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[various] CONLANG Digest 19 Aug

From:Muke Tever <alrivera@...>
Date:Sunday, August 20, 2000, 8:03
> From: Michael Potter <MaxForwrd2@...> > Subject: Re: CHAT: living conditions/conditionally Re: Miscellaneous
> > artabanos@MAIL.UTEXAS.EDU writes: > > > I've always wondered about the distribution of this phrase -- "chest of > > drawers". > > My mother uses it, but I've always used "dresser" or "bureau". Are
> > any > > dialects this is associated with? > > I've never heard anyone born in Tennessee use the word "bureau" in that > context :)
Hehe. I'm born in Tennessee. My parents (not born in TN) used the word "bureau" but I use 'dresser' exclusively for all the furniture in this thread.
> From: Yoon Ha Lee <yl112@...> > Subject: Re: [wolfrunners] Languages & SF/F (fwd)
[quoting someone else, I think]
> My Russian teacher really tried to impress on us that you can't always > directly translate words. For an example, she would write Russian words > up on the board and give the English "equivalent". *Then* she would tell > us what the word *really* means--all the connotations and nuances that > come from being a Russian. Direct translations are nearly impossible.
An interesting book on this kind of thing was Anna Wierzbicka's "Semantics, Culture, and Cognition" (and a couple other books that our library has by her). "Direct translations" in the sense of 'a word for a word' mayn't be possible, but she manages to do a sort of "source-code" comparison between different "folk concepts" of ideas with her 'natural semantic metalanguage'.
> From: "H. S. Teoh" <hsteoh@...> > Subject: Re: Conlangs in History > > But I just wonder... has anybody come up with writing systems > (conlang-related or otherwise) that don't follow a character-based system?
The reduced version of Daimyo script is basically character-based, but the elaborate form theoretically would be glyph-based (er,...) _something_ like ... well, it'd remind me somewhat of Maya with its elaborately-decorated faces, which might be arranged linearly or perhaps pictorially...
> My third English-transliterating system actually uses a rough system of > constructing a single symbol for consonant clusters, and writes the vowels > as "accent marks" over the consonant symbols.
My current conlang's "ancient/classical" phase had a consonantary script, albeit without vowel marks. Later stages borrowed vowels from the Latin (or possibly the Greek at a late stage).
> From: Yoon Ha Lee <yl112@...> > Subject: Re: [wolfrunners] Languages & SF/F (fwd) > > > << someone wondered why sf writers don't use > > constructed/extrapolated languages more often in their works (though
> > question applies to fantasy, too). You know--future versions of major > > languages today, or creolized variants, word-borrowings, etc. >> > > > > Anyone ever read Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn? Sure, Mark Twain got
> > with that sort of language play, but he's not competing in today's
> > Well, there are ways of suggesting dialect without getting *that* extreme.
Or, or, you could end up like James Joyce's _Finnegans Wake_ ! >:)
> From: Nik Taylor <fortytwo@...> > Subject: Re: Conlangs in History > > > never having to wonder "what the heck is 'agenothree'?" > > I wonder - is that /edZnoThri/ or /edZEnoTri/? And why didn't they just > use the shorter "Nitric" for "Nitric acid"? Of course, if they had > stuck with a corruption of HNO3, it seems that it would've been > corrupted further, after thousands of years, perhaps down to something > like /edZTri/ or /edZTi/.
Except "agenothree" isn't really much of a corruption. But, uh, I never read that book, nor a lot of others in the series (and the ones I have, their names I couldn't remember offhand). *Muke!