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Urkwe ~ New Orc Conlang

From:Steg Belsky <draqonfayir@...>
Date:Tuesday, August 8, 2000, 17:43
A while ago a few different people happened to be making conlangs for orc
kinds of concultures.

Now it's my turn.  :-P

I participate in a LARP (Live Action Role-Playing) group at my college,
and although i haven't been in any full-fledged Events yet, i certainly
like boffing (fencing with foam weapons), which we have practices doing
almost every week.

In my constant quest to create a character, i came across the "Lords and
Lands" section of the group's webpage, and found that there was, in the
contimeline, a goblinoid-society-friendly country named Tiere.

But i couldn't remember the name properly - i kept on thinking that it
was "Tièrre", pronounced in a semi-French (in a nonfrancophone's view)
way as [ti'EG].

And then, working in a summer job at an office, i came across the Israeli
name "Nir", which just forces you to pronounce it with an Israeli R,
which sounds remarkably similar to a French R except it's more of a velar
approximant than a velar?/uvular? fricative.

And then i named my character "Ur Baharav", with two Israeli velar
approximants.  And he's a half-Orc.

So i decided, hey, why not make an Orc language for my character (even if
i won't actually use it In Character)?

URKWE, the NYSLARP-Inspired Orc Language:


/p/ /t/ /k/  ~  voiceless stops
/b/ /d/ /g/  ~  voiced stops

/r/  ~  voiced alveolar flap {r}

/h/  ~  voiceless fricative

/w/ /j/ /R/  ~  voiced approximants {w} {j} {r'}

/i/ /u/ /a/
/E/  ~  somewhat centralized

Allophones Under Gemination:

voiceless stops become aspirated.
/pp/ /tt/ /kk/  >>>>>  /p<h>/ /t<h>/ /k<h>/

flap becomes trill.
/r/  >>>>>  /r*/ {r~}

approximants become fricatives.
/w/ /j/ /R/  >>>>>  /v/ /Z/ /G/ {v} {z`} {g'}

word-final /e/ drops.


Just like IPA, except for where marked, the diacritic belongs above the
{'} = acute
{`} = grave
{~} = tilde

(all these combinations thanks to the WordPerfect wordprocessor's
"overstrike" feature!)

Possible One-Syllable Morpheme Structures:


The language is partially polysynthetic, and distinguishes between parts
of speech (which have no distinctive marking) by stress:

Noun & Adjective:  n-A
Subject & Verb:  V-S
Object & Verb:  O-V
Subject & Verb & Object:  o-V-s
Verb & Adverb:  v-A
Phrase/Word & Case:  P-c

Stress is marked with an accute accent on vowels.  If the stress falls on
a single-consonant morpheme, the stress slides either backwards or
forwards to the easiest immediate vowel for syllabification.

The language will be called something like URK-WE, TI-ER-RE-WE, or some
combination of the two.

It has 5 pronouns, which don't inflect or change for case:

me  =  EK  /Ek/
we (me & them)  =  GUR'  /guR/
we (me & you)  =  JAW  /jaw/
you/you-all  =  DA
them/them-all  =  HIB

Some first words:

be = /p/
want = /krij/
sit = /Raw/
kill = /kErt/
day = /ba/
all = /ha/
(genetive) = /wE/
orc = /urk/
human = /tark/


/da-p-krij-jaw/  >>>>>  [dapkríZaw]
(you-be-want-we.I)  =  "we-all want to be you"

/uR ba-ha-Raw-we tark-kErt-uR/  >>>>>  [uR báhaRav tark<h>ÉrtuR]
(Ur day-all-sit-(gen.) human-kill-Ur)  =  "Ur Sits-All-Day (Báhar'av)
kills human"

Any comments?

-Stephen (Steg)
 <POLITICS> "Go, Go, Joe!" </POLITICS>