Tserzou

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Tserzou
Period c. 0 YP
Spoken in
Total speakers ~2000
Writing system unknown
Classification unknown
Typology
Basic word order SOV
Morphology fusional
Alignment unknown
Credits
Created by User:Nort

Tserzou /tsʼɪɛχzɯə/ is a language spoken somewhere by some people.

Phonology

Labial Dental Alveolar Lateral Velar Uvular Glottal
p pʼ b t tʼ d ts tsʼ dz tɬ tɬʼ dɮ <tl tlʼ dl> k kʼ g ʔ <ʼ>
ɸ β <f w> s z ɬ l <lh l> x ɣ <kh gh> χ ʁ <‌q r>
m n ŋ <ng>
Front unrounded Front rounded Back unrounded Back rounded Short rounded Short unrounded
i <ih> y ɪu̯ <yh iu> (ɯ <ou>) u <uh> ɪ ʏ <y>
ɪɛ <ie> ʏœ <yoe> ɯə <ou> uɔ <uc>
e <eh> ø oɪ̯ <‌u oi> o <oh> ə <a>
ɛɪ <ei> œʏ <oey> ɔu <cu>
eɛ <ee> øɶ wʌ <ua ov> ʌ <v> ɔ <c> œ <oe> ɛ <e>
æ <ae> wæ <oae> a <ah> wa <oah>

[ɿ] only appears in open syllables after sibilants, [ɯ] only appears in open syllables after nonsibilants, and [ɯə] only appears in closed syllables, so these are treated as the same phoneme.

Syllable structure is CV(C). Permissible coda consonants are /n k ŋ χ ʔ/, and additionally in stressed syllables /p m/. Some word-internal clusters, e.g. in keisqaq candle and oahtqouj hammer, could be explained with final /s t/.

There are two tones, low and high. The low tone is written <j> except in syllables ending in /p k χ/, where <‌b g r> are written instead.

/β/ is written <v> word-initially.

Nouns

Nouns inflect for three binary oppositions - singular vs. plural, absolute vs. construct, and animate vs. inanimate - and four cases - nominative, accusative, lative, and ergative.

DEF.SG DEF.PL INDEF.SG INDEF.PL
ANIM INAN ANIM INAN ANIM INAN ANIM INAN
ABS NOM -zi -ziq -da -daq
ACC -zaj -zala -zaq -zalha -daj -da
LAT -zin -zi -zij -den -de -dej
ERG -gan -raj -dan -daj
CON NOM -goe -roeq -doe -doeq
ACC -raj -gala -raq -galha -doej -doe
LAT -goen -goe roej -doen -doe -doej
ERG -(w)oen -(w)oej -boen -boej

The voicing of the initial depends on the tone and final of the preceding syllable: it is voiced unless followed by a high-toned syllable ending in a plosive coda. (There is, of course, extensive phonetic variation.) Certain words undergo further transformations, for example TODO.

Example declensions for rahb- 'woman' and rohp- 'river'

rahb- rohp-
DEF.SG DEF.PL INDEF.SG INDEF.PL DEF.SG DEF.PL INDEF.SG INDEF.PL
ABS NOM rahbzi rahbziq rahbda rahbdaq
ACC rahbzaj rahbzaq rahbdaj rahbdaq rohpsala rohpsalha rohpta rohptaq
LAT rahbzin rahbzij rahbden rahbdej rohpsi rohpsij rohpten rohptej
ERG rahbgan rahbraj rahbdan rahbdaj rohpkan rohpqaj rohptan rohptaj


Cases

Nominative

The nominative case marks animate subjects of intransitive sentences:

saenzi
saen-zi
dog-DA.NOM
zeeloek
zeeloek
urinate
The dog is pissing.


As well as animate subjects of transitive sentences:

bijnihgoe
bij-nih-goe
2SG.POSS-mother-DC.NOM
seemdaq
seem-daq
goat-IA.ACC.PL
toemdloen
toem-dloen
fuck-PLUR
Your mother fucks goats.

The nominative is the citation form of animate nouns:

saenzi
saen-zi
dog-DA.NOM
dog

Accusative

The accusative case marks direct objects of transitive verbs:

zeezi
zee-zi
man-DC.NOM
uahtqcujden
uahtqcuj-den
hammer-IC.LAT
byn
byn
INS
vihjdahla
vihj-dahla
boulder-IC.ACC.PL
tlouk
tlouk
break
The man is breaking boulders with a hammer.
vee
vee
1SG
k'yoejdaj
k'yoej-daj
deer-IA.ACC:ANIM
k'imyng
k'im-Ing
shoot-A
I shot a deer.

Lative

Indirect Object Lative
vee
vee
1SG
vakeisqaqala
va-keisqaq-kala
1SG.POSS-candle-DC.ACC
k'yoejzin
k'yoej-zin
man-DA.LAT
khating
khat-Ing
give-A
I gave the man my candle.
Lative of Direction or Intention

Statements of direction or intention, other than 'to so.'s house' (which takes a final glottal stop and high tone), take the lative.

vee
vee
1SG
tl'oizi
tl'oi-zi
hill-DA.LAT
teing
teing
go
I'm going to the hill.

cf.:

vee
vee
1SG
vatihnga'
va-tihn-ga'
1SG.POSS-house-DC.???
teing
teing
go
I'm going home.
Postpositional Lative

Certain postpositions, including the instrumental =byn, take the lative.

vak'ahmjrohjzala
va-k'ahmjrohj-zala
1SG.POSS-bow_and_arrow-DC.LAT
byn
byn
INS
vee
vee
1SG
ts'uahjboen
ts'uahjboen
hunt
I hunt with a bow and arrow.
imk'ih,
imk'ih
next_day
ritl'utl'ujzi
ritl'utl'uj-zi
mockingbird-DC.NOM
rantsyn,
rantsyn
awaken
teibohnggan
teibohn-gan
sky-DA.PAR
t'yn
t'yn
LOC
qohjden
qohj-den
throat-DA.LAT
khoi
khoi
vomit
lucj
lucj
bring_forth\PLURACT
ts'ee
ts'ee
REL
'oequaraj
'oequa-raj
bird-IA.ACC
oung
oung
behold
the next day, the mockingbird woke up and saw in the sky a vomitous bird

Ergative

Ergative of Inanimate Agent
Adpositional Ergative
Ergative of Composition
Ergative of Location

Verbs

Pluractionality

Certain verbs take a separate form when either the action is habitual or the object is plural. Pluractional forms are occasionally suppletive, but are more commonly marked by lateralization of a consonant:

vee
vee
1SG
vohmzi
vohm-zi
hills-DA.LAT:INAN
ts'wahjboen
ts'wahpoen
hunt
I'm going hunting in the hills.
vee
vee
1SG
vohmzi
vohm-zi
hills-DA.LAT:INAN
ts'wahjdloen
ts'wahtloen
hunt\PLUR
I hunt in the hills.

Pluractionality may optionally be marked on verbs with no mutated form with the verbal suffix -dloen:

vee
vee
1SG
douj
douj
2PL
nihraq
nih-raq
mother-DC.ACC.PL
toemdloen
toem-dloen
fuck-PLUR
I fucked all your mothers.

Tense

Non-future vs. future.

The irrealis

Certain verbs are composed of a root and an absolute marker. This absolute marker is lost TODO

vee
vee
1SG
doenehq
doenehq
whole
seem-doe
seem-doe
goat-IC.CON:INAN
sim-boen
sin-boen
eat-A
I ate a whole goat.
vee
vee
1SG
doenehq
doenehq
whole
seem-doe
seem-doe
goat-IC.CON:INAN
sin
sin
eat\IRR
tuvq
tuvq
be_able_to
I could eat a whole goat.

Some verbs have irregular irrealis forms.

seemzi
seem-zi
goat-DA.NOM
tihnggan
tihn-gan
house-DA.ERG
ieqtl'ij
ieqtl'ij
yesterday
t'ucn
t'ucn
be_in
Yesterday the goat was in the house.
lee
lee
and
seemzi
seem-zi
goat-DA.NOM
tihnggan
tihn-gan
house-DA.ERG
ieqtl'ij
ieqtl'ij
yesterday
t'yhn
t'yhn
be_in\IRR
If the goat had been in the house yesterday...

Syntax

Noun phrase

The noun phrase is composed of a case-bearing element, optionally preceded by modifiers. The case-bearing element may be an independent pronoun or demonstrative, or a nominal with an article.

tsucda
tsuc-da
owl-IA.NOM
an owl
tl'ouj
tl'ouj
white
tsucda
tsuc-doe
owl-IC.NOM
a white owl
'oequa
'oequa
bird
keila
kei-la
DEM.DIST-DO
simboen
sim-boen
eat-A
ts'ee
ts'ee
REL
tl'ouj
tl'ouj
white
ts'ucgoe
ts'uc-goe
owl-DC.NOM
the white owl that ate that bird

Examples

Seven Kill Stele

duaj
duaj
great
teibohn-goe
teibohn-goe
sky-DC.NOM
kyoe'
kyoe'
hundred
quaqtoeq
quaq-toeq
mass-IC.DIR.INAN.PL
lucj
l\'ucj
PLUR\produce
lhaj
l\khaj
PLUR\give
k'yoejdej
k'yoej-dej
man-IA.LAT.PL
noeyn
noeyn
ANTIP.CONT.CONSTR
tucj
tucj
eat
k'yoejdaq
k'yoej-daq
man-IA.NOM.PL
fohm
fohm
good
q'ujdoe
q'uj-doe
thing0-IC.DIR.INAN.PL
duaj
duaj
great
teibohnggoen
teibohn-goen
sky-DC.LAT
dlehq
dl\rehq
PLUR\NEG.CONT
lucj
l\'ucj
PLUR\produce
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill
teijp'vq
teijp'vq
kill