Head Direction: Final
Number of genders: 0
Kartillian is fairly unremarkable phonemically. It contains phonemes that are present in the vast majority of modern-day European languages.
Below is a table of its basic consonant phonemes.
|Fricative||(β)2||f v||ð||s z||ʃ ʒ||ç ʝ||h|
|Affricate||ts dz||tʃ dʒ|
|Flap / Tap||ɾ|
The most notable aspect of the Kartillian consonant phoneme inventory is the situation of voiced stop consonants. Kartillian has no /b/ or /g/, and instead the letters represent /v/ and /ʝ/ respectively. The status of /d/ is slightly different. Although there is no /d/ in native words (having become /ð/ instead), the sound is frequently found in loanwords, where it is represented by the letter ‹đ›, for example đeođorant ('deodorant') and đanyş ('danish pastry').
Kartillian has a relatively large system of ten basic vowels, the majority of which are front vowels.
|Close||i · y||u|
|Open-Mid||ɛ · œ||ɔ|
|Open||ɑ · ɒ|
Unusually, Kartillian has the front vowel /æ/, and the back vowel /ɑ/, but no basic /a/ vowel. The language does not employ phonemic vowel length, although vowel lengthening may be incidental in stressed vowels.
In addition to its basic vowel phonemes, Kartillian also has a system of diphthongs. Often, cases of a vowel followed by the approximant j are treated as diphthongs, as in the case of majra ('woman') [mæi̯ːɾæ]. Diphthongs are also pronounced longer than regular vowels, so often create a sort of secondary stress (provided they were not already in the stressed syllable of the word).
The Kartillian language uses a very phonemically oriented alphabet which follows the basic one sound - one letter rule. Although this is not always possible, the vast majority of the time the pronunciation of a word can be determined by its spelling.
A few of the letters, most notably the letters ‹b›, ‹d›, ‹g›, ‹q› and ‹x›, represent sounds very different to the sounds that they represent in English, and indeed many other languages of Europe, so require some degree of practice to get the pronunciation just right.
|Ä ä||/ɑ/||Although ‹ä› usually represents a front vowel in European languages, in Kartillian it represents a back vowel, where it replaces the former digraph aa.|
|B b||/v/||‹b› represents the sound /v/, which can be troublesome for English speakers. As a result, it represents the same sound as the letter ‹v›. ‹b› is being phased out in word initial position and replaced with ‹v›, for example volevärd instead of former bolevärd.|
|D d||/ð/||‹d› represents the sound /ð/, with ‹đ› representing /d/. This can be troublesome for English speakers.|
|Đ đ||/d/||This letter is only seen in loanwords where it represents the foreign sound /d/ (with the letter ‹d› representing the sound /ð/).|
|V v||/v/||Represents the same sound as the letter ‹b›. As a result, the spelling of words containing the sound /v/ have to simply be remembered. ‹v› is supplanting ‹b› word-initially.|
|W w||/v/||A recent addition to the alphabet, which was brought in for foreign places, for example Washington and foreign names, for example William. In all cases, the most common pronunciation by Kartillian speakers is /v/, meaning it represents the same sound as both ‹b› and ‹v› - however, due to the marginality of ‹w› in Kartillian (it is hard to find even in longer texts), it does not really cause any more problems than the ‹b› vs ‹v› problem.|
Kartillian employs regular use of the trema/umlaut diacritic (ä, ö and ü), the cedilla (ç and ş), the bar (đ) and the grave accent (ò). These seven special characters are all considered separate letters in Kartillian, and are collated with their own place in alphabetical order.
B, V and W
The letters ‹b›, ‹v› and ‹w› all represent the same sound: /v/, like the "v" in the English word "very". The pronunciation of ‹b› as /v/ is a result of the lenition of the historical sound /b/ - in which the representation of the sound as ‹b› was kept the same, regardless of the sound change. The pronunciation of ‹v› as /v/ has always been so. Lastly, the pronunciation of ‹w› as /v/ is the result of the Kartillian rendering of the foreign sound /w/ (the letter ‹w› is only ever found in foreign place names - in loanwords it is usually replaced with ‹v›). In general, recently, the letter ‹v› has supplanted the use of the letter ‹b› in word initial positions.
Kartillian is a VSO language. This means that rather than the English word order "I ate oranges", Kartillian is written "Ate I Oranges".
Due to the VSO nature of Kartillian, for the most part the language is a tripartite language. Nouns take different case forms depending on whether they were the subject of a transitive verb, the object of a transitive verb or the agent of an intransitive verb.
|Ergative||-||nadonnär||"the house" (the subject of a transitive verb)|
|Accusative||-(a)tt||nadonnäratt||"the house" (the object of a transitive verb)|
|Intransitive||-(a)nn||nadonnärann||"the house" (the agent of an intransitive verb)|
|Dative||-(e)der||nadonnäreder||"to (the) house"|
|Genitive||-(a)qq||nadonnäraqq||"of/belonging to the house"|
|Locative||-(a)bon||nadonnärabon||"in/on/by/at/to the house"|
|Allative||-(a)prò||nadonnäraprò||"because of/for the house"|
|Comitative||-(a)vek||nadonnäravek||"with the house"|
|Instrumental||-(ei)gar||nadonnäreigar||"with/using the house"|
Kartillian noun phrase always start with the head noun. The noun almost always comes first, as the vast majority of modifiers are suffixed to the end of the noun.
Kartillian has two grammatical numbers: the singular and the plural. The singular is unmarked, whereas the plural is marked by the suffix -(a)k. For example òrom "book" > òromak "books" > òrom ta "one book" > òromak zär. Plurality is marked wherever necessary, even if the quantity of the noun is being expressed. The plural -(a)k suffix is the first suffix to be added to the end of the head noun.
Articles are the second modification to be added. They are added as a suffix to the end of a noun. The definate article ("the") is -när, and the indefinate article ("a/an") is -sas. For example òromnär "the book" > òromsas "a book".
Demonstrative determiners ("this") and ("that") are positioned with the same priority as articles. A demonstrative determiner suffix cannot be added if there is an article suffix present. The determiner with the meaning of english "this" is represented by the suffix -çesm, and the determiner with the meaning of english "that" is represented by the suffix -çösm. For example: òromçesm "this book". When coupled with the plurality suffix -(a)k, the demonstrative determiner suffixes represent "these" and "those", for example òromakçesm "these books".
Adjectives are placed after the noun that they are modifying, as in French, but in contrast to English. For example raimaşnär raba "the red car". Adjectives are pluralised as well as nouns, using the same suffix -(a)k, so "the red cars" is written raimaşaknär rabak.
Content clauses can only really be explained by an example, so take the sentence "He told her (that) she was beautiful", in which the final part of the sentence is the content clause. To portray this in Kartillian is quite complicated:
- Firstly, the first clause "he told her" is written: kerekär se sett.
- Next, there is a slight pause (represented orthographically by a semicolon ';').
- Then, the pronoun in the accusative case löjtt is used to represent the pronoun ("she") already mentioned, and the phrase "was beautiful" kyxmyla follows.
This results in the following sentence: Kerekär se sett; löjtt kyxmyla - "He told her that she was beautiful".
The reason why the pronoun löj is written in its accusative form löjtt, is to make sure that people are certain that "she" is being referenced. If the form löj was used (in the ergative case), it would result in the following sentence: Kerekär se sett; löj kyxmyla meaning "he told her that he was beautiful".
Kartillian verbs are very simple, and often vague in relation to verbs of English and other European languages. This is because of a lack of grammatical aspect. This means that "I asked", "they have asked", "they have been asking" and "they have asked" are all represented by the same basic verb: cybronär viqq.
Kartillian has three tenses: the past, present and future. The most basic way of notating tense is the use of a tense suffix: -(l)är for the past, -(l)edz for the future. The present tense is unmarked.
The verb "is" vaz has a separate form for the past tense: feig. "It is a fruit" is written vaz uş lysudumsas, whereas "It was a fruit" is written feig uş lysudumsas.
Kartillian employs an active and a passive voice. The active voice is the basic form, as in vejla ha dzagnatt "I love you". However, the passive voice is marked by the preposition e- (with hyphen). For example e-vejla ha dzagnatt "I am loved by you".
|-||-||vejla hann||"I love"|
|Conditional||-xir||vejlaxir hann||"I would love (if).."|
|Subjunctive||-fej||vejlafej hann||"If I love..."|
|Desiderative||-şenc||vejlaşenc hann||"I want to love"|
|Potential||-lanna||vejlalanna hann||"I (might) have the possibility/potential to love..."|
|Presumptive||-zynner||vejlazynner hann "Even if I loved..."|
Personal pronouns come in a plural and a singular form. For the third-person pronoun, there are separate forms for whether it is animate ("he, she") or inanimate ("it"). Personal pronouns decline in the same way as regular nouns, so where ha means "I", hatt means "me".
Kartillian makes a distinction between "this" and "that". The pronoun for "this" is şeşt, and for "that" is şöşt. They are declined regularly as other nouns and pronouns.
Disjunctive pronouns are those that are used in isolation. In these cases, the vocative case form of the pronoun is used. For example "Who did it? Me." is written "edeş fejgär uşatt? Ho."
There are two pronouns in Kartillian which fulfill the function of relative pronouns, but are not entirely translatable into English.
The pronoun hojg refers back to something that has already mentioned. It can be translated into English as either "that, what, who, why, where, then" etc. For example "The things that I know" is translated as kenxetaknär hojg kastän hann.
For detailed use of the obscure pronoun löj, see the section: Noun Compliments
Kartillian has a system of interrogatives similar to those of English. However, it has different words for "what" when it refers to various things.
|myd||"what?" when referring to a basic noun. For eg: myd edej dzagnaqq? "what is your name?"|
|mync||"what?" when referring to a direct object. For eg: mync şöşt? "what is that?"|
|mör||"what?" when referring to the time. For eg: mör hora? "what hour/time (is it?)"|
|yvob||"when?" For eg: yvob desg dzagnann? "when are you leaving?"|
|what||myd, mync, mör|
- man (adult male)
- Man (human being)