High Ceirspeech

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High Ceirspeech, Nobles' Common Tongue of the Aedaïr Empire
Caéir-aelon
Pronunciation [ˈke̟˞.'aɛ̯.lon]
Setting Westcoast
Spoken natively in Aedaïr Empire and its former territories
Native speakers ~600 000  (3299 AGS)
Language family
Aembric
  • Continental Ambric
    • Fhailic
      • Plains Fhailic
        • High Ceirspeech, Nobles' Common Tongue of the Aedaïr Empire
Dialects High Ceirspeech is the formal language derived from the Ceirspeech-Saeghêl dialect continuum
Writing system Avalône logographics, Céir Esgair abugida
Official status
Official language in Aedaïr Empire
Recognised minority language in The Krammakhaar, Fwylien, Eastmounts
ISO 639-3

High Ceirspeech is an a priori conlang created by warlockelder. It is set in the fantasy word of Speak, in the Westcoast region of the Aembra continent. This page is a WIP in early stages.

Introduction

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Phonology

Orthography

Consonants

Bilabial Labio-dental Dental Alveolar Postalveolar Palatal Alveolo-

palatal

Velar Uvular
Nasal m ɲ̟
Plosive p b t̪ d̪  tʲ dʲ k g kʷ gʷ kʲ~c gʲ~ɟ 
Fricative β ɸ βʷ ɸʷ  v f θ ð θʲ ðʲ s z ʃʷ ʒʷ ç ʝ  ɕ ʑ xʷ ɣʷ χ ʁ
Approximant w ɹ ɹʲ j
Flap or tap ɾ ɾʲ
Lateral app. l~ɫ ʎ̟

As you can probably tell, High Ceirspeech consonants usually come in three variations: plain, labialised and palatalised. Only certain consonants break this pattern as the result of a phonetic changes in Old Saeghêl, which was the main source for the phonology of High Ceirspeech. Most notably, some rounded vowels in word endings preceded by the bilabial fricatives stopped being pronounced but in turn labialised the preceding fricatives. A similar process happened to the approximant /ɹ/ intervocally before an /e/ onset dipthong that later merged into a single vowel. Some consonants also drifted away from their original pronunciations, for example /βʲ/ and /ɸʲ/ becoming /f/ and /v/.

Consonants can also be geminated and consonant length is phonemic.

[ŋ] and [ɴ] are allophones of all nasals before velar and uvular sounds, respectively.

Vowels

Front Near-front Central Near-back Back
High i y u
Near-high ɪ ʏ ʊ
High-mid e ø o
Mid ə
Low-mid ɛ ɜ ɔ
Near-low ɐ
Low a ɶ

The diphtongs of High Ceirspeech are /aɛ̯/ /aɪ̯/ /aʊ̯/ /aɔ̯/ /aʏ̯/ /wa̯/ /wɛ̯/ /wɔ̯/ /wʏ̯/. Vowel length is not phonemic.

Allophonically, vowel+alveolar approximant sequences usually become a single rhotic vowel, and vowel+palatalised alveolar approximant sequences become a raised rhotic vowel.

Stress

The stress rules of High Ceirspeech are quite complicated. Some words with historical merged diphtongs are stressed on irregular syllables and stress can be phonemic in these cases. Normally, though, stress is taken by the syllable with the largest amount of morae.

  • A normal syllable has one mora
  • A closed syllable has two morae. A closed syllable ending in a stop sound is three morae.
  • Having a diphtong or /i/ /u/ /o/ /ø/ /e/ /y/ adds one mora to syllable.
  • Lacking an onset consonant adds one mora to a syllable.

If multiple syllables share the highest mora count, the penultimate syllable takes the stress if it is one of those syllables; otherwise, the foremost syllable of those syllables takes the stress.

Intonation

Phonotactics

Most common syllable structures are CV and CVC. Maximal syllable structure is C3VC3. Onset forbids nasals as the first sound of a consonant cluster.

Morphology

High Ceirspeech is a fusional language with nominative-accusative alignment. Albeit inflectional forms are not very many in number, they are highly irregular and make frequent use of suppletition, sound mutation and reduplication.

Nouns

Nouns in High Ceirspeech decline in two numbers (singular and plural, or in some cases singulative and plurative) and three cases: nominative, oblique, genitive (however, use of the genitive case alone instead of "cor+noun.GEN" constructions is frowned upon). In addition, there are two forms of a noun based on whether the noun is modified by an adjective/determiner or not. Using the modified form of a noun if it is not modified by anything can be used to indicate definiteness. There are five noun classes: feminine, masculine, astral, bestial and human (neuter). It is very common to use the present realis participle of a verb as a noun to indicate things like profession.

Pronouns

Adjectives

Verbs

Verbs in High Ceirspeech conjugate in three persons, two numbers, two moods (realis and irrealis), and six tense/aspect combinations: present, present continuous, past perfect, past imperfect, future imperfect, future perfect. As non-finite forms, they have two participles (realis and irrealis) that agree with noun classes, a gerund and twelve infinitives (one for each tense/mood combination)

The first conjugation is the so-called "dipthong root" conjugation, and is the most regular of conjugations. The root of a verb in this conjugation ends in a diphtong, and produces three stems: root diphtong stem*, monophtong stem** and broken stem***. For example, for the table below, to get the forms of the verb "chaer" (to war, to wage war), you replace * with chaer [χaɪ˞̯], ** with char [χa˞] and *** with chaoïr [χɶ.i˞].

(table WIP)


Adverbs

Particles

Derivational morphology

=Syntax

Constituent order

Noun phrase

Verb phrase

Sentence phrase

Dependent clauses

Example texts

Other resources