In a message dated 12/28/2002 3:08:41 AM Pacific Standard Time, [log in to unmask] writes:
Every now and then this phenomenon has come home, as I find some old
language project from years and years ago, only to find that one word is the
same in a completely unrelated (and often, very different) language that I'm
working on now. It could be unconcious memory, but it could also be that
some things just have a sound that goes naturally with them in my mind. If
only we all heard the same sounds... or maybe I'm just hearing things.
Oh, I hate that! When you've developed enough words for your vocabulary, it will only be a matter of time before two words in the SAME language will sound suspiciously similar. I made up most of my Kankonian words entering them in the lexicon immediately without remembering them afterwards. The word for "word" was made up fairly early on, and it was "arik". Then, eventually I got to the word for "tongue". The sounds I decided sounded perfect for the concept of "tongue" were "arig". Then, when I went to the Kankonian-English section of the dictionary to enter "arig", guess which word I found right next to the place I was about to put it! The things that come off of your tongue! Another fairly early creation was "shta" (to measure). Later I came up with "shta" for the preposition "worth", and when I went to the Kankonian-English glossary, was I surprised! ("Shta" turned out to be a very useful verb BTW, and I remember the word well. It's what you use to indicate age, so that "Wan shtaas 56 oiras" means "He measures 56 years," or, He is 56 years old.) But what is it about /Sta/ that makes the sounds sound so connected with attaching numbers (measurements or costs) with things? I explain "arig"/"arik" and "shta" on my page as due to the "atavistic" nature -- a coming-out of long-forgotten human instincts in the creation of all words -- of the language; in fact that's how I make them all up. But I don't see what it is that my mind likes about that combination of phonemes, sh, t, a.