Parsing Open Syllables
|From:||Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, January 13, 2004, 16:33|
So I'm thinking maybe it's about time I actually
complete a full conlang with a grammar that covers all
the bases and a vocabulary a few thousand words or
more. All my conlangs seem to get halfway there at
So I'm putting together the preliminary material on
what approaches this new, improved, destined to be
completed conlang will use and my thoughts turned to
I've always favored open syllables. They are neat and
tidy and east to synthesize. But there's a parsing
probelem with the spoken language. When you hear
"konali" is that "ko nali" or is it "kona li"? Longer
sequences of sounds get even more difficult to parse.
So here's the solution that occured to me as I was
dozing off last night:
Words take the form CVV or VCVV or CVCVV or VCVCVV or
CVCVCVV or VCVCVCVV, etc., where the final syllable
must always have a vowel pair and no other syllable in
a word is permitted to have a vowel pair.
If you hear "konialiu" there is only one way to parse
it: "konia liu", since "ko nialiu" breaks the vowel
Words may occasionally end in three vowels as in
"taui" but when that happens they are invariably
pronounced with a glottal stop after the first vowel
"ta'ui" and the main stress for the word falls on the
first vowel after the stop.
When the final vowels of a word are the same as in
"tapii" they are separated buy a glottal stop:
"tapi'i" and the main stress for the word falls on the
vowel _before_ the stop.
I'm thinling my alphabet will be 21 letters; the Roman
alphabet minus C,J,Q,Y,X.