| Iáþi |
|Nouns decline according to...|
|Verbs conjugate according to...|
Iáþi (/ɪ.ɐ.θɪ/, anglicized Iathi) is the language of the Iátéô people, who live on the northeastern peninsula of Káslωta, the southeastern continent of the planet Aïslíŋ (Eng. Aysling). It is the national and official language of Se Niλúba, where it is spoken as a first language by 64 million people and as a second language by an additional 4 million, mostly by native speakers of other Lhuban languages in the southern regions. It is also spoken by diaspora communities across the planet.
Classification and Dialects
Iáþi is the most spoken member of the Lhuban family. It is one of three extant languages of the Northern branch, the only extant branch of the family. The other two languages, Throlyen and Vaseka, are closely related though not mutually intelligible with each other or Iáþi.
There are two main dialects of Iáþi, which are mutually intelligible. The northern dialect, known in English as Talaman after the major city of Talama, is the more innovative dialect, while the southern dialect, called Marunaean in English after the city of Marúné, is more conservative. Marunaean is the prestige dialect, although Talaman is increasing in popularity. Amongst these two main dialects are several subdialects, found primarily in major urban centers, such as Oϟaalí.
Iáþi has the largest consonant inventory of any Lhuban language, totaling in at 32 native standard phonemes in Talaman and 37 in Marunaean.
|Plosive||p b||t d||c ɟ||k g||q||(ʔ)|
|Fricative||ɸ β||f v||θ ð||s z||(ʃ ʒ)||ç ʝ||x ɣ||χ ʁ|
|Trill or tap||r̊ˠ rˠ|
|Plosive||p b||p͆ b̪||t̪ d̪||c ɟ||k g||q ɢ||(ʔ)|
|Fricative||ɸ β||f v||θ ð||s z||ç ʝ||x ɣ||χ ʁ|
|Trill or tap||r̊ˠ rˠ|
- speakers of Talaman have lost contrast of /ɱ/, /p͆/, /b̪/, /ɴ/ and /ɢ/, merging them with /m/, /p/, /b/, /ŋ/ and /g/ respectively; this can cause some intelligibility issues with Marunaean speakers
- /s/ is voiced to [z] when in the syllable coda and the next syllable begins with a voiced consonant
- /r/ is realized as [rˠ] following consonants and as [ɾˠ] elsewhere in Marunaean, but is generally realized simply as [rˠ] in Talaman dialects, though this is not universal; the same may apply to /r̊/
- the distinction between /r/ and /r̊/ is neutralized in consonant clusters; voicing assimilates to the adjacent consonant
- velar and uvular consonants become labialised before rounded vowels
- /ʃ/ and /ʒ/ are found only in loanwords in Talaman; Marunaean replaces these with /s/ and /z/ respectively
- some rural subdialects of both major dialects may insert a glottal stop between adjacent vowels, though speakers of the standard dialects regard this as a sign of uneducated speech
Iáþi has an equally large vowel inventory, ranging in size from 25 phonemes in Talama to 29 in Marúné.
|High||i ĩ y ỹ||u ũ|
|Near-high||ɪ ɪ̃||ʊ ʊ̃|
|High-mid||e ẽ ø ø̃||o õ|
|Low-mid||ɛ ɛ̃||ɔ ɔ̃|
|Low||a ã||(ɑ ɑ̃)|
|High||i ĩ y ỹ||ɯ ɯ̃ u ũ|
|Near-high||ɪ ɪ̃||ʊ ʊ̃|
|High-mid||e ẽ ø ø̃||ɤ ɤ̃ o õ|
|Low-mid||ɛ ɛ̃||ɔ ɔ̃|
- Talaman merges /ɯ/, /ɯ̃/, /ɤ/ and /ɤ̃/ with /u/, /ũ/, /o/ and /õ/ respectively, and also fronts /ä/, /ä̃/, /ɐ/ and /ɐ̃/ to /a/, /ã/, /æ/ and /æ̃/ respectively
- in Talaman, /a/ and /ã/ in open syllables (those without a coda) tend to be backed to /ɑ/ and /ɑ̃/ respectively
- permitted diphthongs: /ṷV/, /i̭V/, /aṷ/, /ɛṷ/, /øṷ/*, /ai̭/, /ɔi̭/, /ɤi̭/* (where V stands for any vowel or other diphthong; asterisked diphthongs occur only in Marunaean)
- diphthongs may also be nasalized
- /ə/ may become voiceless or even be elided after voiceless consonants in rapid speech
Syllables must be in the form (C1)(C)(C2)V(C3)(s), where V is any vowel (including permitted diphthongs and triphthongs), C is any consonant, C1 is /s/ or /z/, C2 is /s/, /z/ or /r/, and C3 is any sonorant. C and C1 must agree in voicing. Thus, an example of the simplest syllable possible is /ɛ/ (Eng. "a") and an example of the most complex is /scrṷɔi̭ls/ (a disease native to the continent of Káslωta), though such highly complex syllables are incredibly rare.
The vowel /ə/ may only appear at the end of a word in an open syllable (i.e., one without a coda).
Stress is not distinctive in Iáþi, much like in French. This means that two words may not be differentiated based on stress alone, as can be the case in English such as in the pair "dessert" and "desert." In fact, the difference between stressed and unstressed syllables is much less marked than in English, making such a distinction impossible anyway.
Some dialects of Iáþi employ a simple tonal system realized as a pitch accent on a minority of words. Pitch accented vowels are always pronounced long, although vowel length is otherwise not contrastive in Iáþi. The pitch accent's tone may vary by dialect, though in standard Marunaean it is realized as a cresting tone. This pitch accent is more common in Marunaean dialects, whereas Talaman dialects typically either eliminate the accent entirely, or replace it with an interrupting glottal stop. For example, the word íí "beauty" is pronounced [îː] in Marúné, but in Talama it is simply [iː], and in the western city of Çovízê it is pronounced [iʔi].
- Main article: Iáþi Writing Systems
Iáþi has two native scripts, a true alphabet and a featural abugida. The alphabetic script, known as Se Hízôl, is used for everyday purposes, and has two cases, with capitalization rules similar to those of the Latin alphabet. The abugida, known as Se Φώteentar, is used for special purposes such as ceremonial events, religious scripture, or decorative design. It has only one case, though it uses a diacritical mark to mark what would otherwise be a capital letter. It can however be written in two styles, one rounded and the other square, the former being more common. All native speakers are taught to read and write in both.
The standard orthography used throughout the country is based on the Marunaean dialects, as these dialects use more phonemes than do the Talaman dialects. Words that may be distinguished in Marunaean dialects can be homophones in Talaman.
In this article, Iáþi will be transcribed in a Latin script appended with some Greek and Cyrillic characters to maintain a 1:1 phoneme to grapheme ratio. This script is called the Stón transliteration, and is as follows.
|Letter||Aa, Áá, Ââ, Ãã, Ää||Ee, Éé, Êê, Ẽẽ||Yy, Ýý, Ŷŷ, Ỹỹ||Ii, Íí, Îî, Ĩĩ|
|Sound||/a/, /ɐ/, /ã/, /ɐ̃/, /ə/||/ɛ/, /e/, /ɛ̃/, /ẽ/||/ø/, /y/, /ø̃/, /ỹ/||/ɪ/, /i/, /ɪ̃/, /ĩ/|
|Letter||Oo, Óó, Ôô, Õõ||Ωω, Ώώ, Ω̂ω̂, Ω̃ω̃||Uu, Úú, Ûû, Ũũ||Ïï||Üü||Hh|
|Sound||/ɔ/, /o/, /ɔ̃/, /õ/||/ɤ/, /ɯ/, /ɤ̃/, /ɯ̃/||/ʊ/, /u/, /ʊ̃/, /ũ/||/i̯/||/u̯/||/h/|
/ʃ/ and /ʒ/ are transcribed in this system as ⟨Śś⟩ and ⟨Źź⟩ respectively, however they are not included in the standard alphabet.
There are two other systems of transliteration, however the Stón system is the most common. To see these systems, please see the article Iáþi Writing Systems.
In Iáþi, most words have roots that take the form of nouns. All basic roots of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs are expressed as the absolutive case of the noun. For example, haïla is the noun "music" in the absolutive case. To form the infinitive of the verb "to perform music," one simply adds the suffix -sä to form haïlasä, which can then be conjugated. Likewise, the adjective "musical" can be formed as haïlatä and the adverb "musically" can be formed as haïlaþä.
Nouns in Iáþi do not decline directly. However, all nouns must carry a determiner with them. These determiners are marked for definiteness, number, and case. Iáþi nouns possess no grammatical gender.
Every noun is required to carry a determiner, which may be either an article or demonstrative. Articles and demonstratives carry the noun's definiteness or proximity, and number.
Nouns in Iáþi decline for a large number of cases. In most dialects this number is 26, though some dialects still use the now-archaic vocative case. Nouns decline for cases with simple suffixes that attach to the noun's determiner, and the unmarked form is in the absolutive case, which is used as the subject of intransitive verbs and copulae. Examples of each case are given in the table below, with the phrase se жom "the house, home."
|absolutive||se жom||The house is clean.|
|ergative||sena жom||The house shelters us.|
|accusative||sedu жom||We painted the house.|
|dative||seçy жom||We bought curtains for the house.|
|genitive||sâ жom*||The house's door.|
|instrumental||seke жom||With the house; using the house.|
|compositive||sece жom||(Made) Of the house.|
|comitative||sesi жom||With the house.|
|semblative||As the house; like the house.|
|causative||seüé жom||Because of the house.|
|illative||Into the house.|
|inessive||sebe жom||In the house.|
|extressive||Outside the house.|
|elative||Out of the house.|
|perlative||seŋώ жom||Through the house.|
|sublative||Onto the house.|
|superessive||semó жom||On the house; above the house.|
|subessive||setó жom||Under the house.|
|delative||seγω жom||Off of the house.|
|prolative||Across the house.|
|allative||seþo жom||To the house.|
|adessive||serω жom||At the house.|
|circumessive||sejaü жom||Around the house; about the house.|
|dessive||Away from the house.|
|ablative||seяa жom||From the house.|
|prosecutive||setô жom||By the house; along the house.|
*The genitive suffix -â combines irregularly with determiners. In determiners ending in -e, the -e drops and is replaced with -â. In determiners ending in -é, the -é drops and is replaced by -ã. Some cases may be combined. For example, the ergative and accusative may be combined to express a reflexive action. "Ánnadu sevílase" means "I washed myself."
Pronouns decline for case directly, by adding the above suffixes directly to the end of the pronoun, without need for a determiner.
As a result of the extensive case system, Iáþi has no adpositional system. It lacks prepositions or postpositions.
Infinitive verbs in Iáþi are formed from noun roots by adding the suffix -sä to the absolutive. These infinitives may then conjugate for tense and mood, but not for voice or agreement with any arguments (i.e., the subject or object), and aspect is denoted using adverbs. Infinitives always end in -sä. The infinitive ending is then replaced with other endings to denote tense and mood. The consonant of the ending reflects the mood, and the vowel the tense. The following table demonstrates the conjugation of the verb víêsä "to see."
Most verbs are regular and follow these conjugations. There are a few verbs, however, that drop the -sa ending in the present indicative. These verbs are vasä "to be," vósä "to be," masä "to have," sasä "to exist," and pésä "to do." Some colloquial speech may also do this with tasä "to go, come," though this is informal and almost never found in writing.
Moods may also be compounded, much like noun cases. To do this, one simply suffixes both endings, so that "Could you see him?" becomes "Aóna qâdu víêñexe?" Note that the vowels (and thus the tense) of both suffixes are the same. The indicative cannot compound with the other moods.
Iáþi has two copulae, vasä and vósä. Much like in Spanish, the difference between these two is a difference of status versus essence. Vasä, used similarly to Spanish estar, is used to describe a noun's state of being, a temporary condition. Meanwhile, like Spanish ser, vósä is used to describe a noun's essential nature, permanent characteristics inherent to the person, place, thing or concept being described. The exact uses of these two verbs is often difficult for second-language learners to master, as the division between status and essence is often somewhat arbitrary.
In Iáþi, copulae require different syntax than other verbs. While a typical verb usually appears after both of its arguments, a copula appears in between the subject and the complement. Note that while most verbs have flexibility in their placement within a clause, the word order for copular phrases is fixed. Additionally, any noun appearing in a copular phrase will be in the absolutive case, so that even phrases with two nouns, which would require one to be in the ergative and the other in the accusative in normal verbal phrases, will have both nouns in the absolutive case.
Gerunds and Participles
Gerunds and participles are formed by suffixing noun and adjective endings to the indicative forms of the verbs, respectively. If a gerund is the subject of an intransitive verb, it takes the ergative ending.
Iáþi uses eighteen personal pronouns that distinguish between five persons and two numbers, and clusivity in the first person and animacy in the third and fourth persons. Pronouns do not distinguish gender or formality. Singular pronouns of the second, third, and fourth persons have two forms that are equal in meaning; they are used to distinguish between multiple possible antecedents, resolving abiguities that exist in languages such as English (e.g., "He gave him the apple."). The forms correspond to the order in which the possible antecedents were mentioned. The following is a list of pronouns:
|Second Person||First Form||aó||жom|
|Third Person||First Form||pâ||bâ|
|Fourth Person||First Form||qâ||ϙâ|
The third person denotes a proximity close to the speaker, whereas the fourth person denotes a proximity farther from the speaker. (The third is normally used when the antecedent is within sight, and the fourth when the antecedent is not within view.) Both are translated as the third person in English. The fifth person denotes a general, nonspecific antecedent; it is often used in general truths.
Adjuncts come in three forms: adjectives, adverbs, and intensifiers. As in most languages, adjectives modify nouns and adverbs modify verbs. Intensifiers can modify both adjectives and adverbs. Unlike in English, adverbs do not modify adjectives or other adverbs; this is solely the job of intensifiers.
Adjectives and adverbs can be formed from nouns using the suffixes -tä and -þä respectively. Intensifiers however are a closed word class, meaning that they have their own roots and new ones cannot be derived. Most intensifiers do not take a suffix like the -tä or -þä of adjectives and adverbs.
Comparative and superlative forms of adjectives and adverbs are formed using an intensifier. For the comparative, this intensifier is the word ka, while in the superlative it is kí. In comparative constructions, the comparative form of the adjective is followed by the word pá "than" and then the noun being compared in the absolutive case.
The basic, default syntax structure in Iáþi is SOV. However, due to the extensive use of cases, word order is virtually free. In many subordinate clauses, the default order is SVO instead, though this is not universal. Additionally, Iáþi does not require a subject to be present, though it is not a pro-drop language in the sense that the Romance languages are. An absence of a subject indicates the passive voice. Modifiers always follow the word being modified. The standard modifier order is manner-place-time, which is uncommon cross-linguistically, the common orders being place-manner-time and time-manner-place.
- Main article: Iáþi Lexicon by native order
- Main article: Iáþi Dictionary by English order
- Main article: Iáþi Vocabulary by theme
|4||we||pán (incl.), gán (excl.)|
|37||man (adult male)||úís|
|38||man (human being)||tâta|
- Án lússa seke iáþi.
- [ɐn lussə sɛkɛ ɪ.ɐθɪ]
- "I speak Iathi."
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1
- Zédu téúné þelstä kemïesa φaïlaþä le méλúþä sece жóvês le zéce çedalí. Δándu bâxisa sesi crê le sesi hínól só δán ótrâga psa se ô dastä esi tímí sece kúpevo.
- [zedʊ teune θɛlstə kɛmjɛsa φai̯laθə lɛ meʎuθə sɛcɛ ʝovɛ̃s lɛ zecɛ çɛdali ðɐndʊ bãxɪsa sɛsɪ cr̊ˠɛ̃ lɛ sɛsɪ hinol so ðɐn otr̊ˠãga psa sɛ ɔ̃ dastə ɛsɪ timi sɛcɛ kʷupɛvɔ]
- "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood."