West Yalan

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Jaran
[jaˈran]
Period c. 0 YP
Spoken in southern Tuysáfa,
Yalne plains
Total speakers unknown
Writing system unknown
Classification T1 languages
  Yalan
    West Yalan
Typology
Basic word order VSO
Morphology fusional
Alignment neutral/accusative
Credits
Created by Pole, the
Speaking area of River, Estuary and Coast Jaran varieties.

West Yalan, Jaran is an ethnolect spoken in southern Tuysáfa around 0 YP. Together with the East Yalan it forms the Yalan language family / dialect continuum.

Background

The term covers a group of dialects spoken in southern and southeastern Tuysáfa coast. It is also a descendant of the Old Yalan dialects spoken around -800 YP.

West Yalan is a part of the T1 language family created for the Second Reconstruction Relay, together with i.a. Cednìtıt, Tumetıęk, Hkətl’ohnim, Omari and Teyetáti.

Internal phonological history

Apocope

(V₁, V₂ – short vowels)
V₁CV₂ → V₁ːC / _#

  • OY ẑozuẑōz → WY fâs
  • OY xjoņoxjōņ → WY śâ

Consonant shift (Western fronting)

s̺ z̺ → f v

  • OY ŝāxjō → WY faśâ
  • OY cīŝici → WY ćifić


ɲ tʃʰ tʃ dʒ → n tsʰ ts dz
ʃ ʒ → s z

  • OY nīšici → WY nisić
  • OY čāca → WY caće


ŋʲ kʰʲ kʲ ɡʲ → ɲ tɕʰ tɕ dʑ
xʲ ɣʲ → ɕ ʑ

  • OY kūxjixī → WY kuśeći
  • OY xjixjīmī → WY śeśimi

Vowel reduction

i u iː uː → ɪ ʊ i u (common)
ɪ ʊ → e o (Estuary and River Jaran)
ɪ ʊ → e u (Coast Jaran)

  • OY tusūcīxjicū → WY tosućiśeću, CJ [tusutɕiɕetɕu]
  • OY pusūdu → WY posuto, CJ [pusutu]


æ o æː oː → ɛ o aː ɔː → e o a ɒ (Estuary Jaran)
æ o æː oː → ə ə æ o → a a e o (River Jaran)
æ o æː oː → ɛ o aː oː → e o a o (Coast Jaran)

  • OY thāxjakō → WY thaśekâ, RJ [tʰeɕako], CJ [tʰaɕeko]
  • OY phōto → WY phâto, RJ [pʰota], CJ [pʰoto]


i u e o → e o a a / _C# (River Jaran)

  • OY xoẑo → **xōẑ → WY hâf, RJ [haf], CJ [hof]
  • OY pagjiri → **pagjīr → WY pećir, RJ [patɕer], CJ [petɕil]

Loss of voicing distinction

b d dz dʑ ɡ → p t ts tɕ k

  • OY pādā → WY pata
  • OY ībi → WY ipe


v z ʑ ɣ~ɦ → f s ɕ x~h

  • OY šivō → WY sefâ
  • OY šaža → WY sas

Late consonant reduction

x → h

  • OY xōpo → WY hâpo
  • OY īxiti → WY ihit


ŋ → ɰ → ∅

  • OY xjoņo → **xjōņ → WY śâ
  • OY khothōņo → WY khothâo

Early West Yalan

Early West Yalan was an earlier variety of Jaran spoken around -200 YP. The most notable feature of EWY was its eight vowel system that later collapsed to vowel inventories of five-six phonemes of later dialects spoken in 0 YP.

There have also been additional voiced series of stops (/b d dz dʑ ɡ/) and fricatives (/v z ʑ ɦ/) that merged with their unvoiced counterparts soon after, most probably under Cednìtıt influence.

Varieties

There are three main varieties of Jaran:

Estuary Jaran

Estuary Jaran, sâ Jarenah Fosotih, is the standard language described in this article.

/r/ is usually pronounced as [ɾ].

/a/ is realized as [æ].

River Jaran

River Jaran, sâ Jarenah Âkasetih, RJ so Jeranah Okeseteh, differs slightly from the standard:

  • /a ɒ/ are raised to [e o] in open and merged to [a] in closed syllables;
  • /i u/ are lowered to [e o] in closed syllables;
  • some instances of the original /e o/ remain [e o] (ê ô in the scientific orthography);
  • other occurrences are merged to [a] (e o in the scientific orthography);
  • instead of morphological reduction of vowels, RJ has lowering of i u e o to e o a a;
  • in some areas there is a pitch stress on the final open syllables (the high pitch unmarked, the low pitch marked with a grave accent in the scientific orthography).

Coast Jaran

Coast Jaran, sâ Jarenah Pamâkotih, CJ so Jarenah Pamokotih, has some differences as well:

  • /ɒ/ is raised to [o];
  • some instances of the original /o/ are further merged to [u] (ô in the scientific orthography);
  • /r/ is pronounced as [l] syllable-finally and [ɾ] otherwise.

Rapid speech

There are some tendencies present in the rapid speech, in all of the above varieties.

Vowel sequences are often realized as pre- or post-glided vowels, e.g. moać [mwatɕ], aetuk [ajˈtuk], ie [je].

Unstressed non-initial syllables beginning with a sonorant have the vowel elided, e.g. nârârena becoming rapid CJ [noɾolˈna] or even [nolːˈna].

Phonology

Consonants labial alveolar palatal velar glottal
nasal m n ɲ ‹ń›
plosive fortis ‹ph› ‹th› ‹kh›
lenis p t k
affricate fortis tsʰ ‹ch› tɕʰ ‹ćh›
lenis ts ‹c› ‹ć›
fricative f s ɕ ‹ś› h
fluid r j

The fricatives and lenis stops can be voiced between vowels.


Vowels front back
close i u
mid e o
open a ɒ ‹â›

The front-back dichotomy has influence on inflection, e.g. noun stems expanded with e or o depending on the last vowel.


Syllables of type (C)V(C). Final consonant permitted only word-finally.

Word stress falls on the last syllable, e.g. śatite [ɕatiˈte] "flour".

Morphophonology

There are two common alternations: reduction and fronting.

Reduction

When a vowel is reduced, it changes to a mid vowel:

Non-reduced i a u â
Reduced ê e ô o

Fronting

Fronting is a shift of velar to palatal and palatal to dental consonants. The two degrees can combine:

Grade 0 k kh h
Grade +1 ć ćh ś
Grade +2 c ch s

Assibilation

Assibilation (or lenition) is present only in some suffixes and sometimes doesn't happen regularly.

Normal p ph t th c ch ć ćh k kh
Mutated h s s ś h

Pronouns

The personal pronouns are as follows:

1sg 2sg 3sg 1pl 2pl 3pl
N. nica fica i itu taca cica ni netu
O. nicań ficań i
ie ¹
itu
itou ¹
tacań cicań ni netu
netou ¹
G. nicaś ficaś ih ituh tacaś cicaś nih netuh
L. nicatu ficatu itu itutu tacatu cicatu nitu netutu
¹) used mostly for disambiguation

There are also shortened form of 1st and 2nd person pronouns, with -ca- omitted (i.e. ni, niń, niś …, fi, ta &c) in use. They are considered inferior, though.

Itu and netu are the obviative forms, used when not referring to the subject of the previous sentence:

  • Pâhokuthu śâphehi tesata. Pâtuk nica i.
    pâ-hokuthu śâphehi tesat-a. pâ-tuk nica i
    sg.an.obj.aor-see lion seagull-obl. sg.an.obj.aor-hunt 1sg 3sg
    The lion saw the seagull. I hunted it (the lion).
  • Pâhokuthu śâphehi tesata. Pâtuk nica itu.
    pâ-hokuthu śâphehi tesat-a. pâ-tuk nica itu
    sg.an.obj.aor-see lion seagull-obl. sg.an.obj.aor-hunt 1sg 3sg.obv
    The lion saw the seagull. I hunted it (the seagull).

Nouns

-2 -1 0 +1 +2
possession number root deixis case

Prefixes

Possessive

C – before consonant
E – before front vowel
O – before back vowel
C E O
sg 1. ne- ne~ ¹ ńo~ ¹
2. fe- fe~ ¹ fo~ ¹
3. po- p-
pl 1. te- te~ ¹ to~ ¹
2. ce- ce~ ¹ ćo~ ¹
3. no- n-
âthuf, thuf "fish"
ńothuf, nethuf
fothuf, fethuf
pâthuf, pothuf
tothuf, tethuf
ćothuf, cethuf
nâthuf, nothuf
ipe, nepe "place"
nepe, nenepe
fepe, fenepe
pipe, ponepe
tepe, tenepe
cepe, cenepe
nipe, nonepe
âjâ, noja "ant"
ńojâ, nenojâ
fojâ, fenojâ
pâjâ, ponojâ
tojâ, tenojâ
ćojâ, cenojâ
nâjâ, nonojâ
¹) prefix replacing the original vowel

Number

P – before plosives and affricates
C – before other consonants
E – before front vowel
O – before back vowel
P C E O
sg an. â- - - -
inan. ~ ²
pl an. - no- ne~ ¹ no~ ¹
inan. ne-
collective i- ie~ ¹ io~ ¹
caka "duck" pa "sea" śiti "bird" ha "brain" aće "fire" âpo "country"
âcaka śiti ha aće âpo
pha
caka pa nośiti neće nopo
neha
icaka ipa iśiti iha ieće iopo
¹) prefix replacing the original vowel
²) aspiration of the consonant

Declension

West Yalan has four cases:

  • Nominative, the default form;
  • Oblique (Accusative-Dative), objects of present tense verbs;
  • Genitive, possessions and relations; used with most prepositions;
  • Locative (Locative-Allative), location, time or movement towards an object;

In some dialects the -tu locative suffix can be separated and preposited, e.g.:

ćifećatu
ćifić-*atu
house-loc
~
tu ćifeća
tu ćifić-*a
loc house-prep
in/to a house

The noun form having the -tu subtracted is also called prepositive, this is the form to which two other prepositions are added: fań "near" and ja "above".


There are also three declensions: indefinite, proximate and distal.

The words are divided into four inflectional groups:

I – words ending with a consonant
II – words ending with e o
III – words ending with i a u â
IV – some words ending with i a, inpredictable

Indefinite

I II III IV
N. thuf "fish" ipe "ground" âjâ "ant" fa "plain"
O. thofa ¹ ipa âjâ fań
G. thofah ¹ ipah âjâh faś
L. thofatu ¹ ipatu âjâtu fatu
¹) last vowel of the stem reduced to e o

Proximate

I II III IV
N. thofoti ¹ ipeti âjoti ² feti ²
O. thofoteu ¹ ipeteu âjoteu ² feteu ²
G. thofotih ¹ ipetih âjotih ² fetih ²
L. thofotitu ¹ ipetitu âjotitu ² fetitu ²
¹) last vowel of the stem reduced to e o and echo vowel introduced
²) final vowel reduced to e o

Distal

I II III IV
N. thofokhâ ¹ ipekhâ âjokhâ ² fekhâ ²
O. thofohu ¹ ipehu âjohu ² fehu ²
G. thofokhâh ¹ ipekhâh âjokhâh ² fekhâh ²
L. thofokhâtu ¹ ipekhâtu âjokhâtu ² fekhâtu ²
¹) last vowel of the stem reduced to e o and echo vowel introduced
²) final vowel reduced to e o

Verbs

-1 0 +1 +2
person, tense, aspect root mood voice

Person-tense prefixes

Verb prefixes mark tense, aspect and also animacy and number of the subject and the object.

Where two prefixes are given, the former is used before consonants and the latter before vowels.

When a prefix marked with the asterisk (*) is attached, the first vowel is reduced to e o.

The reflexive prefixes have the consonant alternation between k, ć(h) and c – the consonant is fronted once in singular subject prefixes and then again in imperfect and progressive tense.

Aorist

Aorist is used for complete actions with no present relevance.

Object Subject
sg anim. sg inan. pl
- po- p- * se- s- * ho- h-
sg pâ- pom- * su- sem- * hâ- hom- *
pl pa- pon- * sa- sen- * hon- *
refl poće- poć- * śeće- śeć- * hoke- hok- *

Imperfect

Imperfect is used for incomplete past actions.

Object Subject
sg anim. sg inan. pl
- pe- p- se- s- hi- ho-
sg pome- pom- seme- sem- home- hom-
pl pone- pon- sene- sen- hone- hon-
refl poce- poc- sece- sec- hoće- hoć-

Present

Present is used for general utterances.

Object Subject
sg anim. sg inan. pl
- mo- m- a- - ne- n-
sg mu- mom- * u- am- * na- nem- *
pl mon- * an- * nen- *
refl moće- moć- * aćhe- aćh- * neke- nek- *

Progressive

Progressive is used for ongoing actions that will be presumably completed in future.

Object Subject
sg anim. sg inan. pl
- mi- mo- ae- a- aj- ¹ ni- ne-
sg mome- mom- ame- am- neme- nem-
pl mone- mon- ane- an- nene- nen-
refl moce- moc- ache- ach- neće- neć-
¹) a- before close vowels, aj- before mid and open vowels

Mood endings

I – verbs ending with a consonant
II – verbs ending with e o
III – verbs ending with i a u â
I II III
Indicative tuk "hunt" jape "pull" śi "try"
Energetic tokak ¹ japak śik
Imperative toća ¹ ² japa ² śea ¹
Desiderative toku ¹ japu śeru ¹
Conditional tukothi ³ japethi śithi
Potential tukopa ³ japepa śipa
¹) the last vowel of the stem is reduced to e o
²) the final consonant is fronted: k kh h ć ćh ś change to ć ćh ś c ch s
³) an epenthetic vowel (e or o) is added

Voice suffixes

There are several grammatical voices in West Yalan.

The voice suffixes can be added to verbs in other moods, so they don't necessarily depend on the verb group.

Active -
Passive -un ¹, -no ² monotransitive verbs
-hun ³ ditransitive verbs
Causative -ka ³ intransitive verbs
-ih ¹, -h ² transitive verbs
¹) after a consonant or replacing final e o
²) after i a u â
³) an epenthetic e or o added after a consonant

Adjectives

Adjectives, numerals and verbs acting as participles behave in their own way.

-1 0 +1 +2 +3
attributive root mood voice comparison

When they describe another noun, they take the attributive prefix he-, h-.

Relative clauses are created the same way.

  • ćhifić heśâ
    ć‹h›ifić he-śâ
    sg.an›house att-small
    the small house
  • śâphehi hetuk
    śâphehi he-tuk
    lion att-hunt
    the hunting lion / the lion, which hunts


-1 0 +1 +2 +3 +4
person, tense, aspect root mood voice comparison case

When they are substantivized – used alone as independent arguments, they take verbal prefixes and use their own declension type.

  • aśâ
    a-śâ
    sg.in-small
    the small thing
  • motuk
    mo-tuk
    sg.an-hunt
    the hunting one

Comparison

There is one degree used for comparison. It is created with the suffix -tetumi (-tetume- when declined).

After consonants, the last vowel of the stem is reduced and added as the echo vowel.

  • aśâtetumi
    a-śâ-tetumi
    sg.in-small-comp
    the smaller / smallest thing
  • śâphehi hetokotetumi
    śâphehi he-tuk-tetumi
    lion att-hunt-comp
    the lion, which hunts more / the most

The standard argument behaves as the object:

  • uśâtetumi ćhifeća
    u-śâ-tetumi ć‹h›ifić-*a
    sg.in.sg.o-small-compsg.in›-house-obl
    smaller than house

Case endings

N. thar "red" śâ "small"
O. thereta ¹ śâta
G. theretah ¹ śâtah
L. theretatu ¹ śâtatu
¹) last vowel of the stem reduced to e o and echo vowel introduced

Numerals

Numerals have properties of other attributive nouns.

1. 11. naneta
2. ńać 12. ńećeneta 20. ńaća
3. sa 13. saneta 30. sena
4. ćap 14. ćepeneta 40. ćapa
5. śa 15. śaneta 50. śena
6. tâk 16. tokheneta 60. tâkha
7. mur 17. moreneta ¹ 70. muna
8. ćapać 18. ćapećeneta 80. ćapaća
9. âra 19. âraneta 90. ârena
10. aneta 100. anetena
¹) alternative form muneta can be also encountered by analogy

The changed forms from 11-19 can be also prefixed to other numerals, e.g.

  • netokheńaća
    ne-tokhe-ńaća
    pl-four-twenty
    twenty-four

Full n-ties (10-90) behave similarly, up to 199:

  • nârârenanetena
    n-âr-âren-anetena
    pl-nine-ninety-hundred
    one hundred and ninety-nine

Higher numbers are done analytically, with a conjunction śi:

  • nanetena hârârena śi nârârena
    n-anetena h-âr-ârena śi n-âr-ârena
    pl-houndred att-nine-ninety and pl-nine-ninety
    nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine (lit. ninety-nine houndred ninety-nine)

Derivation

There are several derivational affixes in West Yalan.

Below, the adjectives are treated as verbs.

-ema
v → n
habitual agent
(unproductive; frequent alternations; replaced with -tu)
  • uthape "steal" → uthamema "thief"

-tu
n/v → n
person associated with X
  • śiti "bird" → śititu "birdwatcher"

-hâ
n/v → n
substance associated with X
(the last vowel is reduced and, regarding consonantal stems, echoed)
  • thaće "fruit" → thaće "juice"

-(m)â
v → n
place / item associated with X
(rarely used; frequent irregular alternations)
  • śane "sleep" → śa "bed"

-ta
v → n
gerund / action noun
(the last vowel is reduced and, regarding consonantal stems, echoed)
  • nosuk "happy" → nosokota "being happy, happiness"

a-
v → v
have a generic / habitual tendency towards X
(the initial consonant is assibilated; the initial vowel is reduced)
  • ekun "to burn" → aekun "to be inflammable"

u-
v → v
do X involuntarily
(the initial consonant is assibilated; the initial vowel is reduced)
  • hâf "to kill, to murder" → uhâf "to kill accidentally"

-ku
n → v
be coloured like X
(the last vowel is reduced and, regarding consonantal stems, echoed)
  • śańe "blood" → śańeku "bloody (red)"


Sample text

The sample text is śâphehiti hehoćâ ("this young lion"), the text used in comparative linguistics of the T1 language family.

Momeće
mom*-aće
sg.an.sg.o-be
śâphehi
śâphehi
lion
âcińemań
â-cińe-ma-ń
sg.an-rule-er-obl
pa
pa
all
nohâruh,
no-hâru-h
pl.an-animal-gen
The lion is the ruler of all animals,
thâ
thâ
because
mośepak,
mo-śepa-k
sg.an-strong-ene
apehafak
a-pehafe-ak
sg.in-thick-ene
pośaâ,
po-śaâ
3sg.poss-chest
akhik
a-khi-k
sg.in-thin-ene
puho,
p-uho
3sg.poss-belly
ahokâk
a-hokâ-k
sg.in-fast-ene
mofiń.
mo-fiń
sg.an-run
because, certainly, he is strong, his chest is thick, his stomach is thin and he runs fast.
Ća
ća
behold
mopa
mo-pa
sg.an-be
śâphehiti
śâphehi-ti
lion-prox
hehoćâ.
he-hoćâ
att-young
Look, there is this young lion.
Mosas
mo-sas
sg.an-go
phethitu
ph‹h›ethi-tu
sg.in›forest-loc
ińe
ińe
every
thatatu,
th‹h›ata-tu
sg.in›morning-loc
si
si
and
mukhophâ
mu-khophâ
sg.an.obj-compare
nohâru
no-hâru-∅
pl-animal-obl
haćaf
h-aćaf
att-other
śepeta.
śepeta
strength
He goes to the forest every morning and compares to the other animals with regard to strength.
Si
si
and
aputus
a-putus
sg.in-always
mićinu
m-ićinu
sg.an-return
hepetific.
he-petific
att-win
And he always returns winning.
Naphame
na-phame
pl.o-hear
si
si
and
nasaćeti
na-saćeti
pl.o-know
pa
pa
all
nohâru
no-hâru
pl-animal
mećheteu:
maćh-teu
news-prox.obl
mucińe
mu-cińe
sg.an.o-rule
śâphehiti.
śâphehi-ti
lion-prox
All the animals hear and know this news: this lion rules them.
Si
si
and
mićinu
m-ićinu
sg.an-return
hepetific
he-petific
att-win
ińe
ińe
every
faśâtu,
faśâ-tu
day-loc
si
si
and
mumaheta
mu-maheta
sg.an.o-praise
pimeńu:
p-imeńu
3sg.poss-mother
And he returns winning every day, and his mother praises him:
“Momeće
mom*-aće
sg.an.sg.o-be
fica
fica
2sg
ńohata!
ńo-uhata
1sg.poss-child
Apehafak
a-pehafe-ak
sg.in-thick-ene
fehak!
fe-ahak
2sg.poss-neck
Akhik
a-khi-k
sg.in-thin-ene
foho!
fo-uho
2sg.poss-belly
Ahitak
a-hita-k
sg.in-big-ene
feśamâ!
fe-śamâ
2sg.poss-chest
“You are my child! Indeed, your neck is thick! Your stomach is thin! Your chest is big!
Muśâfoka
mu-śâf-ka
sg.an.def-be.named-caus
nica
nica
1sg
ficań
fica-ń
2sg-obl
‘Mośepata’!”
mo-śepa-ta
sg.an-strong-obl
I name you ‘The Strong One’!”
Apate
a-pate
sg.in-now
apakafat
a-pakafat
sg.in-repeat
muchiaka
mu-chia-ka
sg.an.def-stretch-caus
ponećesa
po-ne-aćas-*a
3sg.poss-pl-leg-obl
thatetitu,
thata-*ti-tu
morning-prox-loc
si
si
and
mumaheta
mu-maheta
sg.an.o-praise
pimeńu:
p-imeńu
3sg.poss-mother
Now he stretches his legs again this morning and his mother praises him:
“Apehafak
a-pehafe-ak
sg.in-thick-ene
fehak!
fe-ahak
2sg.poss-neck
Akhik
a-khi-k
sg.in-thin-ene
foho!
fo-uho
2sg.poss-belly
Aśepak
a-śepa-k
sg.in-strong-ene
feśamâ!
fe-śamâ
2sg.poss-chest
“Indeed, your neck is thick! Your stomach is thin! Your chest is strong!
Musaće
mu-saće
sg.an.o-own
fica
fica
2sg
pefesa
∅-pefas-*a
pl-arm-obl
hetesakhihik
he-tesakhihik
att-mighty
śâphehih!”
śâphehi-h
lion-gen
You own the mighty arms of a lion!”
A
a
but
amohuth
a-mohuth
sg.in-follow
mukhothâo
mu-khothâo
sg.an.o-end
mumahetata,
maheta-ta
praise-obl
si
si
and
monofotiâ
mon*-âfotiâ
sg.an.o.pl-say
nooteu:
no~ââ-*teu
pl-word-prox.obl
But then she finishes praising him and says these words:
“Achić,
a-chić
sg.in-indeed
mukotâo
mu-kotâo
sg.an.o-believe
nica.
nica
1sg
“Indeed, I believe it.
Muśepatetumi
mu-śepa-tetumi
sg.an.o-strong-comp
fica
fica
2sg
pa
pa
all
nohâru
no-hâru-∅
pl-animal-obl
haćaf
h-aćaf
att-other
You are stronger than all other beasts.
Aputus
a-putus
sg.in-always
mosas
mo-sas
sg.an-go
fica
fica
2sg
phethitu,
ph‹h›ethi-tu
sg.in›forest-loc
si
si
and
aputus
a-putus
sg.in-always
mićinu
m-ićinu
sg.an-return
hepetific.
he-petific
att-win
You always go into the forest and always return victorious.
Si
si
and
aputus
a-putus
sg.in-always
momepâśi
mom*-ipâśi
sg.an.o.sg-show
fica
fica
2sg
nicań,
nica-ń
1sg-obl
mucińeketa
mu-cińe-ak-*ta
sg.an.o-rule-ene-obl
nohâroteu.
no-hâru-*teu
pl-animal-prox.obl
And you always show me that you truly rule the beasts.

Source of the sample text: Roy S. Hagman, Nama Hottentot grammar, Bloomington/Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1977.

Lexicon

Main page: West Yalan/Lexicon