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[conculture] IB: The Indo-European Language Family

From:Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date:Thursday, February 19, 2009, 15:20
Subject: Re: [conculture] IB: The Indo-European Language Family
From: Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2009 09:03:08 +0100

On 2009-02-18 Jan van Steenbergen wrote:
 > Hehe. GMP? Are you saying we know anything about Modern

Yes, I have some drafts in my head! ;-)

 > If so, all I can say is: wow! Bengan, I want to know more
about that!

There is so far only a little known about it.
I started out from the known consonantal allophony
in Old Tocharian:

         #_, _#  V_V     C_V             N_
------  ------  ------  ------------    ------
/p/     [p]     [B]     [p\]/[B]        [b]
/t/     [t]     [D]     [T]/[D]         [d]
/k/     [k]     [G]     [x]/[G]         [g]

to which I added:

         #_, _#  V_V     C_V             N_
------  ------  ------  ------------    ------
/c/     [ts\]   [dz\]   ([s\]/[z\]?)    [dz\]
/s/     [s]     [z]     [s]/[z]         [dz]
/s\/    [s\]    [z\]    [s\]/[z\]       [dz\]
/s`/    [s`]    [z`]    [s`]/[z`]       [dz`]

Where [s\ z\] are the Polish/Wenedyk soft
sibilants _si zi_ and [S Z] are the Pol/Wnd hard
sibilants _sz .z_.

And that the stops have the fricative allophones
also next to liquids, so that e.g.

- tr > Tr / #_
- tr > Dr / V_V
- rt > rT / _#

The most important subsequent change on the road
to New Tocharian is

- @ > 0

i.e. the loss of all "[ä]"s. (That is a-umlaut,
the unstressed allophone of /a/) except where it
had already shifted to /i/. This made all the
above consonant allophones phonemic, with the
important exception that there were no /b d dz\ dZ
g/ but rather /mb)/ etc.

Later changes include:

- a > @
- B > w
- ew > ju
- oj > jo
- ej > e  (O.Toch. /e/ = [E])
- ow > o  (O.Toch. /o/ = [O])
- aj > &: > ja
- aw > Q: > wa
   j  > /z\/
- z\ > "/j/"
- z` > Z
- s\, s` > S
- sT, ST > T
- Sx > x
- zj, Zj, Dj, rj > j
- sj, Sj, Tj > s\
- nj > J
- lj > L
- mb... > b / #_
- Ng, NG > N
- p\ > f
- w > v\

Needless to say these changes will also bring
havoc in the inflexional system...

Probably an intermediate stage in the development
of the O.Toch. _ew oj_ was /y 2/, which later
'broke' to /ju jo/ along with /& Q/ > /ja wa/,
i.e. the langiuage was heavily
Turkicized/Uralianized at some point.  Perhaps
even it still is, so that the letters hitherto
Latinized _ju ja_ actually have front rounded
allophones, with an actual [j] occuring only word
initially and intervocallically, and Middle
Tocharian *ji and *i merge.  Instead there is a
distinction between low mid and low front vowels.
There is no actual /jA/ since Middle Tocharian
/jA/ merges with /j&/ and /j@/ as follows
(M.Toch. = Middle Tocharian, of course only
attested as spelling errors in documents trying to
write Old Tocharian! :-)

Cyr.    M.Toch.     New Toch.  New Lat. ASCII   HTML
------  ----------- ---------- -------- ------  ---------
ю       /ju/        /(j)y/      (j)ü    (j)ue   &uuml;
е       /jo jQ/     /(j)2/      (j)ö    (j)oe   &ouml;
і       /i ji/      /i/         i        i
ы       /e/         /e/         y        y
и       /je/        /je/        jy       jy
э       /E/         /E/         e        e
є       /jE/        /jE/        je       e
ѣ       /&/         /&/         ë        ea     &euml;
я       /j& jA j@/  /j&/        ja       ja
ъ       /@/         /3/         ä        ae     &auml;
у       /u/         /u/         u        u
о       /o Q/       /o/         o        o
а       /A/         /A/         a        a

Darn Yahoos which make an ASCIIsation necessary
in the first place...

Obviously the Cyrillic needs to be adjusted. For
totally implausible reasons I wanted to have jat'
as /&/ and /@/ as _&auml;_! :-)  The odious turned
square E goes out unmourned. Otherwise the
inventory of the Ajchrip alphabet would be the
same even though some of the correspondences to
O.Toch. phonemes would be different.

 > This Ajchrip alphabet, did you devise it
 > especially for Tocharian?


 >> The text doesn't seem
 > to mention it.

No, because I asked for input on what people on
CONLANG thought about the phoneme to letter
mappings without prejudicing them by telling
about the Tocharian connexion.  Yitzik didn't like
my use of turned Cyrillic letters, but I think
it makes perfect sense in the conhistory --
plus that e-oborotnoe and the Ukrainian je
really suggest this, and even Yitzik had to admit
that Russians hear [T] and [D] as [s] and [z]! :-)

I didn't mention either that Ajchrip was a
*Buddhist* monk.  His name is from the Sanskrit
_Háyagríva_ "The Horse-headed", thus yet another
incarnation of myself!  Perhaps he should be
_Eachrip_ now.  I kind of like the idea of his name
beginning with Jat'!

I wonder what Middle and Modern orthography in the
Brahmi script is like.  I guess the C&auml;
letters could come in handy for missing voiced
fricative letters, long vowel signs for
back/unjotized/higher vowels and short vowel signs
for front/jotized/lower vowels although that would
have been a slow and painful process.


Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>