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Cvsoyseng

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Cvsoyseng, (CVSOY - Cvsoy +SENG - language), pronounced [ʧʊ.sɔĭ.sǝ̀:ŋ] is an International Auxiliary Language. It is aimed at having a simple, straightforward grammar that will not give any one group of people an unfair advantage when learning. It was devised in 2010 by Robert Xun, former Esperantist and then Gurcajist.

The vocabulary is mainly based on Indo-European, Austronesian, and Sino-Tibetan languages, but there are many words from other languages and autochthonous words. The grammar is similar to that of Tagalog, but in reality they are not related. The phonology is essentially Manchu with slightly more flexibility.

The language can be written in three different ways: with the Latin orthography, with the Manchu orthography, and with the Cvsoyseng orthography, the latter two only used in artistic and formal context. Furthermore, it is possible to adapt Cyrillic to fit the language.

Name: Cvsoyseng

Type: Agglunitative

Alignment: Ergative

Head Direction: First

Number of genders: None

Declensions: Yes

Conjugations: Yes

Nouns declined
according to
Case Number
Definitiveness Gender
Verbs conjugated
according to
Voice Mood
Person Number
Tense Aspect
Cases Numbers Aspect Persons Moods Trigger
Verb No No Yes No No Yes
Nouns Yes No No No No No
Numbers No No Yes No No No
Pronouns Yes No No Yes No No
Particles No No No No No No


PhonologyEdit

Bilabial Labiodental Alveolar Postalveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasa m   n jn [ɲ] gn [ŋ]  
Plosive b [p] p [pʰ]   d [t] t [tʰ]   g [k] k [kʰ] [ʔ]
Affricate   j [ʧ] c [ʧʰ]      
Fricative   f s x [ʃ]   h [x]
Trill     r        
Approximant     l   y [j] w  


Front Central Back
Close i v (ɨ) u
Close-Mid e [ǝ]
Open-Mid o [ɔ]
Open a

/s/ can have several different pronunciations at the end of a word if used to mark the indirect case. After a vowel or consonant from the first row of the table below, it is pronounced normally, syllabically in the latter case. After a fourth-row, fifth-row, or sixth-row consonant, it is pronounced the same as the corresponding first-row consonant. When it occurs after y or nj, s is pronounced as [c].

/nn/ may be used at the end of a prefix, and may hold the value of any fourth-row consonant depending on the consonant that comes after it. Whatever column that consonant is in, the fourth-row consonant of nn is in the same column. For example, if a prefix "vnn-" is attached to "foyel," nn becomes m because it is in the same column as f, so the combination is written and pronounced as vmfoyel.

Stressed syllables, always at the end of a word, are pronounced about a third pitch lower, and twice as long as a normal syllable. All other syllables are pronounced the same length.

PhonotacticsEdit

Consonants can be arranged as such:

Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar
b d j g
p t c k
f s x h
m n jn gn
l y w
r
  • All consonants can appear at the beginning of a syllable.
  • Consonants in the first, third, and fifth columns can appear at the end of a syllable, except c. S may appear at the end of a word if used to mark the indirect case.
  • Consonants in the fifth row can appear between consonants in the first or second row and a vowel in a single syllable, but sixth-row consonants can only be after first-row consonants in a single syllable.
  • Affricates are allowed for labial, alveolar, and velar consonants, aspirated and non-aspirated.
  • Allowed diphthongs are oy [oĭ], ay [aĭ], ey [ǝĭ], uy [uĭ], ew [ǝŭ], iw [iŭ], aw [ae

Basic GrammarEdit

The grammar of Gurcaj, Cvoyseng's predecessor, was based on Quechua, English, and Chinese. The grammar of Gurcaj remained largely the same, but it received influence from Filipino.

Sentence StructureEdit

Cvsoyseng is a head-first language language.

Part Head Example Literal English
Adposition First xansofa on.sofa on the sofa
Adjectives Regular First kow xervy dog black the black dog
Clause First kow guit yew dog like I the dog which I like
Genitive First hul yowur house my my house

Verbs and NounsEdit

Normally, a Cvsoy root is in the form VSO, Verb Subject Object, emphasizing the subject. One can remember easily because it is in the name of the language (Cvsoy). Since the subject and object are marked separately, a VOS subject is equally fine, but it still emphasizes the subject.

The noun system is as follows:

There are three types of nouns: ergative, absolutive, and oblique.

Ergative: Similar to a subject of a sentence in English, the ergative is basically something that acts on another object.

Absolutive: Basically the direct object of a sentence, acted upon by a subject. Bear in mind that in Cvsoyseng, adjectives and nouns that do not involve both a subject and object. For example, in the sentence "I jump," I is an absolutive. This comes with practice, but eventually it can be accomplished.

Oblique: This covers anything that could be followed by a preposition in English and many western European languages, as well as serving as the indirect object. Without a preposition before it, a noun marked as oblique is translated as "for (noun)" if the noun is a proper name or other depiction of a person (e.g. teacher, woman). If the noun is not a person, then it can be translated as "inside (noun)." Without a preposition, and with certain verbs, it acts as an indirect object, thus making that verb trivalent.

While there are three types of nouns, a clause (in the VSO structure) technically can only hold two types of nouns of the three, without adding extra nouns before the verb. The subject is henceforth referred to as "the direct noun" and the object as "the indirect noun" to avoid confusion.

Kharan yow injaws.

Look-pres I bird-indefsing-indir.

I am looking at a bird.

This is a standard sentence in the form Verb, Ergative, Absolutive. The emphasis is placed on "yow," the ergative. Note the infix "-i-" placed inside the root khan, "look," indicating this is a standard sentence.

Khain           anjaws              yew.
Look-pres     bird-indefsing-indir      I.
I am looking at a bird.

This sentence means exactly the same thing. It is perfectly fine to switch around a direct noun and an indirect noun as long as they are marked the same way. Emphasis is still on "yow"

Kharan       anjaw         yews.
Look-pres bird-indefsing I-indirect.
A bird is being looked at by me.

This sentence is passivized per se with the infix "-ar-." Yow becomes the indirect noun and injaw becomes the direct noun. The sentence conveys the same information as the first two sentences, but the emphasis is now on the fact that it is a bird that is being looked at.

Axin      yew  vs. 
Give-pres  I  him/her. 
I give (something) to him/her.

In this case, yow is the direct noun, and v is the indirect noun. The direct noun acts as the ergative, and indirect as oblique. Note how the ergative is in this case described by the verb, due to the absolutive-ergative alignment. The infix in this case is -xi-.

On a side note, it is possible to shorten this sentence:

Axin yew vs.
Axin yew vs. 
Axin yvs.

This only works when there are two pronouns next to each other. Cut off everything from the vowel of the first pronoun to the consonant (if any) of the second pronoun.

Back to the main point, it is possible to create any permutation of two nouns from the three cases, based on the chart below, under inflections. However, there is still a further sentence construction.

Hvrvn        nan     fems.
Marry-pres   man     woman-indir.
The man is marrying the woman (now).

This is known as the reciprocal construction. Because marrying something inherently involves being married to, the infix -rv- is necessary.

Servng            nan         fems.
Speak-present     man         woman-indir.
The man is speaking with the woman.

This describes a much different case, but it is still reciprocal. The method for creating this construction is if the direct noun acts as an ergative, while the indirect noun acts as an oblique. The difference is that the indirect noun acts upon the direct noun in the same way. Thus the man is speaking to the woman, and the woman is speaking to the man. This is not limited to nouns that hold indirect objects in English.

Tshervn    njaw   yews.
Eat-pres  bird  I-indir.
The bird and I ate on behalf of each other.

The second and final use of the -or- infix is for intransitive verbs, verbs that cannot take an ergative noun, or an object. These include adjectives and verbs such as "to jump," "to go," and others.

Fervl       yew.
Happy-pres   I.
I am happy.

or

Sorvnj         njaw.
sleep-pres  bird-indir. 
The bird is sleeping.

If a noun needs to be in a sentence, but it doesn't follow the original patterns, e.g. it needs to contain absolutive, ergative, and oblique, there is a way to get around it, and that is using the particle ing.

Ing      nanj       khain              yews           anjaw. 
---      you        look              I-accus      bird-indef.
You look at me for a bird.

Nanj, the direct verb, is instead placed before the verb, while the indirect verb is placed in the same location. The remaining applicable noun possibility (absolutive, ergative, oblique) is unmarked after the indirect noun.

Structure Remaining Noun
SO I
OS I
IS O
SI O
Recip. O
Intrans. I

•S stands for ergative case, O for absolutive, and I for oblique.

AspectEdit

Verbs conjugate according to aspect rather than tense in Cvsoyeng. There are three aspects:

  1. PERFECT: the action is completed cleanly without any loose ends—This tense is marked with the trigger infix placed before the verb (oysonj).
  2. IMPERFECT: the action is under way, with loose ends—This tense is marked with the trigger infix placed before the first vowel in a verb (soyonj).
  3. CONTEMPLATED: the action is to take place and explicitly has not started—This tense is marked with the trigger infix placed after the verb (sonjoy).

InflectionsEdit

Below are inflections of a root seng.

SENG: to speak, say

DEFINITE INDEFINITE SINGULAR INDEFINITE PLURAL
direct indirect direct indirect direct indirect
seng sengs aseng asengs caseng casengs
ASPECT SO OS SI IS OO
perfected iseng raseng xeseng poseng rvseng
imperfected seing serang sexeng sepong servng
contemplated sengi sengra sengxe sengpo sengrv
ACT or STATE: sengaw ADJECTIVE: senghay

•OO signifies an intransitive verb or reciprocal action.

Approximate English translations of above

DEFINITE INDEFINITE SINGULAR INDEFINITE PLURAL
direct indirect direct indirect direct indirect
the speech the speech a speech a speech some speeches some speeches
ASPECT SO OS SI IS OO
perfected said was said by spoke to was spoken to by spoke with
imperfected says is being said by is speaking to is being spoken to by is speaking with
contemplated will say will be said by will speak to will be spoken to by will speak with

ACT or STATE: speaking ADJECTIVE: relating to speaking

PrepositionsEdit

Prepositions in Cvsoyseng involve an object or action being in a certain state or location. Common prepositions include:


For, to: por (omitted before a person)

In, at: na (omitted before a noun other than a person)

Next to, near: ey

Over, on: xann

During: cu

Due to: ray

Numbering: ngo

Using, endowed with, using the method of: yonn

More than: pi

Prepositions are placed directly before their nouns, and pi, xann, por, ray, yonn, and ey can all use the vnn- prefix to express their opposites.

Prepositions Describing ChangeEdit

This is a confusing part of the language but it ensures that all possible concepts are possible to say. Prepositions are in this form:

CHANGE.PREFIX+PREPOSITIONAL.PREFIX+NOUN

While the prepositional prefix describes a fixed relationship with the noun, the change prefix describes how that relationship is changing. Note that the preposition may still be omitted as above.

mobile inclusive singular local
translative a ak cak thaw
exessive o ok cok thow
prolative/essive sann sak thv

TRANSLATIVE: the noun is going into the state described by the preposition

EXESSIVE: the opposite of translative, the noun is going out of the state

PROLATIVE/ESSIVE: the noun is going through the state or is in a state

MOBILE: the noun is approaching the specified change, but not actually being in the state described by the preposition

INCLUSIVE: the noun approaching the specified change, at one point being in the state described by the preposition

SINGULAR: the noun is not changing, being in a specified location within the state

LOCAL: the noun occupies multiple locations within the state

A translation to English:

mobile inclusive singular local
translative to into somewhere up to stretching up to
exessive from out of somewhere from stretching from
prolative/essive to and from through in within

Verb AffixesEdit

Opposite quality (stative verbs), reverse action (other verbs): vnn-


Complementary action: pyann-

Render: khay-

Become: lay-

Augmentation: (repitition of first syllable)

Opposite+augmentation: kyann-

ModalsEdit

Mental Physical Legal Honor
Obligatory njaw- phaw- haw- tsaw-
Potential njvnn- phvnn- hvnn- tsvnn-
Beneficiary njil- phil- hil- tsil-

To be afraid of: fopya-

To have madness for: manja-

Noun AffixesEdit

diminutive: or-

all: mey-

none: nol-

xxx's: -ur

of xxx: -ik

partly made of: -phong

CompoundingEdit

xxxyyy= yyy made of xxx


QuestionsEdit

Questions are extremely simple. Simply use the pronoun cir, "what" in the correct location to mean any wh- word (or how) in English.

ParticlesEdit

Xu: placed at the beginning of a sentence to signalise action away from the speaker, go

Xu rvfey njaw.
-- fly bird
The bird flew away.

Wen: placed at the beginning of a sentence to signalise action towards the speaker, come

Wen rvfey njaw.
---  fly  bird
The bird flew towards me.

Mak: increased amount, placed before a word

Mak tsilervm nanj.
--- should.eat you
You should eat more.

Non: not, placed before a word

Non rvfey njaw.
The bird did not fly.
Rvfey non njaw.
It was not the bird that flew.

Ra: emphasizes word before it

Ra rvfey njaw.
The bird did fly.
Rvfey ra njaw.
It was the bird that flew.

Pa: placed at the beginning of a sentence to indicate a suggestion or softening a sentence that could be viewed as harsh

Pa xurvn new.
--  go   we
Let's go.
Pa vntsiltorvm nanj ra feys.
-- not.should.ride you EMPH fly-n.
You should not have gone by plane (it's okay, just don't do it in the future).

Ma: placed before a word to question its certainty

Ma torvm nanj feys.
You rode the plane (you didn't do something else to it, i.e. miss it)?
Rvtom ma nanj feys.
Did you ride the plane (you didn't ride something else)?

Ngew: do, placed before a word to affirm its certainty, at the beginning of a sentence expresses approval

A: Ma rvtom nanj feys.
B: Ngew rvtom yew feys.
Did you ride the plane?
Yes I rode the plane.
A: Rvtom ma nanj feys.
B: Rvtom ngew yew feys.
Did you ride the plane?
Yes I rode the plane.
Ngew rvtom nanj feys.
You rode the plane (that's a good thing).

Aw: indicating disapproval or discontent at the beginning of a sentence, can mean "only" before another word

Aw rvtom nanj feys.
I'm disappointed that you rode the plane.
Xihem yew aw vnmahal matras.
You only bought me a cheap matress.

Okey: added at the beginning of a sentence to mark a suggestion, asking for approval, used imformally and emphasizing the immediacy of the suggestion

Okey xurvn new.
---- go   we
Let's go, okay?

Sin: expresses impatience at the beginning of a sentence

Sin hawxurvn yew cu16:00 ak-hasa cortou.
--- need.go  I  at 16:00 to.house court.of
I need to go to the courthouse at 16:00 (expresses impatience with the situation).

Lo: indicates obviousness before a word

Lo yurvn.
-- rain
It's raining.
Rakhil lo rv.
Kill—4-3.
He was obviously killed by her.

DictionaryEdit

The dictionary is built on eight world languages in the eight largest language families by total number of speakers. In parentheses are languages that have preferred status when the main language's word matches with the word in the language in parentheses. Languages are indicated in order of number of total speakers.

European: English (Latin, Greek, Russian)

Sino-Tibetan: Mandarin (Middle Chinese, Burmese*, Tibetan*)

Indic: Hindi/Urdu (Bengali, Marathi, Tamil*)

Afro-Asiatic: Arabic (Hebrew, Hausa*)

Austronesian: Indonesian/Malay (Javanese, Tagalog, Hawaiian*)

Altaic: Japanese (Korean*)

Amerindian: Quechua (Aymara, Guarani*, Nahuatl*)

Niger Congo: Swahili [Bantoid Words Only] (Zulu, Shona)

*Languages are distantly related or unrelated and resemblances are not common

Although such resemblances are to be used as much as possible, the systematic system will only benefit speakers of these languages while learning.

Example textEdit

The North Wind and the SunEdit

The North Wind and the Sun disputed as to which was the most powerful, and agreed that he should be declared the victor who could first strip a wayfaring man of his clothes. The North Wind first tried his power and blew with all his might, but the keener his blasts, the closer the Traveler wrapped his cloak around him, until at last, resigning all hope of victory, the Wind called upon the Sun to see what he could do. The Sun suddenly shone out with all his warmth. The Traveler no sooner felt his genial rays than he took off one garment after another, and at last, fairly overcome with heat, undressed and bathed in a stream that lay in his path.

Persuasion is better than Force.


Feng Norirvn Sol



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©Robert Xun 2010

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