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Re: new Unnamed Conlang

From:Paul Bennett <paul-bennett@...>
Date:Friday, September 17, 2004, 17:07
On Fri, 17 Sep 2004 10:09:28 -0400, Mark J. Reed <markjreed@...>

> On Fri, Sep 17, 2004 at 01:08:20PM +0200, Andreas Johansson wrote: > >> I don't know how AE sounded, and I doubt anyone else does for sure >> either. What's worse, I don't even know what the conventional >> pronunciation of 'dj' is for it. > > Right. AE didn't get written with the Roman alphabet, so first you have > to indicate which transcription system you're using, and even then no > one is sure about the actual sounds. Completely at a loss for vowels, > in fact, although I understand we have some idea about the consonants.
Well, not entirely at a loss. We do have proper nouns transcribed into Greek, which tend to agree with Coptic[*], and there exists a large Coptic corpus that shows clear and direct descent from AE. AFAIK, it's fairly usual to use Coptic vowels to vocalise AE. For instance, the word |pt| (sky) could be |opt|, |epat|, |pit|, or any one of a multitude of other readings. However, the Coptic word is |pe|, and given that Coptic regularly drops AE final |t|, it seems that the old Coptic was |pet|, and |pet| is thus the usual vocalisation of the AE word. [*] I fully admit that some Coptic transcriptions of AE names could have been inspired or influenced by Greek, which pokes a bit of a hole in the theory, but doesn't severely hamper the internal reconstruction. Paul