|Spoken in:||Lamona Continent|
|Conworld:||Dhamashi, a circumbinary planet|
|Total Speakers:||~ 60,000,000|
|Genealogical classification:|| Old Lortho|
|Basic word order:||Verb-Subject-Object|
|Brian Bourque||March 2017|
Lortho is an a priori constructed language created by Brian Bourque in the beginning of 2003. It originally started as a prop for a strategy board game where only the script was created for aesthetics. It is an agglutinating language with some minor fusional aspects.
The people (Kalanune) who speak Lortho live on Dhamashi, a circumbinary plant which has two natural satellites in an alternate universe. The planet's surface has many similarities to Earth where it has oceans, mountains, deserts, and forests. The planet has three major continents: Mashonu, Kashti, and Lamona. The Kalanune live on Lamona.
Even though there are two stars, neither one can be seen separate from one another during daylight hours. At dawn and dusk, however, both can bee seen due to light refraction through the world's atmosphere.
- 1 Inspiration
- 2 Etymology of Lortho
- 3 Goals
- 4 Phonology
- 5 Orthography
- 6 Morphology
- 7 Syntax
- 8 Example texts
- 9 Resources
A friend was creating a board game similar to Risk; however, instead of taking place on Earth, this new game was to take place on an inter-planetary scale. The game creator wanted to develop an extraterrestrial theme and requested a fictional script. The name of the race on this game is "Lortho" and thus the seed was planted. Brian was unable to work on this piece for quite sometime until he joined the CONLANG mailing list and observed both seasoned and novice conlangers discussing all aspects of linguistics. Since then he decided to move forward and bring Lortho into fruition.
Another inspirational source is Brian's daughter. Through her development of learning how to make speech sounds leading to coherent speech, Brian found certain "words" to use in Lortho which he used to develop its phonology.
Etymology of Lortho
Lortho is a combination of Lor, the god from which their story of life stems, and -tho, the archaic form for the genitive case. It has since become a noun and can take other case endings (e.g. konpharin lorthome - I speak Lortho-ACC).
The mountain from which Lor is said to originate is called Malhi Dharakhi, "Great Mountain," and is located in the coastal mountain range on the west side of Lamona.
The goal is to create the gradual progression of Lortho which will lead to the development of daughter languages and, eventually, create sister languages which have developed on different parts of the planet.
There are 18 consonants in Lortho and all are strictly pronounced the same regardless of placement.
|Plosive||p pʰ||b||t tʰ||d dʰ||k kʰ|
|Lateral Approximant||l lʰ|
|Tap or Flap||ɾ|
|Front||Near- front||Central||Near- back||Back|
There are only four diphthongs in Lortho: [aɪ], [eɪ], [aʊ], and [ɔɪ].
The syllable structure is (C)V(V)(C).
There are no consonant clusters allowed in onsets or codas; however, clusters formed from adjacent syllables (i.e. coda + onset) are allowed. These clusters are:
- /nk/ (normally pronounced [ŋk])
- /np/ (colloquially it is sometimes pronounced [mp] e.g. the verb konpharo to speak)
Stress in Lortho is handled as follows:
- Stress is always on the penultimatae syllable of the root or infinitive except:
- -n verbs will always receive stress on the final syllable of the infinitive or root.
- Pluralized nouns will shift the stress to the penultimate syllable.
- If the word is two syllables long, then the stress is on the first syllable.
- Stress is never given to prefixes nor suffixes.
Section under Development Please do not edit this section while this banner is displayed For general information on intonation (linguistics), please click here
The Lortho alphabet contains 21 letters, one of which is a vowel. The writing system behaves in a similar manner to an abugida; however, there are no conjunct consonants. Ligatures are formed by the combination of consonants and vowels (other than the vowel [i]). Lortho's script was inspired by the Devanagari, Uchen, and Tengwar writing systems.
Vowels and Vowel Constructs
The vowels are written similarly to the vowels seen in Devanagari. Each vowel (except [i]) are attached to the preceding consonant forming ligatures.
The diphthongs are written as seen below.
Word-Initial Vowels and Diphthongs
For word-initial vowels, the letter [i] will be used as the place holder (unless the [i] is the vowel) and the additional vowel will be added as one would on a consonant-vowel ligature.
Since Lortho has its own script, a romanized version has been set up to make it easy to read and pronounce as shown in the tables below.
Nouns in Lortho have three distinct features:
- They are one of three genders: masculine, feminine, or neuter
- All nouns are modified to denote case
- All nouns end in a vowel
There there are a couple nouns that do not follow the above rules for gender (this will increase as Lortho's lexicon grows):
Lortho has ten cases. The vowels in parentheses are added if the word ends in a consonant. The following word will be used for demonstration:
kansaptha (n. neut.) woods, forest
|Accusative||-(i)me||kansapthame||forest (direct obj.)|
|Dative||-(i)mela||kansapthamela||forest (indirect obj.)|
|Genitive||-(i)nalo||kansapthanalo||of the forest|
|Sublative||-ina/ena||kansaptaina||in/into the forest|
|Ablative||-(e)nat||kansapthanat||out of/from the forest|
|Allative||-(e)dan||kansapthadan||to/towards the forest|
|Prolative||-(e)danar||kansapthadanar||through/via/by way of the forest|
|Instructive||-(i)len||kansapthalen||using the forest|
- dhammu n. fem. chair; plural dhammune
Each noun is pluralized by adding a suffix:
- Feminine (-u) and Neuter (-a) nouns add the plural suffix -ne:
- Feminine: kansaphu (n. fem) tree; pl kansaphune
- Neuter: hadikha (n. neut) land, country; pl hadikhane
- Masculine nouns (-i):
- Regular masculine nouns will add the infix -en- before -i:
- Masculine nouns that end in -ni will add the infix -em-.
- olakhi (n. masc) boat; pl olakheni
- phorenni (n. masc) peak, summit; pl phoɾennemi
- If the noun ends in a consonant, the suffix -eni will be added:
- Example: tapas (n. masc) pasta; pl tapaseni
Verbs are conjugated in gender and in number which are governed by the subject (written or implied). For the most part the conjugations are simple and are formed through agglutination; however, there are slight fusional changes that occur when denoting aspect.
There are three main verbs in Lortho: -o verbs, -t verbs, and -n verbs. The conjugation tables below show a preview of how the regular verbs conjugate in each category. Conjugation in other tenses includes more fusional aspects.
The root is formed by subtracting the final "o."
| konpharo [kon.'pʰɑ.ɾo] to speak|
The root is formed by changing the final "t" to a "d."
| phramit ['pʰɾɑ.mit] to push|
The root is the same as the infinitive.
| shailan [ʃaɪ.'lɑn] to sit|
Although labelled irregular, the verbs still have a regular feel in that they still use the same personal endings; however, the root is derived slightly differently. One example is the verb harlan.
| harlan [hɑɾ.'lɑn] to be|
The imperative form of the verb is simply the root with the vocative case (which can be either implied or explicit).
- famannu, konphar!
- Hey you, speak!
- fanamin, nathar namineme!
- Hey you, be quiet! (lit. quiet yourselves)
- fabrian, shailan!
- Brian, sit!
- konpharo (konphar-) v. to speak
- natharo (nathar-) v. to quell, pacify
- mannu pronoun you (fem. sing.)
- namin pronoun you (masc. pl.)
- shailan (shailan-) v. to sit
Adjectives behave a little differently. All adjectives are roots since they must agree in gender with the noun which they modify. For placement, adjectives must be placed in front of the noun which they modify.
Verb-Subject-Object (VSO). Lortho contains a lot of information in the verb and the noun or noun phrase. The verb is conjugated by person and gender and thus pronouns are largely unnecessary except for emphasis or clarification. The nouns are altered to denote case, removing almost entirely the need for prepositions.
There are four basic rules which govern agreement between words:
- Verbs must agree in gender and number with the subject (explicit or implied)
- Cardinal numbers do not take case nor gender
- Nouns are not pluralized when counted
see -1MSG.PRS tree.F -PL-ACC
I see trees
kilikh-in bon kansaphu-me
see -1MSG.PRS two tree.F -ACC
I see two trees (lit: I see two tree)
- Adjectives must agree with the noun which they modify in gender, but not in grammatical case nor number
|konpharin lorthome||I speak Lortho|
| kalanune denimanimu kalanune khonaminalo
hana tomidikhimu ma kansapthaina
| The people are known as people of the|
lanterns and they lived in that forest.
| lharidikhin kansapthanat hana tharnidikhin
dharakhime. konpharinin toshanimela hana
semanikhin, "hankhanin malhiro
danadanar." remedikhi toshani,
| I ran out of the forest and climbed the mountain.|
I was speaking to the dragon and said, "I want
to walk through here." The dragon replied,
"You will not walk through here."
|Source: Brian's Instagram post|
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