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YANC and YANCC, Ecoi and the saKoni

From:Dan Jones <feuchard@...>
Date:Monday, June 25, 2001, 17:24
Ecoi is the language of the people who live on the planet woDakawi (which is
from the Proto-Ecoi /w3:D@'fVka:wi:/), who call themselves the saKoni
(singular form koni). The sketch presented below is based on the dialect of
the Holy City, nyoNulon. Etymological information is given in brackets.

Phonology and Alphabet.
The saKoni use an alphabet which is very similar to the Terrestrial Roman
alphabet. It has twenty letters, transliterated: a, c, d, e, f, i, j, k, l,
m, n, o, p, r, s, t, u, v, w, y and z. They each have only one
pronunciation- i.e. all are as the IPA except c /S/, j /Z/ and y /j/. Acute
accents can occur on vowels, which mark irregualr stress.

Stress is on the first syllable of the root word. Thus prefixes are not
stressed and in the orthography are never capitalised. Proper nouns are
capitalised, as are adjectives derived from them. The first word in a
sentance, however, is not capitalised.

Nouns do not have gender. They inflect for six cases- nominative, ablative,
dative, genitive, illative and locative. The noun distinguishes two umbers,
singular and plural, although this distinction is optional. The noun tan
"area" is given fully inflected below, with the proto-form in brackets.

nom    tan (p-e /ta:n/)
abl      rotan  (p-e /fr@ta:n/)
dat      tutan  (p-e /tu:ta:n/)
gen     vatan  (p-e /Vv@ta:n/)
ill        otutan  (p-e /oftu:ta:n/)
loc       natan  (p-e /in@ta:n/)

nom    satan  (p-e /samta:ns/)
abl      rosatan  (p-e /fr@samta:ns/)
dat     tusatan  (p-e /tu:samta:ns/)
gen    assatan  (p-e /@fsamta:ns/)
ill        otusatan  (p-e /oftu:samta:ns/)
loc     isatan  (p-e /insamta:ns/)

Note that Ecoi does not posess definate or indefinate articles.

Adjectives always come before the nouns they qualify: vi tan "big area". If
the noun is inflected, the inflection moves to the adjective: rosavi tan
"from big areas", not vi rosatan.

Ecoi verbs do not distinguish tense, although they do distinguish aspect by
means of particles before the verb. Verbs inflect for person. The verb tuyo
"to go" is inflected below, in both affirmative and negative forms:

infinitive: tuyo
           affirmative    negative
I        om yowimi,   ono yowimi
you        ya yowinya,   yana yowinya
he        iz yowinim,   ina yowinim
she        ciz yowina,   cina yowina
it        es yowinda,   ena yowinda
we        wia yowino,   wiano yowino
you (pl)    ya yowinyalo,  yana yowinyalo
they        dia yowindem,   diana yowindem

As can be seen, tu- is a prefix which marks the infinitive. Note that
the -w- between the o and the i is merely epenthetic, verbs which end in a
consonant, e.g. turot "to write" do not have this: om rotimi, not om

Aspect markers come between the preverbal particle and the verb itself.
These particles are:
foin- emphatic aspect, emphasises the positivity or negativity of the
pre-verb (p-e /fVkn=/)
stiu- imperfect aspect (p-e /stIl/)
yen- repetitive aspect (p-e /@gEn/)
reva- aorist aspect (p-e /frEv@/)
yona- volitionary aspect (p-e /gon@/)

Pronouns are inflected like nouns, save that they always take singular
inflections, whether or not they are gramatically singular.

I                       o                     /oj/
you                   yu                    /ju:/
he                     i                      /i:/
she                   ci                     /Si:/
it                      e                      /I?/
we (inc)            manyo             /mi:an_ju:/
we (exc)            ulo                  /uslO?/
you (pl)            yulo                  /yu:lO?/
they (m)            di
they (f)             dic
they (n)            de                    /DeI/

It is obligatory to use pronouns before verbs.

1    wan
2    tu
3    ri
4    fo
5    fov
6    sis
7    sevan
8    ey
9    non
10    ten

11    levan
12    dwel
13    fuyin
14    foyin
15    fitin
16    sitin
17    senin
18    eyin
19    nonin
20    dweni

And I do remember, to love another person is to see the face of god.
an om foin memrimi, tulev nova muc es siyinda fes vayoz

and PREVERB-1s-aff EMPH remember-1s, inf-love other person PREVERB-3sn-aff
see-1sn face gen-god.

The Story Behind Ecoi.
As you may have worked out, Ecoi is a future form of a certain English
dialect. The premise is that two coachloads of people from London we
abducted by aliens, had bizarre tests performed on them and then dumped on
an uninhabited planet with basic equipment for survival. Jokingly they
called themselves "the cockney exiles", and "koni" is thus from "cockney".
The name "Ecoi" is from our word "Estuary", referring to the so-called
"Estuary English" prevalent here in the UK.

The name of the planet itself is descended from the original settler's cries
of "where the fuck are we?". Eventually, their descendants regressed to a
more primitive level of culture and mythologised late 20th Century Britain.
Their original settlement named New London became Nulon, and the priests
here preached a religion where the cheif god is called Tonile and the
arch-demon is Wiyomey (Tony Blair and William Haig). There is a large cult
which is devoted to the Martyred Good Goddess, Pisesta (Princess Diana).

The saKoni's most sacred relics are Dason (a collection of disintigrating
peices of paper, bearing an unknown language and with pictures of heavenly
nymphs called sapejriyo, from /peidZTri:g3:w/- Page Three Girl), Penos
(which has more sapejriyo) and a nokya, which is a brightly coloured brick.
These are kept in the Temple at nyoNulon.

So, any thoughts?


La plus belle fois qu'on m'a dit
          "je t'aime"
                   c'était un mec
                             qui me l'a dit...
Francis Lalane


Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>