|Created by||Frederic Bayer|
The Daùnare language (Daùnare: Daùnarenu /ˈdaʊ̯.nʌ.rɪ.nʊ/ or Daùnarekelnu /ˈdaʊ̯.nʌ.rɪˌkel.nʊ/) is a language spoken by the Daùna people (Daùnare: Daùnadistunu /ˈdaʊ̯.nʌˌdis.tʊ.nʊ/).
The chart below shows the phonemic and [reduced] vowels present in Daùnare. The reduced vowels also occur as part of diphthongs, but are not considered phonemes in their own right. There are six phonemic vowels which are additionally differentiated by length, and three reduced vowels.
Orthographically, the phonemic vowels (when not used in diphthongs) are all written as in IPA with the exception of /ɛ/, written ⟨æ⟩, and length is indicated using a macron rather than the IPA length symbol. For a more detailed overview, please see →Orthography.
NB: With the (partial) exception of this section (Phonology), this article generally uses orthographic representations rather than IPA when discussing phonemes.
Daùnare features eleven diphthongs, not including the so-called iotified vowels and labialised vowels which are treated separately. Diphthongs can end in [ɪ̯], [ʊ̯], or [ʌ̯]; the latter also known as hiatus vowels. Diphthongs can be formed by any vowel that is not "too close" to the final vowel. Specifically:
- Diphthongs ending in [ɪ̯] can be formed by any vowel other than the close and close-mid front vowels.
- Diphthongs ending in [ʊ̯] can be formed by any vowel other than back vowels.
- Diphthongs ending in [ʌ̯] (hiatus vowels) can be formed by any vowel other than the open and open-mid vowels.
The only notable exception is that there is no diphthong /eʊ̯/; this is because diphthongs beginning with /ɛ/ are orthographically represented with ⟨e⟩ rather than ⟨æ⟩, which has resulted in what used to be the /eʊ̯/ diphthong merging into the (still-extant) /ɛʊ̯/ diphthong.
In summary, the following diphthongs exist:
Any non-close(-mid) vowel can be iotified, i.e. the following iotified vowels exist: /ɪ̯ɛ ɪ̯a ɪ̯o ɪ̯u/. Iotation is orthographically represented through diacritics – specifically, the ogonek.
The use of ⟨ɪ̯⟩ to represent the onset of these vowels (or diphthongs) phonetically is by convention, as there nominally exists no independent **/j/ phoneme, but the realisation is functionally [j].
In the standard language, these vowels are pronounced as such, but in many dialects this has resulted either in the palatalisation of a preceding consonant or a wholesale shift to a palatal consonant, alveolo-palatal consonant, or an affricate. For more information, see →Sociolinguistics.
Any non-back vowel can be labialised, i.e. the following labialised vowels exist: /ʊ̯ɛ ʊ̯a ʊ̯e ʊ̯i/. Iotation is orthographically represented through diacritics – specifically, the breve.
The use of ⟨ʊ̯⟩ to represent the onset of these vowels (or diphthongs) phonetically is by convention, as there nominally exists no independent **/w/ phoneme, but the realisation is functionally [w].
In the standard language, these vowels are pronounced as such, but in many dialects, one of two things has happened:
- labialisation of the preceding consonant, or
- monophthongisation and compensatory lengthening to [œː ɔː øː yː]
For more information, see →Sociolinguistics.
In unstressed syllables, short monophthongs reduce as follows:
- /e, i/ → [ɪ]
- /o, u/ → [ʊ]
- /a, ɛ/ → [ʌ]
Diphthongs cannot reduce, and must therefore always be stressed.
As with the →Vowel chart, phones occurring only as allophones are indicated with [square brackets].
|Plosive||p b||t d||k g|
|Fricative||f [v]||s [z]||[ç]||x||[h]|
In phonological notation, valid onset clusters fall into the following categories. The colour coding of categories is reflected in the reference tables.
|Consonants||F||L||F||/l/||F||N||F||/n/||P||L||P||/r/||P||/s/||F||P||(L)||F||P||(/r/)||/p, k, g/||/n/|
Broadly summarised Daùnare allows…
- fricatives to be followed by liquids and nasals (FL, FN),
- /s/ to be followed by voiceless stops and vice versa (/s/P, P/s/),
- Stops to be followed by liquids including after /s/ (PL, /s/PL),
- Voiceless stops to be followed by /s/ (P/s/), and
- /p/, /k/, and /g/ to be followed by /n/,
…with a few phonotactic exceptions: */fm/, */sr/, */(s)tl/, */dl/
Proposals for orthographic reform
Aα Bb Γc Δd Ee Φϕ Hh Iı Kκ Λλ Mμ Nν Oo Pp Rꞃ Σſz Tt Υυ Ææ Ꙗꙗ Ѥѥ Юю ωω
As in the modern alphabet, labialised vowels were indicated using a breve, and long vowels using a macron.
Modern – Ū Ǫta! Distas kunen disnimi plasnel tugusat, bak kunenere dorāket.
Historic – Ῡ Юtα! Δıztαz κuνeν dızνıμı pλαzνeλ tucuzαt, bακ κuνeνeꞃe doꞃᾱκet.
(Translation: Oh Jota! A man gave the woman the child's dog, and dogs steal from each other.)
Morphophonology of verbs
Voice is indicated through apophony (gradation) of the theme vowel of a verb (also referred to as grade 0), which refers to the nucleus of the verb root's stressed syllable. Grade 1 forms the antipassive, and grade 2 the middle voice.
These theme vowels also correlate with the class of the verb, which indicates the vowel used in person-number-tense/aspect conjugation (→Thematic anaptyxis). Because the gradation by theme vowel is unique in each class (i.e. no theme vowel has grades which also occur as theme vowels within the same class), and the class vowel appears in conjugational endings, base verbs are generally not ambiguous with gradations of other verbs except in the infinitive (i.e. the verb root on its own).
Below is a breakdown of gradations sorted according to class vowel and theme vowel:
|Class vowel||Theme vowel
Morphophonology of nouns
Methelcystic t and the definite clitic
Initial consonant mutations after modal particles
Daùnare nouns decline according to noun class (also called gender), number, and case. There are four classes, each declining for either three or two numbers as shown below (an asterisk* indicates the default/undifferentiated form).
- Masculine (singular,* dual, plural)
- Feminine (singular,* dual, plural)
- Concrete (singular,* dual, plural)
- Abstract (collective,* singulative)
However, in many ways the abstract singulative can be regarded more as a derivational than inflectional process, as it isn't universally productive (there are many collective-only abstract nouns).
Masculine, feminine, and concrete nouns decline for six cases: absolutive, ergative, dative, genitive, ablative, and vocative. Abstract nouns feature the same cases except for the vocative, i.e. a total of five. Declension suffixes are shown in the table below – for an overview of what the parenthesised letters indicate, please see the above sections on →class-dependent anaptyxis and the →methelcystic t and the definite clitic.
Some singulative abstract nouns have been reanalysed as concrete nouns (known as concretised nouns). These follow a special uncountable declension:
Definiteness is expressed using the definite clitic, or (for detached possessed nouns) the construct clitic, for both of which see below (→Particles and clitics § Definite and construct clitics).
Because of the focus-theme-rheme word order of Daùnare, nouns express agreement with the converb using the suffix ⟨-pe⟩. For example:
Focus Theme Rheme Muȧrnempe kas (san) dalpeset tālosnem kasnar dalabo. muȧr=n=em‑pe kas (san) dal‑pes‑e‑t tālos=n=em kas‑nar dal‑a‑bo house‑def‑conc.dat‑cvb to (3sg.m.abs) go‑cvb‑∅‑3sg.pres shop‑def‑dat to‑inside go‑∅‑1sg.pret House while to he goes while shop into I went. ‘While it was the house he was going to, I went into the shop.’
Focus Theme Rheme Muȧrnem kas (san) dalpeset tālosnempe kasnar dalabo. muȧr=n=em kas (san) dal‑pes‑e‑t tālos=n=em‑pe kas‑nar dal‑a‑bo house‑def‑conc.dat to (3sg.m.abs) go‑cvb‑∅‑3sg.pres shop‑def‑dat‑cvb to‑inside go‑∅‑1sg.pret House to he goes while shop while into I went. ‘It was the house— while he was going into the shop —that I went to.’
Personal pronouns in Daùnare decline according to person, number, case, formality (second person only) and class (third person only). The vocative case only exists in the second person.
|first person||second person||third person|
Possessive pronouns indicate inalienable possession and can occur either on their own, or in conjunction with a possessed noun, which must be definite. By default, they are placed after the noun they possess, but they can become detached from it for semantic reasons (→Syntax § Constituent order). In this case, the definite clitic in the possessed noun is replaced with the construct clitic (→Definite and construct clitics).
Possessive pronouns decline the same way as personal pronouns, except that there are no vocative possessive pronouns (in any person):
|first person||second person||third person|
Verbs conjugate by apophony to express voice, and by suffixation to express tense-aspect. Verbs do not conjugate for mood, which is instead expressed through modal particles.
Tense and aspect
The "default" (unmarked) aspect of the present and future tenses is the gnomic or simple aspect (by convention, the nomenclature is gnomic present but future simple). A progressive aspect can be expressed through the regular suffix ⟨‑ta⟩ affixed to the base conjugation of both tenses, and a perfect aspect only in the future tense through the suffixes ⟨‑bi⟩ (first person), ⟨‑si⟩ (second person) and ⟨‑ni⟩ (third person).
The past tense, by contrast, has no unmarked aspect; each past aspect (preterite or simple past, imperfect or progressive past, and habitual [past]) has its own set of person‑number inflections.
Below is an inflection table, where V represents the thematic vowel of the verb (→Morphophonology of verbs § Thematic anaptyxis). The progressive and perfect aspects for the future and present tenses are not shown, as they are perfectly regular, with the exception that the present progressive third person singular/collective (or second person singular formal) has another theme vowel inserted between the conjugational suffix and the progressive suffix to prevent the two /t/s colliding, which is the only instance of double thematic anaptyxis.
|first person||second person||third person|
Mood in Daùnare is best analysed as being composed through three modal dimensions, comprising factual‑intentional modality (indicative, imperative, subjunctive, conditional, or optative), syntactic modality (declarative, interrogative, relative, or subordinate) and negativity (positive or negative).
The default/unmarked mood is the positive declarative indicative; other moods are expressed through modal particles, for which see below (→Particles § Modal particles)
Daùnare has three "primary" voices, which are indicated through apophony on verbs. As an ergative-absolutive language, Daùnare does not feature an active voice but rather a primary voice, in which the argument of an intransitive verb is equivalent to the patient of a transitive verb; i.e., in ambitransitive verbs, the intransitive use in the primary voice will omit the agent (like the passive voice of a nominative-accusative language), not the patient.
To omit the patient instead (like one in the active voice of a nominative-accusative language), the antipassive voice can be used, called such because it effectively achieves the reverse of what a passive voice achieves in a nominative-accusative language. Some verbs do not have an antipassive form; these are termed defective verbs. Conversely, some verbs only have an antipassive form, and these verbs are termed deponent verbs.
The middle voice, with the exception of a few specific verbs, only normally occurs intransitively. It generally indicates reciprocity, reflexivity, or volition.
Besides these "primary" voices, there exist two prefixes, the applicative ⟨do-⟩, which promotes the dative object of a verb to be its patient, and the diapplicative ⟨ro-⟩, which does the same thing with the ablative object. The prefixes can combine with either the primary stem to create the applicative and diapplicative voices, or with the middle stem to create the medioapplicative and mediodiapplicative. However, it is worth noting that many verbs lack some or all of these forms, which is why these latter four voices are not regarded as "primary".
Nonetheless, in total, Daùnare can therefore be said to feature seven voices.
Converb and pro-verb
- See also: Nouns § Converbal agreement
The converb and pro-verb ⟨pes⟩ fulfills the function of a converb when suffixed to another verb root, and that of a pro-verb (akin to English "do" or "do so") when used independently.
The tense-aspect declensions of the converb indicate its function, and as such do not need to agree with the main clause verb. The converb conjugates for all tense-aspects except the habitual (though the pro-verb does), as follows:
- Present – simultaneous converb ("while doing")
- Preterite – perfective converb ("after doing")
- Imperfect – causal converb ("because of doing")
- Future – anticipatory converb ("before doing")
Particles and clitics
Modal particles, placed at the beginning of clauses (except copular clauses, in which they fuse with the copula), express grammatical mood. For an overview of mood, please see (→Verbs § Mood)
Definite and construct clitics
The definite clitic =n= is a mesoclitic inserted between a nominal root and its declensional suffix. Where a noun is possessed but detached from its possessor, the construct clitic =r= is used instead.
Derivations are achieved in Daùnare either through one of three methods:
- Compounding – combining two lemmas to create a new lemma
- Class derivation – forming new nouns by altering the class of an existing noun
- Affixation – adding a bound morpheme to a lemma to create a new lemma. This latter can be further subdivided into:
- Ciscategorical affixation, where the lexical category stays the same (e.g. deriving a new adjective from an existing adjective)
- Transcategorical affixation, where the lexical category changes (e.g. deriving a noun from a verb)
Derivational noun class
Affix derivation of nouns
Affix derivation of verbs
Affix derivation of adjectives (and adverbs)
Monoclass nouns and class-derived alternates
The verb tug
The Daùnare verb ⟨tug⟩ nominally means "to bring", but is capable of expressing a whole host of things for which English uses different verbs. It is a so‑called defective verb, meaning it has no antipassive.
When used intransitively in primary voice, it can be used with non‑sentient/non‑volitional arguments to mean "there is":
S V Harnu tugut. har‑nu tug‑u‑t way‑abst.sg.abs bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A way is brought. ‘There is a way.’
The same meaning ("there is") can be expressed with the middle voice for sentient/volitional arguments:
S V Distan tegut. dis‑t‑an teg‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.abs mid\bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man brings (himself). ‘There is a man.’
Of course, this also works in conjunction with other tenses and aspects (for, e.g., "There used to be a man", "There will have been a way") – with the exception of the progressive aspect (which exists in the present and future tense).
In (mono)transitive usage in the primary voice, the verb usually does translate as "bring":
A P V Distas kunen tugut. dis‑t‑as kun‑en tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg dog‑conc.sg.abs bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man brings a dog. ‘A man brings a dog.’
A peculiarity of this verb is that it is possible to use the middle voice form of the verb transitively, i.e. with an ergative argument (which middle voice verbs usually do not take) functioning as recipient:
A P V Distas kunen tegut. dis‑t‑as kun‑en teg‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg dog‑conc.sg.abs mid\bring‑∅‑prs.3sg (To) a man a dog brings (itself). ‘A man gets a dog.’
In ditransitive usage the verb can either be translated as "give" or "take" depending on whether the indirect object is dative or ablative:
A P I(DAT) V Distas kunen disnimi tugut. dis‑t‑as kun‑en dis=n=i‑mi tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg dog‑conc.sg.abs person=def=∅‑fem.sg.dat bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man brings a dog to the woman. ‘A man gives the woman a dog.’ A P I(ABL) V Distas kunen plastel tugut. dis‑t‑as kun‑en plas‑t‑el tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg dog‑conc.sg.abs child‑∅‑conc.sg.abl bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man brings a dog from a child. ‘A man takes a child's dog.’ / ‘A man takes a dog from a child.’
Both indirect objects can be present to express the idea of giving A to B having taken it from C:
A P I(DAT) I(ABL) V Distas kunen disnimi plastel tugut. dis‑t‑as kun‑en dis=n=i‑mi plas‑t‑el tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg dog‑conc.sg.abs person=def=∅‑fem.sg.dat child‑∅‑conc.sg.abl bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man brings a dog to the woman from a child. ‘A man gives the woman a child's dog.’ / ‘A man gives the woman a dog taken from a child.’
When used as a di‑ or tritransitive, the verb can be modified using the applicative prefix ⟨do‑⟩ which promotes the dative to patient (and the secondary indirect object to primary). Relatively unusually, ⟨tug⟩ does not function as an intransitive verb with the applicative. Also, unlike some verbs, the applicative prefix cannot be combined with the middle voice stem to produce a medioapplicative.
A P V Distas disnini dotugut. dis‑t‑as dis=n=i‑ni do‑tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg person=def=∅‑fem.sg.abs appl‑bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man "bebrings" the woman. ‘A man gives [something] to the woman.’ A P I(DAT) V Distas disnini plastem dotugut. dis‑t‑as dis=n=i‑ni plas‑t‑em do‑tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg person=def=∅‑fem.sg.abs child‑∅‑conc.sg.dat appl‑bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man "bebrings" the woman through the child. ‘A man gives [something] to the woman [taken] from the child.’
As is the case with other tritransitive verbs, the diapplicative prefix ⟨ro‑⟩ can be used to promote the secondary indirect object to patient instead. Much like with the applicative, the diapplicative does not function intransitively (unlike in other verbs). Also, again like the applicative, the diapplicative prefix cannot be combined with the middle stem to produce a mediodiapplicative.
A P V Distas disnini rotugut. dis‑t‑as dis=n=i‑ni ro‑tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg person=def=∅‑fem.sg.abs diappl‑bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man "disbrings" the woman. ‘A man takes [something] from the woman.’ A P I(DAT) V Distas disnini plastem rotugut. dis‑t‑as dis=n=i‑ni plas‑t‑em ro‑tug‑u‑t person‑∅‑masc.sg.erg person=def=∅‑fem.sg.abs child‑∅‑conc.sg.dat diappl‑bring‑∅‑prs.3sg A man "disbrings" the woman through the child. ‘A man takes [something] from the woman [and gives it] to the child.’
Daùnare is subject to significant phonological, morphological, and lexical variation across regions and social classes, as well as age.
Unlike most languages that feature a strong social class distinction in speech, there are two identifiable acrolects: The plutolect, is the prestige dialect of urban elites, "media types", the nouveau riche, and (in a wide sense) liberals. The aristolect, meanwhile, is the prestige dialect of the clergy, "traditional" artists (painters, sculptors, classical musicians), old money (aristocracy and gentry), other well-heeled country-dwellers, and (in a wide sense) conservatives.
Both of these sociolects feature innovations (such as pitch accent in the aristolect, or the extensive coalescence of the plutolect), but on the whole the plutolect can be considered more "innovative" while the aristolect is more "conservative", relative to the historical development of the language. The latter's "conservatism" is particularly evident in lexical terms.
Of course, being multi-dimensional, sociolinguistic variation is multi-faceted, as at least both region and social class (as well as age) will impact on a speaker's idiolect. While regional features are strongest in non-acrolectal speakers, certain features are more or less strongly influential on each acrolect: Speakers of the plutolect are more likely to have regional morphological features, and less likely to use regional vocabulary, while the opposite is the case for acrolectal speakers.