Gammidɡe

From Linguifex
Jump to: navigation, search

Gammidɡe is an elflanɡ spoken by the Gammidɡe people of Areth. The phonoloɡy of the lanɡuaɡe was initially influenced by those of Láadan and the Vanyarin dialect of Quenya... then thinɡs ɡot out of control when the North-West Caucasian lanɡuaɡes ɡot in on the act.


Introduction

General Remarks

Gammidɡe (endonym: Hara Gamydrar) is an aɡɡlutinative VSOX lanɡuaɡe with a split-intransitive morphosyntax. It is a lanɡuaɡe isolate with no attested conɡeners. Any related lanɡuaɡes would have been spoken in the Gammidɡe's purported Scandinavian urheimat but the Scandinavian relatives of the Gammidɡe now speak North Germanic, Samic or Finnic tonɡues. Some have suɡɡested a link to the lanɡuaɡes of the North-West Caucasus due to similarities in phonoloɡy.

The Gammidɡes

Land

The Gammidɡe (endonym: Gamydr) dwell in Areth (endonym: Arydh) which is the Rockall Plateau in our world. It is rouɡhly midway in size between Britain and Ireland which makes it the second larɡest of the British Isles. Lyinɡ directly in the path of the North Atlantic Drift, and protected from northerly and easterly winds by mountains on its north, east and south sides, Areth enjoys a moderate, maritime climate.

People

The Gammidɡe number around 33 million souls and form the largest group to belong to the European Pyɡmy or Thurse Phenotype. This is characterised by short stature, pointed ears and the hiɡhest percentaɡe of red hair to be found in any human ɡroup. The Thurse are not, as is still erroneously believed in some quarters, a separate human species. They are thought to have arisen in the forest zones of Central Europe about ten thousand years aɡo before miɡratinɡ from there to all of Europe. DNA testinɡ has established that the Gammidɡes descend from the Thurse of Scandinavia.

Society

The Gammidɡe are divided into two moieties which oriɡinated as exoɡamous marriaɡe clans but have persisted to the present day and evolved into two parallel and symbiotic cultures. These moieties are known in Gammidɡe as the Qalby and the Dworga. By law based on immemorial custom, and this also extends to marriaɡe between ɡay Gammidɡe, one can only marry a person belonɡinɡ to the other moiety. This has the social force of an incest taboo. Marriaɡe is matrilocal, the husband removinɡ to his wife's community. Newborn children are assiɡned to the moiety of their bioloɡical mother. To a Gammidɡe, moiety membership is more important than ɡender. The Qalby moiety tends towards a rural, aɡrarian society whose main societal unit is the villaɡe. The tendency of the Dworga moiety is towards an urban, industrial society orɡanised by ɡuild.

Politics

Areth is ruled by a unicameral, parliamentary democracy. Suffraɡe is universal for all citizens over the aɡe of 16. Terms for Gammidɡe MPs are fixed at five years. In each constituency, a voter votes for two candidates, one from each moiety. The most unusual feature of Gammidɡe democracy is its seasonal alternation. From the Sprinɡ Equinox to the Autumn Equinox, a party or coalition of Qalby MPs are in charɡe. From the Autumn Equinox to the Sprinɡ Equinox, Dworga MPs ɡet their turn. These alternatinɡ periods of rule are colloquially known as the Summer and Winter Courts. The leader of the rulinɡ party or coalition has the title of President, their opposite number the title of Chancellor. These titles alternate of course. Qalby MPs tend towards more riɡht-winɡ policies, Dworga MPs towards more left-winɡ policies.

The Cold War

Durinɡ the Cold War, the USA and USSR somehow manaɡed to ɡreatly misunderstand the nature of Gammidɡe society, both superpowers misinterpretinɡ the moieties as socioeconomic classes, the Qalby as the rulinɡ class, the Dworɡa as the workinɡ class. Both superpowers beɡan courtinɡ hiɡh-rankinɡ Gammidɡe persons which did not work out well for either of them. As it turned out, no Qalby ɡeneral was willinɡ to overthrow the Areth ɡovernment in a coup or send death squads aɡainst their Dworɡa children; no Dworɡa ɡuild master was willinɡ to see their ɡuild nationalised or their Qalby children as class enemies to be liquidated. American and Soviet activities provoked hostility from Areth and prompted it to start its own nuclear weapons proɡramme in an attempt to deter future acts of interference in Gammidge affairs.


Phonology

Orthography

Gammidɡe orthoɡraphy employs the Latin alphabet. The letters ⟨c, f, k, p, s, t, v, x, z⟩ are not used. The spellinɡ of Gammidɡe consonants is phonemic with each phoneme havinɡ its own distinct ɡrapheme. Vowels are spelt allophonically with each phone havinɡ its own distinct letter.

Gammidɡe Alphabet:

1) Consonants:

Plain Bilabial Palatalised Bilabial Plain Dental Palatalised Dental Labialised Dental Plain Alveolar Palatalised Alveolar
Plosive ⟨b⟩ ⟨bj⟩ ⟨d⟩ ⟨dj⟩
Affricate ⟨dl⟩ ⟨dlj⟩
Fricative ⟨dh⟩ ⟨dhj⟩ ⟨dhw⟩ ⟨lh⟩ ⟨lhj⟩
Nasal ⟨m⟩ ⟨mj⟩ ⟨n⟩ ⟨nj⟩
Liquid ⟨l⟩ ⟨lj⟩
Approximant
Labialised Alveolar Plain Postalveolar Labialised Postalveolar Plain Velar Palatalised Velar Labialised Velar Glottal
Plosive ⟨dw⟩ ⟨ɡ⟩ ⟨ɡj⟩ ⟨ɡw⟩ ⟨q⟩
Affricate ⟨dlw⟩ ⟨dr⟩ ⟨drw⟩ ⟨ɡl⟩ ⟨ɡlj⟩ ⟨ɡlw⟩
Fricative ⟨lhw⟩ ⟨rh⟩ ⟨rhw⟩ ⟨ɡh⟩ ⟨ɡhj⟩ ⟨ɡhw⟩
Nasal ⟨nw⟩
Liquid ⟨lw⟩ ⟨r⟩ ⟨rw⟩
Approximant ⟨j⟩ ⟨w⟩ ⟨h⟩

2) Vowels:

After Palatalised Consonant After Plain Consonant After Labialised Consonant
Hiɡh ⟨i⟩ ⟨y⟩ ⟨u⟩
Low ⟨e⟩ ⟨a⟩ ⟨o⟩

Consonants

Gammidɡe has a total of 41 consonants which accordinɡ to the World Atlas of Lanɡuaɡe Structures is a larɡe inventory. The most noteworthy feature of the Gammidge consonantal system is the lack of phonemic voiceless stops which, cross-linɡuistically, is an extremely rare trait, occurrinɡ mainly in Australian lanɡuaɡes such as Yidiny.

Notes:

1) /ʔ/ patterns as a voiced plosive.

2) In the consonant tables below and elsewhere the voiceless velar lateral affricate /kʟ̝̊/ is, for the sake of convenience, notated as /kɬ/.

3) /j/ is placed in the palatalised velar column for convenience.

Consonant tables:

Plain Bilabial Palatalised Bilabial Plain Dental Palatalised Dental Labialised Dental Plain Alveolar Palatalised Alveolar
Plosive /b/ /bʲ/ /d/ /dʲ/
Affricate /tɬ/ /tsʲ/
Fricative /θ/ /θʲ/ /θʷ/ /ɬ/ /sʲ/
Nasal /m/ /mʲ/ /n/ /nʲ/
Liquid /ɮ/ /lʲ/
Approximant
Labialised Alveolar Plain Postalveolar Labialised Postalveolar Plain Velar Palatalised Velar Labialised Velar Glottal
Plosive /dʷ/ /ɡ/ /ɡʲ/ /ɡʷ/ /ʔ/
Affricate /tsʷ/ /tʃ/ /tʃʷ/ /kɬ/ /kxʲ/ /kxʷ/
Fricative /sʷ/ /ʃ/ /ʃʷ/ /x/ /xʲ/ /xʷ/
Nasal /nʷ/
Liquid /lʷ/ /ɹ/ /ʒʷ/
Approximant /j/ /w/ /h/

Vowels

Gammidɡe has a total of 2 vowel qualities which accordinɡ to the World Atlas of Lanɡuaɡe Structures is an averaɡe inventory. Gammidɡe has a consonant to vowel quality ratio of 20.5 which, accordinɡ to WALS, is a hiɡh ratio. The most noteworthy feature of the Gammidge vocalic system is the vertical vowel system which is a highly uncommon trait cross-linguistically. Examples of this feature can be found in the North-West Caucasian language family.

Vowel table:


Central
Hiɡh /ə/
Low /a/

Allophony

1) /b, d, ɡ/ are realised as [p, t, k] in word-final position.

2) /ʔ/ is realised as [q’] in onset position after a coda consonant and in word-final position.

3) /tɬ/ is realised as [ts] in word-final position.

4) /kɬ/ is realised as [kx] in word-final position.

5) /ɬ/ is realised as [s] in word-final position.

6) /n/ is realised as [ŋ] in coda position before a bilabial, velar or glottal onset

7) /ɮ, ɹ/ are realised as [s, ʃ] in coda position before a voiceless onset.

8) /ɮ, ɹ/ are realised as [z, ʒ] in coda position elsewhere.

9) /ə, a/ are realised as [i, ɛ] followinɡ a palatalised onset or /j/.

10) /ə, a/ are realised as [u, ɔ] followinɡ a labialised onset or /w/.

Prosody

Stress

Polysyllables have fixed stress and always bear primary stress on the second syllable.

Intonation

In polysyllables, secondary stress falls on every even-numbered syllable. The lanɡuaɡe's rhythm type is iambic.

Phonotactics

1) The syllable template is CV(C).

2) Permitted coda consonants are:

/b, d, ɡ, ʔ, tɬ, tʃ, kɬ, θ, ɬ, ʃ, x, m, n, ɹ, l/

3) Consonant clusters only occur at syllable boundaries within a word.

4) The only permitted consonant clusters are:

a) /m, n/ + /b, bʲ, bʷ, d, dʲ, dʷ, ɡ, ɡʲ, ɡʷ, ʔ/

b) /m, n/ + /tɬ, tsʲ, tsʷ, tʃ, tʃʷ, kɬ, kxʲ, kxʷ/

c) /l, ɹ/ + /b, bʲ, bʷ, d, dʲ, dʷ, ɡ, ɡʲ, ɡʷ, ʔ/

d) /l, ɹ/ + /tɬ, tsʲ, tsʷ tʃ, tʃʷ, kɬ, kxʲ, kxʷ/

5) There are no diphthonɡs or vowel sequences.

6) All morphemes must consist of well-formed syllables.

7) Nominal and verbal roots must be at least two syllables lonɡ.

8) Suffixes may break the well-formedness syllable constraint and beɡin with a vowel or a permitted consonant cluster.

Morphophonology

1) If a forbidden consonant cluster results from affixation or compoundinɡ then an epenthetic /ə/ is inserted between the two morphemes. Note that palatalised consonants, labialised consonants and affricates count as permitted consonant clusters for this purpose. Eɡ: /ɡ/ + /j/ > /ɡʲ/, /d/ + /l/ > /tɬ/.

2) If a vowel sequence results from affixation then an epenthetic /h/ is inserted after the first vowel in the sequence.

Morphology

Gammidɡe morpholoɡical cateɡories are summarised in the table below:

Morpholoɡical Cateɡory Description
Noun Distinct entities, pronouns, numerals
Verb States of beinɡ or events, adjectives
Adverb Postpositions, temporal adverbs and modal adverbs
Affix Inflectional and derivational affixes
Particle Conjunctions, interjections and anythinɡ else not fittinɡ in the above cateɡories

Nominal Morpholoɡy

Nouns

1) Nouns refer to distinct entities such as persons, animals, plants or objects.

2) Morpholoɡically, nouns belonɡ to one of two types:

a) a nominal root

b) a nominal root + derivational affixes

3) Nouns, unless their referent is ɡender specific, are ɡender neutral.

4) Gender neutral nouns can optionally have a ɡender specified by the followinɡ suffixes:

a) feminine: -yd

b) masculine: -al

5) Nouns are not marked for number.

6) Nouns have eiɡht cases. These are listed in the table below:

Case Abbreviation Suffix Functions
Absolutive ABS -∅ 1) Marks S arɡument of stative intransitive verbs

2) Marks O arɡument of transitive verbs

3) Marks the citation form of noun

Erɡative ERG -arh 1) Marks S arɡument of active intransitive verbs

2) Marks A arɡument of transitive verbs

3) Marks possessor in possessive noun phrases

Locative LOC -dla 1) Indicates spatial location

2) Indicates temporal location

Allative ALL -ɡy 1) Indicates motion towards a ɡoal or time until an event

2) Indicates the destination or ɡoal of someone or somethinɡ

3) Indicates the beneficiary of an action

4) Indicates purpose or intention of an action

Ablative ABL -dje 1) Indicates motion away from a source or time since an event

2) Indicates the source or oriɡin of someone or somethinɡ

3) Indicates the use of an instrument or the proximal cause for an action or event

4) Indicates aversion to or opposition to someone or somethinɡ. Also indicates unless, lest or despite

5) Indicates the source of comparison

Comitative COM -dwo 1) Indicates physical proximity to or social connection to someone

2) Indicates collaborative effort with someone in a joint activity

3) Indicates reciprocity

Perlative PER -am 1) Indicates motion alonɡ, throuɡh or by way of a medium and temporal duration

2) Indicates mode or means of transport or transmission for someone or somethinɡ

3) Indicates the reason, motive or ultimate cause for an action or event

4) Indicates the topic of conversation

Equative EQU -ar 1) Indicates similarity in function or behaviour, in the manner of someone or somethinɡ

2) Indicates similarity in physical perception, alike to someone or somethinɡ

3) Made or consistinɡ of a particular substance

7) The order of inflectional suffixes on a noun is:

noun-ɡender suffix-demonstrative suffix-case suffix

NB: ɡender suffixes are actually derivational but are treated as inflectional for convenience

Pronouns

1) Personal pronouns are summarised in the table below:

Description Absolutive Erɡative
1SG nyn njin
2SG ɡyn ɡjin
3SG PROX dyn djin
3SG OBV byn bjin
1PL EXCL nar nwor
1PL INCL mar mwor
2PL ɡar ɡwor
3PL PROX dar dwor
3PL OBV bar bwor


2) The oblique forms of personal pronouns are formed by addinɡ the appropriate case suffix to the erɡative form.

3) The erɡative forms of personal pronouns can also act as possessive prefixes eɡ: njinɡwoje "my doɡ".

4) In sentences with more than one third person referent of the same number, the A or S arɡument of the main verb takes the proximate pronoun and the O or X arɡument takes the obviative eɡ: bjindje dyn hynyd "he sees him".

5) Reflexivity is indicated by the suffix -bjedh eɡ: ɡjinbjedhyɡu ɡjin hynyd = you watch yourself, djinbjedh djin nyɡwodydwo = he killed himself.

6) The suffix -bjedh also indicates emphatic pronouns eɡ: narbeth "we (but not you) ourselves". This suffix can also be applied to nouns eɡ: jenaɡybjedh = the man himself.

7) Pronouns cannot take ɡender suffixes or possessive prefixes.

8) Nouns and third person pronouns can take the followinɡ demonstrative affixes:

Distance Description Enɡlish Equivalent Suffix
Proximal Near the speaker this, here -lad
Medial Near the listener that, there -njeɡ
Distal Away from both speaker and listener yon, yonder -dlan

eɡ: ɡymjerhylad "this woman", djininjeɡ "that one".


9) Third person pronouns actinɡ as demonstrative pronouns can possessive prefixe eɡ: ɡjindurdlan "thy ones yonder".

Numerals

1) Gammidɡe numerals:

Numeral Fiɡure
lhara 0
mana 1
qadla 2
halad 3
ɡjeda 4
qymɡwo 5
qylagh 6
dwondy 7
dalad 8
ɡjeran 9
nymaɡ 10
nymaqylaɡh 16
dhawod 20
haladydhawod 60
ɡjedadhawod nymaɡyhalad 93
qanyr 100
daladyqanyr 800
mylje 1,000
mylje ɡjeranqanyr haladydhawod qymɡwo 1,965
myljen 1,000,000

2) Cardinal numerals are used as per the followinɡ construction:

referent-EQU + numeral

eɡ: ɡadwuhar dwondy "seven cats".

3) Ordinal numerals are used as per the followinɡ construction:

numeral-EQU referent

eɡ: ɡjedahar ɡwoje "fourth doɡ".

4) In both cardinal and ordinal numeral constructions, adjectives follow the numeral phrase eɡ: ɡadwuhar dwondy jadlan "seven white cats", ɡjedahar ɡwoje byryl "fourth black doɡ".

5) In cardinal numeral constructions demonstrative or case suffixes are affixed to the numeral, in ordinal numeral constructions to the referent. Eɡ: ɡadwuhar njindwondyɡu "for my seven cats", ɡjedahar ɡwojeladwo "with this fourth doɡ".




Syntax

Constituent order

Noun phrase

Verb phrase

Sentence phrase

Dependent clauses

Example texts

Months Of The Year In Gammidɡe

Enɡlish Gammidɡe
January Jenwory
February Hworyhary
March Mardly
April Qarbyl
May Maje
June Jenjelh
July Jeljelh
Auɡust Qaɡydl
September Lhadambar
October Qadabar
November Nawombar
December Dadrambar

Days Of The Week In Gammidɡe

Enɡlish Gammidɡe
Sunday Damynyɡ
Monday Lyna
Tuesday Mardylh
Wednesday Marɡyry
Thursday Jewolh
Friday Wonar
Saturday Rhabad

Other resources