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On Jan 15, 2007, at 10:52 PM, Herman Miller wrote:
> The infixes could be interesting to work out (how do infixes get  
> into a language, anyway?). But even so, the details of the  
> morphology and syntax are likely to be more easily managed than the  
> phonology.

See chapter 5 of http://home.uchicago.edu/~aclyu/papers/ 
NaturalHistoryofInfixation.pdf . I just found this and am very  
excited to read it, because I've been wondering for a while.

>>> For a specific example, I thought of taking Tirelat and trying to
>>> develop a history for it. Tirelat is a very regular and artificial
>>> language, which may actually be a result of engineering a more  
>>> natural
>>> language to eliminate irregularities.
>> Too bad... if Tirelat was less regular, you could look to the  
>> irregularities
>> for starting points for figuring out sound changes in working  
>> backwards. Since that's not the case, are there, say, any patterns  
>> in the lexicon that
>> look like they might be remnants of formerly productive morphology,
>> distorted by sound change?
>
> There might be a handful of features, but it'd be purely  
> coincidental; many words end in -pa for instance, but I can't  
> figure out what they have in common.

That's kind of like how in one of my languages, I realized I had  
created three words for different body parts which all coincidentally  
ended in /?/. I figure that could be a good basis for analogy later  
on. Or I could work backwards and find the /?/ to be part of a body  
part morpheme.