|Genders:||0 (3rd-sg pronouns)|
|Cases:||0 (except on pronouns)|
w:Bavarian language, w:Luxembourgish language w:Yiddish w:Dutch language w:Flemish w:Afrikaans w:Frisian languagesw:Norwegian language
Africa: SEDES • Middle Semitic • Kintu • Guosa Central Asia: Jalpi • Caucas • Zens • Dravindian • Neo-Sanskrit Europe: Intralingua • Folksprak • Interslavic • Balkan • Samboka Far East: Dan'a'yo • IM • MSEAL
The language can easily be understood by any speaker of a Germanic language (a group numbering over 110 million native speakers with an additional 300 to 900 million speaking English which is nearly-Germanic) without much teaching. For example, a native speaker of German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Afrikaans, Yiddish or some other Germanic language, can understand a sentence like ᛁᛣᛣ ᚻᚪᚹ ᛋᛣᚱᛁᚹᛏ ᛖᚾ ᛞᛖ ᛒᚢᛣ/Ik hav skrivt en de buk with little or no thought.
Design goals include
- intelligible with little or no training to Germanic speakers
- simple enough for ease of learning to write or speak about normal topics
- precise enough to deal with more complex topics (e.g. science, maybe philosophy)
where the importance descends from first to last.
The rhotic varies across the region, and h is sometimes voiced, but neither of these pose a problem to intelligibility. Icelandic-speakers would have to learn the traditional voiced-unvoiced distinction whatever language they wanted to learn!
There are set digraphs for non-Germanic sounds: Some non-Germanic sounds are used in transcription:
- zj = [ž] or [zh] or /ʒ/
- cj = [č] or [ch] or /tʃ/
There are twelve vowels, six short and six long. All vowels raise when they lengthen, excepta, which moves further back. A vowel is long when it is:
- stressed and
- followed by no more than a single consonant
All other vowels are pronounced short, or even reduced. Vowels written twice are said over two syllables.
|High||/ʏ/ /yː/||/ɪ/ /iː/||/ʊ/ /uː/|
|Mid.||/œ/ /øː/||/ɛ/ /eː/||/ə/ *||/ɔ/ /oː/|
Diphthongs are oi, ou, ai, ei. au is the same as ou. eu is just long u.
English [th] and [z] are rather late additions to the alphabet, and not part of Folksprak today. There are, in fact, many such letters which would be needed for place names around Europe. ᛊ/Z, ᛢ/Q, ᛝ/Ŋ, and ᚦ/Þ are not productive and part of "historic" name spellings only. Swedish /ɧ/ may be written ᚺ. (Other "old" letters include ᛠ/Ä, ᚫ/Æ, ᛡ/Ï, ᛥ/ST, ᚸ/Ȝ, and ᛤ/KK.)
|Nasal||/m/ ᛗ||/n/ ᚾ||*ŋ *ᛝ|
|Voiced Stop||/b/ ᛒ||/d/ ᛞ||/g/ ᚷ|
|Unvoiced Stop||/p/ ᛈ||/t/ ᛏ||*/θ~ð/ *ᚦ||/k/ ᛣ|
|Voiced Fricative||/v/ ᚹ||*/z/ *ᛊ|
|Unvoiced Fricative||/f/ ᚠ||/s/ ᛋ||/ʃ/ ᚳ||/x/ ᛉ||/h/ ᚻ|
|Approximant||/r/ ᚱ||/j/ ᛄ|
|High||/ʏ/ /yː/ ᚣ||/ɪ/ /iː/ ᛁ||/ʊ/ /uː/ ᚢ|
|Mid.||/œ/ /øː/ ᛟ||/ɛ/ /eː/ ᛖ||/ə/ *||/ɔ/ /oː/ ᚩ|
|Low||/a/ /äː/ ᚪ|
- definite article ᛞᛖ/de
- indefinite article ᛖᚾ/en, same as 'one' (different vowel length)
- possessive (genitive) ending -ᛋ/s
- plural ending -ᛖᚾ/en (pronounced enn)
- Adjectives do not inflect for number, gender, or case
- comparative adjective ending -ᛖᚱ/er (pronounced err)
- superlative adjective ending -ᛖᛋᛏ/est
- ordinal number suffix -ᛞᛖ/de
ᛗᚪᚾᚾmann ᛗᚪᚾᚾᛖᚾmannen ᛗᚪᚾᚾᛋmanns ᛗᚪᚾᚾᛖᚾᛋmannens
- the Subject may not be separated from the finite verb by any other word.
- the ordinary position for the verb in a declarative sentence is as second element and in imperatives or questions as the first element.
- the grammatical Subject must always come before any objects
|Singular||Nominative||ᛁᛣᛣ ikk||ᛞᚢ du||ᚻᛁ hi||ᛋᛁ si||ᛁᛏᛏ itt||No|
|Genitive||ᛗᛁᚾ min||ᛞᛁᚾ din||ᚻᛁᛋᛋ hiss||ᚻᛁᚱ hir||ᛁᛏᛋ its||ᛋᛁᚾ sin|
|Poss.||ᛗᛁᚾᛋ mins||ᛞᛁᚾᛋ dins||ᚻᛁᚱᛋ hirs||ᛋᛁᚾᛋ sins|
|Accusative||ᛗᛁ mi||ᛞᛁ di||ᚻᛁᛗᛗ himm||ᚻᛁᚱᚱ hirr||ᛁᛏᛏ itt||ᛋᛁᚷ sig|
|Plural||Nominative||ᚹᛁ vi||ᛄᛁ ji||ᛞᛖᛁ dei||No|
|Genitive||ᚢᚱ ur||ᛄᚢᚱ jur||ᛞᛖᛁᚱ deir||ᛋᛁᚾ sin|
|Poss.||ᚢᚱᛋ urs||ᛄᚢᚱᛋ jurs||ᛞᛖᛁᚱᛋ deirs||ᛋᛁᚾᛋ sins|
|Accusative||ᚢᛋ us||ᛄᚢ ju||ᛞᛖᛗᛗ demm||ᛋᛁᚷ sig|
- Verbs inflect for tense, not number or person.
- The lexical form is the infinitive (+e)
- Infinitive is +ᛖe
- Present and Imperative are the bare form (-e)
- Past tense is +ᛞᛖde
- Active participle +ᛖᚾᛞᛖende
- Passive participle +ᛏt
- ᚹᚪᚱᛖvare (to be) is the only irregular verb
- ᚹᚪᚱᛖvare - infin.; ᚪᚱar - pres.; ᚹᚪᚱvar - imper.,preterite;
- Auxiliaries abound, normally with infin., but sometimes past part.
Adverb making suffix: -ᛚᛁᛣlik (cp. English -ly). Elatives need ᛗᛖᚱmer more and ᛗᛖᛋᛏmest most
see also Folksprak/Swadesh