Aug01 –  A Constructed Language

Aug01 Morphology

Legend: Definitions, Terms, <Text>, [IPA], -Tags-, and "Glosses".


The word classes are verb, secondary, adjective, noun, quantity word, and particle. There are similar root classes. Particles and quantity words are uninflected while nouns are declined and everything else is conjugated.


Conjugation involves voice and gender, format, temporal inflection, and personal agreement.

Voice and Gender

There are 3 voices: direct-antipassive, inverse-passive, and reflexive. The direct-antipassive distinguishes the gender (animate or inanimate) of the subject or patient argument, so there are 4 distinct markers.

Voice and Gender Markers
Marker Tag Gender Voice
î (û) T inanimate direct-antipassive
â R animate direct-antipassive
o D animate inverse-passive
ê (au) X animate reflexive


There are 5 verb formats, a secondary format, and an adjective format, each of which may occur for a root or derived stem. Every format distinguishes voice and gender; the position of that marking partially determines the format. The format groups are as follows:

  1. For the adjective and 1st 2 verb formats, the voice and gender marker is suffixed to the root or stem.
  2. For the secondary and other verb formats, the voice and gender marker is infixed before the last consonant of root or stem. Any vowel already in that position must shift to before the preceding consonant; this usually requires reduplication of the intial root consonant.
  3. Not part of conjugation, the unmarked root is used for noun derivation.

The following table summarizes the formats:

Format Summary
# Group Suffix Suffix Note Temporal Tag Name
1 A -si (-su) 0 if verb root (tense) Ind Indicative
2 A - - aspectual Sub Subjunctive
3 B -a (tense) Piv Pivotal
4 B - - aspectual Inf Infinitive
5 B 0 if verb root - Imp Imperative
6 B 0 if secondary root - Sec Secondary
7 A -lo 0 if adjective root (tense) Att Attributive

Temporal Inflections

There are 2 groups of temporal inflections: aspectual and relative tense. Both are the final suffixes to the verb. The 1st table shows the relative tense suffixes:

Relative Tense Suffixes
Static Other Telic Tag Tense
-q -x -Pst Past
-s -Prs Present
-s -gʷ -gʷ -Fut Future

The 2nd table shows the aspectual suffixes:

Aspectual Suffixes
Suffix Tag Aspectual
-tâ -Stat Stative
-mô -Inch Inchoative
-bê -Pros Prospective

Personal Agreement

The personal prefixes specify up to 2 arguments. They're shown in the following table:

Personal Prefixes
Prefix Tag Description
ni- 1S- 1st person singular
niz- 2:1S- 1st person singular : 2nd person
we- 1P- 1st person plural
wez- 2:1P- 1st person plural : 2nd person
ya- Incl- Inclusive person
go- 2- 2nd person
3rd person or none

Conjugation Examples

The following table shows some forms of 3 example verbs:

Conjugation Examples
Group # Verb Root Adj. Root Sec. Root
A 1 mendâ sôbâsi goθâsi
7 mendâlo sôbâ goθâlo
B 5 menâd sovâbô gogâθô
6 menâdî sovâbî gogâθ
C menden sôben gôθen


The copula is irregular, using suppletion for the pivotal and infinitive stems and lacking the imperative and secondary stems. Also, voice and gender are not marked. The A group root is ho and the B group root is bi. The vowel is lengthened for the subjunctive and infinitive forms unless a personal prefix appears. The attributive (adjective) form appends the -lo suffix.

Possessive Adjectives

The possessive adjectives are forms of the defective adjective sp with personal prefixes, e.g. nisp- "my". No 3rd person forms exist; otherwise, the conjugation is regular.


Each noun is either animate or inanimate. Nouns are inflected for number and case. The numbers are singular and plural (P). The cases are the O-case, the S-case (Top, topical), and the G-case (Gen, genitive). Inanimate nouns lack the S-case.

There are 5 declensions, based primarily on stem structure, and 2 or 3 stems per declension. The distribution of the stems depends on the declension. The following table shows the number and case forms for example animate nouns:

Declension Examples
Number Case Tag 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Sing. O-case tel gero xʷanti zûrap qâden
S-case -Top telki geroki xʷantiki zurapki qâdenki
G-case -Gen têlos gegoros xʷanitos zurapos qâdenos
Plur. O-case -P tela gegora xʷantiz zurpaz qavedan
S-case -PTop telaki gerozki xʷantizki zurpazki qavedanki
G-case -PGen têlar gegorar xʷanitar zurapar qâdenar

Generic Nouns

The generic nouns (Ani, animate) and (Ina, inanimate) are regular 1st declension nouns (both with vowel alternation). They are used by themselves as 3rd person pronouns or combined with preceding determiners to form other pronouns, e.g. tîmâ "this" (animate). In the latter case, G-case vowel lengthening doesn't occur.

Personal Pronouns

The adjective forms of the copula with personal prefixes combine with following animate generic noun forms to construct the personal pronouns, e.g. niholomâ "I", "me". The 2nd person forms may be singular or plural depending on the number of the referent while the 1st person singular forms are always singular and the others always plural. The genitive forms are replaced by the corresponding possessive adjectives.

Interrogative Pronouns

The content question pronouns are kʷil "who(m)" (animate) and kʷem "what" (inanimate).

Relative Pronouns

The relative pronouns (RAni, animate) and (RIna, inanimate) are regular 1st declension nouns (both with vowel alternation).

There are also headless relative pronouns: sil (RHAni, animate) and sem (RHIna, inanimate).


A root of a given class may be converted to a stem of another class by suffixing, by infixing, and by 0-derivation (for verbs of definition).

Action Nouns

An action noun refers to the event or other situation rather than a participant. Action nouns are regularly constructed from verbs, secondaries, and adjectives by appending -le -Act to the B group stems. The voice and gender marking specifies the role of the participant argument, if any.

Quantity Words

Basic Cardinal Numbers

The basic cardinal numbers are shown in the following table. The value "1" has a distinct form for each gender.

Basic Cardinal Numbers
Value Word Value Word Value Word
1 xâ, xî 10 xiyoda 100 xîpqa
2 20 povoda 200 pôpqa
3 30 seyoda 300 sêpqa
4 saro 40 sarolda 400 saropqa
5 baŋo 50 baŋolda 500 baŋopqa
6 bina 60 binalda 600 binapqa
7 doqu 70 doqulda 700 doqupqa
8 raiki 80 raikilda 800 raikipqa
9 kʷixte 90 kʷixtelda 900 kʷixtepqa

Compound Numbers

Compound numbers are constructed from highest value to lowest. When followed by a digit component, the final a of the tens's component is replaced by i. When followed by another component, the final a of the hundred's component is replaced by u. Example: binapqu-saroldi-pô "642".

Numeric Verbs

For each cardinal number, the corresponding verb base is formed by appending m.

Ordinal Numbers

The ordinal numbers are nouns derived from the corresponding cardinal numbers.

page started: 2017.Aug.04 Fri
current date: 2017.Aug.07 Mon
content and form originated by qiihoskeh

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