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sabyuka : consonants, orthography, and a few things more

From:julien eychenne <eychenne.j@...>
Date:Wednesday, May 22, 2002, 14:55

I would like to share what should be the definitive phonological system
of the conlang I am working on. It's name is composed of |sab| (the
first syllable of Sabrina, my girlfriend who'll design the alphabet),
and |yu|, an IPA reading of the first syllable of my name (Julien). The
suffix -ka sounds good to me :). In the language, this word will
certainly mean "the way leading to knowledge". It would be analyzed as :

where DAT is Dative and RM is Reference Marker.
The glosis would be "the thing to knowledge", or something like that.
The idea is to create (the outline of ) an associated conculture, where
the Society would be organized around language. Language would be some
kind of God's gift, and would have to be adorated as so. Political
authority would be given to the best grammarians. That explains the name
of the language.

So, here is the outsketch of the consonant system, widely inspired by
nawatl system :

p  t  ts  tS  k
      tl      kw
b  d      dZ
m  n
f  T  s   S    h*
   r  l
v\         j

*/h/ is pronounced [h] in very formal discussion, but quite everyone
uses [x] instead in every day life.

where v\ is a labiodental glide as in Sanskrit 'açvas' "horse"

Here is how I will transliterate it (at least here as we don't use
exotic letters ;)) :

/p/ --> |p|
/t/ --> |t|
/ts/ --> |tz|
/tS/ --> |c|
/k/ --> |k|
/tl/ --> |tl|
/kw/ --> |q|
/b/ --> |b|
/d/ --> |d|
/dZ/ --> |j|
/m/ --> |m|
/n/ --> |n|
/f/ --> |f|
/T/ --> |th|
/s/ --> |s|
/S/ --> |x|
/h/ --> |h|
/r/ --> |r|
/l/ --> |l|
/v\/ --> |v|
/j/ --> |y|

Notes :
  - /ts/ is really problematic to me, because I want my system to be
first aesthetic, /ts/ might be in every position, especially final. I
had thought of |ç| and |z|, but I finally decided for |tz| : please tell
me if you have any better idea :)
  - doubling a consonant is made by writing the consonant twice (!) In
the particular cas of a digraph, such as |tz, th|, only the first one is
doubled (e.g. |ttz, tth|)
  - in ambiguous cases, such as |th| (/t+h/ or /T/?) I use an apostroph
(') to indicate that the two consonants are different, so that :
|t'h| is read /th/, or [tx].

Here is the transliteration of the vowel system :
/i/ --> |i|
/e/ --> |e|
/ei/ --> |ê|
/@/ --> |à|
/a/ --> |a|
/a@/ --> |â|
/u/ --> |u|
/o/ --> |o|
/ou/ --> |ô|

Feel free to comment (and criticize :))

Best regards,



And Rosta <a-rosta@...>
Nik Taylor <fortytwo@...>
Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Raymond Brown <ray.brown@...>