Re: Deriving words that aren't too long
|From:||Mathias M. Lassailly <lassailly@...>|
|Date:||Monday, November 16, 1998, 18:04|
Simon wrote :
Simple English words are mostly short, normally one or two syllables.
> But English doesn't seem to derive these simple words from smaller
> roots. My conlang does, more or less regularly, but its words seem so
> For example, I have the root "chit" (gift), and by adding the endings
> "il" and "a" I get the word "chitila" (to take). Is there any way I
> could still have regular derivation, but keep the size of the words
> down?... it makes a single English sentence 3 times as long translated.
You should not think you fail because your conlang's sentences are longer than in
English. English is a very concise language and translations into French or
Japanese are usually twice as long as the original English text.
My recipe : to derive adjectives and agent nouns from verbs and reversely I
transfer the cases into the verb and reversely, then I add a 'pronoun' tag such
as 'the fact of', 'the result of', 'the one who'. Example of deriving the noun
*mata* meaning *eyes* :
mata : eye // mata o- : to use eyes (nominal sentence : *o* is the instrumental
case // ho-mata : to use eyes (in verbal sentence) // mata-q o- : to see (in
nominal sentence) // ho-mata-q : to see (in verbal sentence) // wo-mata-q :
seeing (adjective) // ca-wo-mata-q : the one who sees (agent noun) //
co-wo-mata-q : the fact of seeing // ci-wo-mata-q : the sight, the image, etc.
If you cram aspect and mood within the root-noun *mata* or in the case *o-*, then
you can make aspected and *mooded* agent nouns, which English doesn't :
homataq : to see // homa-a-taq : to look (imperfective) // homat-t-aq : can see //
ho-ma-mataq : to watch (durative) // ho-mata-mataq : to watch now and then //
ho-mataq-mataq : to watch intensively, etc.
See the original message at http://www.egroups.com/list/conlang/?start=18446