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Lengryis

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Name: Lengryis

Type: Fusional

Alignment: Fluid-S

Head Direction: Mixed

Number of genders: 1

Declensions: No

Conjugations: Yes

Nouns declined
according to
Case Number
Definitiveness Gender
Verbs conjugated
according to
Voice Mood
Person Number
Tense Aspect

Brief OverviewEdit

Lengryis is a mixed language (like Michif in Canada) spoken several centuries from now. It is a hybrid of English, Japanese and Thai. It is a topic comment language, with the Topic always coming first in the sentence, immediately followed by the verb (except in Wh-questions where the Wh- particle comes between the Topic and the verb). Verbs do not inflect for tense at all, but distinguish Telic vs. Atelic aspect. Tone is used both grammatically and phonemically. The vowel system is relatively simple, but there is a complex system of consonant mutation, sandhi and allophony.


Phonology and OrthographyEdit

Lengryis uses a Latin based script.


VowelsEdit

Lengryis has 5 vowels.

i - /i/ - Must be preceded by a glide, either /j/ or /w/.

u - /u/ ~ /ɯ/ - Is rounded to [u] when preceded by /w/. It cannot be preceded by /j/.

e - /e/ ~ /ɛ/ - Is raised to [e] when preceded by /j/.

o - /o/ - Some speakers centralise this to /ə/ when preceded by /j/.

a - /a/ - Cannot be preceded by /j/.



DiphthongsEdit

There are 4 diphthongs.

ea - /ea/ ~ /əa/ - Has the allophone [ia] when preceded by /j/.

iu - /yu/ - Is unrounded to [iɯ] when preceded by /j/.

au - /au/

ai - /ai/ - In rapid speech, some speakers pronounce this as [ɛi] or [ei], especially when preceded by /j/. If it is preceded by /w/, some speakers pronounced it as [oi].



Vowel LengthEdit

Vowels and diphthongs are long in the final syllables of words, and short elsewhere. Vowel length used to be phonemic, but this is no longer the case in standard Lengryis because the long vowels either became diphthongs or glide + vowel sequences.



ToneEdit

The final syllable of each word takes one of 5 contour tones. This is used for both lexical and grammatical purposes. These are described below in terms of numbers, 5 indicating the pitch at the top of a speaker's vocal range, and 1 indicating a pitch at the bottom of a speaker's vocal range.

a - High Level (44) - Some speakers pronounce this is a High Rising Tone (45).

â - High Falling (42)

à - Low Falling (21) - Some speakers pronounce this as a Low Level Tone (22) or (11).

á - Low Rising (15)

ä - Falling Rising (314)



Non final syllables of a word take one of 2 pitches, High or Low. These are not phonemic, however and can be predicted based on the tone of the final syllable of the word.

If the final syllable has High Level Tone, High Falling Tone or Falling Rising Tone, then any preceding syllables in the word will be pronounced with a High Pitch.



If the final syllable of the word has Low Falling Tone or Low Rising Tone, then any preceding syllables in the word will be pronounced with a Low Pitch.



In words of more than one syllable, it is common for speakers to merge the High Falling and Low Falling Tones into a single Falling Tone (31). It is also common for the Low Rising and the Falling Rising Tone to merge into a single Rising Tone (24). Neither of these mergers create any new homophones, however because the non-final syllables of the word will still be pronounced with different pitches.


ConsonantsEdit

Counting the number of consonant phonemes in Lengryis is difficult, because of the number of allophones and sandhi processes in the language. Lengryis speakers traditionally analyse their language as having 23 consonants, however word initially each consonant has a "Strong" and a "Weak" version. If the consonant is no longer word initial (e.g. if the word takes a prefix or is compounded), then the contrast between Strong and Weak is neutralised. Depending on the consonant, this can happen in one of 3 ways. The Strong consonant could take on the pronounciation of its Weak counterpart (whose pronunciation is unchanged), or the Weak consonant could take on the pronunciation of its Strong counterpart (whose pronunciation is likewise unchanged), or both consonants could take on a new pronunciation. Like tone, the Strong / Weak distinction is used for both grammatical purposes and also to distinguish pairs of unrelated words.



Complicating matters even further, Lengryis has many sounds that are not considered phonemes in themselves, but merely sequences of two underlying phonemes (the second one is almost always /j/ or /w/). For example a word initial [dz] is underlyingly a sequence of /nd/ and /j/.


The consonants of Lengryis are listed below in groups of 3. First the Strong variant is described, then its Weak counterpart, and finally the consonant that the Strong and Weak pairs merge into non-word initially (i.e. if a word takes a prefix, then a mutation process will change both the first and second consonants in each group into the third). Only the last consonant in each triplet can occur non-initially. A consonant in bold can be a syllable coda.


ph - /ph/ - By themselves, bilabial stops and nasals are usually velarised, however the sequence /Bj/ (where B is a bilabial stop or nasal) is often pronounced as simply a palatalised consonant, without the /j/ being pronounced.

mp - /mph/

ph - /ph/ Non word initially, this consonant is lightly aspirated if at all. It is common to pronounce it as a tenuis stop [p].



p - /p/ - Word initially, some speakers give this a weakly ejective pronunciation.

b - /b/ - Word initially, this is pronounced with a slack voiced pronunciation about 50% of the time.

b - /b/ - In syllable codas, this is in free variation with [p].



bh - /ɓ/ - Strongly imploded, contrasts with /b/ in many words.

mb - /mb/ - This is sometimes heard with stiff voice, and occasionally even creaky voice.

bh - /ß/ - This is in free variation with /v/. The sequence /ßj/ is pronounced as [ɥ]. The sequence /ßw/ is usually pronounced simply as [w].



mh - /mʔ/

m - /m/

m - /m/



f - /f/ - The combination /fj/ is pronounced as [çw], and the combination /fw/ is pronounced as [fɣ] word initially.

j - /ɣ/ - Word initially, the combination /ɣj/ is pronounced as [v], and the combination /ɣw/ is pronounced as [w].

f - /f/ - The combination /fj/ is heard as [çw], and the combination /fw/ is heard as [ʍ]. In syllable codas, this is in free variation with [v].



t' - /t'/ - Unlike the other coronal stops which are usually dental, the ejective is usually alveolar.

t - /t/

t - /t/ - In a syllable coda, this is pronounced as [θ] or [ð].



th - /th/

nth - /nth/

th - /θ/



d - /d/

nd - /nd/ - The sequence /ndj/ is pronounced as [dz].

d - /z/ - This can coalesce with /j/ into a voiced palatal fricative [ʝ]



dh - /ɗ/

dv - /ð/

dh - /d/



nh - /nʔ/ - All dental nasals, whether glottalised or voiced, coalesce with /j/ to form a palatal nasal [ɲ] or [ɲʔ].

n - /n/

n - /n/



s' - /ts'/ - This is always an affricate.

s - /ts/

s - /ts/ - In a syllable coda this is unspecified for lateralness i.e. it is in free variation with [tɬ]



sv - /s/ - Word initially, the sequence /sj/, is pronounced as [ʈʂ].

v - /θ/ - Word initially, the sequence /θj/ is pronounced as [ʂ]

v - /ð/ - Non word initially, the sequence /ðj/ is pronounced as [s], and the sequence /ðw/ is pronounced as [sw].



z - /z/ - Word initially, the sequence /zj/ is pronounced as [ɮ].

y - /j/ - Word initially, the sound [ɭ] can be heard, but this is underlyingly /jj/. Word initially, the sequence /jw/ is pronounced as [ɥ]

z - /ɣ/ - Non word initially, the sequence /ɣj/ is pronounced as [ɮ]. In syllable codas, this is in free variation with a palatal fricative.



lh - /ɬ/

l - /l/ - This is in free variation with [ɫ]. The combination /ly/ is usually heard as [λ].

l - /l/ - This is in free variation with [ɫ]. The combination /ly/ is usually heard as [λ].



rh - /ʁ/ - This is in free variation with [r], [ʀ], [ɹʀ] - These sounds are in free variation. The combination /rj/ is pronounced as a retroflex approximant /ɻ/.

r - /ɹ/ - This consonant is palatalised when followed by a /j/, which is usually not pronounced.

r - /ɹ/ - Some speakers pronounced this as a tap [ɾ] when it is between vowels. This consonant is palatalised when followed by a /j/, which is usually not pronounced.



c - /kh/ - The combination /khj/ is pronounced as a palatal aspirated stop [ch]. The combination /khw/ is usually pronounced as a doubly articulated stop [kph], but only if it is word initial.

ch - /x/ - The combination /xj/ is pronounced as a pharyngeal fricative [ħ]. The combination /xw/ is pronounced as a labialised pharyngeal fricative [ħw].

c - /kh/ - Word internally, this is in free variation with unaspirated [k].



k' - /k'x/ - Any sequence /Kj/ (where /K/ is a velar affricate) is pronounced as a palatal affricate.

k - /kx/

k - /gɣ/ - In syllable codas, this is pronounced as [k].



kh - /kxh/

nk - /ŋkh/

kh - /kx/



nhg - /ŋʔ/ - The combination /ŋʔj/ is pronounced as a palatal implosive [ʄ]. The combination /ŋʔw/ is pronounced as a doubly articulated glottalised nasal [ŋmʔ].

ng - /ŋ/ - The combination /ŋj/ is pronounced as a retroflex fricative [ʐ]. The combination /ŋw/ is pronounced as a doubly articulated nasal [ŋm]. Both these rules only apply word-initially.

ng - /ŋ/ - After a consonant, this is pronounced and written as a voiced stop g - /g/. Non word initially, the combination /ŋj/ is pronounced as just [j].



tq - /txh/ - This is a non-homorganic affricate. The stop component is dental, and the fricative release is usually either velar or uvular [thχ]. Some speakers release it into an uvular trill [thʁ], or less commonly an alveolar (usually fricative) trill [thr]. A few speakers simply pronounce this as an aspirated uvular stop [qh] or an uvular affricate [qχh]. The combination /txhj/ is pronounced as an aspirated retroflex affricate [ʈʂh], and the combination /txhw/ is pronounced as a labialised retroflex affricate [ʈʂhw]

sh - /tsh/

sh - /ɬ/ - The prestige pronunciation of this is a lateral affricate [tɬh], but much more often it is a lateral fricative.



q' - /q'/ - The combination /q'j/ is pronounced as [kj], and the combination /q'w/ is pronounced as a doubly articulated ejective [kp'].

q - /q/ - The combination /qj/ is pronounced as [k], and the combination /qw/ is pronounced as a doubly articulated tenuis stop [kp], but only word initially.

q - /ʔ/ - This used to be a pharyngeal stop [ʕ], and although this pronounciation is becoming archaic ,it can still be heard



l' - /ɺʔ/ - Except utterance initially (and sometimes phrase initially), this is usually pronounced as a glottal stop [ʔ]. The combination /ɺʔj/ is usually pronounced as a palatalised glottal stop, and likewise the combination /ɺʔw/ is usually pronounced as a labialised glottal stop. Except in the two cases just described, if the preceding word ends in a consonant then this phoneme is only pronounced in extremely careful speech.

' - /H/ - This phoneme is not in the IPA, but could best be described as a creaky voiced [h]. The combination /Hj/ is pronounced as a creaky voiced [j] or [ç], and the combination /Hw/ is pronounced as a creaky voiced /w/.

l' - /ɺʔ/ - This is deleted when not between two vowels, or preceded by a vowel and followed by either /j/ or /w/. It is only glottalised in the most careful speech, and most speakers merge this into /l/ when it is between two vowels. Speakers who pronounce r as [ɾ] between vowels (instead of the usual [ɹ]) also sometimes pronounce l' as [ɾ].



x - /h/ - The combination /hj/ is pronounced as [ç], and the combination /hw/ is pronounced as [ʍ].

h - /ɦ/ - The combination /ɦj/ is pronounced as a breathy voiced [j], and the combination /ɦw/ is pronounced as a breathy voiced [w].

h - /ɦ/ - The combination /ɦj/ is pronounced as a breathy voiced [j], and the combination /ɦw/ is pronounced as a breathy voiced [w].


In monosyllabic words only, the Strong and Weak initial consonants can be used interchangably. The Weak form is normally used, and the Strong form is used for emphasis e.g. hêa [ɦê:a] - 5, xêa [hê:a] - Five!

GeminationEdit

Any consonant that can occur word internally can be geminated if it is the onset of the final syllable of a non-monosyllabic word, and the preceding syllable ends with either a vowel, /ɹ/ or /ɣ/. In the orthography, this is written as a hypen before the consonant that is geminated i.e. (-t) indicates a geminate t /tt/. Lengryis speakers traditionally analyse this as a property of the word as a whole, similar to tone, as if the word takes a suffix the gemination will shift to the onset of the final syllable. e.g. The root "lwa" with gemination means victimise, and without gemination means wait. By themselves the words are indistinguishable, but when affixed the resultant words are different. Here are the words after attaching the suffixes (l'a) meaning a person who does an action, and (khwon) meaning a person who is affected by an action, and with the atelic verb prefixes (nt) for the active voice and (ngye) for the passive voice, we can construct the following words:



lwa-l'a [lwaɺɺa:]- a victimiser

lwal'a [lwaɺa:] - someone who waits

lwa-khwon [lwakkxwo:n] - a victim

lwakhwon [lwakxwo:n] - someone who another person is waiting for

nta-lwá [nthallwá:] - to victimise (atelic)

ntalwá [nthalwá:] - to wait (atelic)

ngye-lwá [ʐellá:] - to suffer from victimisation (atelic)

ngyelwá [ʐelá:] - to have someone wait for you (atelic)



If r - /ɹ/ and z - /ɣ/ are geminated, then they are pronounced as [ʔɹ] and [ʔɣ] respectively as in the following words. (Remember that l' is deleted when not between vowels).



mha-za [mʔaʔɣa:] - silk maker

mhaza [mʔaɣa:] - renewer

mhaz-khwon [mʔaxkkxwo:n] - one who has silk made for him / her.

mhazkhwon [mʔaxkxwo:n] - one who has something renewed for him

nta-màz [ntammà:ɣ] - to make silk (atelic)

ntamàz [ntamà:ɣ] - to renew (atelic)

ngye-màz [ʐemmà:ɣ] - to have silk made for you (atelic)

ngyemàz [ʐemà:ɣ] - to have something renewed for you (atelic)



The tone changes in the verbs derived from the nouns are regular. In the first two words, the atelic verb has Low Rising Tone because the noun roots began with a Weak initial consonant (l) - /l/. In the latter two words the atelic verb has Low Falling Tone because the noun roots began with a Strong initial consonant (mh) - /mʔ/.



PhonotacticsEdit

The range of possible syllables is much less than English. The range of syllable structures is C (j / w) V (ɹ / ɣ) (C). (V stands for a vowel or a diphthong). If there are two consonats in the syllable coda, the second cannot be /ɹ/ or /ɣ/. Voicing is not phonemic for syllable codas, they have the same voicing as the following consonant.



Noun MorphologyEdit

Lengryis noun roots are divided into two categories, Monosyllabic and Multisyllabic. The overwhelming majority of Multisyllabic roots consist of two syllables. The number of roots consisting of three or more syllables is extremely small and almost all of these are loan words.


Monosyllabic roots can never occur by themselves, but must take a suffix depending on what type of object the noun is. Lengryis has an enormous number of nouns that were derived from another noun by changing this suffix e.g. from mhea-twea [mʔeattwe:a] - a horse (belonging to the animal class), we can make new words like mhea-l'a [mʔeaɺɺa:] - a horse trainer, mhea-khon [mʔeakkxô:n] - a horse rider, mhea-nyin [mʔeaɲɲi:n] - a professional horse rider and mhea-zyin /mʔeaɮɮi:n/ - a nomadic race. To create abstract nouns, the monosyllabic root is reduplicated e.g. mhea-mea [mʔeamme:a] - something to do with horses. Below is a list of common noun suffixes (if two are listed together, the former implies a larger object than the latter):


twea [twe:a] - for animals, furniture

l'a [ɺa:] - for someone or something performing an action (usually human)

khwon [kxwo:n] - for someone or something (usually human) receiving either a benefit or a negative effect

nyin [ɲi:n] - for humans in a profession

zyin [ɮi:n] - for nationalities or races of humans

twon [two:n] - for plants, clothes

hwon [ɦwo:n] / thaing [θa:iŋ]- for long thin inanimate objects

bhean [ße:an] / rwong [ɹwo:ŋ] - for objects with a hole in them e.g. doors, windows, gates, donuts, rings, bracelets.

lwiub [lwi:ub] - for pictures of another object

lwum [lwu:m] / khan [kxa:n] - for vehicles

khwiu [kxwiu] - for pairs of things

fwang [ʍa:ŋ] - for eggs, embryos, foetuses

veaz [ðe:aɣ] / theang [θe:aŋ]- for roads, rivers, train lines, paths

kwang [gɣa:ŋ] - for organised groups of things

kwan [gɣa:n] - for objects without a constant shape e.g. clouds

khwa [kxwa:] - for ideas, concepts, beliefs, philosophies

kheang [kxe:aŋ] - for body parts

khizt [cçi:çθ] - for lines

daz [za:ɣ] - for machines

(n)gean [ŋe:an] / [ge:an] - for documents

swut [tswu:θ] - for microscopic and barely visible objects

dyeang [ʝe:aŋ] - myet [mje:θ] - for roughly spherical objects

dwak [zwa:k] - for smells, tastes and patterns

deam [ze:am] - for non mechanical tools

thiz [θi:ɣ] - for places

bhaz [ßa:ɣ] / maz [ma:ɣ] - for flat, thin objects



Multisyllabic nouns cannot take the above suffixes.


Singular / Plural SystemEdit

Lengryis inflects nouns for plurality. Nouns with a High Tone on the final syllable are Singular, and Nouns with a High Falling Tone are Plural e.g. mhea-twea [mʔeattwe:a] - horse becomes mhea-twêa [mʔeattwê:a] - horses. Uncountable nouns are arbitrarily assigned as either Singular or Plural e.g. mhyizdû [mʔjiɣzû:] - water is Plural, and nakhwan [nakxwa:n] - urbanisation is Singular. Diminutives can be formed from uncountable nouns that are normally Plural by changing them to the Singular form (by means of a tone change) e.g. mhyizdu [mʔjiɣzu:] - a little water. Likewise augmentatives can be formed from uncountable nouns that are normally Singular by changing them into the Plural e.g. nakhwân - [nakxwâ:n] - super-urbanisation.


There are a few nouns that have very different meanings depending on whether they take the Singular or Plural e.g. `yizmbizn [Hjiɣmbi:ɣn] - permanent marking (Singular), `yizmbîzn [Hjiɣmbi:ɣn] - permanent obstacle (Plural). (Note that the [H} here means a creaky voiced [h]).


Noun Phrase SyntaxEdit

NumbersEdit

If the noun is indefinite, then numbers come after it e.g. mhea-twêa véam [mʔeattwê:a θé:am] - three horses, mhea-twêa vyì [mʔeattwê:a ʂì:] - four horses, tazbhwû véam [taɣwû: θé:am] - three stables. If the noun is definite, then numbers come before it, and are followed by the particle 'wâf [Hwâ:f] e.g. véam 'wâf mhea-twêa [θé:am Hwâ:f mʔeattwê:a] - the three horses. Ordinal numbers also come before the noun they modify, with the particle mbân [mbâ:n] in between e.g. véam mbân mhea-twea [θé:am mbâ:n mʔeattwe:a] - the third horse. If another noun is used to quantify the noun being counted, then it comes before 'wâf e.g. tazbhwû véam 'wâf mhea-twêa [taɣwû: θé:am Hwâ:f mʔeattwê:a] - three stables of horses, véam 'wâf tazbhwû 'wâf mhea-twê'a [θé:am Hwâ:f taɣwû: Hwâ:f mʔea-ttwêa] - the three stables of horses or véam mbân tazbhwu `wâf mhea-twêa - [θé:am mbâ:n taɣwu: Hwâ:f mʔeattwêa] - the third stable of horses.


Here are the numbers

1 - nùng [nù:ŋ]

2 - vwáng [θwá:ŋ]

3 - véam [θé:am]

4 - vyì [ʂì:]

5 - hêa [ɦê:a]

6 - hwòk [ɦwok]

7 - syèt [tsjè:θ]

8 - bàit [bà:iθ]

9 - kêar [kxê:aɹ]

10 - vyìzb [ʂì:ɣb]

11 - vyìzb `yèt [ʂì:ɣb Hjè:θ]

12 - vyìzb vwáng [ʂì:ɣb θwá:ŋ]

13 - vyìzb véam [ʂì:ɣb θé:am]

...

20 - yî vyìzb [jî: ʂì:ɣb]

21 - yî vyìzb `yèt [jî: ʂì:ɣb Hjè:θ]

22 - yî vyìzb vwáng [jî: ʂì:ɣb θwá:ŋ]

...

30 - véam vyìzb [θé:am ʂì:ɣb]

31 - véam vyìzb `yèt [θé:am ʂì:ɣb Hjè:θ]

32 - véam vyìzb vwáng [θé:am ʂì:ɣb θwá:ŋ]

...

40 - vyì vyìzb [ʂì: ʂì:ɣb]

41 - vyì vyìzb `yèt [ʂì: ʂì:ɣb Hjè:θ]

42 - vyì vyìzb vwáng [ʂì: ʂì:ɣb θwá:ŋ]

...

100 - lwáz [ lwá:ɣ]

101 - lwáz `yèt [lwá:ɣ Hjè:θ]

102 - lwáz vwáng [lwá:ɣ θwá:ŋ]

...

200 - vwáng lwáz [θwá:ŋ lwá:ɣ]

...

1,000 - mpan [mpha:n]

...

10,000 - mùn [mù:n]

...

100,000 - vyìzb mùn [ʂì:ɣb mù:n]

...

110,000 - vyìzb `yèt mùn [ʂì:ɣb Hjè:θ mù:n]

...

1,000,000 - lwáz mùn [lwá:ɣ mù:n]

...

10,000,000 - mpan mùn [mpha:n mù:n]

...

100,000,000 - 'wôk [Hwô:k]


So the number 235,714,689 would be vwáng wôk véam mpan hêa lwáz syèt vyìzb nùng mùn hwòk lwáz bàit vyìzb kêar [θwá:ŋ Hwô:k véam mpha:n ɦê:a lwá:ɣ tsjè:θ ʂì:ɣb nù:ŋ mù:n ɦwok lwá:ɣ bà:iθ ʂì:ɣb kxê:aɹ]


AdjectivesEdit

All adjectives are derived from nouns by a regular process. They are divided into two categories, Permanent and Temporary, and must agree with the noun they modify (which they precede) in number and animacy.. Lengryis only has Attributive adjectives (like the blue as in "the blue sky"). Where English would use a Predicative adjective (like the blue as in "the sky is blue"), Lengryis verbalises the noun instead.

Permanent AdjectivesEdit

Permanent adjectives are used to describe qualities inherent in a particular noun, in other words the speaker believes that the noun has always been and will always be that way. They are derived from Monosyllabic-Root nouns by removing any suffixes and replacing them with -na when describing animate nouns and -nwo when describing inanimate nouns. If they describe a Singulative noun, the final syllable has High Tone, and if they describe a Plurative noun. it has High Falling Tone e.g.


mhea-twea [mʔeattwe:a] - horse

feangtwon [feaŋtwo:n] - straw (more specifically a clump of straw)

mhea-nwo feangtwon - [mʔeannwo: feaŋtwo:n] - a clump of horse straw i.e. straw for horses

mhea-nwô feangtwôn - [mʔeannwô: feaŋtwô:n] - clumps of horse straw i.e. straw for horses

feangna mhea-twea [feaŋna: mʔeattwe:a] - a straw horse i.e. a horse made of straw

feangnâ mhea-twêa [feaŋnâ: mʔeattwê:a] - straw horses i.e. horses made of straw


Sometimes the -nwo suffix is used even when the noun described is animate. This is implies that the adjective describing the noun is somehow much greater / more powerful / more superior than the noun being described e.g.


ngwadha - [ŋmada:] - God

khabha - [kxhaßa:] - singer

ngwatnwo khabha - [ŋmaθnwo: kxhaßa:] - a God singer i.e. a Gospel singer, who might be associated with God, but is not considered divine him/herself.

ngwatna khabha - [ŋmaθna: kxhaßa:] - a God singer i.e. a music superstar, who the speaker believes is divine.


For Multisyllabic-root nouns, the suffix -na is replaced with the particle ' [Hjì:], and the suffix -nwo is replaced by the particle [kxù:]. Both of these particles follow the adjective e.g.


t'aleat [t'ale:aθ] - market

kemwu [kxemwu:] - camel

kemwu kù t'aleat [kemwu: kxù: t'ale:aθ] - a camel market

t'aleat 'yì kemwu [t'ale:aθ Hjì: kemwu:] - a market camel e.g. a camel sent to the market


If the adjective describes a plural noun, then the final syllable of the adjective has High Falling Tone e.g.


t'alêat [t'alê:aθ] - markets

kemwû [kxemwû:] - camels

kemwû kù t'alêat [kemwu: kxù: t'alû:aθ] - camel markets

t'alêat 'yì kemwû [t'alê:aθ Hjì: kemwû:] - market camels e.g. camels sent to the market


Temporary AdjectivesEdit

Temporary adjectives describe states that the speaker believes were once not so, or will cease to be so at some point in the future. In the singular they are formed in exactly the same way as Permanent adjectives, except that the last syllable of the adjective has Falling Rising Tone.


teaznä mhea-twea [teaɣnä: mʔeattwe:a] - a dead horse (the Temporary Adjective is used because it was once alive, compare with teazna mhea-twea [teaɣnä: mʔeattwe:a] a stillborn horse i.e. never alive)

teaznwön kektwes [teaɣnwö ŋkhektwe:ts] - a dead cactus

hyothyïz 'yì mhea-twea [ɦjoθjï:ɣ Hjì: mʔeattwe:a] - a healthy horse

hyothyïz kù nkektwes [ɦjoθjï:ɣ kxù: ŋkwektwe:ts] - a healthy cactus


The situation with pluralisation of Temporary adjectives is slightly more complicated. If the initial consonant of the adjective is Weak, then the tone on the final syllable of the adjective is Low Rising e.g.


teazná mhea-twêa [teaɣná: mʔeattwê:a] - dead horses

teaznwón kektwês [teaɣnwó ŋkhektwê:ts] - dead cacti

hyothyíz l'yì mhea-twêa [ɦjoθjí:ɣ ʔjì: mʔeattwê:a] - healthy horses

hyothyíz kù nkektwês [ɦjoθjí:ɣ ŋkwektwê:ts] - healthy cacti


But if the initial consonant of the adjective is Strong, then it changes to its Weak counterpart in the plural form. Also the tone on the final syllable of the adjective is this case is Low Falling e.g.


phwedhwëf 'yì mhea-twea [phwedwë:f Hjì: mʔeattwe:a] - a preserved horse

phwedhwëf kù nkektwes [phwedwë:f kxù: ŋkwektwe:ts] - a preserved cactus

mpedhwèf 'yì mhea-twêa [mphedwè:f ʔjì: mʔeattwê:a] - preserved horses

mpedhwèf kù nkektwês [mphedwè:f kxù: ŋkwektwê:ts] - expensive cacti


Numbers come before any adjectives describing definite nouns, and immediately after an indefinite noun e.g.

véam hyothyíz 'yì mhea-twêa [θé:am ɦjoθjí:ɣ Hjì: mʔeattwê:a] - the three healthy horses,

hyothyíz 'yì mhea-tyêa véam [ɦjoθjí:ɣ Hjì: mʔeattjê:a θé:am] - three healthy horses


PossessionEdit

Simple Possessive PronounsEdit

Possessive pronouns precede any adjectives, but if the noun is definite, they come after any numbers e.g.

véam mwaz hyothyíz 'yì mhea-tyêa [θé:am mwa:ɣ ɦjoθjí:ɣ Hjì: mʔeattjê:a] - my three healthy horses,

mwaz hyothyíz 'yì mhea-tyêa véam [mwa:ɣ ɦjoθjí:ɣ Hjì: mʔeattjê:a θé:am] - three of my healthy horses


mwaz [mwa:ɣ]- 1st person singular

'air - [Ha:iɹ] - 1st person plural exclusive

mbart [mba:ɹθ]- 1st person plural inclusive

ywau [ɥa:u] - 2nd person singular formal

ywo [ɥo:] - 2nd person singular neutral

ya [ja:] - 2nd person singular casual

ndad [nda:z] - 2nd person plural

'arn [Ha:ɹn] - 3rd person proximative (belonging to the subject of the most recently used verb)

'yos [Hjo:ts] - 3rd person obviative (other cases)


The difference between 'arn and 'yos can be illustrated by the following sentences:


khabha svyingyïf k'yaitaz liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f cç'aita:ɣ liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC mobile phone.SG son.SG

The singer gave a mobile phone to the son


khabha svyingyïf 'arn k'yaitaz liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f Ha:ɹn cç'aita:ɣ liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSPROX mobile phone.SG son.SG

The singer gave her mobile phone to the son


khabha svyingyïf 'yos k'yaitaz liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f Hjo:ts cç'aita:ɣ liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSOBV mobile phone.SG son.SG

The singer gave his / her (another person) mobile phone to the son


khabha svyingyïf k'yaitaz 'arn liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f cç'aita:ɣ Ha:ɹn liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSPROX son.SG

The singer gave a mobile phone to her son


khabha svyingyïf k'yaitaz 'yos liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f cç'aita:ɣ Hjo:ts liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSOBV son.SG

The singer gave a mobile phone to his / her (another person) son


khabha svyingyïf 'arn k'yaitaz 'arn liukshaz [kxaßa: ʈʂijï:f Ha:ɹn cç'aita:ɣ Ha:ɹn liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSPROX mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSPROX son.SG

The singer gave her mobile phone to her son


khabha svyingyïf 'arn k'yaitaz 'yos liukshaz [kxaßa: ʈʂijï:f Ha:ɹn cç'aita:ɣ Hjo:ts liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSPROX mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSOBV son.SG

The singer gave her mobile phone to his / her (another person) son


khabha svyingyïf 'yos k'yaitaz'arn liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f Hjo:ts cç'aita:ɣ Ha:ɹn liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSOBV mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSPROX son.SG

The singer gave his / her (another person) mobile phone to her son


khabha svyingyïf 'yos k'yaitaz 'yos liukshaz [kxhaßa: ʈʂijï:f Ho:ts cç'aita:ɣ Hjo:ts liukɬa:ɣ]]

singer.SG 3PSFEMSGSUBJ-give.TELIC 3PSPOSSOBV mobile phone.SG 3PSPOSSPROX son.SG

The singer gave his / her (another person) mobile phone to that person's son


Complex Possessive PronounsEdit

Lengryis has another set of possessive pronouns used in constructions equivalent to "A's B" or "B of A". The word order in these phrases is always "Xa B A", where A is the possessor, B is whatever is possessed and Xa is a pronoun that agrees with A in number, and gender. There are 6 such pronouns:


hyis [ɦji:ts] - singular human male possessor

hwe [ɦwe:] - singular human female possessor

'yis [Hji:ts] - singular nonhuman animate possessor

dvyai [ðja:i] - plural animate possessor (formal)

dvye [ðje:] - plural animate possessor (casual)

ndu [ndu:] - inanimate possessor


The pronoun used does not depend on the object being possessed, but only on the possessor e.g.


hyis liukshaz khabha [ɦji:ts liukɬa:ɣ kxhaßa:]

3PSPOSSMASCSG son.SG singer.SG

the (male) singer's son


hwe liukshaz khabha [ɦwe: liukɬa:ɣkxhaßa:]

3PSPOSSFEMSG son.SG singer.SG

the (female) singer's son


dvyai liukshaz khabhâ [ðja:i liukɬa:ɣkxhaßâ:]

3PSPOSSANIMPL son.SG singer.PL

the singing couple's son (one son cannot have more than two parents)


hyis liukshâz khabha [ɦji:ts liukɬâ:ɣ kxhaßa:]

3PSPOSSMASCSG son.PL singer.SG

the (male) singer's sons


hwe liukshâz khabha [ɦwe: liukɬâ:ɣkxhaßa:]

3PSPOSSFEMSG son.PL singer.SG

the (female) singer's son


dvyai liukshâz khabhâ [ðja:i liukɬâ:ɣ kxhaßâ:]

3PSPOSSANIMPL son.PL singer.PL

the singers' sons


Also if the possessed object is inanimate and inalienably possessed, then the particle nkwáng [ŋkhwá:ŋ] is inserted between it and the possessor e.g.

k'adhiuk [k'xadiuk] - bone

dhwaktwea [ɗwaktwe:a] - dog

'yis k'adhiuk dhwaktwea [Hji:ts k'xadiuk ɗwaktwe:a] - the dog's bone (part of it's body)

'yis k'adhiuk nkwáng dhwaktwea [Hji:ts k'xadiuk ŋkhwá:ŋ ɗwaktwe:a] - the dog's bone (i.e. that it owns, maybe is chewing or has buried somewhere)


VerbalisationEdit

At least in theory, all verbs are derived from a corresponding noun. The way this is done depends on whether the noun root is Monosyllabic or Multisyllabic, whether it begins with a Strong consonant or a Weak consonant and also on the telicity of the verb.


The Telic aspect is used for completed actions, and the Atelic aspect is used for incomplete actions.


Telic VerbsEdit

The tone on the last syllable of a Telic verb is always Falling Rising. In Multisyllabic-Root words this tone change is the only change that occurs when a verb is derived from a noun e.g.

nakhwan [nakxwa:n] - urbanisation

nakhwän [nakxwä:n] - to become urbanised


Monosyllabic-Root nouns must also take an affix (usually a prefix) when they are verbalised. This affix depends on the transitivity and voice of the verb and agrees with the subject in number and gender. Also if the affix is a prefix, then it's initial consonant mutates to be Strong if the noun root began with a Strong consonant, and Weak if it began with a Weak consonant. In this case the initial consonant of the noun root mutates according to the rules described in the consonants section i.e. the first two consonants in each triplet become the last consonant in the triplet e.g.


vyo [ʂo:] - noun root meaning "sell", no meaning on its own

vyol'a [ʂoɺa:] - seller

vyotwea [ʂotwe:a] - animal for sale

hyivzyö [ɦjixsö:] - sell (3rd person singular male human subject, telic, transitive)

vyizvyö [ʂixsö:] - sell (3rd person singular female human subject, telic, transitive)

dvazvyö [ðaxsö:] - sell (3rd person plural human subject, telic, transitive)

vyol'wën [ʂoɺwë:n] - sell (telic, intransitive) as in the sentence "the item sold well"


svyen [ʈʂe:] - noun root meaning "send", no meaning on its own

svyena [ʈʂena:] - sender

svyenkhwon [ʈʂenkxwo:n] - a person who is sent somewhere

xyizvyën [çixsë:n] - send (3rd person singular male human subject, telic, transitive)

svyizvyën [ʈʂixsë:n] - send (3rd person singular female human subject, telic, transitive)

dhazvyën [ɗaxsë:n] - send (3rd person plural human subject, telic, transitive)

svyenwën [ʈʂenwë:n] - send (telic, intransitive) this word is used to imply that the item reached its intended destination .e.g "the email sent OK"


As we can see with these two examples, when the noun root begins with a Strong consonant (i.e. the svy- in svyen), the initial consonant in the prefix has to be changed to its strong form. Likewise when the noun root begins with a Weak consonant (i.e. the vy- in vyo) the prefixes all begin with Weak consonants, but are otherwise the same. We can also see how the svy- in svyen becomes -vy- when it is no longer word initial.


A full list of these affixes is given in the section on verb transitivity and voice.


Atelic VerbsEdit

Atelic verbs take the same affixes as Telic verbs, except that the initial consonant is always from the Weak category. If the corresponding Telic verb began with a Strong consonant, then the final syllable of the Atelic verb has Low Falling Tone. If the corresponding Telic verb began with a Weak consonant, the the final syllable of the Atelic verb has Low Rising Tone. Below are some conjugations of the verbs for "sell" and "send" in the Atelic aspect:


hyivzyó [ɦjixsó:] - sell (3rd person singular male human subject, atelic, transitive)

vyizvyó [ʂixsó:] - sell (3rd person singular female human subject, atelic, transitive)

dvazvyó [ðaxsö:] - sell (3rd person plural human subject, atelic, transitive)

vyol'wën [ʂoɺwé:n] - sell (telic, intransitive) as in the sentence "the item sold well"


hyizvyèn [ɦjixsè:n] - send (3rd person singular male human subject, atelic, transitive)

vyizvyèn [ʂixsè:n] - send (3rd person singular female human subject, atelic, transitive)

dvazvyèn [ðaxsè:n] - send (3rd person plural human subject, atelic, transitive)

vyenwèn [ʂenwè:n] - send (atelic, intransitive) this word is used to imply that the did not its intended destination e.g. "the email sent, but he couldn't receive it"


Verb Morphology and SyntaxEdit

Transitivity and VoiceEdit

Lengryis speakers themselves analyse Lengryis as have 7 voices, although this analysis conflates transitivity and voice, which traditional grammar has usually considered to be seperate.


Active Intransitive VoiceEdit

This voice is used when the Topic of the sentence is also the Agent (i.e. performed the action), and the verb does not take any other arguments (although it can be a part of a serial verb sequence). If the verb root is Monosyllabic, then the suffix -l`wes [ɺwe:ts] is used. If it is Multisyllabic, then the clitic dva [ða:] is place after the verb e.g.

khabha vyenwès [kxaßa: ʂenwè:ts] - the singer is sending (him / her / it / them / etc.)

khabha hyothyìz dva [kxaßa: ɦjoθjì:ɣ ða:] - the singer is healing (could mean either that the singer is recovering from some kind of illness, injury or setback i.e. healing himself / herself, or that the singer is healing someone else)


Note that this voice can only be used when the Topic is animate.


Stative Intransitive VoiceEdit

This voice is used when the Topic of the sentence is the Patient (i.e. underwent the action), and the verb does not take any other arguments (although like above, it can be a part of a serial verb sequence). If the verb root is Monosyllabic, then the suffix -l`wen [ɺwe:n] is used. If it is Multisyllabic, then the verb takes no affixes or clitics e.g.

mhazwû vyenwèn [mʔaɣwû: ʂenwè:n] - the mail is sending

khabha vyenwès [kxaßa: ʂenwè:ts] - the singer is sending (a better, less literal translation would be "the singer is on tour")

khabha hyothyìz [kxaßa: ɦjoθjì:ɣ] - the singer is healthy


Lengryis has a very large number of verbs that can conjugate into both the Active Intransitive and Stative Intransitive Voices (as can be seen above), and could thus be said to be a Fluid-S language.

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