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On Tue, 25 Mar 2014 07:48:10 -0400, Daniel Bowman <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Hm, Angayus is on the planet Anga.  It sounds like you've learned Justin B
>Rye's Lesson Seven of Xenolinguistics! :-p
>
>Not so fast!  Keep in mind, we are reading an account by a colonist who
>comes from off-world.  I'd argue that Dr. Lucero's use of "Angosian" has
>parallels with, say, our use of the word "European" to denote an inhabitant
>of Europe.  Regarding "Angius" vs "Anga," I should have made this more
>clear: "Angius" is the Anglicisation of In Anga (ɪn ɑŋɑ ), which is the
>name for the home planet in Angosey (it literally translates as "the
>egg").  The so-called "Angosians" (those who speak the ritual language
>Angosey) actually refer to themselves as "al aved" (ɑl ɑvɛɖ).  This
>literally translates as "the people" or "the humans."  Dr. Lucero would
>pronounce "Angosey" as
>"ɑŋgoʊseɪ" whereas Angosey speakers would pronounce it "ɑnkɔsɛɪ."  So it's
>important to recognize the filter that the good professor is seeing through
>when writing up his description - I should have noted this explicitly.
>In general, I need to come up with a narrative of how people from Earth
>were able to colonize part of Angius, how they contacted the native
>inhabitants, and what the consequences were.  In any case, it seems that
>first contact was made with Angosian language speakers, or perhaps these
>native peoples were seen as more "authoritative" due to their apparent
>erudition - so the entire planet came to be called "Angius" in complete
>ignorance of whatever the other cultures on the planet thought.

You got me, I did totally forget about your conceit when I wrote that.  That is an eminently sensible explanation.  

>> >However, in one site (the modern day native city of Streydan), a pivotal
>> event changed the course of Angosian civilization.  A source about 300
>> years later speaks of an "angel" (Angosey:  al kayetana) appearing to a
>> village woman.  Over the course of the next twenty years, the angel
>> instructed her on the method of forecasting the weather based on the
>> positions of the  27 other planets visible in the night sky,
>>
>> Ah, is this something to do with the origin of the Angosey base 28, then?
>>  What's a "planet", and is there (exactly) one celestial luminary that's
>> not reckoned among them?  (A sun?  Anga itself, if their cosmology was
>> advanced enough then to see it as of the same kind?)
>
>Yes, I think there's a connection with the numbering system.  A "planet" is
>the same in this place as it is here in the Solar System (a "large" body in
>hydrostatic equilibrium). There are, in fact, three suns (not failing to
>suggest some connection with Christian myth, just saying :-)).  I believe
>other stars are visible, but I'm not quite decided on that point yet.
>During the time of climate stability, nothing was visible beyond the
>planet's atmosphere, although diffuse light did make it through sufficient
>to sustain the world.  There's a whole cosmic drama behind that, but that's
>another post for another day.

Several more posts for several more days!  

In any case, in Occidental Earthly cultures, there are various specialnesses of the number 7 (e.g. the length of the week) that trace back to seven being the number of planets, but the planets are
  moon, Mercury, Venus, sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn.
If there are 27 planets-in-the-modern-sense plus other bodies that aren't planets-i-t-m-s but also go about in the sky, they may or may not have been counted in the total; but if the special number obtained from this count was 27 it would be surprising if they went for base 28, not 27, on those grounds.  (I don't know of a single Earthly culture where the people looked at their two hands and then sprung for base 11.)

And I'm not very good at noticing connexions with Christian myth unless they're more obvious than (even?) that...

>> >The increasingly sophisticated mathematical developments and flourishing
>> religious practice demanded a less cumbersome writing system, and thus
>> within about half a millennium a "proto-runic" script was developed.
>>
>> This will then be the point in time at which the script descends to
>> alphabetic from whatever it was before (syllabic, or something even
>> hairier?).  Now why would these developments have motivated an _alphabet_,
>> specifically?
>
>Is an alphabet more efficient at encoding large amounts of technical terms
>rapidly?  An interesting question.

Well, the Sinosphere gets by just fine in the modern era using logographic writing for technical terms.  But in those cases the technical terms are assembled using native morphology the writing system is familiar with, so there is no trouble.  I guess that if the technical terms were borrowed, and borrowings weren't written with logograms but with a dedicated more phonetic sub-script (like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_transcription#Transcription_table, or somewhat like Egyptian group writing), this could lead to greater visibility of the phonetic sub-script and tip it towards eventually taking over.  But on the first hand, the phonetic subscript of a logography probably would be unlikely to be an àlphabet as opposed to something closer to a syllabary, using closer to word-sized chunks to imitate the sounds of the donor language.  

>> Actually, quasi-related question: did the Angosey scripts have a (shared)
>> alphabetic order?  If they did, that would have quite a large influence on
>> the later realignment of ceremonial with contemporary runic.
>
>As I've written them, they did.  So, yes, why not?

Well, the order you've written the characters in your scans can't be the Anga-internal alphabetical order, that would be too much of a coincidence: your consonants are clearly just in Roman order, aside from a few places where you've grouped variants together and a few additions on the end.  Your vowels are also in an order that has some commonalities with Roman, but it's different enough.  I could believe it that that Angosey-native order goes 
  a, ay, ey, e, i, ou, au, eu, u, ye, o, eo, ya, [some other permutation of the consonants], th, dh, p.

>> Remarkably stable -- aw, what fun is that? :-p  There's a systemic bias in
>> conworlds, I think, that not enough hàppens in history, that paging forward
>> a thousand years leaves things looking far too much the same.  Even if the
>> Roman civilisation existed both in the 5th century BC and the 5th AD, even
>> if the Byzantines did in the 5th and 15th centures, quite a lot of internal
>> and external changes happened between then.  (There's a TVTropes page on
>> this, but I couldn't find it, and I don't mind; I wouldn't want to be the
>> sort of person who knows the TVTropes name for everything...)
>
>My concept for the world is to have it seem extremely old, with many more
>ruins than occupied locations, etc, but I can certainly compress the
>history a bit.  

The easiest way to achieve that, I'd think, is for the ruins and the oldness to date from before pre-Streydan.  If there were regular severe swings of the climate enough to lay civilisations low every few millennia, and understanding the climate was hard enough that it took an extraplanetary visitor to spell out the methods, it would make sense to me that there could have been several cycles of cultures who failed at adapting to an unpredicted change and left remains before the Streydanites succeeded.  

>There needs to be enough time for the natural world to
>readjust to climate change - that should take several thousand years each
>time, based on my understanding of the response of North America to the
>beginning of the latest glacial intermission.

Hm, that's tough.  That would make me want to make the tradition of the Angosey knowledge discontinuous.  Even if Angosey kept being spoken, for one reason or another they ceased paying attention and eventually forgot about the predictive texts; it could then be a while before their rediscovery.  

Alex