----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, October 21, 2000 12:57
Subject: Re: I'm new!
> > From: James O'Connell
> > Thank you all for the compliments!
Anyway, to make it readable I have quickly html-ised the language
> > it is now reachable at http://website.lineone.net/~istari/ling.htm - it's
> > still not perfect but it is ok. Any comments
> > Look forward to talking again to you all
> I just looked at your language
sketch. Nice work. A couple of comments.
> 1) You might want to describe your phonemes using IPA or an
> English tends to be pronounced in many different ways
depending on dialect,
> so English equivalents aren't really
I will be intriducing IPA shortly.
> 2) What led you to use 'c' for /s/ and 's' for
> 3) Your labial fricative 'mf' is unusual. What prompted
A lone survivor from a set including mf and pf - mf
was more likely to survive because of the "a norange" idea - m is common at the
end of words, and f at the beginning, and it isn't just english speakers who are
sloppy ...these sounds sometimes become combined.
> 4) 'ae' for /aI/ is most
/aI/ is what I normally used ae to represent due to
the influence latin has had on me.
> 1) I see that you
have adopted a split ergative system motivated by animacy
considerations. I should warn you that the tripartite system that
> for 3rd person pronouns is somewhat rare, existing in a few
> languages and of course in amman iar.
> 2) I don't see
this tripartite distribution of cases for 3rd person pronouns
> in your
pronoun table. There seems to be a missing ergative form.
The pronouns are irregular, and I have made some
changes to the tables to try and make what I meant clearer.
> Verb structure
> 1) Aspect ( can be
a very subtle concept. Aspect coincident with tense (as
> it very
often is) can be even more subtle and they don't always work the way
they do in English. You might want to give some examples of these
> perfect, imperfect, pluperfect, future)
This will come later when I look at usage
throughout the language.
> 1) I very much like the
use of prenominal adjectives to provide additional
> force for the
> 2) Could you give some examples of the syntax of adjective
> comparative, superlative)?
halacé herúin anna síp agillir kécam ammár - The
lord of the haven loved the most gold-coloured ring
halas - haven (genetive [ + é], singular)
lord (ergative [ + in ], singular)
anna - ring (absolutive,
síp - superlative particle
gold-coloured (absolutive, singular)
kúnvan - to have (auxilliary.
3rd person present [ kécam ] )
ammárn - to love (3rd person, perfect [ - n
) Same question about adverb
> 1) I like the use of animacy to determine word order in
> sentences. How will you handle pragmatic considerations
like topic and
Haven't considered this yet
> Again, nice work! I like the texture of the language.
You really have to
> give it a name, however. A conlang without a
name lacks soul.