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Sellamat prients !  

(à propos, "sellamat" from Arabic, but falsely understood as "sell" 
= "good" + "amat" = "pleasant" by Sambahsans)
>> After yesterday's Sambahsa yallah vs. mien div discussion I began
>> thinking about what changes would be inevitable with a language 
with
>> any sort of popularity. I don't think yallah will succed among those
>> that prefer to say something along the lines of mien div, as it seems
>> much too close to its Arabic source for comfort for many. It's an
>> exclamation, and I doubt people can be reprogrammed to go with 
that
>> instead of something they know means my God, mein Gott and so 
on.
>
>The phrase is a simple extension of its components, and quite
>international. If the replacement word were not so marked, it might
>work as a euphemism, as in English "My goodness!" for "My God!" Still,
>"yallah" isn't "Allah," so maybe it would go unnoticed.
>
I agree that people can't be reprogrammed, but then, they would use 
interjections in their native languages. Then "my god"! "mon Dieu" ! 
This can be funny for translations where people with different linguistic 
backgrounds are confronted to each others, but soon becomes boring 
and irrealistic when it is used systematically. For example, as an 
attempt to make believe they know current French, some non-
Francophone writers may make their Francophone characters always 
say "oh la la !" or "c'est magnifique" though I may nearly never use 
those expressions (especially the latter one, which is a rendition of 
English "that's great"!). 
You'll agree that "The Man from Earth" has a universal reach and that it 
is preferable to translate the English dialogues as "neutral" as possible. 
Precisely I chose "yallah" because it was less religiously obvious 
than "mien div" that any speaker of Sambahsa could understand. 
Already in Arabic, "yallah" has been confused with a similar imperative 
for the verb "to go"; it is more or less understood in other Muslim 
countries (criterium of internationality; that's why Sambahsa 
has "adieu" which is widespread outside French, but not "mon dieu !"); 
it matches other kinds of interjections; "ya" already means "yes" in 
Sambahsa, [yalA] matches other words of surprise in other languages 
(French "oh la la !"); as I've already said, the fact that Spanish "olé" 
comes from it shows that it had already lost its religious meaning in 
the Middle-Ages (though Spaniards were fierce catholics and moor-
killers; still in the XVI° century, those suspected of being "hidden 
Muslims" were gruesomely persecuted). 
The basis of Sambahsa, i.e. Indo-European, could not provide a serious 
equivalent. Indo-Europeans were polytheistic and that's why Sambahsa 
has only the interjection for the plural "O Deiwes" = "Grands Dieux". 
It is noteworthy that the Latin word "deus" had no vocative; its Greek 
equivalent "o Zeu !" (for Zeus) referred of couurse to a particular god, 
and as an invocation, not an interjection of surprise. 
For translations with a strong cultural background, there is no problem 
that "local" exclamations be kept; for instance, the characters in my 
Tolkien translations still say "Elbereth Gilthoniel" ! :-)



>I
>> also happened to notice the Occidental word for conscience today:
>>
>> conscientie
>>
>> somehow I doubt that word would end up being pronounced 
constsientsie.
>> Something like conshiensi(e) or consiensi(e) seems much more 
likely.
Here, Sambahsa "conscience" is [konsyEn(t)s]. 
We had already discussed that point and I had explained that 
having "science" sounding like "chier" or "shit" may have its drawbacks 
too. 

Olivier
http://sambahsa.pbworks.com/