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Re: Back again, with YANC

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Thursday, February 8, 2001, 14:58
En réponse à Keolah Kedaire <keolah@...>:

> > So, I sat down and decided Yeishen needed an alphabet. For a change, > however, I decided to start with pictograms and evolve into a phonetic > alphabet. However, I ended up liking the pictograms, so I've kept them > as > their main form of writing. > > For details, see: > >
Interesting. I like the shape of the pictograms. Interestingly, my language Tj'a-ts'a~n also uses pictograms, one pictogram corresponding to one syllable. But the system is as well pictographic as phonetic: pictograms have a meaning (which is the meaning of the corresponding one-syllable root they stand for) but alos a phonetic value, and thus can be used with this value even if the meaning doesn't correspond. I don't know if I'm clear, but for instance, Tj'a-ts'a~n is an agglutinating language using prefixes and suffixes for declinations and conjugations. To write those prefixes and suffixes, you use the pictograms corresponding to their pronunciation, disregarding completely the original meaning of the pictograms. As the Sky People (the people speaking Tj'a-ts'a~n) see writing more as a help to remember what they learn by heart than as a way to store information, the ambiguity that may arise is not that important (the Sky People value more oral transmission of information than written transmission, so writing is less important in their culture than in ours). The difficulty is that prefixes and suffixes undergo consonnant and vowel harmony, and thus can have as many as 6 different pronunciations. Thus, the Sky People's scholars are dividied into two schools: the ones that advocate a perfect phonetic rendering of the pronunciation (and thus use as many as 6 pictograms for the same affix in different situations), and the ones that advocate the use of a single pictogram for the affix, since the different pronunciations are known without ambiguity from the surroundings of the affix. Both systems has its advantages and drawbacks. Christophe.