From Linguifex
Jump to: navigation, search

Pages with the prefix 'Netagin' in the and 'Talk' namespaces:

This article describes Classical Netagin; for Modern Netagin, see Netagin/Modern.
ne Natagin
Pronunciation [nɛː nətɐːˈgiːːn]
Created by User:IlL
Setting Verse:Unbegotten
Language family
  • Netagin

In the Unbegotten timeline, Netagin (English: net-ə-GHEEN; natively ne Natagin [nɛː nətɐːˈgiːːn]; folk etymology connects the name with the root n-t-g 'to sing') is a classical language of Edna's conworld, belonging to the Idavic language family. Netagin has influenced many other languages, especially Ouřefr and Shalaian. Netagin is intended to be optimized for writing piyyutim: like Hebrew, Netagin has triconsonantal morphology, final stress and stressed suffixes, so that it is natural to rhyme by having the last syllables the same like in Jewish piyyutim. It tends to be verb-initial and head-initial like Hebrew, and its morphosyntactic alignment is split-S with some Austronesian elements.

The spread of the religion Qypadkiism (ně Qypadkinůn) elevated Netagin to the status of a classical and liturgical language throughout the entire Idavic-speaking world in the post-Apocalyptic era. Netagin had a nickname "the Language of the Řix" (byrůc nie Řix), after the letter for ř; It was the only language known to its speakers to have the Czech ř sound.

This is the seventh version of Netagin. Its aesthetic is inspired by Hebrew, Maltese, Czech, and Windermere and its grammar is Indonesian, Lushootseed and Slavic-inspired.


  • gzarot gzarot gzarot!
    • irregular gzarot would be caused by w/y/'/maybe the palatal consonants, m ť ď
  • noun patterns!
  • Albionian negation in modern lects?
  • Emphatic -nk (< miek) in a modern lect

WCONS 3SG.M-CAUS/walk/TELIC 3PL.INDEP DET.F desert WCONS die-3SG.M "They made him go out into the desert and he died"


Hazaj meter:
Tygům šatlej řy-čannevěr,
Kadob pehlať a-vahmavěr,
ale'ad tu pa-nojjannem,
Hypyre žůj vyto šotnem.

Shakhar Avakeshkha:
Takum pyčie takum
Pařuj palenůk hoj,
Eki šakov leťin
Absan tapien lahoj.

Yigdal meter:
Peslam mygeptak ďah mynej ve'ůx,
Mirěť čapa korin a-ruze'ůx.
Dolper aniv neliem taja tožie,
Bon niem sa pakavin lyma pežie.



Netagin has 25 consonants:

Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal m /m/ n /n/ [ɲ] [ŋ]
Plosive voiceless p /p/ t /t/ ť /c/ k /k/ q /ʔ/
voiced b /b/ d /d/ ď /ɟ/ g /g/
Fricative voiceless þ /θ/, s /s/ š /ʃ/ x /x/
voiced v /v/ z /z/ ž /ʒ/ h /ɦ/
Affricate c /ts/ č /tʃ/
Trill raised ř /r̝/
plain r /r~ɾ/
Approximant l /ɫ/ j /j/

The following classes of consonants are 'weak letters' and cause irregular gzarot:

  • Semivowels: j v
  • Palatals: š ž č ť ď ř
  • Ungeminables: q h ř


Classical Netagin vowels
Front Central Back
Close i /i/ y /ɨ/ u /u/
Diphthong ie /iə/ ů /uə/
Mid e /e/ a [ə] o /o/
Open ě /æ/ a /a/

Modern Standard Netagin vowels
Front Central Back
unrounded rounded
Close i /i/ u /y/ y /ɨ/ ů /u~ʊ/
Near-close ie /ɪ/
Diphthong ě /eə/
Mid e /ɛ/ a [ə] o /o/
Near-open a [ɐ]
Open a /a/

Less conservative; vowels in stressed syllables are lengthened, unstressed vowels reduced when historically short

Russian/Hebrew style alternation between pretonic a and propretonic a:

  • In pretonic syllables, a is pronounced /ɐ/;
  • In propretonic syllables, a is pronounced /ə/.

Vowel diachronics:

  • In stressed syllables: a e i u ā ē ī ū > a ě e o ů ie i u.
  • In pretonic syllables (open): a o i e > a a y e
  • In propretonic syllables: a o i e > a a y y


Usually final, some penultimately-stressed "segolates" CVCVC or CVCCV

Penult long vowels + every other stress gives the language a distinctive "Scotch snap" rhythm.


no initial clusters, max cluster length 2

cluster consonants can be arbitrary as long as voice assimilated

Possible vowel final vowels: /ɪ, e, a, ea, o, u, i, y/ (cf TibH /ɔ, ɛ, e, o, i, u/)

Vowel reduction

Pretonic to propretonic: (Most commonly occuring type) a > a, e > y.

Tonic to pretonic: *a, *o > a; *e > e; *i > y

Other phonetic rules

  • y > i, after C[+palatal]: šy žy čy ťy ďy řy > ši ži či ťi ďi ři
  • In unstressed syllables, a > e after C[+palatal]: ša ža ča ťa ďa řa > še že če ťe ďe ře


Pronominal markers

Netagin has many sets of personal markers:

  • Independent personal pronouns, serving as subject pronouns in independent clauses (corresponding to Lushootseed čəd-words)
  • Emphatic personal pronouns: used for emphasis, and for calling someone with a 2nd person pronoun (corresponding to Lushootseed ʔaca-words)
  • The "me too, you too, etc." forms
  • Alienable prefixes
  • Inalienable/preposition/conjunction suffixes
  • Verb object affixes
  • Verb subject suffixes
1sg 2sg 3sg 1pl 2pl 3pl
m. f. m. f. n. exclusive inclusive
Independent tiel tied tieš qen qej toť tum tinni qěv
Emphatic hali hadů hadůš qemna qesna qejna hynťů hynťiem hynni qěna
Alienable l(e)- t(e)- s(e)- qen-/qem- qes- qed- ť(e)- b(e)- č(e)- ha-
Inalienable -al -da -die -i -as -is -ťů -ťiem -bi -us
"X too" telam tedam tešam qenam qesam qejam tyťam tymam tynnam qevam

Nouns and adjectives

Netagin has 3 genders (masculine, feminine, neuter; neuter forms can also be used as gender neutral and nonbinary forms). The feminine gender evolved from the Proto-Idavic abstract/honorific gender. There are two forms that are traditionally called cases (nominative, genitive), but are not true cases. The genitive is used for the last noun of a genitive or prepositional phrase; the genitive thus functions more like an "end of noun phrase marker".

Netagin case affixes are regular:

lyt (m.) = man ďašatle (f.) = sparrow jůši (n.) = person
singular plural singular plural singular plural
Nominative lyt lytů ďašatle ďašatla jůši qyjůši
Genitive lyto lytůx ďašatlěn ďašatlěx jůšid qyjůšid

The suffix -in (which is analogous to Semitic -i) is used on some nouns and adjectives:

Declension of -in words: Qarbecin (of the city Qarbec)
masculine feminine neuter
singular plural singular plural singular plural
Nominative Qarbecin Qarbecinů Qarbecie Qarbecja Qarbeci Qarbeci
Genitive Qarbecino Qarbecinůx Qarbecien Qarbeciex Qarbecid Qarbecid

Stem changes in the genitive and plural can get pretty bad

Comparison of adjectives

hotter than X = "exceed X hotly" (need adverb form)

The newest version of Netagin will be quite weird syntactically. For example, to say "bigger than X" you have to say "to exceed X bigly".

"Qaj, laršip ne dáqer rysohe qacom." barces ně qama.
/ʔaj lɐr'ʃip nɛ 'daʔɛr rɨso'ɦɛ ʔɐ'tsom bar'tsɛs nɛə ʔɐma/
MIR me-exceed-he DET.M.SING son.SING big-ADV already speak-3SG.F DET.F mother.SING
("'Behold, the son exceeds me bigly already,' spoke the mother.")
"Oh my, my boy is bigger than me already!" said the mother.


Ne-words, which are usually determiners, decline as follows:

Declension of ne-words (determiners)
sg. pl.
m. f. n.
Nominative ne (unstressed); nech (stressed) na no
Genitive ni nie na no

The following are ne-words:

  • ne (Lushootseed ti; roughly 'that-which'.)
  • ve (Lushootseed kʷi)
  • kyne 'this'
  • kyve 'that'
  • be (relativizer; roughly 'which VERBs' or 'which is a NOUN'. The head of a relative clause is only allowed to be its subject; verb voices are used to compensate for this.)


Like Hebrew and Arabic, Netagin derives verbs by inflecting a consonantal verb root according to a binyan. The subject is a purely syntactic concept. Different verbs have different theta-roles for the subject, whether agent, patient, experiencer, instrument, location, or recipient; this is determined lexically by the individual verb (though verb voice can promote non-subject arguments to subjects).

Purely form-wise (rather than semantically), the primary axes by which verbs differ are:

  • Binyan: derives verbs from a consonantal root; encodes variables such as transitivity, volition, aspect and manner of action.
  • Voice: intransitive~passive, active (only with transitive verbs) and applicative.
  • Agreement: Person/number/gender of participants.
  • Mood: Realis and irrealis. The irrealis is used for imperatives, wishes, purpose clauses, and possible future events.

Binyan and voice are realized with stem changes, and agreement inflection is realized by attaching affixes which change the stem in a regular manner. Notably, Netagin has no tense or aspect forms; aspect is more of a lexical feature, and tense is inferred through context.

  • The nonfinite forms are:
    • the transgressive: The transgressive is uninflected and does not take person markers; it refers to the syntactic subject in subject-less subordinate clauses.
    • the verbal noun.

Verb stems

Netagin has 12 binyanim which encode various aspects or manners of action:

  • Binyan 1 verbs are primarily basic iterative, imperfective or habitual actions, including stative verbs ("be cold") and some monotransitives. It is often considered the most basic form.
    • For example, tegal means 'to know'
  • Binyan 2 are primarily basic perfective verbs ("eat"), many unidirectional motion verbs, and perfectivizations of Binyan 1 verbs ("make happy").
    • dalum = to go by vehicle (uni), as opposed to Binyan 7 dollam = to go by vehicle (multi).
    • tagul means 'to get to know'
  • Binyan 3 consists of verbs denote reflexive/reciprocal action ("get dressed", "kiss each other"), or change of state ("thicken"), or perfectives.
  • Binyan 4 contains causatives of transitive verbs ("feed") (and of some Binyan 2 and Binyan 3 verbs), or a maintainance of state.
  • Binyan 5 is roughly equivalent to the German prefix be- (applicative).
  • Binyan 6 - telic, intensive, momentane or perfective
  • Binyan 7 - atelic, iterative, many multidirectional motion verbs
  • Binyan 8 - "X a little, almost X"
  • Binyan 9 - "X in advance, X for oneself" (tends to be used for self-directed, intentional actions)
  • Binyan 10 - frequentative, "-le"
  • Binyan 11 verbs tend to express gradual processes.
    • Ex. hadadex 'warm up (literally or romantically)'.
  • Binyan 12 - "mis-X, over-X"

Here are the stems in the regular gizra (for other gzarot, see Netagin/Gzarot):

Binyan Intransitive (or passive) Transitive (or active) Applicative Transgressive Verbal noun
1 1e2a3 -y12a3 -y1ym2a3 1a2ů3 1a2i3, 1y2i3
2 1a2u3 -a12u3 -a1ym2u3 1a2o3 1a2ie3e
3 qa12i3 -o12e3 -o1ym2e3 qa12ů3 qa12ie3
4 qa1a2e3 -a12a3 -a1ym2a3 qa1a2ů3 qa12a3e
5 da12u3 -ud1o2e3 -ud1ym2e3 da12ů3 da12u3e
6 qi1:a2a3 -u1:e2o3 -u1:ym2o3 qi1:a2ů3 qu1:a2ie3
7 1a22o3 -u1a22e3 -u12ym2e3 qy1a22ů3 dy1a22ie3
8 qi21a2e3 -i21e2o3 -i21ym2o3 qi21a2ů3 qu21a23e
9 1as2o3 -u1is2o3 -u1isym2o3 1as2ů3 du1as2ie3
10 1a2e2ě3 -i12a2ě3 -i1ym2y3ě3 1a2e2ů3 du12a2ie3
11 1a2a2u3 -i12e2o3 -i1ym2e2o3 1a2a2ů3 di12a2ie3
12 1i31a2o3 -i1i31e2o3 -i1i31ym2o3 1i31a2ů3 1i31a2ie3

Person marking

The subject is marked after the verb using a suffix, or when there is already a suffix in the suffix slot, the independent pronoun. For example, 'I know you (m)' = dytgalxil but 'I know you (f)' = dytgăles tiel (Irish has something similar). The independent pronoun may be dropped if known from context, but a subject suffix must be used whenever one can be used.

1sg 2sg 3sg 1pl 2pl 3pl
m. f. m. f. exclusive inclusive
Subject affixes: maqur 'walk (to somewhere)' maqurxil 'I walk' maqurxid maqurxis maqur maquris maqurťů maqurťiem maqurni maquro
Object affixes: tegal 'to know' lytgal-0 's/he knows me' dytgal-0 dytgăles ytgal-0 sytgal-0 ťitgal-0 mytgal-0 dytgalo sytgălo

To "-0", a suffix can be inserted.

The -x- in intranstive suffixes is changed to -v- after k, g, x, h. For example, *qapluk-xil changes to qaplukvil 'I ate/will eat it'.

Irrealis forms always use a regularly determined variant of the transitive stem:

sg pl
m. f.
Intransitives: maqur 'walk (to somewhere)' myqur! 'walk thou (thither)!' myqures! myquro!
Transitives: tegal 'to know (someone)' tygal! 'know thou him!' tygales! tygalo!



Netagin has only one true preposition: the generic oblique preposition my- /mɨ/. It has the following inflected forms: miel, mied, mydie, mi, mas, min, miť, mynib, myneď, mis.

Netagins has adverbs to indicate more specific meanings, where English uses prepositions:

  • har = generic locative.
    • Qalam-ši har my-tar·al? (be_at.3SG.M=Q LOC OBL-house-1SG) = 'Is it in my house?'
  • inside
  • outside
  • up
  • down
  • left
  • right
  • in
  • out
  • across, beyond
  • north
  • NE
  • east
  • SE
  • south
  • SW
  • north
  • NW


From Netagin2:

  • 1a23, 1e23, 1o23 = noun
  • 1a2a3, 1a2o3 = adjective, noun?
  • 1a22u3 = adjective relating to personal qualities
  • da12u3 = noun
  • ʔi12ů3 = agent noun
  • 1a2a3, 1a2e3 = noun
  • 1ů2a3 = noun
  • 1i2a3, 1i2i3, 1i2u3 = noun
  • 1a2a3e, 1a2i3e, 1a2u3e = nouns
  • 1i22a3, 1u22a3
  • 1a22e3 = desire for X
  • -in = adjective suffix
  • -ům = augmentative
  • -ůn (f) = abstract noun, collective
  • CaCiC: quality adjective
  • CoCaC: resultative adjective
  • CeCůC: event
  • dyCCuC: event/place
  • dyCCaC/dyCCeC: instrument
  • vaCCieC/vaCCiC: profession
  • diCCaCe/dyCCěCe: process
  • vyCCuC: patient noun
  • vyCCůC: resultative noun
  • CyCCaCe: degree/measure


Netagin has focus-first or predicate-first word order, which is often realized as VSO order.


todo: when, before, after, while (relative tense)

  • qi = and, also, so
    • from qaj = indeed; yes, aye; mirative particle, like Hebrew הנה
  • mat = or (both inclusive and exclusive or)
  • ďem = or (can only be used for xor)
  • ba = not
  • bař = because (etym. not=EMPH 'is it not true that...'); lest
  • bařdymiek, bařmiek = because (etym. not=EMPH 2SG.know)
  • lynoj = although
  • lynojačiř = although
  • vyzěq = but
  • daja = but
  • qatie = if
  • věn = that (complementizer)
  • be (ne-word) = that (relativizer)
  • myři = that, whom

Wackernagel clitics

These conjunctions are unstressed clitics that come in second position. They attach to the emphatic form of the pronoun if the subject is a pronoun.

  • =me = waw-consecutive (used for each event in a narrative sequence of events; often implies past tense)
  • =ča = or
  • =qař = (poetic) for
  • =hě = interrogative or "if"

Inflected conjunctions

These conjunctions may take pronominal inflections, taking the pronoun suffix for the subject.


In prose, a clause is negated by adding ba before the verb and using the particle duš. It combines with ve-series determiners to form de-series determiners; de is used before the absolutive constituent.

  • Ba ygxar duš. = He is not growing.
  • Ba ytarrě de pyžal. = The dog does not bark.
  • Ba ylmě va macni da qasi. (NEG 3SG.N-eat-3SG.N VE.N child NEG.ABS-VE.N fruits) = He does not eat fruits.

Ba also translates "no".


Yes-no questions are formed by changing the determiner ne of the noun being asked about to ve. The particle qu may optionally be added to the beginning.

Lečar ně qama. = Mother is at home.
(Qu) lečar vě qama? = Is Mother at home?

Answering yes-no questions in the positive may use the word qaj 'indeed' or repeat the focused constituent.

- (Qu) lečar vě qama? - Qaj/Lečar. = - Is Mother at home? - Yes.

Wh-questions are formed by putting the appropriate interrogative word at the beginning, and using the same determiner change.

Jos vě qama? = Where is Mother?
Jal vě miešsad(ie)? = What (lit. Who) is your name?

Translating "to be"

Netagin translates all five senses of English "be" with distinct constructions:

  • "is-a" (membership in a class): Y ne X = "X is a Y"
  • "is-the" (equality): rieh ne X ne Y "X is Y" (implies that both X and Y are definite)
  • "there exists": qům ne X = "There exists X"
  • "is + adjunct": [had lečar] ne X = "X is [at home]"
  • "is + ADJ": [baděj] X = "X [is big]"


The h-possessive ("X has a Y") is formed with the existence construction, applied to the genitive phrase "X's Y". So to say "I have a book" one literally says "There is a book of mine":

Qům ne padudal. (exist DET.M book-1SG)

The b-possessive ("X belongs to Y" etc.): The noun gáqem can be used in a possessive construction:

Gáqmal na žiri. = The fruit is mine (lit. is my possession).

Alternatively, the possessive construction "X is Y's X[head noun in X]" can be used:

Žirjal na žiri. = The fruit is mine. (lit. The fruit is my fruit)

Relative clauses

Netagin has two relativizers:

  • be: a noun relativized with be can be either the subject or the direct object.
  • myři unambiguously denotes a direct object (possibly after taking the applicative).


ně vůlqe lyxžamis - the woman who loves me

direct object:

ně páles bě/myři sadmurxil - the cake that I made

Only subjects and direct objects can be relativized directly. Relativizing oblique objects requires using the applicative voice:

ni rycům bi/myři qypymlakvil - the fork that I eat with

Possessors also use the applicative strategy. However, if the verb already has an object, the verb's object affix agrees with the original object, not the relativized noun.

ně jove bě/myři qytymgalxil (*sytymgalxil) ne qeb
DET girl REL appl-3SG.M-know.1SG DET father
the girl whose father i know

Comparative objects cannot be relativized in any way, at least in prose Netagin:

  • Comparing verbs: the man that he(i) gave more to the poor than = "The man whose giving to the poor he(i) exceeded/did_better" or "the man who gave less to the poor than him(i)"
  • Comparing NPs: the team that we ate more apples than = "The team whose eating of the apple we exceeded"
  • For comparison of adjectives, Netagin can express the only student I am taller than, for example, as "the only student shorter than me", or "the only student whose tallness I exceed", using one of the above constructions.
  • For comparison of adverbs, again the auxiliary verb corresponding to the adverb is used with either the transgressive or the verbal noun of the lexical verb. The auxiliary can take applicatives and direct objects: the only student I can jump higher than = "the only student REL him-APPL-do_better-1SG jump.TRGR" (pseudogloss)

The pyšme věn "such that" + resumptive pronoun construction is always available in post-classical literary Netagin (Modern Netagin vernaculars use resumptive pronouns for less "relativizable" positions in the relativization hierarchy). Gap and internally headed relative clauses are restricted to poetry.

Complement clauses

Balanced complement clauses: nar/var + CLAUSE

Dymiek nar dyktiexil = You know that I love you; (Qu) dymiek var dyktiexil? = Do you know that I love you?

Deranked complement clauses: na/va + poss(subj)-VN + subject + my + secondary argument

Dymiek na lykotjie mied = You know that I love you

Time clauses

'when (conjunction)' = toj

'before' = hamet

'after' = gahed

Conditional clauses

Reason clauses

Purpose clauses

'So that' can be expressed with qi 'and' + irrealis verb (Biblical Hebrew has a similar clause structure).

Circumstantial clauses

For example, the Latin phrase Quaerendo invenietis 'Seek and ye shall find' can be translated using the transgressive:

Hydůp qavvylono.
seek/TRGR 3SG.N-IRR/find-2PL
Look for it and find it. (More literally: [By] seeking, you will find it. or [By] seeking, find it.)
Hydůp qyvvelon tim.
seek/TRGR 3SG.N-REAL/find 2PL
"Seek and ye shall [surely] find." (This indicates a much higher-than-normal degree of certainty that "ye shall find".)

Information structure

A regular independent clause is of the form

[focus] [other constituents].

A topicalized clause is of the form

[regular clause referring to the topic] [topic].

Sometimes the particle miek (from dymiek 'you know') may be used in second position for extra emphasis.


Verbs of motion

Netagin does not have exact equivalents for the English verbs "go", "carry", or "bring". Netagin motion verbs vary along two dimensions: one dimension is the method or direction of transport and one dimension is the telicity of the verb. Unidirectional, or telic, motion verbs express one-time motion towards a destination. Multidirectional, or atelic, verbs express undirected motion, repeated directed motion, or back-and-forth motion. The directionality is usually expressed by binyan change, but is sometimes expressed through suppletion.

Meaning Unidirectional verb Multidirectional verb
to go by foot, to walk mur (Binyan 2) voččal (Binyan 7)
to go with a land vehicle dalum (Binyan 2) dollam (Binyan 7)
to ride, to mount (trans.) qapcě (Binyan 4) pecě (Binyan 1)
to go in xapun (Binyan 2) xoppan (Binyan 7)
to go out paduš (Binyan 2) poddaš (Binyan 7)
to rise (of heavenly bodies and other inanimate beings)
to take off (of flying creatures or vehicles)
ganě (Binyan 2) gonně (Binyan 7)
to set (of heavenly bodies)
to fall (of precipitation)
šabud (Binyan 2) šobbad (Binyan 7)
to run qagiž (Binyan 4) govvaž (Binyan 7)
to swim nařub (Binyan 2) neřab (Binyan 1)
to fly kall (Binyan 2) kollal (Binyan 7)
to float on water
to go with a small boat, to row
qivvahař (Binyan 6) qyvahiř (Binyan 4)
to flow (of a fluid or current) beral (Binyan 1) borral (Binyan 7)
to roll mall (Binyan 2) mollal (Binyan 7)
to climb ďexuč (Binyan 2) qyďxič (Binyan 3)
to jump bacc (Binyan 2) boccac (Binyan 7)
to crawl zarzur (Binyan 2Q) zorzar (Binyan 7)
to fall (of animates)
to go down (of inanimates)
namě (Binyan 2) nommě (Binyan 7)
to dive, go into water sadě (Binyan 2) soddě (Binyan 7)
to carry, bring (on foot) pasun (Binyan 2) qypasin (Binyan 4)
to carry, bring (using a vehicle) (trans.) qiddalam (Binyan 6) qydalim (Binyan 5)
to carry, bring in qixxapin (Binyan 6) qyxapin (Binyan 5)
to carry, bring out qippadaš (Binyan 6) qypadiš (Binyan 5)
to pull, drag (trans.) kačun (Binyan 2) qykačin (Binyan 4)
to drive (an animal or a vehicle), lead paťur (Binyan 2) poťťar (Binyan 7)

Verbs for "to wear"

Poetic Netagin

Poetic Netagin is a separate register from prose Netagin, and has the following characteristics:

  • Vowel reductions that don't occur in prose Netagin may be used for metrical purposes. (think "ne3im shimkhem")
  • Determiners omitted
  • constituent order freer
  • Negative ba used without duš



Sample texts

A fable

A hymn

An anthem

A piyyut in hazaj meter

Be dyštavno zǎqům-medho,
REL.SBJ 2-fight_for-PL justice(CONST?)-feeling/soul/sentient-GEN
Ye who contend for sentient-justice,

Something 1

Yigdal meter

Something 2

Shakhar Avakeshkha meter