The recent discussion of parts of speech has inspired this idea for a very weird one. A mapword is a word whose entire purpose is to define the grammatical structure of a sentence. It is a polysynthetic compound of particles, each morpheme corresponding to the function, role and gramatical relations of the words following it. Each sentence begins with such a monstrosity, the rest of the sentence consisting of isolating semantic words which are its arguments. Here's an example (in English gloss). n-pat.adj-attrib-pat-sup.vb-pt.adj-attrib-agt-comp.n-agt dog big buy small boy The smaller boy bought the biggest dog. Word order is simply mapword : everything else. Of course, when you start using subclauses things can get seriously complicated. Any thoughts?