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Re: The League of Lost Languages (was Re: Fakelangs)

From:Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>
Date:Sunday, July 4, 2004, 19:39

On Sat, 3 Jul 2004 23:28:02 -0400,
Sally Caves <scaves@...> wrote:

> Thanks for your patient responses to my posts, Jo"rg; I think I was mostly > reacting to the assumption that the Teonim are not human, or that they must > stay within one fictional depiction of them (they wander most annoyingly > into other venues!),
It never was my intention to nail them shut anywhere; I simply was confused by their wandering into other venues, and the Melting struck me as something that went beyond the framework of the LLL.
> and since I've been toying with the notion of "faking" > Teonaht as a real language in some form, I was most interested in this > thread. I would be happy, though, to just sit in and observe, if I may.
You may, of course. The LLL mailing list is open to everyone interested, and its archives are public: Be our guest!
> I > could be mistaken but it strikes me that the LLL's goal is to produce > evidence of "dead" languages for which we have Rosetta stones and a > surviving literature?
Yes, but not only. The adjective "lost" is more about what happened to the languages in question in *our* world (they died out and left no documents behind, hence we don't know them), while in the otherwise identical world of the LLL, they are *not* lost, but have either left behind documents - or are still spoken today. We have not only dead languages that left behind documents, but also living linguistic minorities, as long as they are small enough to "fly below the radar" of history.
> Teonaht's vocabulary extends into the twentieth > century. If some LLLs are said to be spoken by living persons, though, > there has to be a this-world explanation for them, right?
They survived, but the speakers were too few to make a difference. For example, there are a few villages in the UK where a part of the population speak Albic languages. They are all bilingual in English, and the fact that they speak Albic at home is hardly obvious to the visitor. They use the Albic language only among themselves, and address strangers in English. Otherwise, the UK *there* is the same as the UK *here*; one can indeed imagine that the Albic languages are spoken in our world at this low level, but somehow managed to escape the attention of field linguists. You remember John Fisher's Elet Anta? That's about the way it works.
> T. could do that, > but it would have to be a diaspora; no straight-faced "melting." :) And a > diaspora would produce dialects, which I'm not yet up to. But June has > produced all manner of new projects and games, and I'd like to observe them. > We'll see what happens!
Be our guest and see what happens. Greetings, Jörg.