Asári

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Asári
Asári
Pronunciation [aˌsa:'ri]
Created by
Setting
Spoken natively in Thessia and other Asari Worlds, the Citadel
Region Much of Known Galaxy
Native speakers Trillions  (2185)
Language family
Asáric
  • High Asári
    • Asári
Writing system Latin script, Asari Script
ISO 639-3 asa


Background

Asári is the most-spoken language in the Milky Way Galaxy. The Asari race, first to discover the Citadel Station, quickly became the leaders of galactic government and other affairs. Being one of the most widespread and certainly the 'oldest' spacefaring race in the modern Milky Way, the Asari enjoy the benefits of having Asári as one of the four administrative languages of the Citadel Council.

The Asari language detailed in this article is High Asari, or Asári teporu (AT).

Asári is of my own creation, even though it is meant to be spoken by a race of aliens created by Bioware. I have not copied or used any material from other Asari-langauge Conlangs. (Nor am I aware that they exist as of writing this sentence)

Phonology

Letters Pronunciation Further information
a [a:] has no short version
c [kʰ]/[-] used as glide after a and long u
e [ɛ] / [e:] -
g [g]/[-] used as glide after a and long u
h [h] -
i [i] -
k [kʰ] rarely used, usually replaced by c
l [l] -
m [m] -
n [n] -
o [ɔ]/[o:] short/long
p [p] -
r [r]
s [s] -
t [t] -
u [ʉ] has no short version
v [v] -
x [ks] -
y [i] makes the same sound as i
z [z] rarely used

The Asári alphabet also has stress marks that can be placed over any vowel (á, é, í, ó, ú, ý) to indicate the primary stress placement on a word if it does not follow the standard stress rules.

The phones [b] and [d] have merged with [p] and [t] and are no longer in use. They are still found in some archaic words, such as ardat-yakshi.


Consonants

Here is a chart of the Consonantal Phonemes in Asári:

Phonemes Bilabial Labiodental Dental Alveolar Postalveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Stop p t kʰ g
Affricate
Nasal m n (ɲ)
Fricative f v s ʃ ks h
Approximant r
Lateral approximant w l

The digraph sh represents [ʃ], and ng represents [ɲ].

Vowels

Here is a table of the vowel phonemes in Asári:

Phonemes Short Long
Front Back Front Back
Closed i - ʉ
Mid-closed - e: o:
Mid-open ɛ ɔ - -
Open a - - -


Asári has a relatively small number of individual phonemes, which is what makes it so easy for other species to learn and one of the reasons it is the main administrative language of the Citadel Council.

Stress

Stress falls on the first syllable of a word, unless specified otherwise by an accented vowel. Vowels in stressed syllables are always long, if a length distinction can be made for that vowel. This can change the meaning of seemingly homophonic words:

  • teporu ['te:,pɔ,rʉ] (high, adj.) vs. tepóru [tɛ'po:,rʉ] (gate, n.)

Glides

Asári has two glides: the j-type glide and the w-type glide, each represented by specific letters in specific positions.

The letters c and g represent these glides respectively. They are only used as glides after the phonemes [a] and [ʉ:]. (a and long u)

For example:

Word Pronunciation Glide Type Meaning
tagó [ta,wo:'] w-glide hand
uge [ʉ:'wɛ] w-glide moon
oeaci [o:'ɛa,ji] j-glide paint
arúcetú [a:,rʉ:'jɛ,tʉ:'] j-glide to have a career (from German arbeiten)

Grammar

Nouns and Gender

Nouns in Asári are not inflected for gender, in keeping with Asári's simple grammatical concepts. They are, however, inflected for number.

There are three numbers in Asári, singular, dual, and plural. Number inflection for nouns is done by conjoining a word before the noun. teng is used for two of something, and acia is used for any number over three. Here is a chart showing the prefixed number markers for nouns in different numbers:

Singular Dual Plural Meaning Definite
asári teng-asári acia-asári asári asári-te
sale teng-sale acia-sale land (country) sale-te
aeóica teng-aeóica acia-aeóica eye aeóica-te

Proper nouns are pluralized by suffixing ae:

  • Aria (name) - Ariae (if the noun ends in a, then only e is added)
  • Mari (type of fish) - Mariae

Personal Pronouns

Case 1st person
Singular Plural
Nominative eia teia
Accusative co tecó
Dative cu tecú
Genitive coia tecóia
Case 2nd person
Singular Plural
Nominative vo tevó
Accusative meia teméia
Dative maia temáia
Genitive aer teáer
Case 3rd person
Feminine (Neutral) Plural
Nominative sene ten
Accusative sena tena
Dative senu tenu
Genitive seno teno


Nouns in Asári derive their plural form through the addition of acia. (There is no plural marker, so to speak) However, in the instance of pronouns, a t is added. Asári tends to avoid consonant clusters, and because of this, a 'glider e' is inserted before the initial consonant of the root word. For instance:

  • eia - I -> teia - we.
  • meia - you (acc.) -> meia - teméia - you pl. (acc.) (note the accent on é to preserve the pronunciation of meia)


Verbs

Verbs have a complex structure in Asári, and form the only part of the langauge that requires significant study to learn well.

There are two verb conjugation classes: definite and indefinite. Under these categories verbs are also inflected for 6 cases: Accusative, Dative, Genitive, Instrumental,

Examples