With this greeting I want to start my new blog, batunurisi Word of the Week. Batunurisi is my conlang, and I’ll be posting a new word in it, complete with example sentence, pronounciation in the IPA, gloss*, translation, and commentary, presumably every week. Other people have Word of the Day blogs, but as a student I don’t have much time so for now it’ll be Word of the Week.
*The italic line is called a gloss, which is basically a word-to-word translation with some ALL-CAPS annotations. Whenever a new one comes up, I’ll explain them in the commentary. The annotations used here are straightforward: SG is singular, INF is infinitive.
In this first example you can already see a lot of features of batunurisi:
- Adjectives (and adverbs) are placed in front of the modified noun (or verb), and connected with a hyphen.
- There is a special kind of adjective, the comparative (that name is used a little more loosely for batu than for English), which puts the following word in some relation to the preceeding word. For example, or means “of” and kwon-or-blog means “the blog of me”, or “my blog”.
- The sentence structure is SOV. Natlangs (natural languages) that also have this structure include Latin, Japanese, Turkish and Hindi, and according to Wikipedia, it is the most common sentence structure in natlangs.
- Punctuation is spaced on both sides, to distinguish it from intonation marks, which I’ll introduce in the next section.
A word that I derived from muxop is muxo — hello. Yes, that means that I had “to greet” before “hello”. This is because in batu, saying muxo Fenhl-Tanbusraz for “hello, Tanbusraz Fenhl” is wrong. (Tanbusraz Fenhl is my Author Avatar to some extent.) You have to say “kwon Fenhl-Tanbusraz muxop . ” which really means “I greet Tanbusraz Fenhl”.
Someone saying “Hello!” would be written .muxo! in batunurisi, with the dot and bang intonation marks meaning that is sounds like a greeting or something similar. Other intonations include:
- !word! — shouted, loud
- word. — monotonous (see comments)
- .word, — whispered
- word? — rising
- ?word — high
- word! — low
- !word — falling
- !word. — headline (not an intonation, but still widely used)
- ;word. — annoyed
- word; — incomplete (when it sounds like the speaker stopped mid-sentence or even mid-word)
- ,word, — hoarse (EDIT: not creaky, this was a translation error)
- .word — monotonous, robotic (see comments)
there are a lot more, but this is only supposed to be an overview of what intonation marks do in batunurisi.