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On Fri, May 07, 2010 at 05:15:40PM +0200, Njenfalgar wrote:
> 
> What I'd like to do is start from a language like English, move it a couple
> of centuries into the future and end up with something like Japanese. So
> what I need to know is: what English word should grammaticalize to give such
> things like -masu, o-, go-, and how do you get four words for even the most
> simple things (like iu/ossharu/mōsu/mōshiageru all meaning "say" in
> different levels of politeness) where English nowadays only has one?

For verb *endings*, start by using helper verbs which then fuse.  For 
example, mõshiageru above is not really a different word from mõsu, it
just has the helper verb "ageru" tacked on, and I think "ageru" means
"give upwardly" or something like that.  So you could use the verb 
"lift" as a helper verb to turn into a polite ending.  Or if you were
really starting from English, leverage our higher register and use
"elevate"!

(How iu/ossharu/mõsu got there, I do not know.)

tylakèhlpë'fö,
Amanda