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Re: probably a bloody obvious question...

From:Padraic Brown <pbrown@...>
Date:Sunday, August 20, 2000, 19:51
On Sat, 19 Aug 2000, Yoon Ha Lee wrote:

>(Sorry I seem to be spamming the list. Please, please feel free to tell >me to shut up. In my experience it takes over a month before one gets a >feel for the dynamics of a particular mailing list....)
On the contrary! I have enjoyed reading what the writers have had to say. Perhaps, if any of them wish to pepper their writing with conlangs, I am sure they'd be welcome to visit us!
>When y'all design languages, do you have a checklist or template you work >from? I'm using the Language Construction Kit and Pablo Flores' pages >for now--I find them an easy-to-use starting point due to my lack of >experience.
Absolutely! ( ) Location/Culture ( ) Language Type/Relationships ( ) Grammar ( ) Lexicon/Texts ( ) Phonology :D Sorry that's probably not the kind of checklist you're looking for! Even so, the first two items are the first steps I use when working on a new language. The rest kind of falls in place.
>But someday I'd like to make sort of a reader/learning grammar for >Chevraqis, once I have more of the syntax hammered out (I'm evolving >postpositions from serial-verb constructions in Aragis, which is fun but >exhausting), but I'm not sure what's a good way to organize it. I've >seen a number of conlang pages that have grammars, but not so many that >have coherent learning guides with examples, exercises, maybe even >pictures. Perhaps I haven't looked hard enough?
Buy _any_ one of the Teach Yourself series. I don't really like them for the precise reason that they _aren't_ set up like a reference grammar; but for teaching a language, I think you'll like the setup. Just copy their template! They have exercises, vocabulary sections, grammar sections, cultural sections, etc.
>I'm looking at my own natlang grammars, and the one I like best is >_Living German_ by R.W Buckley, copyright 1965 and probably very out of >print. The organization makes beautiful sense--it made transition into >an actual college intro German class absolutely trivial. But I think >this also depends on the two languages (to-be-learned and learner's) >you're working with. Another I liked is C.J. Cherryh's intro to Latin
Quid est hoc?
>(which she claims is unorthodox, but I wouldn't know; I picked up a >Wheelock today but haven't had a chance to start reading), which I also >found very natural to learn from, though I'm sure it's glossing over all >kinds of things. (You can find it at
Gratias tibi ago.
>Has this been discussed before? Is there a website on >teaching-grammar-construction that I missed? A FAQ I can look at?
Not very in depth; though we _have_ done two or three rounds of phrasebook type exercises on Conlang. Padraic.
>Thanks in advance, >YHL