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"Conlang" and "Artlang" in German (was ... in Swedish)

From:Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>
Date:Tuesday, January 20, 2009, 20:14

On Tue, 20 Jan 2009 13:56:23 +0100, Henrik Theiling wrote:

> Hi! > > Benct Philip Jonsson wites: > >... > > However this incorporation of the word for 'art' > > into the general term for 'conlang' makes a problem > > of how to translate 'artlang'! So far I've come up with > > tree alternatives, all of which have their drawbacks, > > and none of which is very short: > >... > > In German, I avoid the problem by using the English terms -- they are > specialised vocab.
Where is your language aesthetics? While I am not generally hostile to borrowings, I think it is better to use a German word than to use an unnecessary anglicism which many people probably won't understand.
> 'Kunstsprache' is really fixed vocab in German. Esperanto is > definitely a 'Kunstsprache', but surely not an artlang, which would be > the literal translation.
While _Kunst_ as a standalone word means 'art', in compounds such as _Kunststoff_ or _Kunstdünger_ it usually means 'artificial'. Indeed, the term _Kunstsprache_ is quite widely used in the general meaning of 'artificial language', covering all kinds of conlangs. For 'international auxiliary language', we have _Welthilfssprache_; also _Plansprache_ is often used for that, though some use it in the general meaning of 'conlang'. However, I feel that _Plansprache_ sounds way too much like a product of engineering to do justice to a naturalistic artlang such as Quenya. 'Artistic language' I would translate as _künstlerische Sprache_ (somewhat cumbersome, though) or _Kunst-Sprache_ (though uncomfortably close to _Kunstsprache_). I don't know what kind of word to use for 'engelang', though.
> I think there was a discussion about this on > the German conlang Yahoo group (which is dead now for at least a year > or two), but I do not remember what the result was.
I dimly remember such a thread, too, but as far as I can remember, the result was inconclusive.
> Using adjectives > seems unelegant to me -- as a German I prefer compounds. :-)
Both have their pros and cons.
> Another word that has no good translation is 'conlanger'. > 'Kunstsprachenerfinder' ('conlang inventor') is kind of bulky. > 'Spracherfinder' ('language inventor') would be almost ok.
_Sprachenerfinder_ works perfectly well, and is what I use; the second member makes the element _Kunst-_ redundant. On Tue, 20 Jan 2009 15:11:09 +0100, Benct Philip Jonsson wrote:
> What about _Kunstsprachler_? Surely the verb 'to conlang' > must be _kunstspracheln_ in German, and even if it isn't > there is _Wissenschaftler_ in spite of there being no > verb _*Wissenschafteln_.
_Kunstspracheln_??? BAAAH! What an ugly word! To me, it sounds like 'to fiddle about with conlangs without ever achieving a satisfactory result'. ... brought to you by the Weeping Elf


Philip Newton <philip.newton@...>
Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>
Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>"Conlang" and "Artlang" in German