|Nouns decline according to...|
|Verbs conjugate according to...|
Dakanese is an artlang created in 2017 by jretion with the intent of being used in-universe as the official language of the City State of Dakan. Dakanese is an a priori language with grammar influenced by French, English and Japanese: the 3 languages that jretion speaks decently. In universe, Dakanese in its current form emerged from middle Dakanese ~500 years ago. Whilst not the only spoken language native to Dakan, it is the only official one. Before middle Dakanese, there was old Dakanese which co-existed with other extinct languages such as Yoshralese (a literary language which has gone 500 years without any speakers) and Odmeshic (a poorly-attested language only mentioned in old Dakanese texts along with minimal word lists.)
Classification and DialectsEdit
Dakanese's only known relative is named Shenish and is a minority language in the north of Dakan. The Dakanese government has yet to give official status or protection to the language and the language is slowly losing favour to Dakanese. Speakers of Shenish tend to display an accent when speaking Dakanese where U is said as [u] and UU is said as [ɯᵝ] instead of the standard pronunciations of [ɯᵝ] and [ɯᵝː] respectively.
|Plosive||p b||t d||k g|
|Fricative||f v||s z||ʃ ʒ||h|
|Front||Back||Front (long)||Back (long)|
Dakanese's syllable structure is CVN, meaning consonant (any consonant save [ŋ]), vowel (or diphthong) and nasal consonant ([m], [n] or [ŋ]). Syllables are also allowed to start with a vowel if they're at the beginning of a word. The syllable following a syllable ending in a nasal consonant may not begin with the same consonant. For example: Yomma wouldn't be allowed, but yomna and yonma are. Below is a chart of every possible syllable in Dakanese.
|Letter||J||L||Y||W||N||M||Nh||A||AA or Ā||I||II or
|U||UU or Ū||E|
|O||OO or Ō|
The full stop (or period) is used to indicate the end of a sentence. The comma is used to separate the topic from the rest of the sentence. The question and exclamation marks are used to indicate a question and emphasis respectively. The apostrophe is used to separate syllables that end in n from the following syllable should it begin in h. Example: the correct way to spell yonhoom is yon'hoom.
Nouns are not conjugated with case, number or gender. The role of the noun is determined by which particle is followed by it. For example, the topic marker hon, the nominative particle yekan, the accusative particle mimu or the location particle den.
To indicate possession of a noun by another, you take the object which is owned, add the possessive particle tom and then put the noun which owns said object. For example: moyonh tom choko (My language).
Dakanese uses 4 personal pronouns. They are not marked for number, though should you really need to specify number, simply duplicate the last syllable. For example: choko (I) would become chokoko (We). However, this is uncommon and choko is used to mean both I and We; the meaning is usually clear from context. They're also not marked for case or gender. Like nouns, their roles are determined by the particle which follows it. The personal pronouns are displayed in this table with their corresponding English equivalents.
Along with the 4 personal pronouns, there are also 4 demonstrative pronouns.
|Near the speaker||This||Mo|
|Near the listener||That||Aho|
|Away from both||That over there||Chono|
There are also 4 pronouns for location.
|Near the speaker||Here||Shin|
|Near the listener||There||Shu|
|Away from both||Yonder||Sha|
Verbs have 2 classes and 2 registers: casual and polite. To change a verb from the casual register to the polite register, remove the ending and replace it with the polite ending for the same verb class. These endings are called the "dictionary form".
|Class I||Class II|
The tenses of Dakanese Edit
Dakanese verbs are marked for tense and mood. The tenses are past, present and future. The moods are indicative, conditional, imperative, passive, hypothetical and volitional. Two tables will be below, displaying all possible conjugations. Darker areas which have no text in them are forms which are not possible. To make the negative form of a verb, add amee at the end.
|Class I Past||-anh||-am||-aa||-amaa|
|Class II Past||-toma||-to||-too||-tonoo|
|Class I Present||-aam||-aada||-amanh||-amka||-amkaa|
|Class II Present||-tonh||-tomo||-toyo||-todu||-totuu|
|Class I Future||-amaka||-amama||-a||-amai||-amtai||-amto|
|Class II Future||-toyoka||-totoo||-ton||-toti||-tohom||-tooma|
|Class I Past||-ho||-hoka||-hoom||-homa|
|Class II Past||-do||-doko||-domoo||-domo|
|Class I Present||-hoho||-hopa||-honh||-homka||-hoo|
|Class II Present||-dodo||-doba||-donh||-domka||-doo|
|Class I Future||-hom||-hokoto||-hokan||-homta||-hokaa||-hoshi|
|Class II Future||-dom||-dokoto||-dokan||-donta||-dokaa||-doshi|
Adjectives work similarly to verbs. However, they are only conjugated in one way: no classes nor registers of politeness. All adjectives finish in miki. All adjectives are indicative. To negate and adjective, add mee to the end.
Adverbs work the same as adjectives, though their endings are different. All adverbs end in yako. Adjectives may also be made into adverbs by removing miki from the end of the word and replacing it with yako. The table below shows how adverbs are conjugated. The same rule for negating adjectives applies here: to negate an adverb, one adds mee to the end.
Dakanese's normal word order is TSOV (Topic, Subject, Object and Verb), although it is possible to change the order around because of the particles being used to indicate roles. The only thing is that the topic must always be first. Take this sentence as an example:
(Choko hon,) yanka mimu koto-jika yonamamto.Translation: I shall see you later today.
This sentence, piece by piece means (I [topic],) you [object] today-[time] see-[future volitional].
Note: (Choko hon) is in brackets since choko is the default topic should another topic not be specified at the beginning of a conversation, though one would say choko hon if the topic isn't oneself and one would like to change the topic.
Describing Things Edit
Adjectives can be used in a sentence like a noun, but cannot have any particles associated with it. Should the adjective appear at the end of a sentence, one needn't add the verb atoku (to be) as it's implied. For example: (Choko) Hikanmiki atoku. means "I'm hungry." though just saying Hikanmiki would suffice.
Describing the Desire for Something Edit
Like Japanese, Dakanese has a suffix added to the end of a verb to describe the desire for something. However, unlike Japanese, it isn't an auxiliary adjective, but an alternate verb ending which applies for both verb classes, though it is still subject to change regarding the politeness register. Unlike regular verb endings, the "wanting suffix" can only be in 4 moods: Indicative ([subject] wants to [verb].), Conditional (If [subject] wants to [verb].), Passive ([Subject] wants [verb] done to them.) and Hypothetical (Let's say [subject] wanted to [verb].)
Base-12 Numeral System & Math Operations Edit
Numbers 0 to 12. Edit
Unlike English and a fair share of other languages, Dakanese is base-12 or duodecimal, meaning a number like 13 would be said twelve-one. Below is a table of the numbers from zero to 12.
Numbers Bigger than 12 Edit
Numbers that are bigger than twelve follow the format [multiple prefix]-12-[remaining numbers]. An example of this in use is the number 26 (22 in base-12): Letokam-lemi. The multiple prefixes are below.
|Multiple of 12||Prefix|
Fractional Duodecimal Numbers Edit
Fractional duodecimal numbers are indicated with a comma instead of with the full stop in English. In spoken speech, the fractional part of a number is indicated by the word emeto and then the numbers that follow. For example, 52.5 would be written 44,6 and said Vetokam-vemin emeto losum (Four-twelve four [duodecimal mark] six).
Words for Mathematical Operations Edit
|Division （÷）||Divided by||Loom|
|Exponentation （^）||To the power of||Mailade|
Base-20 Numeral System Edit
Numbers 0 to 20 Edit
Along with the duodecimal system, Dakanese has an alternative counting system: vigesimal (also known as: Base-20). This means that unlike duodecimal, all numbers higher than twenty are based on twenty, like how the numbers 70 to 99 work in French. These are more common in formal speech, but it's also not unheard of for it to be used in casual speech, especially in North Dakan where it's more common than base-12. If you want to avoid confusion, you can use the phrase Choko yekan kolowamiki. Literally meaning "I am twenty." but actually meaning "I count in base-20."
Numbers Bigger than Twenty Edit
The same system used in base-12 is used, but you replace it with 20, so then bigger numbers follow the structure [multiple prefix]-20-[remaining numbers]. The multiple prefix used is below.
|Multiple of 12||Prefix|
Fractional Vigesimal Numbers Edit
In transcription, a semicolon is used instead of a comma to indicate the vigesimal point in a number as to reflect the fact a different word is used to indicate a fractional number in speech. So the number 20.5 in vigesimal would be written 10;A instead of 18,6 as if it were base-12. The word used instead of emeto is miala. So 10;A would be said kolowa miala maiwa.
Basic Vocabulary Edit
|Interjection||I don't know||Emee|
|Verb||To come from||Kimtoku|
|Noun||Country of origin||Kimtogim|
Example Phrases Edit
[English] Hello! My name is _____.
[Dakanese] Ama! Dosomi tom choko hon, _____ atoku.
[English] I'm sorry, but do you speak English?
[Dakanese] Choko hon, doshamiki. Yanka hon, Anhlisha-yonh mimu samtonh yo?
[English] Where is the nearest hotel?
[Dakanese] Loyum hon, aiyako-mai namshe den ikami yo?
[English] Do you have a telephone?
[Dakanese] Honyakengim tom yanka hon, ikami yo?
[English] Where do you come from?
[Dakanese] Yanka hon, namshe lamna kimtotoo yo?
[English] I'm from _____.
[Dakanese] Choko hon, _____ lamna kimtotoo.