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CONLANG  March 2002, Week 3

CONLANG March 2002, Week 3

Subject:

Re: making up words

From:

Jan van Steenbergen <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Constructed Languages List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 21 Mar 2002 08:34:50 +0000

Content-Type:

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 --- "Sean M. Burke" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> A question to all language constructors:  once
> you've settled on the
> phonology and phonotaxis of your
> language-in-progress, how do you go about
> making up the phonological forms of new words (as
> opposed to their meaning)?

Personally, I am not a great phonology enthusiast.
Usually, I start with creating some grammar and some
words, and only then I "reconstruct" the phonology
rules, later to be applied to new words.

When it comes to word creation: since all my languages
are a posteriori, I mostly use roots from the
(natural) proto-language (in my case: Indo-European
and Common Slavic). Sometimes I make up words myself,
under the condition that they fit well within the
language.

A "technique" that I use rarely, is using a sentence
in an existing language, removing the spaces and add
new spaces. Sometimes a nice word comes up.
For example:
"A shark is a terrible fish with very great teeth."
"Asharkisaterriblefishwithverygreatteeth".
"Ashar kisat er rib lefish wi thver ygre atte eth."
One or two words of such a sentence might be useable.

But in general, I would say it is just a matter of
pure intuition. Personally, I would never use a word
generator, because it kills the fun of creating words.

Jan


=====
"You know, I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe." --- J. Michael Straczynski

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