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Thread: WIP: Aardia and the Kyzian Empire

  1. #31
      Jalyha is offline
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    I guess it all depends on how you look at what's important.

    I did want to clarify one thing though.. I didn't say, really that what you stated was controversial... just that I view it in a different way.

    Language evolution is very complex, but I don't think it's at all controversial to note that Norse and English are far more closely related than Etruscan (which isn't an Italic language) and Italian (or Latin).

    Except that Norse and English diverged many times (1) north vs west germanic, (2) West Germanic to old norse (3) North Germanic to old english, (4) old norse to old norwegian, (5) Old english to middle english, and so on, to whatever end result/language you end up with, VS (1) Etruscan from Italic, (2) Italic - Lhatzo, (3) Lhatzo - Latin.

    It's nearer, even though it's heading in a different direction.

    If I head south from Richmond VA to Chesterfield, from chesterfield to petersburg, and petersburg to dinwiddle, I'm *still* closer (even though I'm moving the opposite direction) to Hanover, than my cousin, who headed down that road... if she went richmond to hanover to bowling green, to bel alton maryland, to st charles to waldorf.

    I'm speaking more in degrees of separation than anything.

    You can see this in a practical way by looking at the root words of... idk ... warning labels on packaging. I don't understand any of the German because the words and patterns are so very foreign. I can *almost* understand, if not the message, at least the basic meaning, of the same message written in spanish, because most of the words have a *similar* root.

    (The kind of thing that everyone who tries to "fake" knowing a language will add to every word, lol)

    "Me go to you "house-o"." As ridiculous as it sounds when people mess up like that, it does have a basis. Spanish/english have a lot of cognates.

    like...



    Delicious

    Delicioso


    OR Words that are spelled *exactly the same*, like Animal, or hospital

    Tons more, and lots of rules here

    I think that kind of proves that with languages it's more about degrees of seperation, than linear progression


    Then again, as I said, I'm not a linguist... don't even speak any foreign languages, except my own conlangs
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  2. #32
      Azelor is offline
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    The reason english look similar to spanish is in large part due to William the conqueror, who added a lot of french words to the english language. French is much closer to spanish than english is since they are both latin languages but english feels more latin than Deutsch. Some english words or some sentences feels more germans than latin, but they are the exceptions.

    Yea, it's funny to see some people adding a/o when they fake spanish...

    You really speak you own conlangs ?
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  3. #33
      Jalyha is offline
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    I do. Fluently with some, not so much so with others... depends on how old they are and how far I've developed them... not that the two things are necessarily related... a couple of us were discussing it in one of the toponomy threads (mine, lol) .


    My sister (not my real sister but I call her my sister) she would half-fake, half loud-talk, half imitate her way to people who spoke other languages... like... to a French-speaking African, she would say "Bon joor Jam bo sun" which, is at least halfway to what the two greetings, in french and swahili, must have sounded like to her untrained ears, but THEN she would speak in english and say something stupid like.... "Come-eau to-eau my-eau house-eau por dinner-eau" which is pretty ridiculous and probably offensive, at an ear-splitting volume. Or worse, she'd forget he said he spoke french and start trying to imitate the Swahili, and instead, end up sounding like a grunting gorilla, which HAD to be offensive, not to mention, the wrong fake-language entirely!

    Nothing anyone can say will make her stop it either

    And I didn't know that about french/William the Conqueror

    So, perhaps, for "accuracy" you'd want to go the opposite way, but it still "feels" that way. So, again, it comes down to what your intended audience is going to go for, I suppose
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  4. #34
      SumnerH is offline
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    Vocabulary wise, English borrowed a lot from the Romance languages (particularly French, as noted above). It's still got more common words of Germanic origin than of Latin origin, but it's one of the more mixed languages in the world.

    The rule of thumb is that because French came in through the upper classes and because day-to-day vocabulary is less able to change then less common words, you see "fancy" words of Romance origin and "common" words of Germanic origin: hut and house Germanic, villa and mansion Latin. Crap (and f--k and s--t) Germanic, excrement and copulate French. Mother and father, German; paternal and maternal Latin. Book Germanic, library Romance. Fight Germanic, battle Latin. Daily use words that have been important for millenia are typically German (horse, sun, moon, field, water, crop, corn, wheat) because people use them so often that they're unlikely to change them. Likewise indigenous species (cow, ox, deer, wolf, fish, bird).

    This plays out in word origins: 97% of the 100 most common English words and about 60% of the 1000 most common are of Germanic origin, but about 50% of words that aren't in the 2000 most common are of Romance origin.

    But that's just vocabulary, which is the least important part of figuring out how languages at their core are similar or different.

    English is structurally much more like German:

    The core language features (not particular to one word) come from Germanic roots. E.g. it's "John's computer"--the 's is Germanic--rather than the Romance-style "the computer of John". Even borrowed Latin words are congugated with a Germanic style (I reduce/I reduced/I will reduce, the latter with an auxiliary) rather than a Latin style stem change (reduco/reduxi/reducam), whereas French and Spanish do the latter.

    In Germanic languages, modal helping verbs like can, might, may, shall, will are common--we say "He can work", Germans say "Er kann arbeiten". Contrast this to Romance languages, which use a fully conjugated verb meaning "to be able" with an infinitive ("Puede trabajar" in Spanish, or "Il peut travailler" in French). Germanic infinitives are formed with an auxiliary word (to drive, zu treiben) while Romace ones use a stem change (conducir, conduire).

    English has a distinction between strong verbs, which change stems to indicate past tense (ride/rode, freeze/froze German reitet/ritt, friert/froren) and weak verbs which use a suffix to indicate past tense (climb/climbed, dance/danced Germen klettert/kletterte, tanzt/tanzte). Romance languages make no such distinction (e.g. congela/congelaron).

    There are many more technical things you can look at that show the similarity of English with Germanic languages (e.g. Grimm's law).
    Last edited by SumnerH; 02-06-2014 at 11:24 PM.

  5. #35
      SumnerH is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jalyha View Post
    Except that Norse and English diverged many times (1) north vs west germanic, (2) West Germanic to old norse (3) North Germanic to old english, (4) old norse to old norwegian, (5) Old english to middle english, and so on, to whatever end result/language you end up with, VS (1) Etruscan from Italic, (2) Italic - Lhatzo, (3) Lhatzo - Latin.
    1. Your classification of English might be off a bit: it's a West Germanic language, but norse/norwegian/North Germanic don't play into it until you get back before West Germanic on the tree. The splits would be more like Germanic -> West Germanic -> Anglo/Frisian -> Old English, and Germanic -> North German -> Old High Norse -> Norwegian.

    (I think that's actually what you meant to say, just clarifying in case it isn't).

    2. The Etruscan link is entirely wrong. Etruscan did not derive from Italic, nor did Italic derive from Etruscan. Etruscan was not even an Indo-European language--English, Sanskrit, and Russian are more closely related to Italic languages or to Italian than Etruscan was.

    Etruscan was a Tyrrhenian language, akin to Raetic and Lemnian. There is a proposed link to Eteocretan, which might establish those and an early eteo-Minoan language as a large Aegean pre-Indo-European language family that was later supplanted, but that link isn't widely accepted.
    Last edited by SumnerH; 02-06-2014 at 11:29 PM.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jalyha View Post
    Spanish/english have a lot of cognates.
    The false cognates are even funnier--new speakers will sometimes say "Estoy embarazado" thinking they're saying "I'm embarassed", but "embarazado" actually means "pregnant" in Spanish.

  7. #37
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    Aye, I'll cede the point on the grammar.

    It's fun to learn new things. (And I have a new idea for my "nobility" and my newest conlang, now!)

    And, if I was wrong on the details, I apologize, as I said, I'm no linguist, I go primarily by "feel" and the things I've taught myself

    However, even if we go back to your statement, that it's more similar, and take it as a given that:

    about half of city names come from earlier languages or overlapping/conquering/neighboring languages, though spellings are generally corrupted into the local vulgar.
    It's still a recognizable pattern, where as, previously, these names simply seemed... scattered. Since you adjusted for that, I just want to clarify, I'm not arguing your other name choices, simply continuing the discussion, because I like words

    Now that I've clarified (I worry that people will think I'm trying to argue... I'm not!) I did want to say that...

    Certain things that happen, language-wise, on Earth ONLY happened that way due to an increasingly specific series of events. If you change one of those, it could change the entire course of language progression.

    So, using specific examples is great for backing up your choices... (which I generally do by saying, "Cause it's my world and I'm GOD here and I can do what I WANT!"), even if they don't need justification. BUT it does narrow the view on how languages work as a whole.

    If you look at native american tribal languages, for example (I won't use Cherokee, because NOTHING is like the cherokee language, lol)* Sioux and Chippewa/Ojibwe, you'll see that although many words are SIMILAR, as are many language patterns, the only SHARED words are from more modern times.

    And each of those languages has its' own dialects. (Which people mistakenly call "tribes", but anyway...)

    But there is a clear dilineation between the endonyms and exonyms ... and much more respect for each.

    This led to many tribal peoples becoming, not just bi-lingual, but multi-lingual.

    In societies with a caste system, the upper class might/would train their children to speak French and Latin, and in the lower classes (or societies without much of a caste system) no one knew any language but their own... and were often unable to communicate outside their own regional dialect.

    *Tribes* that live near one another, however, tend to adapt by learning as many languages and dialects as possible, or inventing a seperate "trade" language, that is a mix of all the nearby dialects. (You see a lot of this now with arab/african/indian populations who often speak at least 2 languages and several dialects) (Also, until VERY recently, a lot of very religious cultures that pass down at least parts of their language(s) no matter where they live (or for how many generations!) Ex: Amish and Jewish cultures)


    Gah, my mind and my words are rambling again... where was I going with this?


    So if your land had a less decidedly roman/european history (which it doesn't, so for future reference) it would be much more common (to the best of my understanding) to see the "local vulgar" than the fully translated version.

    And it's nearly Jalyha's bedtime again ... I always ramble when I'm sleepy
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  8. #38
      Jalyha is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by SumnerH View Post
    The false cognates are even funnier--new speakers will sometimes say "Estoy embarazado" thinking they're saying "I'm embarassed", but "embarazado" actually means "pregnant" in Spanish.

    Maybe he's embarassed that he's pregnant?
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  9. #39
      Viking is offline
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    Yea, English definitely is closer to Norse/German than to Latin languages. It has borrowed a lot of vocabulary from Latin words but that doesn't change the origin and nature of the language.
    Interesting fact: Maltese structurally is a form of Arabic and is a Semitic language but has half its words from standard Italian and Sicilian and Italian.
    Interesting fact 2: Arabic has many dialects some of which several are mutually unintelligible.
    Interesting fact 3: This is also true of the Chinese languages but they look the same when written down. Since it is one country they are considered dialects.
    Interesting fact 4: The Scandinavian languages are more or less mutually intelligible but since they exist in different countries they are seen as different languages.
    Last edited by Viking; 02-07-2014 at 12:03 AM.
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  10. #40
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    And 5) Finnish is a weird outlier that's not related to Swedish/Danish/Norwegian/Icelandic, though some vocabulary is borrowed.

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