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New Conlang: Hombraian

From:Christian Thalmann <cinga@...>
Date:Friday, January 9, 2004, 0:36
This is a language concept for a human stellar nation in Zahir's
sci-fi universe-building project Skies of Man.  It's basically a
slightly evolved and extrapolated Spanish, which will hopefully
acquire some Russian influences too.  Due to the conservative
nature of modern media and communications, the changes are
comparatively small, although they took centuries to mature.

Have fun...

Oh, and to all you linguists:  Please forgive me my uneducated
and most probably wrong use of would-be linguistic notation for
the sound changes.

-- Christian Thalmann

Hombraian -- a conlang based on Spanish


a [a]
e [e] when stressed, [i] otherwise
i [i]
o [o] when stressed, [u] otherwise
u [u]

Furthermore, i and u are used for the glides [j] and [w] when adjacent
to other vowels.

p [p]
t [tS] before [i], [t] otherwise
c [k]
b [b]
d [dZ] before [i], [d] otherwise
g [g]
f [f]
s [h] syllable-finally, [S] before [i], [s] otherwise
z [Z]
x [S]
j [h]
h [0] (mute)

Phonological Derivation

...or how to derive Hombraian vocabulary from Spanish stock.

Vowels remain mostly unaffected in spelling.  The common diphthongs
ie and ue become ia and ua.  Note that unstressed e and o degrade
into [i] and [u] in pronunciation.

Consonants undergo changes that are often reflected in writing.  In
the following, the symbols W/Y are taken to mean a following
back/front vowel.  A consonant or end of word is counted as a back
vowel environment.  The symbol # represents a word boundary, V
represents an arbitrary vowel.

p        -> p
t        -> t
cW, qu   -> c

b,v      -> b // #___, m___, n___;
             u otherwise
d        -> d // #___, n___;
             r // r___;
            l // l___;
            z // V___[i];
             h otherwise
gW, guY  -> g // #___, n___;
             j otherwise

f        -> f
h        -> 0 (vanishes)

ch       -> x
gY, j    -> j
s, z, cY -> s
ll, y    -> z

r        -> r
l        -> l

n        -> m // ___b;
             n otherwise
m        -> m
n~       -> ni

As in Spanish, the stress falls on the penultimate when a word ends
in a vowel, s or n, and on the ultimate otherwise.  In order to mark
stress on the ultimate in words ending on a vowel, add a -h; if the
word ends in s or n, double that vowel.

Examples: venio' -> benioh [bin'jo]; adema's -> azemass [aZi'mah];
           corazo'n -> corasonn [kura'son]

Sample Text

Straight transliteration, without taking care of vocab and grammar...
just demonstrating the sound changes.  Using Pablo's version of The
North Wind And The Sun, no less.

El viento norte y el sol porfiaban sobre cuál de ellos era el más
fuerte, cuando acertó a pasar un viajero envuelto en ancha capa.

Il bianto norte i il sol porfiauan soure cual de ezos era il mah
fuarte, cuando asertoh a pasar un biajero embualto in anxa capa.

[il 'bjantu 'nortSi i il sol pur'fjawan 'sowri kwal dZi 'eZuh 'era
il mah 'fwartSi  'kwandu asir'to a pa'sar um bja'heru im'bwaltu in
'anSa 'kapa]

Grammar Changes

Don't know yet...  possibly some Russian influences in verb endings,
producing -x [S] in 2sg and -m [m] in 1pl as well as return to the
nos, vos pronouns even for nominative.