CONLANG Translation Relay 16

Urianian (Ring B)

Lars Finsen Wed, 5 Nov 2008 23:28:21 +0100

1. The Text Translated into Urianian

Mali vitani zirkid zivita san furdiran ekni lugna.
Ni mistidat erden san iglen, zine daja nemi sedi emiz e; erd san nemi ni cujat melt eng.

2. Relevant Grammar

The three most common noun classes may be called masculine, feminine and neuter in line with the usual Indoeuropean tradition. There are a few other classes containing a few nouns, and as one of them occurs in the text, I'm including it below. Urianian preserve all the original eight IE cases, and they are marked with characteristic endings:

NOM i et - i - e i ei
ACC en at a et a e en et
DAT e ent ai ant ai ant ei unt
GEN et an ia/ja an ia/ja an eja en
LOC u esi u usi u usi u vi
ABL et imat at amat at amat et unt
INS e imut i it i it vi eit
VOC e et i at an e i et

Uses of the various cases: NOM - for the subject of a clause, ACC - for the direct object, and for marking approach, DAT - for the indirect object, and for marking intent or precedence, GEN - marking ownership, agents of passive actions and certain other originative things, LOC - marking static locations, ABL - marking antecedence, opposition and the origin of motion, INS - marking the means to an end as well as adverbs and adverbials, including those of time, VOC - to address persons or other addressable entities.

Personal pronouns have their own particular forms in most of the cases:

1S 1P 2S 2P 3S 3P
NOM me numit de jet se it
ACC mi nit di ut si it
DAT me nemi du umi su mat
GEN ma san da van sa jan
LOC mi nit di ut im ve
ABL mit est det umit imat mat
INS imi mut

There are no particular vocative pronouns, but in polite addressing the plural forms of the 2nd person pronouns are used.

There are basically three demonstratives, proximal, distal and remote They have many useful functions and their forms are as follows:

NOM gi dat ina get det ine
ACC gin dan inan get de inet
DAT gimai damai inai gent dint inant
GEN get daja inja gnan disan inan
LOC gim dam inam gis dis inus
ABL git damat inat gmat dimat inmat
INS gia di ini gunt dit init

Adjectives, on the other hand, are easy in Urianian. They do not reflect the case of the nouns they refer to, only the number, with singular unmarked and plural marked with -i, and the gender, with feminines also marked -i, in plural as well as singular. Regularly the adjectives follow the nouns they refer to. On the root is attached -t for comparative, and -ir for superlative. In the comparative, a colourless vowel, written u, will intrude if the root ends in a cluster. Any -i endings will be appended last.

Verbs have 4 numbered conjugations: 1. Verbs with roots ending in a vowel. 2. Verbs with a short final root vowel and a single final consonant. 3. Verbs with a long final root vowel and a single final consonant. 4. Verbs with a final consonant cluster (always a short final root vowel). Since the standardisation in the mid 1800s, vowel length is not marked. (Earlier, double vowels were sometimes used.) So the various conjugations are your only clue to the lengths of Urianian vowels when you see the language in writing.

Infinitives have the following endings: 1. de, 2. de/te after voiced/unvoiced final consonants, 3. id, 4. id. They are used in vocabularies, and in sentences where another verb, often a modal auxiliary, is referring to the action of the infinitive, like in English "want to go", "like to sleep" for example, or when stating intent (English "in order to.")

Unlike infinitives and other verbal nouns, other forms of the verbs have personal endings: 1S: am, 2S: it, 3S: unmarked, 1P: ant, 2P: id, 3P: an. There is no gender difference either in 3S or 3P. In the present tense there is no other marking of the verb and there is no difference between the conjugations.

Neither past nor subjunctive forms are relevant here, but the reflexives are:

1 2 3 4
1S ram ram ram iram
2S rit rit rit irt
3S r ur ur ur
1P rant rant rant irant
2P rid rid rid ird
3P ran ran ran iran

The imperatives have the following forms:

1 2 3 4
2S zu zu i i
3S d d id id
1P dat dat idat idat
2P di di di idi
3P nde inde ande ande

The 1st conjugation 3P form depends on the root vowel, which may or may not be changed: -a > -ainde, -e > -ynde, -i > -ynde, -o > -oinde, -u > -unde, -y > -ajinde. In the 2nd conjugation, if the final root consonant is unvoiced, the initial d is replaced with a t in 3S, 1P and 2P. In 2S, the z is devoiced, but retained in writing.

There are a few irregular verbs in Urianian, and an important one is este, 'be'. Here are its forms in the present indicative:

1S em
2S et
3S e
1P sint
2P sid
3P sin

In simple stative sentences, 'be' is often omitted.

Some introductory notes on participles. Urianian pretty frequently uses participles where other languages would have used little words like "which", "that", "who", "because", etc. There are active, passive and stative participles, and all of them are inflected in most of the various cases.

For the purpose of this text it will suffice to consider the endings of the traditionally active participle:

1&2 3&4
NOM an an (simple referring to an action, or for emphasis)
ACC na ana/ina (referring to the action as a direct object, or with a sense of approach, destination or end)
DAT ne une (action as indirect object, or marking intent, precedence or effect)
GEN nat unat (attributive)
ABL nat unat (marking antecedence, cause, opposition)
INS ni uni (concurrence in time)
LOC nu unu (concurrence with little or no duration)

As Urianian is a pretty well marked language, word order is rather free and you may put any part of the sentence first for emphasis or rearrange words at will to suit your rhythm. However, SVO is customary. Attributes are generally postpositioned.

3. Vocabulary

cui (NM) life (cuj- with vowel endings)
ekni (ADV) always
emiz (ADJ) impossible
eng (ADJ) essential, required, vital
erdi (NF) character, personality, way of being
furdid (V4) destine, fate, doom
igli (N4) something else
lugid (V3) fail
mal (NM) effort
mel (ADJ) little
mistid (V4) change
ni (ADV) not
sedi (ADV) indeed, really
vitan (NM) religion
zide (V1) do, act, make
zirkid (V4) control, rule, hold
zivit (NM) behaviour, manner

(For pronouns, demonstratives and the verb be, see above.)

4. Abbreviations Used

1 - 1st person, or 1st conjugation
2 - 2nd person, or 2nd conjugation
3 - 3rd person, or 3rd conjugation
4 - 4th conjugation, or 4th declination
ABL - ablative
ACC - accusative
ADJ - adjective
ADV - adverb
D - distal
DAT - dative
F - feminine
GEN - genitive
INS - instrumental
LOC - locative
M - masculine
N - neuter, or noun
NOM - nominative
P - plural, or proximal
R - remote
S - singular
V - verb
VOC - vocative

5. Smooth English Translation

Efforts to control our behaviour with religion are destined to fail.
Let's not change our character into something else, for doing that is indeed impossible for us; our character is not less essential to us than our life.

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page started: 2008.Dec.07 Sun
last modified: 2008.Dec.07 Sun
form originated by qiihoskeh;
content copyright Lars Finsen.