Re: Conlang Guilt
|From:||Sally Caves <scaves@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, May 20, 1999, 8:07|
Joe Mondello wrote:
> in a project I began yesterday, Purified Nzva, I feel it necessary to make
> the genitive singular ending and the plural endings -s/-z/-es and -s/-z/-ez
> respectively (varying as english does. After realizing that this is
> painfully similar to their English correlaries and felt an almost
> irresistable urge to change it to something more *exotic*. Have any of you
> felt this need to intentionally steer away from the convention in natlangs
> familiar to you?
> pacs precs
I'm four days behind, also four hundred messages behind, and I've
been reading what others have said with interest. Teonaht has so
much in its early development that was taken right out of either
English or Spanish that I have become resigned to it. Yes, of
course, I've deliberately tried to develop it away from common
European models, but these developments have to be true to the
language. What Teonaht looks like, to me, observing it as
objectively as I can, is a reconstruction of the weirder aspects
of English and German and Welsh. It has a lot of sort of "angular"
sounds that I've combined with liquids: _telemak_, _trimbak_,
_tekivar_, _tritarem_, very heavy on the initial or pen-penultimate
stress. I don't know what I was self-consciously imitating. But
certain unconscious resemblances to other well-known languages
emerge and surprise me:
Teonim. Meaning the people who inhabit Teon, and speak
Teonaht. This seems to be an unconscious borrowing from
Hebrew "seraphim," etc.
Tekivar. "Hunter." the -yvar/ivar ending designates the
agent of an action, but it sounds to me now like Kosovar.
Altho' the T. would probably say _Kosovim_.
Heljent. Adjective made from -ndi verb _heljjendi_, "be happy."
It sounds latinate to me. Likewise, the nominalization:
heljjendo, "a rejoicing," obviously influenced by the sound of
that lovely construction in Latin: Carthago delenda est. While it might
not copy the *meaning*, it copies the sound of languages I've
studied and liked.