At 22:56 on 25.12.1998, Arek Bellagio wrote:

[snippings unmarked -- just because I forgot to mark them from the start]

> Hi,
> I've begun developing my nouns in Maraso, a language which uses (at least) 4
> noun cases: Nominative, Accusative, Dative, and Genitive. So far, I've come
> up with this:
> Nominative Noun Ending: o, os
> Accusative: a, as
> Dative: e, es
> Genitive: i, is
> The second example is a plural ending.

Is this an auxlang?  If not you are of course not in need of "simplicity"
of "perspicuity" in any sense (unless you want them anyway).  IMHO there is
an advantage in treating acc, dat, and gen phrases no differently from
"prepositional" phrases.  I put "prepositional" in quotes because you
needn't actually use prepositions; it can be locality cases like in
Finnish.  In fact I prefer preposed markers to endings, since they
obliterate all need of adjective-noun congruence: number is marked on
nouns, and adjective stand between marker and noun.

I have a problem with your vowel scheme, similar to the problem I have with
the Esperanto vowel scheme: Espo makes all nouns look masculine and all
adjectives look feminine.  Yours is possibly worse (sexistically seen) in
that it makes all *nominatives* look masc and all *accusatives* look fem.
Yuck!  I don't think you thought along these lines, surely, but it might be
so viewed... :(

> I've also been very free in my rules for giving case to a nominative noun:

But it will *have* the nom case even  if this is not *marked*!

>  However, when it is plural, the noun, regardless of its former
> ending, requires 'os' for the plural.

This is like Occidental.  It makes one painfully aware that something is
*deleted* in the singular <shudder>.  This is however an artefact of
putting the plural marker after the case marker rather than before it.

There is an advantage in having all words in an auxlang/simp(le )lang end
in vowels: there are languages that require all words to end in a vowel,
but there is AFAIK no natlang with the opposite requirement that all words
must end in a consonant.  I would however laxing the rule so that words may
also end in a alveolar/dental (or coronal for short) sonorant n, r, l or,
more hesitatingly, s.  In fact there are problems also with n, l, r as
final consonants: in many languages (e.g. British English, German, Tibetan)
r after a vowel has a tendency to get vocalized and disappear, n may
disappear via nasalization of the vowel, and l has a tendency to become w
in the same position (which perhaps is a problem only if you have final -u
diphthongs).  I think the best idea is to have e as the optional case
marker, since most people would agree that e is the most inconspicious
final vowel (or a, depending on which of the two alternates with schwa in
the language(s) you're used to!:)  Also people faniliar with Roman script
are also mostly familiar with French andor English words with silent final
-e.  This combined with the fact that I think the dipthong au and one of ai
or oi are ok, but not ei, ui, eu, iu, ou since they too easily mix up with
the other diphthongs or simple vowels.  More over I would rule stress to
fall on the last pre-consonantal vowel, since that would make it less
likely that final consonants are effaced.


    B.Philip Jonsson <[log in to unmask]>

        Solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant!