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New H/G lang?

From:Paul Bennett <paul.bennett@...>
Date:Monday, October 11, 1999, 10:16
I don't have my notes with me, as I wasn't going to ask at this stage in the
lang, but I've begun thinking about a new conlang over the weekend.

Here's a very brief description, and a few questions, please answer frankly and

The lang has an enormous consonantal phono, I make it 288 consonants (3 series
(regular, labialised & palatalised) of an 8 POA x 12 MOA consonant grid).  Could
the human brain actually handle this differentiation in "real life"?  Also,
there's only two vowels, would i-bar and lowered-schwa be "realistic" vowels?.
All this sounds VERY suspiciously like a lot of stuff that has been discussed on
the list recently, but I swear it's (mainly) subconcious borrowing, the idea has
been on my mind for some time..

All roots are CVCVCV, and are defined using the "voiceless stop" row of the
consonant table (ie {pitaca}, {xat[ika})  Each of the three syllables "moves" to
a different row on the consonant table (ie to Voiced Affricate or Prenasalised
Voiced Stop) to show a different grammatical function.  For example: POS,
Person, Tense, Degree, Reflexivity, Number etc.  Is this like any other
(con|nat)lang?  It seems to me like a kind of "inverse arabic" <G>, but that's
probably not a very good term.  I make that 36^3 possible shades of meaning for
each of (8^3)x(2^3) roots?

How reasonable would it be to postulate this as a late-neolithic/early
bronze-age hunter/gatherer lang?  I've tried to go for something that is
phonetically similar to the little I know of North American langs (with two rows
of clicks just for good measure, as I find clicks very nice-sounding), but
probably failed miserably.  So far, the only bit of vocab I have is that time
terms are based on binary fractions (1/2, 1/4, 1/8, etc) of either a solar day
or a lunar night, depending on when the action in question occurs.  Also, there
is great cultural significance to songs, as in many Australian and (afaik) North
American cultures.

A lot of your comments might be "Gosh-tarn it, take it to conculture, wierdo!",
but I'm not at that stage yet, and I'm still not on conculture (memo to self...)

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