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Primitive Azainic

From:Andreas Johansson <and_yo@...>
Date:Sunday, February 24, 2002, 21:07
Possibly, this mail is already sent multiple times, but my browser hang, I
want to be sure it got thru'. Anyways:

The other day, I decided I'd re-start the Azainic language family more or
less from scratch. The thing is, I have to make so that the descendant
Tersnuvu can keep it's phontetic structure, rules of compounding etc (the
grammar is very sketchy, so disrupting that is little problem).

Somewhat oddly in a humankind's future SF coniverse, the Primitive Azainic
language (henceforth "PA") is supposed to be virtually unattested, because
of the planet(s) on which it was spoken were afterwards badly ravaged and
colonized by speakers of other languages. Therefore, Primitive Azainic is
supposed to be reconstructed from the "now" extant Azainic languages, of
which Tersnuvu is one.

The main idea with PA is that "content words" are generally CVCVC(V),
whereas "grammar words" are (V)CV. The content words will work basically
like roots, carrying a general meaning, which may be further specified by
placing grammar words behind it. The golden rule with grammar words is to
leave out everything that can be figured from context.

So, for instance, the content word _sabhar_ basically means "light, to
shine", and _samadu_ means "sun, star". _Samadu sabhar_ may be interpreted
as "a star shines" in one context and "stars shine" in another. When one
needs to keep those apart, one may say _samadu ha sabhar_ for the first and
_samadu ihi sabhar_ for the second, where _ha_ means "one" and _ihi_ more or
less "plural". If something one wouldn't expect to shine does so, this may
be clarified with an "agent" marker; _bhanan adu sabhar_ "a/the commander
shines". Word order is supposed to be topic-comment.

Obviously, I've got alot more work to do on this, but does the system seem
workable and or realistic? PA is, intrafictionally, a natural language, so
I'd like to believe that it's reasonably natural.


PS The little word _ihi_ survives in Tersnuvu as i-umlaut in the plurals, eg
_turu_ "family", pl _tyry_. The changes from PA to Tersnuvu will basically
wreck the grammar and replace it with something more IEoid.

PPS The reconstructed phonemic inventory of PA:

i a u
ai au

p  t  k
b  d  g
ph th kh
bh dh gh

m n
s z h
l r

where Ch means an aspirated consonant. Consonat clusters and vowels in
hiatus aren't.

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