LotM - Jan 16: Proto-Mila
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Happy 2016! The first LotM of the year is none other than Proto-Mila, a devised proto-world language spoken by settlers from another planet.
This public article was written by Admin Sheep, and last updated on 31 Jan 2016, 23:09.
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Congraulations to @garyberlin981 and their language Mila, our 18th LotM and the first of 2016.
[top]Phonology and Orthography
Proto-Mila has a small phonemic inventory with relatively few allophones. Nasals consist of just /m n/, while stops are only /p t c k/. It's kinda fun to have that many points of articulation. The rest of the consonants are rounded out with /s h r l j/. All stops and /s/ have voiced allophones, though it is not certain in what environments these allophones are triggered. Vowels are even scarcer, just /a i u/, and without any noted allophones.
The writing system is perhaps the most fun. Proto-Mila uses a script structured like an abjad. All consonants have their one glyph, but only /a/ is noted in orthography. It does appear that /i/ is also written with the glyph for /j/, as noted in the language's native name ɷʌυ [miɫa].
EDIT: The language's creator has contacted me with the following notes:
- Stops and /s/ are voiced if surrounded by voiced sounds.
- /r/ and /l/ are elided in code position.
- The phonemes /i/ and /u/ are predictable depending on the following consonant, /i/ appears before coronals and /u/ before other sounds (including velarised /l/). There are a very few exceptions to this which is why they have become phonemes and are not just allophones of each other. If no consonant follows then the vowel is /a/, although /a/ also has a grammatical function in predicates so can appear in other positions too.
Proto-Mila inflects its nouns, verbs, adjectives, and pronouns. Verbs conjugate for tense (past, present, and future) as well as two aspects and a mood (inceptive, terminative, and dubitative). They also feature some sort of object or subject marking for first, second, and third persons (singular and plural). Documentation is rather sparse in that department, but it's in this table.
Nouns come in fifteen different cases, all marked with particles following the inflected noun - locative, subessive, supraessive, postessive, antessive, intrative, lative, ablative, vialis, perlative, subject, essive, semblative, benefactive, and possessive). Like verbs, there is some sort of predicate marking for pronouns of first, second, and third person singular and plural.
EDIT: Further notes from @garyberlin981:
Each sentence must have a predicate (which can be a noun – usually the object, but occasionally the subject, pronoun, adjective or verb) and these need to agree in person and number with the subject, but the subject itself can be dropped. Intransitive verbs take an ‘empty predicate’ which also agrees with the subject, but it has a purely grammatical function.
Proto-Mila has two daughter languages, Ijgeglemrál and Inukhe Mumiš. Ijgeglemrál is spoken by purists who were willingly exiled from the original mainland, and settled another island. Inukhe Mumiš is a descendant of Proto-Mila by 300 years and is spoken where Proto-Mila was.
[top]More on Proto-Mila
Crave more? Check out its articles, grammar tables, translations, or LexiBuild sets.
[top]A Note on LotM
Got suggestions for how the next LotM should be written? See something in Proto-Mila that wasn't covered and you wish it had been? Hate my guts and want to tell me? Feel free to shoot us (either phi2dao or argyle) a PM with your thoughts, suggestions, and hate mail. Also feel free to drop by the LotM clan if you have other feedback, want to join in the voting process, or nominate a language!
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