|Nouns decline according to...|
|Verbs conjugate according to...|
- 1 General information
- 2 Phonology
- 3 Grammar
- 3.1 Nouns
- 3.2 Pronominal particles
- 3.3 Verbs
- 3.4 Numerals
- 3.5 Syntax
- 4 Vocabulary
- 5 Example text
General information[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat is a language spoken by a civilization of the same name, that once has ruled in the region of the great river Thailassar; the very name (which is the Middle Aqͣqarͤrhat form, by the way) means "Riverland". Several periods of formation of this language are known, ranging from Proto-Aqͣqarͤrhat, from which also a few other languages come from, through Old and Middle (also called High) stages up to what is nowadays known as the New Aqͣqarͤrhat, with some major changes occuring between these steps.
Phonology[edit | edit source]
Old Aqͣqarͤrhat Consonants[edit | edit source]
|Plosive||p, pʼ, pʰ||t̪, t̪ʼ, t̪ʰ||ʈ, ʈʼ, ʈʰ||k, kʼ, kʰ||q, qʼ, qʰ||ʔ|
|Flap or tap|
Old Aqͣqarͤrhat Vowels[edit | edit source]
|Close||i, iː, ĩ, ĩː, ĭ, ĭ͂; y, yː, ỹ, ỹː, y̆, y̆̃||u, uː, ũ, ũː, ŭ, ŭ̃|
|Open-mid||ɛ, ɛː, ɛ̃, ɛ̃ː, ɛ̆, ɛ̆̃||ɔ, ɔː, ɔ̃, ɔ̃ː, ɔ̆, ɔ̆̃|
|Open||a, aː, ã, ãː, ă ẵ|
As we can see, the Old Aqͣqarͤrhat distinguished its 6 vowels by length (short, medium and long) and by nasality (nasal vs. not nasal). It also retained some of its Proto-language's tonality: its accented vowels (long or medium only) had a pitch accent (High, Mid, or Low), but this was lost in the later stages of development.
High Aqͣqarͤrhat Consonants[edit | edit source]
|Plosive||p, pˤ||t̪, t̪ˤ||ʈ, ʈˤ||k, kˤ||q, qˤ||ʔ (non-phonemic)|
|Flap or tap|
As we can see here, some changes occured during the transition of the Old Aqͣqarͤrhat into the Middle. First, all ejectives disappeared, and pharyngealized stops appeared instead (in the sibilants, the change was in length: the old ejective sibilant changed into a new short, but pulmonic version, and the old 'normal', pulmonic one was lengthened). Also, old aspirated stops became fricatives, with the retroflex fricative getting sibilantized and the uvular and velar ones merging together. The old glottal phonemes changed into the so-called transition system; old glottal stop change into the 'hard transition' (that is, it stayed where it had been, still separating the two syllables), but the glottal fricative changed into 'soft transition' instead, disappearing completely via the lenition process. In the word-initial or final positions the glottal consonants disappeared completely (glottal stop tuning up only to separate vowels from two adjacent words, which otherwise wopuld b in a hiatus). The hard transition meant that the two vowels where to be pronounced separately; and the soft transition caused the vowels to be pronounced without any pause, effectivelly turning them into a diphthong (or even a triphthong or oligophthong, sometimes).
High Aqͣqarͤrhat Vowels[edit | edit source]
|Close||i, iː, ĩ, ĩː, ĭ, ĭ͂; y, yː, ỹ, ỹː, y̆, y̆̃||u, uː, ũ, ũː, ŭ, ŭ̃|
|Open-mid||ɛ, ɛː, ɛ̃, ɛ̃ː, ɛ̆, ɛ̆̃||ɔ, ɔː, ɔ̃, ɔ̃ː, ɔ̆, ɔ̆̃|
|Open||a, aː, ã, ãː, ă ẵ|
Except of the addition of the new soft and hard transition system, the vowel structure of the language didn't change, except that the vowels became shorter and lost the pitch (even in the accented syllables). They also retained the nasalization. The old short vowels became reduced ones, written as a superscript (qͣ) or with a respective diacritic (ă). They could occur only after consonants, if they weren't directly followed by a medium or long vowel. If such a reduced vowel was nasalized, its nasality extended onto the preceding consonant, making it slightly voiced in the process. In the Old Aqͣqarͤrhat, there was a rule that forbade nasal vowels from following ejectives; this was moved into the High Aqͣqarͤrhat, thus keeping the pharyngealized consonants from being followed by a nasal vowel. Only vowels could be word-final, though; and so, there could be no consonants not followed by an (at least reduced) vowel in this position; yet, the only non-close reduced vowel that actually could appear there was the schwa, written as reduced e, or not at all. The reduced close vowels i, u and y could, though, happen even there, starting the process of changing these vowels into palatalization, labialization and palato-labialization, respecively, which would apply to these vowels in all positions (not only word-finally) in the New Aqͣqarͤrhat.
Alphabet[edit | edit source]
Phonotactics[edit | edit source]
The Old and High Aqͣqarͤrhat permit only syllables with an (optional) one-consonant onset, an obligatory nucleus and no coda; yet, the nucleus may consist just of a reduced vowel (which, especially between unvoiced consonants, might be almost inaudible for most European speakers). Vowels that are linked by a soft transition (that is, no consonant interrupting, not even a glottal stop) are treated as singular vowels, even though they might seem to be diphthongs, triphthongs, etc..
Interestingly, glottal stop may occur at the beginning of words, distinguishing them from the ones that don't have it.
Old Aqͣqarͤrhat didn't permit any consonant clusters; this was kept in the High Aqͣqarͤrhat. The New one actually permits some (prenasalizd stops, for example), but it's still quite stiff in this matter.
Grammar[edit | edit source]
Nouns[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat nouns decline by cases (14) and number (7/8); the Old one had also genders (4), but in the later stages it was preserved in the pronomial forms only.
Cases[edit | edit source]
As I said above, Aqͣqarͤrhat nouns have 14 cases in total, these being:
- Direct (the 'subject case'; neither agent nor patient, but can act as any or both);
- Ergative (the agent; the direct cause (or 'perpetrator') of an action);
- Accusative (the patient; the direct recipient (object) of an action);
- Causal (the indirect cause of something happening);
- Dative (the (indirect) recipient, benefactor, goal or effect of an action);
- Instrumental (the way, the means or the tool to do something);
- Comitative (parties that accompany the carrying out of an action, not being directly involved);
- Possessive (the owner of a thing);
- Inessive (the surroundings or circumstances);
- Adessive (all-round indirect case; usually corresponding to the preposition 'about');
- Ablative (the source; motion from; usually used with adpositions to mark moving away from some position);
- Allative (in the direction of; motion to; usually used with adpositions to mark the movement into a position);
- Perlative (through, across, by, along, via; usually used with adpositions to mark movement through or via a position)
- Locative (in, at; used to mark the location where something occurs, might be thought of as a static counterpart of the 3 cases above; usually used with adpositions to mark placement in a position).
Aqͣqarͤrhat nouns have 3 different stem forms, each used with a different set of cases:
- form 1 (or direct) - used to form Direct, Ergative and Accusative;
- form 2 (or middle) - used to form Causal, Dative, Instrumental and Comitative;
- form 3 (or indirect) - used to form Possessive, Inessive, Adessive, Ablative, Allative, Perlative and Locative cases.
There is yet another, fourth form, though - the adjectival form. It can take any of the aforementioned cases, as well as a fifteenth case, the Adverbial (used to make adverbs).
These forms are usually quite regular, although some irregularities might also occur; there can also actually exist several different variants of each form of a single substantive (that is especially true for the adjectival), sometimes with varying meaning.
Aqͣqarͤrhat noun cases[edit | edit source]
When in adjectival form, however, the Aqͣqarͤrhat nouns and gerunds tend to use alternative affixes for some cases, as well as a distinct Adverbial case.
The alternative forms are:
- -sse- [sːɛ] for Ergative
- -ky̆̃ňu- [ky̆̃ɳu] for Instrumental
- -nhͣthu- [ɴăθu] or -ngangū- [ŋaŋuː] for Dative
- -ţ'ylĩ- [ʈˤylĩ] for Possessive
- -qēra- [qɛːra] for Ablative
- -hŭ̃t'ē- [χŭ̃tˤɛː] or -rhē- [ʀɛː] for the Adverbial case.
These affixes (save the Adverbial) are used only sporadically, though, usually in more formal occasions; normally, the usual noun affixes are used. The exception is the participle form of verbs; it actually should use only the 'alternative' affixes (although it may take the 'normal' ones instead, too, but seldom). So, in short, nominal adjectives tend to use 'normal' affixes, while the participles/gerundial adjectives usually use the alternative ones.
Comparing and intensity markers[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat uses the so-called intensity markers or affixes, which are added to words (most often adjectivals or verbs) to express their intensity. In conjunction witha few characterisitc cases, these might be used to form comparative sentences.
Aqͣqarͤrhat intensity markers[edit | edit source]
The Positive and Elative are used solely in comparison, whereas the other markers here have also different functions. The Amplifying and Intensive, as well as Weakening and Residual are used to mark various levels of intensity (from the highest to the lowest). The Diminutive is used to express familiarity.
When a word marked with the above is used in juxtaposition with another word of the same category in a certain case, then it's certainly a comparison. The respective cases to be used on objects of comparison are:
- Ablative with Amplifying, Intensive and Elative
- Allative with Weakening, Residual and Diminutive
- Adessive with Positive (and with any other, too).
Moreover, the Elative (which, in fact, is only rarely used) always appears with its object in Collective number.
Numbers[edit | edit source]
There are 7 (or 8) numbers in Aqͣqarͤrhat, these being:
- Singular (one of an instance of a concept; for single, whole, countable things);
- Dual (used for countable things that are double or occur in pairs or couples; in later times, used for any symmetric system);
- Trial (used for countable things that are triple or occur in threes; in later times, used for any asymmetric system);
- Plural (any set of countable elements, but taken respectively, that is, as a set of units, not a consistent group; in English pronouns 'every' and 'each' are used to express a similar concept);
- Null (zero of instances of a concept; can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns);
- Partitive/Paucal (a part of a greater whole; a little/a few; can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns);
- Collective (all of instances of a concept; can be used with both countable and uncountable nouns).
There also used to be a Quadral number, used for quadruples, fours and 'supersymmetric' systems, but its use was limited for religious purposes only, and so they weren't used in everyday speech.
Aqͣqarͤrhat noun numbers[edit | edit source]
|Quadral (ancient)||-qeqe- [qɛqɛ]|
|Plural (respective)||-fōnhu- [ɸɔːɴu]|
Aqͣqarͤrhat also has a 'blank' or 'unknown' number, with no numerical affix added; this is used when the number is not known, irrelevent or can be understood from the context.
Pronominal particles[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat doesn't have pronouns as we know them; it rather uses different particles (for example, gender, person or definitness markers) affixed to other parts of speech to convey pronominal ideas (so, the pronoun 'I' would be expressed by a combination 'human-Definite-1st person-Singular-Direct case').
Aqͣqarͤrhat pronominal particles[edit | edit source]
|Particle type||Particle form|
|1st person (personal particle)||-mā- [maː]|
|2nd person||-ssē- [sːɛː]|
|3rd person, masculine (personal/gender particle)||-qō- [qɔː]|
|3rd person, feminine||-thī̃- [θĩː]|
|3rd person, impersonal animate||-fȳ- [ɸyː]|
|3rd person, impersonal inanimate||-ngū̃- [ŋũː]|
|Definite (absolute) (definitness particle)||-ţȭn- [ʈɔ̃ːn]|
|Definite (exclusive)||-lã'- [lãʔ]|
|Definite (demonstrative)||-it'i- [it̪ˤi]|
As you can see, the 3rd person pronomial particle has 4 genders. There are also 4 particles dealing with definitness. The first one of these, the absolute definite, is used to express that sb/sth is the only one of his/its kind (like he (and no one else) is the greatest king). It's often used witht the superlative. The exclusive definite, on the other hand, delas with groups; it works on a similar basis as the exclusive pronouns in some languages (like we, but not you). The demonstrative definite is used like the this/that in English, although the Aqͣqarͤrhat doesn't make any distinction between the near and remote; different forms are used to distinguish those. Finally, the indefinite is used to express the idea of 'some' or 'any' (like in 'someone, something, anybody, anywhere' etc.)
Verbs[edit | edit source]
Verbs don't conjugate by tense, voice or person, but they have 6 aspects (Perfect, Inchoative, Stative/Gnomic, Active/Continous, Cessative, Progressive) and 4 moods (Indicative, Interrogative, Potential/Subjunctive, Optative/Jussive).
Aspect/tense[edit | edit source]
As said above, Aqͣqarͤrhat has 6 aspects (I call them aspects rather than tenses, as they convey the manner of an action, not actual time), these being:
- Perfect (an action completed some time prior, but its effects still visible)
- Inchoative (an action/state is just commencing)
- Gnomic (an undefined action; might be constant or habitual; similar to Greek or Quenya Aorist or English Present Simple)
- Continous (an action that is happening at the moment of speaking, or a state that is changing)
- Cessative (an action/state that is ceasing)
- Progressive (a future, usually planned or somehow predicted action/state)
Aspects are marked with special affixes assigned to them:
Aqͣqarͤrhat verb aspect affixes[edit | edit source]
Mood[edit | edit source]
There are 4 moods in Aqͣqarͤrhat verbs:
- Indicative (a real action)
- Interrogative (used to form questions or statements the speaker is somewhat unsure of)
- Potential/Subjunctive (used to make hypotheses, usually in conditional sentences; ambigous as to the speaker willing something or not)
- Optative/Jussive (orders, demands, wishes or encouragement; speaker espresses his will that something happen)
Each mood has its own verb stem form (similar to the nouns' system), to which the aspectual affixes are added.
There is also the gerund, which has its own stem form (and might thus be called a fifth 'mood'). It doesn't take the aspectual affixes, though, but the substantival ones instead (the same as the adjectival in nouns, so, including the adverbial case). Although, if an aspectual affix is added, the gerund turns into a participle (its temporal relation to the main clause being marked by the aspectual affix).
Like the nouns, the verbs might have even several variants of a single form.
Modality[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat doesn't have verbs to express modality; instead, it uses modal particles, followed by verbs in their usual form. The particles are not clitics, and they always precede the verb they modify; they can also be put at the beginning of a sentence.
There's a list of them:
Aqͣqarͤrhat verb modality particles[edit | edit source]
|necessity (need)||ndăra- [ɳăra]|
|obligation (have to/must)||k'uŏ- [kˤuɔ̆]|
|possibility (can)||fyma- [ɸyma]|
|permission (may/to be allowed to}||kithĭ͂- [kiθĭ͂]|
|will (want to)||lane- [lanɛ]|
|advice (should)||mą̄xa- [mãːxa]|
Evidentials[edit | edit source]
There are two evidential particles: -ngalĭ [ŋalĭ] and -ssyrĭ [sːyrĭ], added after the verb they modify. The former one implicates that the speaker is sure of the information expressed, and the latter one indicated the exactly opposite.
Numerals[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat numerals use an octal (8-based) system, which is also, perhaps, a cause for number 4 and its multilplications to be considered holy by the Aqͣqarͤrhatians.
There are 7 types (or forms) of numerals. They're declined just like the adjectives, and, indeed, their function is very similar. There are some differences, of course, but not too complex.
So, these 7 types of numerals in Aqͣqarͤrhat are:
- Cardinal numbers (the most basic ones; also functioning as nouns, but they are not used with the Adverbial case; one, two, three, etc.)
- Ordinal numbers (indicating the order of things; they may take the Adverbial case (for example, for the first/second/third time etc.); first, second, third etc.)
- Collective (groups of elements; naturally, there is no number one or the Adverbial case; they correspond to the cardinal numbers as the dual/trial/collective do to the plural; (group of) two, three etc.)
- Multiplicative (similar to the Latin multiplicatives; singular, twofold, threefold, etc.; might take the Adverbial case - once, twice, etc.)
- Genitive numbers (used to express some part coming from a greater number of things,like one/some/none/any of two, three, four, etc.; don't have the number one or the Adverbial case)
- Partitive numbers/Fractions (not to be confused with the grammatical number Partitive; used in fractions; one half, one third, two fifths etc.; no number 1 or Adverbial)
- Distributive numbers (much like their Latin counterparts; one-by-one, two-by-two, three each, per four, etc.; can take the Adverbial).
So, to sum up, there are 7 different types of numerals in Aqͣqarͤrhat (or 10, if counting the Adverbial forms of some of them). To these might be added various 'indefinite' numerals, functioning as pronouns, nouns or adverbs in English (for example, some, all, least, any, etc.).
The main Aqͣqarͤrhat numerals are shown below:
|1||kărit [kărit]||kărite [kăritɛ]||kărit'ē [kăritˤɛː]||kăritum [kăritum]|
|2||ssērh [sːɛːʀ]||ssērhē [sːɛːʀɛː]||ssērhȭ [sːɛːʀɔ̃ː]||ssērhe [sːɛːʀɛ]||ssērhy̆šō [sːɛːʀy̆ʂɔː]||ssērhišō [sːɛːʀiʂɔː]||ssērhum [sːɛːʀum]|
|3||q'u [qˤu]||q'uē [qˤuɛː]||q'uȭ [qˤuɔ̃ː]||q'ue [qˤuɛ]||q'ušō [qˤuʂɔː]||q'ušō [qˤuʂɔː]||q'u'um [qˤuʔum]|
|4||ţil [ʈil]||ţilē [ʈilɛː]||ţilȭ [ʈilɔ̃ː]||ţile [ʈilɛ]||ţilyšō [ʈilyʂɔː]||ţilišō [ʈiliʂɔː]||ţilum [ʈilum]|
|5||hỹ̄ [χỹː]||hỹ̄ē [χỹːɛː]||hỹ̄ȭ [χỹːɔ̃ː]||hỹ̄e [χỹːɛ]||hỹ̄šō [χỹːʂɔː]||hỹ̄šō [χỹːʂɔː]||hỹ̄'um [χỹːʔum]|
|6||xąth [xãθ]||xąthē [xãθɛː]||xąthȭ [xãθɔ̃ː]||xąthe [xãθɛ]||xąthyšō [xãθyʂɔː]||xąthišō [xãθiʂɔː]||xąthum [xãθum]|
|7||'iši [ʔiʂi]||'išiē [ʔiʂiɛː]||'išiȭ [ʔiʂiɔ̃ː]||'išie [ʔiʂiɛ]||'išyšō [ʔiʂyɔː]||'išišō [ʔiʂiɔː]||'išium [ʔiʂium]|
|8||nhā' [ɴaːʔ]||nhā'ē [ɴaːʔɛː]||nhā'ȭ [ɴaːʔɔ̃ː]||nhā'e [ɴaːʔɛ]||nhā'y̆šō [ɴaːʔy̆ʂɔː]||nhā'ĭšō [ɴaːʔĭʂɔː]||nhā'um [ɴaːʔum]|
|64||ndē [ɳɛː]||ndē [ɳɛː]||ndēo [ɳɛːɔ]||ndē [ɳɛː]||ndēšy̆ [ɳɛːʂy̆]||ndēšĭ[ɳɛːʂĭ]||ndē'um [ɳɛːʔum]|
|512||fara [ɸara]||fare [ɸarɛ]||faro [ɸarɔ]||fare'e [ɸarɛʔɛ]||farešy̆ [ɸarɛʂy̆]||farešĭ [ɸarɛʂĭ]||farum [ɸarum]|
Syntax[edit | edit source]
Aqͣqarͤrhat has a generally free word order, although the predicate and the subject are always just beside one another, without any other word intruding between them. This language is interesting because of its unusual morphosyntactic alignment: apart from Ergative and Accusative cases, which are used to mark the agent ad the patient, respectively, it also has a third case, Direct, which is neither, but can act as any (or both; it indeed comes from a fusion of old Nominative and Absolutive). The Direct-marked subject is obligatory in all of the Aqͣqarͤrhat sentences; it can be intransitive (alone), act as an agent (with Acc.), a patient (Erg.) or even the two at the same time, with both Accusative patient and Ergative agent, (sometimes) with each having its own predicate; this way Aqͣqarͤrhat language is able to form the so-called dipredicative sentences.
Vocabulary[edit | edit source]
|37||man (adult male)||—|
|38||man (human being)||—|