Aethêllan

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Ancient Galern
Aethêllan
Progress: 83%
Type
Fusional-Agglutinative
Alignment
Ergative-Absolutive
Head direction
Initial Mixed Final
Primary word order
Subject-verb-object
Tonal
No
Declensions
Yes
Conjugations
Yes
Genders
5
Nouns decline according to...
Case Number
Definiteness Gender
Verbs conjugate according to...
Voice Mood
Person Number
Tense Aspect



History

Aethêllan is one of my main conlangs and was created out of joy, as a linguistic experiment, and also to be the main classical language for my series of Fantasy novels. Aethêllan is spoken by the dominant species of Anmarla who are known as the Galern. The language has approximately 15 million speakers. At the time of my main novel series, the language and its native speakers are extinct, however Aethêllan is used as the language of academics, state and religious ceremonies, and record/document keeping. Only the upper class can read and speak it and even then only a minority. The seven languages of the nine different Kingdoms during this time are all descended from Aethêllan. Aethêllan is in turn descended from Vamynouynem.

This is a work of love and I ask any readers that, outside of any accidental grammatical mistakes, they do not make any edits, however minor, without my permission and that this work is protected by copyright. Your understanding is greatly appreciated.


Background

Aethêllan is an SVO fusional-agglutinative language. The majority of information is placed on the nouns and verbs, and though it is an SVO language technically speaking it does allow for free word order.


Phonology

Bilabial Dental Alveol. Postalve. Retrofl. Palatal Velar Glottal
Plosives p (p)
pʷ (pw)
b (b)
bʷ (bw)
t (t)
tʷ (tw)
d (d)
dʷ (dw)
k (k)
kʷ (kw)
g (g)
gʷ (gw)
Fricatives f (f)
fʷ (fw)
v (v)
vʷ (vw)
θ (th) ð (dh) s (s)
sʷ (sw)
x (h) h (h)
Nasals m (m) n (n)
nʷ (nw)
Trill r (r)
Glides Approxim. ʍ (hw) w (w) ɹ (r) j (y)
Lateral Appr. l (l) ɭ (l)


Mutations

  1. Both Approximants and Lateral Approximants are de-voiced before nasals.
  2. /l/ becomes /ɭ/ after vowels.
  3. /ɹ/ becomes /r/ before plosives.
  4. /h/ becomes /x/ at the end of a word.


Diphthongs

Diphthong IPA
ao ɐʊ
ey
ôe əʊ:
ÿ aɪ:
ŷe iə:
ae
ai
eo əj


Vowels

Front Near-front Central Back
short long short short long short long
Close i (i) i: (î) u (u)
Mid e̞ (ê) o̞ (ô)
Open-mid ɛ (e) ɔ (ó)
Near-open æ (á)
Open a: (â) ɑ (a) ɒ (o)


Grammar and Syntax

Syntax

Independent Clauses are SVO, whilst Dependent and Relative Clauses are SOV.


Stress

Aethêllan differs from languages such as English in that every vowel is pronounced fully and with clear distinction. The language does however place stress on the last syllable of a word, however this is not as important as stress is considered to be in English and other similar languages. Any long vowels; those with diacritics or diphthongs, are stressed as well as the last syllable.

  • E.g donsênanwê where the stress is on both sên and .

Verbs

In Aethêllan there are two classes of verbs and these two classes each have two forms. Each verb also has five principle parts. There are some irregular verbs, however, they will not be included in this section. There are Strong Verbs and Weak Verbs. Unlike nouns, the two verbs are not differentiated by their phonology nor by their meaning; rather one must learn the principle parts in order to know to which class the verb belongs. Most verbs do have a rather obvious phonological pattern however reliance on phonological similarities will not be enough to properly learn all verbs and their corresponding forms correctly. As stated above, all irregular verbs will be, for the ease of formatting, displayed in more convenient section.

The five principal parts are the present active infinitive, the present imperfective, the past aorist (i.e. simple past), the present perfect and the supine displayed in that order.

NB Which class and form each verb takes is dependent on the verb stem, which is not heard in speech, thus the principal parts make it clear to speakers whether the verb is a strong one or not and to which paradigm the verb belongs.


Aspect & Tense

Strong Verbs

These include verbs whose stems end in a plosive or a vowel. See the two examples below.


Strong Verb Class I
Aed - Aedar - Aedáth - Aedlen - Aedarh - To Rule


Aspect


Tense

Aorist Imperfective Conative Habitual Perfect Inceptive Continuative Terminative
Past Aedáth Aedâl Aedarâl Aedó Aednen Aedey Aedion Aedmen
Present Aedán Aedar Aedarâl Aedaró Aedlen Aeden Aedarion Aedemene
Future Aedarin Aedarv Aedâla Aedaró Aedarlen Aederen Aedarân Aedaremene


Strong Verb Class II
Edhe - Edhel - Edhey- Edhlar - Edheh - To Wield


Aspect


Tense

Aorist Imperfective Conative Habitual Perfect Inceptive Continuative Terminative
Past Edhey Edheoem Edhâl Edhó Edhar Edhaen Edhîm Edhem
Present Edht Edhel Edhwet Edhôe Edhlar Edheyn Edhenaf Edhrat
Future Edhas Edhmen Edhwen Edhôel Edhÿr Edhnen Edheth Edher


Weak Verbs

These include verbs whose stem ends in a fricative and any other possible consonant.


Weak Verbs 1st Class
Vall - Vallak - Vallakir - Vallaken - Vallakum - To Betray


Aspect


Tense

Aorist Imperfective Conative Habitual Perfect Inceptive Continuative Terminative
Past Vallakir Vallakon Vallakâl Vallakó Vallaket Vallakey Vallakerân Vallakemen
Present Vallakân Vallak Vallakae Vallakó Vallaken Vallakek Vallakarion Vallakamir
Future Vallakum Vallakár Vallakimâl Vallakîv Vallakelen Vallaketh Vallakasan Vallakimen


Weak Verbs 2nd Class
Hluf - Hlufan - Hlufte - Hlufrem - Hluftelen - To Jump


Aspect


Tense

Aorist Imperfective Conative Habitual Perfect Inceptive Continuative Terminative
Past Hlufte Hlufe Hluftir Hlufó Hlufÿh Hlufunir Hlufŷeke Hlufegánir
Present Hlufar Hlufan Hlufá Hlufôe Hlufrem Hlufen Hlufeorn Hlufôether
Future Hlufum Hlufna Hlufit Hlufelt Hlufelen Hlufris Hlufwân Hlufutámir


Verb Number Marking

The following are suffixes. These come after the fusional case/aspect marker.

Transitive Verbs

Object
Singular Plural
Agent Singular
Plural -a -(v)in

Intransitive Verbs

Subject
Singular
Plural

Nouns

Cases

Cases
ERG Ergative
Agent
ABS Absolutive
Patient & Experiencer
DAT Dative
Indirect Object, Direction to
GEN Genitive
Description/Relation/Alienable Poss.
e.g. Men of Rome
PART Partitive
Pertaining to a Group/Thing
POSS Possessive
Static Possessive
VOC Vocative
ABES Abessive
Lack of Noun
INS Instrumental
EQU Equative
Comparison


Case and Class Paradigms

In Aethêllan over time Case and Class/Gender have merged into one suffix. When Nouns take their Case and Class marker they now have a far more fusional method unlike its ancestor language Vamynouynem.

Strong Nouns are those which end in either a vowel, an approximant, or lateral approximant. Weak nouns are the remainder.


Class I The Human Class
Absolutive Ergative Dative Genitive Possessive Partitive Abessive Instrumental Equitive Vocative
Strong Gâl Gâlam Gâlal Gâlÿ Gâlâ Gâláth Gâlthârum Gâlfen Gâlanwen Gâlô
Weak Theyn Thênam Thênas Thênîs Thênâ Thêneh Thênârum Thênen Thênetwem Theynô
Class II The Non-Human Class
Absolutive Ergative Dative Genitive Possessive Partitive Abessive Instrumental Equitive Vocative
Strong Kallâr Kallâl Kallâs Kallâ Kallârem Kallâmen Kallâvenîm Kallâkal Kallâkthîl Kallô
Weak Mârith Mâre Mâros Mârîm Mârâ Mârmen Mârsârem Mârthir Mârvith Mârô
Class III The Flora Class
Absolutive Ergative Dative Genitive Possessive Partitive Abessive Instrumental Equitive Vocative
Strong Tiwâr Tiwârn Tiwâras Tiwârîs Tiwârâ Tiwâráth Tiwârthârum Tiwârfen Tiwâranwen Tiwârô
Weak Fwin Fwinelth Fwines Fwinîs Fwinân Fwinenne Fwinârum Fwinestes Fwinemwen Fwinô
Class IV The Abstract Class
Absolutive Ergative Dative Genitive Possessive Partitive Abessive Instrumental Equitive Vocative
Strong Ennedîn Ennedîne Ennedînas Ennedînir Ennedînem Ennedînáth Ennedînârum Ennedînal Ennedînwen Ennedînô
Weak Nethwÿn Nethwÿne Nethwÿnos Nethwÿnî Nethwÿnide Nethwÿnenne Nethwÿnaltum Nethwÿnestes Nethwÿnnith Nethwÿnô
Class V The Mass & Inanimate Class
Absolutive Ergative Dative Genitive Possessive Partitive Abessive Instrumental Equitive Vocative
Strong Eyelgar Eyelgare Eyelgarl Eyelgarîs Eyelgarîte Eyelgarvala Eyelgaránna Eyelgarfen Eyelgarwen Eyelgarô
Weak Dollgan Dollganeth Dollganas Dollganî Dollganâ Dollgannule Dollganârum Dollganen Dollganetwem Dollganô


Notes on Cases
  • Theyn is an irregular verb, hence the short diphthong becoming a long vowel. This happens for all weak nouns with short diphthongs in Class I.
  • Gâl translates roughly to Man though can also be used for both sexes.
  • Theyn is often used for Woman though its literal meaning is One who gives birth.
  • Kallâr translates to Sea-Bird. This is an irregular verb.
  • Mârith translates to Snake. This is also an irregular verb.
  • Tiwâr is a very tall, hard tree similar in appearance to that of our Oak.
  • Fwin is a little vine that lives on larger trees and has tiny white flowers.
  • Ennedîn translates to Elegance
  • Nethwÿn translates to Intelligence.
  • Eyelgar translates to Fire
  • Dollgan translates to Mountain
  • In Class V the Strong class are the Mass nouns and the Weak are the Inanimate Nouns. (Almost)Any noun can take Mass Noun (Strong) CLass V inflections and be used as a Collective Noun, however, the original Mass Nouns cannot take any other inflections or be used in any other paradigms.

Definite vs. Indefinite

The Definite marker for nouns is the allomorphic prefix (v)(i)-.

Definite Indefinite
Igâla Gâla
The Man A Man
Vennedîn Gâlîs Ennedîn
The Elegance of Man Elegance
  • NB Galîs is the collective noun for man, meaning something akin to Mankind/Humankind.


Personal Pronouns

First Person
Exclusive Inclusive
Erg. Va (I) Be (We) Me (We)
Abs. Nen (Me) Gen (Us) Dae (Us)
Poss. Neth (My/Mine) Geth (Ours) Yel (Ours)
Dat. Hel (to Me) ân (to Us) Hwer (to Us)
Inst Var (by Me) Dôr (by Us) Sâl (by Us)
Second Person
Living Non-Living
Singular (Exclusive) Plural (Inclusive) Singular
Erg. Lâ (Thou) Eoâ (Thou) Ete (It)
Abs. Lîn (Thee) Eoŷe (Thee) Ete (It)
Poss. Flan (Thy) Eoin (Thine) Ets (Its)
Dat. Olf (to Thee) Eois (to Thee) Ses (to It)
Inst. Fen (by Thou) Eoân (by Thou) Etsan (by It)
Third Person Singular
Living & Non-Gendered Non-Living & Neutral
Erg. De (He/She) Agan (It)
Abs. Ene (Him/Her) Ani (It)
Poss. Ures (His/Hers) Gâna (Its)
Dat. Del (to Him/Her) Dor (to It)
Inst. Ten (by Him/Her) Than (by It)
Third Person Plural
Living & Non-Gendered Non-Living & Neutral
Erg. Mer (They) Oro (Its)
Abs. Nir (Them) Non (Its)
Poss. Hal (Theirs) Moh (Its)
Dat. Emlen (to Them) Thân (To Its)
Inst. Morth (by Them) Orum (by Its)


Derivation

The following are a mix of prefixes and suffixes. Prefixes are marked, and the remaining are suffixes.


Derivation Pattern Affix & Example
Adjective --> Adverb (prefix) an
Quick > Quickly
Adjective --> Noun (prefix) agar
Happy > Happiness
Noun --> Verb bel
Glory > Glorify
Noun --> Adjective faltar
Recreation > Recreational
Adjectives --> Transitive Verbs lis
Rich > Enrich
Nouns --> Transitive Verbs fal
Rapture > Enrapture
Transitive Verbs --> Intransitive Verbs (Antipassive Voice)
Agent/Experience and Patient/Focus swap places
Ablaut
E.g.to hit > to be hit by
to like > to be pleasing to
Intransitive Verbs --> Transitive Verbs
Increase transitivity, turn impersonal verb into agent-intransitive,
Intransitive verb into transitive, transitive into ditransitive
Ablaut
to rain > to water (plants, etc.)
to have > to give
Inchoative/Inceptive Verb See Inceptive Aspect
Catenative Verb -
Opposite (Quality) (prefix) rao
Happy > sad, clear > vague
opposite (reverse action)(prefix)
Agent and patient remain the same, action of the verb changes
forn
Earn <==> spend, borrow <==> repay
Motion Purpose
Go somewhere in order to do VERB
maela
to buy > to go shopping
Nominal Participle
Person who is doing VERB at the current moment
(Also inflects for tense)
dwe
Run > runner
Person who does verb habitually moth
Write > writer
Place where VERB is typically done gen
to cook > kitchen, to sleep > bedroom
Place with lots of NOUN othin
Book > library, tree > forest
Tool or substance used for doing VERB arta
to write > writing implement, to wash > soap
ADJ = made of NOUN (prefix) val
Gold > golden, wood > wooden
ADJ = having lot of/ some of NOUN (prefix) var
Money > rich, trash > messy
ADJ = lacking/sparsity of NOUN (prefix) ave
Tooth > toothless, money > poor
Augmentation îthil
House > mansion, cat > lion
Pejoration ithse
Man > scoundrel, child > brat
ADJ = tending to often do VERB/be ADJ (prefix) gir
think > thoughtful, forget > forgetful
VERB = to use NOUN in a typical way kâl
Lips > kiss, Hammer > to hammer