Name: Nauspayr

Type: Artlang

Alignment: Nominative-Accusative

Head Direction:

Number of genders: 4 or 6

Declensions: Yes

Conjugations: Yes

Nouns declined
according to
Case Number
Definitiveness Gender
Verbs conjugated
according to
Voice Mood
Person Number
Tense Aspect
Deictic locations

The Nauspayr deictic positions

Nauspayr (Nauspék or ᏁᏗᏚᎵᏬᏦ) /nɔ'spɛːkǝ̆/ is the native language of a formerly tribal people of a large expanse of low hills in a Cascadian Maritime Climate. Since imperial colonisation these people fell into the lowest social castes and, since the Civil War following devolution of power, make up a large percentage of the resulting diaspora.

This page uses IPA symbols and Cherokee characters


Note that the descriptive phonology (that is, not the IPA phonology), unless otherwise stated, assumes an RP-English pronunciation (just because everyone knows what one of those sounds like). This description is very approximate and assumes minimal linguistic knowledge.

Note: for the purposes of this grammar, the Latin form will be used.


There are fifteen simple vowel sounds, divided into "core", "brief" and "extended". Each Latin grapheme takes one of each of these sounds, each denoted by an acute accent for "extended", a grave accent for "brief" and no accent for "core". There are also six "complex" vowels, each having a Latin digraph.

Core Vowels[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
a /a/ The "a" from "bat" and "lamp"
e /e/ The "e" from "bet" and "end"
i /ɪ/ The "i" from "bit" and "lick"
o /ɒ/ The "o" from "hot" and "log"
u /ʊ/ The "u" from "butter" and "hut"

Brief Vowels[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
à /ɑ/ The "a" from "bar" and "hard"
è /ə/ The "e" from "the" and "utter"
ì /i/ The "ee" from "bee" or the "ea" from "beat"
ò /y/ As the sound of "oo" from "boot" but with lips un-rounded.
ù /u/ The "oo" from "boot" and "shoot"

Extended Vowels[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
á /ɑː/ The "a" from "bar" and "hard"
é /ɛː/ Similar to the sound of "er" from "her" or the "urr" from "burr"
í /iː/ The "ee" from "bee" or the "ea" from "beat"
ó /yː/ As the sound of "oo" from "boot" but with lips un-rounded.
ú /uː/ The "oo" from "boot" and "shoot"

Complex Vowels[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
au /ɔ/ The "au" from "caught"
áu /ɔː/ The "au" from "caught"
ae /eɪ/ The "ay" from "bay" and "day"
ai /ʌɪ/ The "igh" from "sigh" and "light"
eu /əʊ/ The "ow" from "low" and "show"
ou /ɒʊ/ The "oa" from "goat" in Estuary English


Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
b Ᏼ and Ꮟ /b/ The "b" from "back" and "cab"
p Ꮲ and Ꮅ /p/ The "p" from "pack" and "cap"
d Ꭰ and Ꮷ /d/ The "d" from "duck" and "had"
t Ꭲ and Ꮏ /t/ The "t" from "top" and "hat"
g Ꮐ and Ꮹ /g/ The "g" from "get" and "hag"
k /k/ The "k" from "king" and "look"


Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
dh /ð/ The "th" from "the" and "those"
f /f/ The "f" from "fan" and "left"
gh /ʝ/ As "kh", but with *voicing*
h /h/ The "h" from "hot" and "hag"
kh /ç/

The Scottish "ch" from "loch"
As the "sh" from "lash" but in the position of the "c" from "kash"

s /s/ The "s" from "sun" and "loss"
sh /ʃ/ The "sh" from "shoe" and "dash"
th /θ/ The "th" from "thought" and "bath"
v /v/ The "v" from "vain" and "have"
vh /ß/ As the "f" from "fan" but in the position of the "p" from "pan"
x /ɦ/ As the "h" from "hot" but with *voicing*
xh /ɦː/ As the "h" from "hot" but with *voicing*
z /z/ The "z" from "zoo" and "haze"
zh /ʒ/ The "g" from "beige"
sch /sʃɦʰ/

The "s" from "pass" followed by
The "sh" from "lash" followed by
The "h" from "hot" but with *voicing*
With aspiration



Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
m /m/ The "m" from "ham" and "mud"
mm /mː/ The "m" from "ham" and "mud" but longer
n /n/ The "n" from "not" and "pan"
nn /nː/ The "n" from "not" and "pan" but longer

Glides and Trills[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
l /l/ The "l" from "log" and "pull"
r /ɹ/ The "r" from "rug" and "periscope"
rr /r/ The Scottish *trilled* "r"
The Spanish *trilled* "rr" from "perro"
w /w/ The "w" from "water" and "wag"
y /j/ The "y" from "yet" and "kayak"

Aspirate Glides[]

Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
lh /hˡ/ The "h" from "hat" released with the "l" from "log"
rh /hʴ/ The "h" from "hat" released with the "r" from "rug"
wh /hʷ/ The "h" from "hat" released with the "w" from "water"
yh /hʲ/ The "h" from "hat" released with the "y" from "yet"


Latin Form Old Script Form IPA Approximate Description
dz /ʣ/ A more combined form of the "ds" from "lads" and "heads"
ch /ʧ/ The "ch" from "chew" and "change"
ts /ʦ/ A more combined form of the "ts" from "bats" and "hits"
j /ʤ/ The "j" from "jog" and "jam"

Nauspayr Alphabet[]



Word Classes[]

All content word forms (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs) have a designated word class which effects the manner in which they are inflected (with the exception of stem-changing verbs). A phonologically identical root form may exist in more than one class and may or may not be semantically related to its homonyms. However, these identical roots behave differently when utilised as nouns, verbs, etc.

If a root, when inflected verbally, is stem-changing, this does not affect its inflection nominally or adjectivally and still exhibits the qualities of its class.

Most content words exist within one of the four chief classes, "Y", "D", "L" or "X". There is, however, a fifth archaic class used exclusively with certain proper nouns, in particular names of humans, deities and places.

Non-content and extreme-high-frequency words inhabit a sixth "pseudo-class" and do not inflect in any manner.

"Y" Class[]

"Y" class words relate to any of the following:

  • Masculine gendered things and animates.
  • Emotions, colours, tools, social structures.
  • Masculine and genderless social roles.
  • Items expressly for male use.
  • All miscellaneous not fitting any other category.

"D" Class[]

"D" class words relate to any of the following:

  • Man-made artefacts, objects, architecture, settlements, etc which do not fit any other category.
  • Celestial bodies, measurements of time, space, currency, weights, measures.
  • Items related to commerce and trade.

"L" Class[]

"L" class words relate to any of the following:

  • Female gendered things and animates.
  • Geographical features, weather, genderless living or environmental entities, religious items or symbolism.
  • Female gendered social roles.
  • Items expressly for female use.

"X" Class[]

"X" class words relate to any of the following:

  • Items relating to un-gendered human body.
  • Food, drink, direction, energy, art, knowledge and their transmission, movement.
  • Items relating to combat and military engagement.
  • Items relating to honour and etiquette.


Nouns decline for class, case, number and definiteness. These four discriminated aspects are contained within a single suffix. Definiteness

There is discrimination between nominal definite and nominal indefinite.


There is discrimination between the singular, dual, trial, paucal and plural. All nouns are considered count nouns, where mass nouns are given always in the plural.

Singular One item / quantity of the noun
Dual Two items / quantities of the noun
Trial Three items / quantites of the noun
Paucal Four, five or six items / quantites of the noun
Plural Seven or more items / quantities of the noun


There are four superior cases (nominative, accusative, dative, genitive) and eighteen subordinate cases. Superior cases are those which are most common and which possess unique declension paradigms. Subordinate cases use the declesion paradigms of the nominative case with a further suffix applied finally. If two identical vowels combine in this process the vowel is converted into its extended form. Subordinate cases are employed in the presence of specific prepositions.

Superior Declensions[]

Nominative Definite Y D L X
Singular +ae +a +e
Dual +aes +às +as +es
Trial +aet +àt +at +et
Paucal +aekh +àkh +akh +ekh
Plural +aerr +àrr +aye

Nominative Indefinite Y D L X
Singular +aeh +àd +al +ex
Dual +aesh +àsh +als +esch
Trial +aed +àdè +alt +exet
Paucal +aegh +àdèkh +alkh +ex
Plural +aehé +àdrè +alé +éx

Accusative Definite Y D L X
Singular +aela +àlè +ala +ela
Dual +aelas +àlès +alas +elas
Trial +aelat +àlèt +alat +elat
Paucal +aelakh +àlekh +alakh +elakh
Plural +aelà +àlà +alá +elà

Accusative Indefinite Y D L X
Singular +aeya +àda +awa +exa
Dual +aeyas +àdas +awas +exas
Trial +aeyat +àdat +awat +exat
Paucal +aeyakh +àdakh +awakh +exas
Plural +aeyà +àdà +awá +exà

Dative Definite Y D L X
Singular +aeghè +àxè +akhè +eghè
Dual +aeghs +àxès +akhès +eghes
Trial +aeghèt +àxèt +akhèt +eghet
Paucal +aeghekh +àxègh +aghekh +eghèh
Plural +aeghé +àxé +akhá +eghà

Dative Indefinite Y D L X
Singular +eghè +àdegh +alegh +eghè
Dual +eghes +àdes +ales +eghes
Trial +eghet +àdet +alet +eghet
Paucal +eghèh +àdex +alex +eghèh
Plural +eghà +àdègh +alègh +eghà

Genitive Definite Y D L X
Singular +aep +àp +ap +ep
Dual +aeps


+pas +eps
Trial +aepet +àpet +apet +epet
Paucal +aepsh +àpsh +apsh +epsh
Plural +aeprá +àrá +ará +erá

Genitive Indefinite Y D L X
Singular +aeyep +àdep +laep +exep
Dual +aeyeps +àdeps +aleps +exeps
Trial +aeyepet +àdept +alept +exsept
Paucal +aeyepsh +àdepsh +alepsh +exepsh
Plural +aeyeprá +àdprá +aleprá +exeprá

Subordinate Declensions[]

Vocative +a
Ablative +an
Abessive +am
Adessive +il
Allative +el
Comitative +idh
Ellative +enn
Evitative +au
Illative +esh
Inessive +uss
Locative +u
Prolative +esè
Separative +et
Translative +onn

Archaic Nouns[]

Only functioning with a certain cluster of proper nouns, this class (sometimes termed the "I Class") only marks case; it assumes that these proper nouns are always definite and singular (it is not possible to say "some Nadias"). I Class nouns have no root form, they may only decline according to this single paradigm and are lexically listed in their nominative form. The subordinate cases function in exactly the same manner as with Y, D, L and X class nouns, but the superior declensions are as follows:

Nominative +ìa
Dative +a
Genitive +ìá

Hence the name "Nadìa" may decline also as "Nadì", "Nada" and "Nadìá".

Archaic nouns also possess a unique diminutive form: +tya


Adjectives do not inflect for number or case, but do inflect for class:

  1. The adjective inflects to match the class of the noun it describes
  2. The way in which the adjective inflects is dependent upon the adjective's own class


As nouns do, adjectives inflect with the affixation of a suffix. In the table below, the X axis denotes the class of the noun described and the Y axis denotes the class of the adjective.

Y +aeyè +aedè +aelè +aexè
D +àrae +àdè +àlèh +àxèn
L +aeyeh +adeh +aleh +axeh
X +aexhè +edex +elex +exen


These forms are produced by the affixation of a further suffix to the correct inflected adjectival form.

  • Relativity: +dun
  • Superlative: +mun


The form of the adverb is similar to that of the comparatives. The correct inflected adjectival form is produced (where the "class of noun" is replaced by "class of verb" (even with stem-changing verbs)) and then an adverbial suffix is applied:

  • Adverbial: +vhurr



The interrogatives function as nouns. They do not decline for the nominative case (and as such, when declining for subordinate cases, only receive the subordinate suffix) but are treated as roots when declining for the genitive, dative and accusative. There are certain subtle differences which are semi-encoded into the English translations:

  • Who: X is who?
  • Whom: which X do you refer to?

This set self-evidently handle subordinate cases differently:

  • Where: stationary inanimate
  • Whence: from which location?
  • Whither: to which location?
  • Wherefore: stationary animate

The interrogatives are:

  • Which: kha
  • What: khe
  • Whose: xú
  • Who: khi
  • Whom: xi
  • What: khu
  • Where: xo
  • Whence: ka
  • Whither: ke
  • When: xá
  • How: xe
  • Why: kho
  • Wherefore: ki
  • Whether: ku
  • How much: khau
  • How long: kau



Referring to the diagram at the top of the page:

Nauspayr marks six deictic positions ("here"s and "there"s):

  • Corporeal: items on the body or touching it or within one's immediate personal space (the figure far left)
  • Proximal: items one could reach out and touch (the outstretched hand of the figure far left)
  • Visual: items between oneself and the horizon, things which can be seen (the tree on the horizon)
  • Distal: items far away, but one could theoretically reach (New York city)
  • Abstract: things very far away that one cannot visit them and prove their existence (space)
  • Metonymic: where one thing stands for another as a representer; a photograph, picture, animal tracks (the Bougereau painting far right)

Nauspayr marks three terms for each position:

  • "That": indicating a specific item(s) from the position
  • "There": indicating a movement in relation to this position
  • "Over There": the position


Corporeal sìe sìu
Proximal sàh sàrr saey
Visual laey lonn
Distal thenn thù thunn
Abstract shù shùn
Metonymic pau pan paumm




For a discussion on simple yes / no terms, see the "Etiquette" section

Nominal Negation[]

When used nominally, negatives decline for class and definiteness, but not for number or case. A negative precedes the noun it negates.

Definite pae pa pe
Indefinite paeh pàd pal pex

Verbal Negation[]

Nauspayr employs double negation upon verbs. The universal negator "pa" precedes the verb negated and a secondary negator follows. The secondary negators are:

  • Plain: se
  • Never: paschae
  • No-one: pàwen
  • Nobody: pàshìx
  • Nothing: pauyen
  • Nowhere: séren
  • None: xùlen
  • Emphatic: saehu

Etiquette and Honorifics[]

Superior / Inferior Markers[]

When a proper noun is used it may be suffixed (after ordinary nominal declension) with a marker denoting the social relationship of the proper noun to the speaker. This marker also denotes gender and is dependent upon the word class of the proper noun.

Masculine Superior +echem +edem +elem +exem
Feminine Superior +echen +eden +elen +exen
Masculine Inferior +aechì +ach +egaelem +axchì
Feminine Inferior +aeché +acha +egaela +axché

Use of the Vocative Case[]

The vocative case is used when initially addressing an animate or proper noun. It is only required in the first instance of the name, and all other occasions should use the prescribed cases.

"Want" Mood Uses[]

There is a subtle distinction between the several verbal moods denoting "want"

  • Precative: "want the world to be so", "I want to mow the lawn today"
  • Cohortative: "want you to do so", "I want you to go shopping"
  • Optative: "hope" for something beyond one's control. "I hope for world peace"
  • Jussive: a final request or plea, particularly to a superior, such as a god, "please don't send me to gaol"
  • Desiderative: a simple "I want" statement "I want to have a banana"


Nauspayr utilises an extensive honorific system, working on a broad level of superior versus inferior, but also to a more detailed level, where it merges somewhat with a "surname" style system. It is considered impolite not to affix an honorific to the name of a proper noun animate (such as a person). This may be a simple "friend" marker, or something more specific such as "musician".

Many honorifics are the X class form of a noun. The honorific takes the form of a postposition, often connected with a hyphen.

There are sixteen key honorifics which are used commonly:

  • malevolent spirit: lùsifyéra
  • mother: màmè
  • father: dhò
  • witch : schíerra
  • reader: lùtra
  • general stranger: sann
  • traveller: mehshyau
  • goddess: áshesma
  • benevolent spirit: dhlofrons
  • chief: síyè
  • friend (male): amhì
  • friend (female): amha
  • master: sinyau
  • mistress: sinyà
  • recently deceased male: chaulae
  • recently deceased female: chaula

Affirmation / Negation Types[]

The terms for "yes" and "no" differ according to the speaker's relationship with the addressee. Although "" and "pa" (yes - no) are both regularly used, there also exist:

  • yes (to a superior): yesum
  • yes (to an inferior): yé
  • no (to a superior): pasum
  • no (to an inferior): nyae

Imperative / Prohibative Markers It is considered impolite to request or deny an action from a superior and thus the imperative or prohibitative mood of a verb must be "softened". Similarly it is considered uncouth and demeaning not to lend credence to a request or denial to an inferior without a similar addition. This is denoted using one of a pair of postpositions which follow the imperative or prohibitative verb.

  • Superior: sau
  • Inferior: sen

Native / Foreign Markers[]

When discussing non-speakers in conversation, markers of foreigness are employed. These replace the honorific as postposition when attached to names, but may also simply be used as common nouns for the whole set of non-speakers.

  • Male: aescherra
  • Female: aeperra

Diminutive / Excessive Markers[]

Diminutive and excessive markers apply directly to the declined form of the noun as a secondary suffix. They may only attach to human nouns.

  • Diminutive male: +uls
  • Diminutive female: +ìta
  • Excessive male: +estè
  • Excessive female: tìna