Elliott Lash wrote:

> Greetings,
>   A co-worker and I have been working on and off on a
> conlang for the a few weeks. I thought it was time to
> talk about it a bit on the list. I'll be using a kind
> of orthography that uses no diactritics, but in the
> actual orthography (which I wont show on the list just
> now) there are several diactritics.
>  The phonology is kind of extraordinary:
>  Vowels:
>   /a/     _a_
>   /E/     _e_
>   /i/     _i_
>   /O/     _o_
>   /u/     _u_
>   /Y/     _y_
> The vowels may be long, short, creaky long and creaky
> short.  (diactrics: /:/, /_k/, /:_k/)

Not very bizarre except for the creaky vowels.

> In the orthography, a doubled vowel is long, and a
> creaky vowel is followed by a _~_
> After uvulars, /i/ becomes /@j/

Makes sense; it is somewhat difficult to pronounce a front vowel
after a uvular.  There is a strong tendency to either front the
uvular, back the vowel or both.

> After a creaky voiced syllable, all vowels become
> creaky.

Ah, a dominant-recessive creakyness harmony!  Nice!

>  Consonants:
>   /p_>/  (bilabial unvoiced ejective)    _p_
>   /b_</ (bilabial voiced implosive)      _b_
>   /d'/  (retroflex voiced plosive)       _d_
>   /t'/  (retroflex unvoiced plosive)     _t_
>   /q_>/ (uvular unvoiced ejective)       _q_
>   /g\_</ (uvular voiced implosive)       _g_

Yeah!  That's wild.  But why aren't the retroflexes glottalized?

>   /m/    (bilabial nasal)                _m_
>   /F/   (labiodental nasal)              _w_
>   /n'/  (retroflex nasal)                _n_
>   /N\/  (uvular nasal)                   _ng_
>   /r'/   (retroflex rhotic)              _r_
>   /K/   (alveolar lateral unvoiced fricative) _lh_
>   /K\/  (alveolar lateral voiced fricative)   _lz_
>  /|\|\/  (lateral alveolar click) (I use || below
> since it's easier)                            _!_
>   /?/    (glottal stop)                  _'_
>  /f_>/  (labiodental unvoiced ejective fricative) _f_
>  /v_</  (labiodental voiced implosive fricative)  _v_
>  (While the last two dont seem like the actual
> descriptions, they are distinct sounds.)


> Some words:
> [snup]
> (more will be given below)
>  Nouns are inflected only for regular plural and for
> collective or mass plural.
>  the "regular" plural is formed as follows:
>  A nasal is prefixed to the beginning of the word that
> assimilates in place of articulation to the first
> sound. (Thus, uvular with uvualr, bilabial with
> bilabial, retroflex with retroflex, labiodental with
> labiodental). Where things get tricky is with
> laterals, nasals and vowels.  Before front vowels, the
> sound /F/ is used as a plural marker, before back
> vowels the sound /N\/ is used. Before laterals the
> retroflex nasal /n'/ is used.
> Before nasals the nasal itself is reduplicated and
> then followed by the vowel /i/.

I must say that this rule is not bizarre at all; nasals tend to
assimilate to the POA of the following consonant, and epenthetic
vowels in order to break up same-consonant clusters aren't
uncommon either.

> [examples and collective plural snup]
>  Verbs:
> These guys are pretty interesting. The tense system is
> pretty easy. There's just an inflected past tense. The
> bare stem is used as the present. Other verbal ideas
> are derived by means of particles. The past tense is
> formed by reduplicating the verbal root.
> [examples snup]
>  Some verbs are compounds, these still just
> reduplicate the verbal root:
> [examples snup]
> From this basis however, different directional and
> manner prefixes can be added to the root to talk about
> different types of action.
>  lh(e)-  /K(E)/  adds a meaning of _fast and random_
>  i'-  /i?/  adds a meaning of _slow and deliberate_
>  da-  /d'a/ adds a meaning of _roundtrip_


> [examples snup]
> In all of these cases, the past tense is formed by
> reduplicating only the root.
> ------------------------------------------------
> Particles:
>  These come divided into three types. First there are
> proclitic role particles which help define a noun's
> role in the sentence. Then there are enclitic clausal
> particles that show how the phrase or clause that
> preceded them is viewed by the speaker. The third is a
> grab bag.
> The role particles so far are:
>  o'   commitative   with
>  nga  benefactive   for, to (or untranslatable)
>  mi   experiencer
>  pe   source        from

So these are, essentially, prepositions, it seems.

> The clausal particles so far are:
>  ea~  emphatic or contrastive (and vocative with
> people)
>  lha   interrogative
>  pe    causal
>  be    volitional
>  lhovi softener particle _so be it, anyway, you know_
>  olhelh regret particle
> The other particles so are are:
>  ge  negative particle (precedes the word/phrase like
> a proclitic)
>  qa  future tense particle
>  te  malefactive particle
> ----------------------------------------------
> Nouns may be marked with any proclitic particle if the
> semantics of the sentence allows:
> Examples:
>   efaa~  nga  ngalh  du'
>   take   ben. I      fish
> "I eat fish"   (where the fact that you're being
> benefited by eating, nourished etc, is being marked by
> the benefactive).

Ah!  I wouldn't say that _nga_ is not a preposition, but used in
an unusual way.

> You can further change this sentence by applying an
> enclitic:
>  nga ngalh ea~  efaa~ du'
>  be. I     emph. take fish
> "I am eating fish for myself"
> Or you can emphasize and deemphasize the subject the
> object:
>  du'  ea~   efaa~ ngalh
>  fish emph. take  I
> "the fish are eaten by me"
> Another sentence:
>   lhpaa nga  ngalh  "I am being rained on"
>   rain  ben. I
> This specifies that the rain is falling down upon you.
> If you want to specify that you and the rain were in
> the same set of circumstances and setting, then you'd
> say:
>   lhpaa mi ngalh   "It's raining, I (am there)"
>   rain  exp. I
> Or you can emphasize the fact that you're being
> adversely affected by the rain:
>   lhpaa nga  ngalh te    "It's raining on me"
>   rain  ben. I     mal.
> And you can further emphasize this with the emphatic
> particle:
>   lhpaa nga ngalh tea~  (contraction of te ea~)
>   rain  be. I     mal.emph.
>  "It's raining on me!!"
> I think that's okay for right now, since this is a
> large post, and I need to do some actual work now..

Nice ideas!  I enjoyed this.  Unlikely as a natlang, but fun!