| Arie |
|Period||c. 4500 YP|
|Classification|| Edastean |
|Basic word order||VSO|
- Ndak Ta (c. -1900 YP)
Notes on the evolution of Arie
The most obvious changes from Aríe to Arie are shifts in which features are considered phonemic; aspiration on consonants is no longer phonemic, but vowel roundedness is. The first change arises from a weakening of intervocalic unaspirated stops to the glottal stop, which in turn lost its phonemicity in favour of the system of creaky-voiced vowels.
An equally significant change was the loss of most intervocalic semivowels, creating a large system of diphthongs. Many of these simplified and merged, leading to a more stable vowel system in which rounded and unrounded vowels have to be considered phonemic, as rounded vowels can follow non-labialised consonants and vice versa. (However, vowels still follow the correct type of consonant more often than not.)
The vowel changes in particular have had drastic effects on Arie's morphology, with the mergers and analogical rearranging conspiring to reduce ten forms of the noun to four – or for some nouns only three.
Arie has the following consonant phonemes (X-SAMPA and orthography):
|Plosives||/p t k p_w t_w k_w/||<p t k pw tw kw>|
|Affricates||/ts ts_w tK/||<z zw tl>|
|Nasals||/m n N m_w n_w N_w/||<m n ŋ mw nw ŋw>|
|Fricatives||/f s S x s_w S_w x_w/||<f s sh x sw shw xw>|
|Laterals||/l K\ l_w/||<l lh lw>|
|Approximants||/r\ r\_w r\_j j w/||<r rw rj j w>|
Note that labialisation is distinctive on all consonants except /j/ and /w/; however, the former phonemes /tK_w f_w K\_w/ have respectively merged with /t_w x_w l_w/. Labialised consonants may be realised with a slight labial off-glide.
Arie has a large vowel system, with /i y I Y 1 M u e 2 E 7 o O A/ as distinct phonemes, represented orthographically as <i y ih yh y u u e e eh uh o oh a>. (But the <h> that distinguishes /i/ from /I/ etc. is not written when the vowel is unstressed or creaky-voiced; see below.) Note that the pairs /1 y/, /e 2/ and /u M/ are not distinguished orthographically; these are recent splits, since vowel roundedness was merely allophonic in Aríe. (However, for the purposes of this grammar, I have used <ÿ ë ü> for /y 2 M/, reserving the unmarked <y e u> for /1 e u/.) There are in addition five diphthong phonemes: /7i e7 oi Ai A7/, written as <ui eu oi ai au>.
The system of unstressed vowels is simpler, with only six vowel qualities being distinguished: /I Y E 7 O A/, written as <i y e u o a>. (That is, when stressed <i> or <ih> becomes unstressed by addition of a prefix, it becomes /I/ and is written <i>, and the same with the other vowels.) All five diphthongs may occur in unstressed positions.
Arie also has a system of creaky-voiced vowels, indicated with a grave accent. Creaky-voiced vowels have merged into the same smaller system of phonemes as unstressed vowels. There are only three creaky-voiced diphthongs, /Ai E7 7i/, each written with a grave accent on its first vowel. (No, I haven't made a typo; the "normal" diphthong is /e7/, its creaky-voiced equivalent is /E7_k/.)
All plosives, plus /ts/ but not including /tK/, are aspirated in the syllable onset (in other words, whenever they come before a vowel).
Fricatives are voiced intervocalically.
/x/ becomes [C] before front vowels, again with the voiced allophone [j\] intervocalically. Word-final unstressed vowels are tensed: /I Y E O/ become [i y e o].
/r\/ and /r\_w/ become [r] and [r_w] at the start of a word. /K\/ devoices to [K] in word-final position. (These two rules are carried over from Aríe.)
Polysyllabic words regularly stress the first syllable.
Arie is an entirely CV(C) language, and syllable-final consonants are only permitted at the end of a word. Sometimes two vowels come together orthographically; where this happens, phonetically they will be separated by the appropriate glide. Thus the name of the language is pronounced [?Ar\Ije] with a [j] glide (for the glottal stop, see below).
Creaky-voiced vowels are separated from a following vowel with a glottal stop rather than a glide: tèe "crown (absolutive possessed case)" is pronounced [t_hE_k?e]. Glottal stop also occurs before a word-initial orthographic vowel.
/j/, /w/ and /r_j/ cannot occur word-finally; there are no other prohibitions on initial or final consonants. When a labialised consonant occurs word-finally, it is followed by a short schwa.
Arie distinguishes four cases: ergative non-possessed (ENP), ergative possessed (EP), absolutive non-possessed (ANP) and absolutive possessed (AP). The ergative and absolutive obey the standard distinction: ergative is used for the subject of a transitive verb, absolutive for the object of a transitive or the argument of an intransitive. The possessed forms are used to mark one noun as possessed by another:
rwaurin shihe miru nirwoi yn
love dog-EP father-ENP horse-AP heretic-ANP
the father's dog loves the heretic's horse
Nouns decline differently depending on whether the stem ends in a vowel or a consonant:
(1) Consonant stem
There are two consonantal declensions, depending on whether the final consonant is labialised:
In addition, if the final consonant is a fricative (not counting /K\/), this becomes labialised in the ENP form (remember that the labialised version of /f/ is /x_w/), and becomes the corresponding plosive in the two possessed forms: /f s x/ become /p t k/ respectively. (This leaves out /S/, which is not found as a stem ending.)
Stems ending in creaky-voiced vowels also take the consonant stem endings, as do some nouns ending in normal vowels. Note that in both cases, the endings are placed after the final vowel; they do not replace it like the true vowel stems (see below).
(2) Vowel stems
Vowel stems form the ENP by replacing the final vowel by <uh> (<u> if unstressed) and the EP by replacing the final vowel by <e>. There are eleven groups of vowel stems, each forming the AP in a different way:
(Again, in the vowel + <h> stems, the <h> is only written if the vowel is stressed. Note that some of the stem groups have the same form for two of the cases, and the last (uh) group has the same form for three.)
If the stem has only one syllable, the vowel is replaced in the AP, but the ENP and EP are formed by suffixing -u and -e.
The plural is formed with a prefix, wo- before consonants and wop- before vowels. However, nouns beginning with /a/ take the wo- prefix and drop the /a/.
Stems beginning with certain consonants undergo lenition as follows:
In stems beginning with /f/, /x/, /x_w/ or a semivowel, these drop out altogether, and the following vowel merges with the /o/ of the prefix as follows:
|a, o, oh||o (exception: /o/ after /w/ becomes /u/)|
|other back vowel||u|
The comparative prefix is re- before a consonant, rep- before a vowel. Consonant lenitions after this prefix are the same as those following the plural prefix.
Quantifiers are also prefixes on the noun.
|ihru-||all of (takes the lenited stem)|
|auru-||all, every (takes the lenited stem)|
|na-||some, a little|
Except in the case of na-, these prefixes drop their final vowel if the stem begins with a vowel; na- becomes nap-.
Higher numbers are formed by concatenation: ari-rwo 11, ih-rwo 12, rwo-ih 20, ari-rwo-ih 21, etc.
Ordinal numbers are formed with a prefix lheh-, with the following being irregular:
Arie verbs do not inflect for person, but only for tense, aspect and mood, which are marked as prefixes. The sixteen forms of the Aríe verb have been reduced to nine:
The two-syllable prefixes lose their second vowel before a stem beginning with a vowel; wë- and lheh- become wù- and lhè-.
Certain verbs form the subjunctive by ablaut of the first vowel rather than using the separate set of prefixes; the most common vowel changes are <au> to either <o> or <ÿ>, <o> to <a> and <oi> to <ai>. (Just one verb, zè, shows an <è> to <ì> change.) These changes are indicated in the dictionary entries.
There are no participles or infinitives; the bare stem is used as an infinitive with auxiliary verbs, and pihn "with" can be used to give the meaning of a participle: nehraf pihn pu "the growing animal".
To be is irregular (and does not have a progressive form):
Basic word order is VSO. In transitive clauses, the subject is ergative, the object absolutive. To be and to become take two absolutive arguments.
rwaurin shihu nirw
love dog-ENP horse-ANP
the dog loves the horse
Adjectives (including numbers) and possessors come after the noun. Adverbs come after the verb. Prepositions precede the nouns they modify, which take the absolutive case, and the prepositional phrase as a whole comes after the noun or verb it relates to.
Auxiliaries precede the main verb. Negation is expressed with the auxiliary ihn:
ihn rwaurin shihu nirw
NEG love dog-ENP horse-ANP
the dog doesn't love the horse
Relative clauses are formed with the relative pronoun tihn; their structure is like that of relative clauses in English, except that the verb comes next after the relative pronoun, with any other arguments coming after it.
shih tihn rwaurin nirw
dog-ANP that love horse-ANP
the dog that loves the horse
shih tihn rwaurin nirwu
dog-ANP that love horse-ENP
the dog that the horse loves
For all nouns ending in vowels, the final vowel of the ANP form is given in brackets. The mark (C) denotes that a noun ending in a vowel nonetheless takes the consonant stem endings.
For all verbs with an ablaut subjunctive, the first vowel of the subjunctive is given in brackets.
|sub.||subordinating conjunction (requires verb to be in the subjunctive)|
|aires||adj.||(of weather) cold, chilly|
|airin||v.||to be cold, to freeze|
|amazilh||v.||to shine, glow|
|are||prep.||as, like, in the manner of|
|arem||n.||(1) neighbour; (2) sun|
|arerui (ui)||n.||annoyance, irritation|
|arirù||n.||(1) king; (2) kingdom|
|arwairai (C)||n.||prisoner; victim; sacrifice|
|arwaunalhe (ai)||n.||tradition; ritual (mildly pejorative)|
|atw||sub.||where, in the place that|
|aushe (ai)||n.||chair, stool|
|ax||adv.||really (adds emphasis)|
|è||prep.||of, belonging to|
|eh (C)||n.||enemy; foe|
|ehlharin||v.||to have sex|
|ehnaren||v.||to damage, to hurt|
|ehtw||v.||to begin, to start|
|en||v.||(1) to say; (2) to rest|
|èna (ai)||n.||lovely girl; (slang) whore|
|eŋurin||v.||to befriend; (slang) to have an affair with|
|eunari (ai)||n.||heretic; traitor|
|fy||adj.||generous, selfless (or wishing to appear so)|
|fy (y)||n.||homosexual man|
|i (i)||n.||man, male person|
|ihkalh||v.||to clear a path through snow|
|irira (ai)||n.||sanctuary, place of safety|
|irwù||n.||mistress, kept woman|
|jürun||adj.||powerful; in authority|
|keh (ai)||n.||road, path|
|ken||v.||to mock; to belittle|
|kihn||n.||(wise) old man; mentor|
|kwo||adv.||apparently (expresses surprise)|
|lwara (ui)||n.||name, title|
|lwuin||sub.||in order to, with the intention of|
|lwaurjin (o)||v.||to want|
|mihrarjin||v.||to celebrate; (slang) to be naked|
|mwaurjin (o)||v.||to protest; (slang) to be loud when having sex|
|nìnwo (oi)||n.||prophet, holy man|
|nwauŋin (o)||v.||to go|
|nwaurjin (o)||v.||to die|
|ŋaren||v.||to dishonour, bring shame on|
|pwaulhas (ÿ)||v.||to take, to remove|
|rehrjin||v.||(1) to hear; (2) to send|
|rui (ui)||v.||breath, vitality|
|rwauŋaka (ai)||n.||charlatan, deceiver|
|rwaurin (o)||v.||to love|
|rworjin (a)||v.||to create, to start|
|shüxi (i)||n.||trade, commerce|
|si||con.||and so, thus|
|swoirjin (ai)||v.||to burn|
|tÿrin||v.||to lust after|
|ui (ui)||n.||prostitute (more formal than èna)|
|uin||v.||(1) to drink; (2) to raise, lift, wake up|
|üpin||v.||to defeat, to conquer|
|waurorjin (o)||v.||to forget|
|wehrjin||v.||(1) to attack; (2) to name|
|xihurje||adj.||blue or green|
|xwoh||n.||sheep (irregular plural: wuh)|
|xwoh||sub.||when; at the time that|
|ynw||prep.||in front of, before|
|zè (ì)||v.||to laugh|
The legend of Emperor Shehŋan
Wùen Shehŋan arirù jurun, arirùai Kwohlh, mihùai arem won twà:
PAST-speak Shehŋan-ANP(1) king-ANP mighty king-AP Kwohlh-ANP brother-AP sun-ANP and moon-ANP
Shehŋan, the mighty king, king of Kwohlh, brother of the sun and moon, said:
“ynw wetalwùin are woi keretl è my are, ehx! Wehŋ ihrarirù rwaurai xihreu y are.
before PAST-sit I-ABS on throne-ANP of father-AP I-ABS, alas! PAST-be all-king-ANP foreign hostile to I-ABS
“Before I sat on the throne of(2) my father, alas! All the foreign kings(3) were hostile to me.
“Wùen worirù rwaurai jurus:
PAST-speak PL-king-ANP foreign nearby
“The nearby foreign kings said:
“‘Wehŋ my ehn arirù mèu. Ehx! wùupin ehr nenarirùai wùe
PAST-be father-AP he-ABS king-ANP brave. Alas! PAST-conquer he-ERG many-king-AP PL-enemy-ANP
“‘His father was a brave king. Alas! he conquered many enemy kings
“‘won welherjin ehn ne
and PAST-become he-ABS god-ANP
“‘and he became a god
“‘ary pihn fehzù rè ehr tihn talwùin woi keretl è my ehr arif.’
but with luck-ANP be he-ABS that sit on throne-ANP of father-AP he-ABS child-ANP
“‘but luckily he that sits on the throne of his father is a child.’
“Xwoh, ynw wenwauŋin are y worirù xihreu y are,
when before PAST-go I-ABS to PL-king-ANP hostile to I-ABS
“When, before I went to the kingdoms hostile to me,
“wenwauŋin are tihn rè mihùai arem won twar pihn woi y Wò
PAST-go I-ABS that be brother-AP sun-ANP and moon-ANP with happiness(4) to Wò
“I, who am brother of the sun and moon, went with happiness to Wò [name of a goddess]
“wemirarjin y are
PAST-celebrate to I-ABS(5)
I celebrated for myself
“won wùuin rer shwamekai are y Men My.
and PAST-raise I-ERG hand-AP I-ABS to mother-ANP shining
“and I raised my hand to the Shining Mother.
“‘Arjai are tihn rè xanai woxwù,
goddess-AP I-ABS that be light-AP PL-star-ANP
“‘My goddess, who is the light of the stars,
“‘ken worirùu jurus tihn wehrjin are arif are
belittle PL-king-ENP nearby that name I-ABS child-ANP I-ABS
“‘the nearby kings who name me a child belittle me
“‘won ehtw wehrjin ehrwa wurui ritai arwolhin rweu.
and begin attack they-ERG border-AP land-AP holy you[PL]-ABS
“‘and they begin to attack the borders of your holy land.
“‘Kill the heathens!’
“Wererjin Wò wureai pỳai are.
PAST-hear Wò PL-word-AP mouth-AP I-ABS
“Wò heard the words of my mouth.
“Wùuin y are won werepin y arazwyn y ihrainai are
PAST-raise she-ERG I-ABS and PAST-give she-ERG(6) strength-ANP to arm-AP I-ABS
“She raised me and she gave strength to my arm
“won nih woiŋ rwa wùupin rer wehn tihn wemwaurjin eh are
and in PL-year-ANP ten PAST-conquer I-ERG they-ABS that PAST-protest against I-ABS
“and in ten years I conquered they that protested against me
“won wetez rer nenarwairai won neneu won nenaxwo
and PAST-capture I-ERG many-prisoner-ANP and many-ox-ANP and many-sheep-ANP
“and I captured many prisoners and oxen and sheep
“won wererjin rer wihn y Khwolh.”
and PAST-send I-ERG they-ABS to Khwolh-ANP
“and I sent them to Khwolh.”
1. Shehŋan is absolutive here because to speak is treated as intransitive.
2. Of can be translated either with è or with a possessed noun. Use of è is restricted to ownership of physical objects (so here it is appropriate for "the throne of my father"), and is not used when the possessor is a personal pronoun.
3. Arirù can mean either "king" or "kingdom". I give what seems to be the more appropriate translation each time.
4. All adjectives can be used as abstract nouns; thus here woi "happy" is used for "happiness" (and arazwyn "strong" for "strength" later on). This can be combined with pihn "with" to give the adverbial meaning "happily".
5. Notice how putting y "to" before the intransitive subject makes the verb into a sort of reflexive.
6. Note that y "she" must be repeated; when one argument is dropped from conjoined clauses, it can only be the absolutive.