit' or 'oo' in 'boot', but not 'u' in 'put').

There are a number of dipthongs:

ai - pronounced as in Finnish (like the 'ie' in 'pie')
ei - pronounced "   "      "         (like the 'ay' in 'pay')
oi - pronounced "   "      "         (like the 'oy' in 'boy')
aj - unique from Finnish, only used to denote 3rd person singular in present
tense, pronounced as 'ei'.

Lapsi loves vowels (there's been a recent discussion on vowel rich languages
on the conlang list) and doubled vowels ( and consonants) frequently occur
in nouns:

maa - land, country
kekko - clock, time
huppo - bowl
luupi - bird

These are 'geminate', so they are pronounced long as written. I know this is
controversial in an IAL, but a lot of natural languages including English
have doubled (or even tripled) vowels and consonants. Eo is notorious for
its consonant clusters.

Lapsi can also be a remarkably succinct language, as can be Eo. An example:

The big house was full of books: 'Ruutena oni kirojeva'.

Lapsi uses '-oje' to indicate a tool of some kind: 'puhoje - telephone'
(from puhtaa verb - to speak).

Lapsi also has the diminutive: '-een' : kirojeen = booklet, soikeen = little
person, dwarf.

Months of the year end in 'meno' meaning 'month' or literally 'moon'.
Vettameno - January (lit. water-moon - January is the month of Aquarius)

Countries end in 'maa' meaning 'country' or literally 'land'.
Anklamaa - England
Soomimaa - Finland

yhti - one
luuki - two
vassi - three
jorka - four
lahvo - five
kuuta - six
loudin - seven
kovi - eight
volli - nine
luka - ten

yhtilukan - eleven

luukiluka - twenty

sana - hundred

Lapsi is very derivative:

'hantaa - to live'
hanojan - life (-ojan indicates abstract)
hanto - flower
hano - path

There are often connections between verbs and nouns:

'mirktaa - to purr'  - mirko (cat)
'luptaa' - to sing - luupi (bird)  - <singer would be 'lupaja'>

What do list members think?

Varijanlla, (best wishes)