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Re: Conlanging with constraints

From:Benct Philip Jonsson <melroch@...>
Date:Sunday, February 17, 2008, 12:54
2008/2/17, Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>:

> I am working more freely in my Albic languages, but even > there, I have set myself similar constraints. The > individual Albic languages are linked to each other by a > system of regular sound changes, so as soon as I determine > the shape of a word in one of them, the shapes of its > cognates in the other Albic languages fall out from those > rules automatically. Of course, a cognate may have been > lost and replaced by a word of different origin in a > particular language, or its meaning may shift, but most of > the words are determined by the interplay of the Proto- > Albic word form with the sound changes of the various > Albic languages. >
Of course the same applies mutatis_mutandis to my historical conlanging as well, whether it be the internal relations between the different languages of the a-priori Sohlob language family or the way my different a-posteriori languages and bastard languages relate to their source language(s). Since sound changes are in principle exceptionless that constitutes a constraint. I only take that so much for granted that I don't think of it. If I for some reason would like to 'cheat' and introduce a word or form which doesn't conform I have to assume borrowing from a cognate dialect or language ('dialang' in my termoinology) -- or a different noncognate language --, and so that dialect or language is automatically created, however rudimentary elaborated (at first). Another situation where a new 'dialang' will spawn is typically when I can't decide between two potential developments: then there will be one cognate 'dialang' with the one development and one with the other. While this kind of multiplication of 'dialangs' is potentially infinite (like alternate timelines!) in practice I often find that different potential changes fit different existing 'dialangs' and so are added to them. Unfortunately such 'rule additions' tend to reverberate throughout already generated vocabulary, rendering already written texts and descriptions more or less outdated. Thus another constraint -- not to multiply such retroactive changes -- is added. -- / BP