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Spoken in: Calen (Cale)
Conworld: Alternate Europe
Total speakers: 430-490 million
Genealogical classification: Indo-European
P Calinic
Basic word order: VSO (V1)
Morphological type: Fusional
Morphosyntactic alignment: Nominative-accusative
Writing system:
Created by:
K. Willis circa 2000-2009 C.E.

Calineg [kæl'inɨg] (i Galineg [i gæl'inɨg]) is an a posteriori constructed language that is a modern descendant of Proto-Italo-Celtic. Calineg has been systematically derived from Proto-Celtic and Proto-Italic roots that best approximate a synthesis of these branches. The vocabulary also shows early pseudo-historical borrowing from Latin and later Brythonic loanwords. The alternate timeline presented in this article has been constructed in order to provide an environment necessary for the survival of the language.

Calineg is spoken around the world *there* by 202.1 million people as a native language, and by about 260 to 300 million people as a second or third language. The language ranks 6th among total number of native speakers, and between 7th and 9th overall. Most native speakers live in Calen (89.6 mn), where the language originated. The rest live in Calophone South America (ir Arianina tha Galluna, 49.1 mn), Canada (i Ganada, 28.3 mn), Australia (Tiratha, 20.3 mn), Calophone Africa (Afira Galluna, 12.6 mn), Indonesia (Idas Misra, 2.4 mn), the United States (Esates Eloge, 1.9 mn), and Israel (ir Eres, 635 000). Calineg is an official language of 16 countries, most of which form what is know as i Galluna (The Calophone).

In Calen, where fluency is a requirement for citizenship, 89.6 million people (96% of 93.1 mn) speak Calineg as their native language. According to the European Union (Uropa Eloga), 159 mn people (32% of 497.2 mn) speak Calineg, 92.8 mn (18.7%) as first language and 65 mn (13%) claim it as their second language, which makes it the most widely spoken mother tongue and second overall in the Union after English (Senege). In South America, Calineg ranks third after Portuguese (Poriwege) and Spanish (Panege), respectfully, in number of native speakers. Calineg ranks third in North America as well, after English and Spanish.

The Calophone. Map of nations using Calineg as an official language.


Proto-Calinic diverged from Proto-Italo-Celtic sometime before the first millennium B.C.E. Widely spoken across Central Europe, Common Calinic stone inscriptions have been found dating as early as the 3rd century B.C.E. Common Calinic speakers were first attested in Roman works of the 1st century B.C.E.

The earliest extant sources identifiable as Calineg go back to about the 1st century C.E. Very little of the language from this period, known as Early Calineg (Calineg fora), remains. The next main period, somewhat better attested, is Old Calineg (Hena Galineg) from the 3rd to 7th centuries. The period also saw the borrowing of numerous Latin words, especially in technical language. Middle Calineg (Calineg metha), with its soaring epic poetry, runs into the 10th century. Modern Calineg consists of two distinct periods. It was marked by the extensive influx of Brythonic words after the incorporation of Belgium (Gwala Felga) in North Burgundy (Borgone Golethole) into Calen. Early Modern Calineg (Calineg thiwetha bora) officially began with the drafting of The Alliance of Calen and the United Burgundy (ir Hocida’r Cale a’r Borgone Eloge) in 937 C.E. Similarly, Late Modern Calineg (Calineg thiwetha netha) began with the drafting of the Unification of the Two Kingdoms (Eloga’r thua Wala) in 1475 C.E. Current linguistic debate centers over whether the modern era has ended with the widespread education and media publication that has effectively made the colloquial register the only known language of the people, and Post-Modern Calineg (Calineg thiwetha hura) began in the latter half of the 20th century.


Modern Calineg can be written in two styles — the colloquial register (Calineg galida) and the literary register (Calineg ica). The colloquial register is used for everyday speech, by the media, and in informal writing. Literary Calineg is closer to the form used since the beginning of the late modern period and is used in official documents and in higher education. As a standardized form, the literary language shows little of the dialectal variation found in the colloquial language. The primary differences include:

Literary Colloquial
Extensive use of simple verb forms Extensive use of periphrastic verb forms
Subjunctive verb forms Subjunctive in fixed idioms
Common use of all mutational forms. Varied use of nasal and aspirate mutations.
Free word order. Strict VSO word order.

Consider these examples:

    Menath fing hosas arweni.                         Manu fi cosas en mena arweni.
    Want-3.Pl. my[NM]kindred-NOM.PL. leader-ACC.S.    Are-3.Pl. my kindred-NOM.Pl. PROG. want-FEM. leader-ACC.S.
    My kindred want a leader.                         My kindred desire a leader.



Front Near-front Central Near-back Back
High i u
High-mid e o
Low a


Bilabial Labiod. Dental Alveolar Post-alv. Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal m n ng
Plosive p b t d c g ch
Fricative f th s
Approximants w h
Lateral l r
Lateral Approximant lh rh

Stress and Pitch

Stress in polysyllabic words occurs on the penultimate syllable, with rare exceptions. Monosyllabic words are always treated as stressed. Because of a shift in stress position, related words may sound very different as declension, conjugation or compound formation change the word length.

Stress on penultimate syllables is characterized by a low pitch, which is followed by a high pitch on the (unstressed) word-final syllable.



Initial consonant mutation is a phenomenon common to Calinic and Celtic languages. The first consonant of a word in Calineg may change depending on grammatical context or when preceded ("triggered") by certain words. Calineg has three mutations: the soft mutation (hence SM), the nasal mutation (NM), and the aspirate mutation (AM). These are also represented in writing:

Radical Soft Nasal Aspirate
p b m h f
b f m
t d n h th
d th n
c g ng h ch
g * ng
lh l
rh r
m m h
n n h
  • A blank cell indicates no change.
  • Note: /g/ disappears.
  • Letters not listed under the category “radical” do not undergo mutation.

For example, the word for “tree” is prana, but “the tree” is i brana, “my tree” fim hrana, and “her tree” ea frana. Not all letters mutate under the same environments, so the same sequence for “woman” is: bena “woman”, i fena “the woman”, fi mena “my woman” , but ea bena “her woman”. Grammatical mutation is discussed under syntax.

The Article

  • There is no indefinite article in Calineg.

bena, a woman. cethe, a man.

  • There are three forms of the definite article in Calineg.

I is used before a consonant. i cethe, the man.

Ir is used before words beginning with a vowel or /h/. ir ore, the hammer.

‘r is used after words that end in a vowel, regardless of whether the following word begins with a vowel or not.

    Ma’r fena’n fira.  
    Is-FEM.-3S. the [SM]woman-NOM.S. PROG. speak-FEM. 
    The woman is speaking.

Note: Feminine nouns undergo the soft mutation after the definite article. i fena, the woman.


In Calineg nouns are declined for gender, number and case.

  • There are two genders in Calineg: masculine and feminine.

All nouns meaning individual male or female persons are masculine or feminine respectfully, but all nouns referring to a mixed group of males and females are feminine. The gender of all other nouns must be memorized.

  • There are three numbers in Calineg: singular, dual, and plural.
  • There are five cases in Calineg: nominative, accusative, genitive, ablative and vocative.

The Nominative is the case of the subject: bena, cethe.

The Accusative is the case of the direct object: bene, cethi.

The Dative is the case of the indirect object. The particle e precedes the noun and causes the nasal mutation: e mena, eng hethe.

Genitive is the case of possession. Genitive relationships are expressed by apposition. The indefinite noun undergoes the soft mutation. cethe fena, a woman’s man.

The Vocative case is the case of direct address. Nouns undergo a soft mutation to form the vocative case. Proper names, however, usually do not undergo mutation: fena, chethe.

    Bures, minduch at ga!  
    [SM]Boy-NOM.Pl. go-IMPER.Pl. to [SM]home-NOM.S.
    Boys, go home!

Masculine Nouns

Case Singular Dual Plural
Nominative e en es
Dative e [NM] -e e [NM] -en e [NM] -es
Accusative i in is

Feminine Nouns

Case Singular Dual Plural
Nominative a an as
Dative e [NM] -a e [NM] -an e [NM] -as
Accusative e en es

  • For example, consider the declension of brene, a male ruler.

Case Singular Dual Plural
Nominative brene "a ruler" brenen "two rulers" brenes "rulers"
Dative e mrene "(to) a ruler" e mrenen "(to) two rulers" e mrenes "(to) rulers"
Accusative breni "a ruler" brenin "two rulers" brenis "rulers"

  • And brena, a female ruler

Case Singular Dual Plural
Nominative brena "a ruler" brenan "two rulers" brenas "rulers"
Dative e mrena "(to) a ruler" e mrenan "(to) two rulers" e mrenas "(to) rulers"
Accusative brene "a ruler" brenen "two rulers" brenes "rulers"


Pronouns must agree in gender and number with the noun to which they refer.

Personal Pronouns

Person Singular Dual Plural
First mi on ni
Second ti en chi
Third ha/e an nu

Calineg also has special emphatic forms of the personal pronouns.

Emphatic Pronouns

Person Singular Dual Plural
First mina fina nina
Second titha dena china
Third hinta (her) dana nuna
finta (him)

Possessive Pronouns

Person Singular Dual Plural
First fi [NM] fin [SM] eni
Second di [SM] den [SM] enich
Third ea [AM] ('hers') dan [AM] enu
ei [SM] ('his')

  • The possessive pronouns are also used as the accusative case of the personal pronouns.

Reflexive Pronouns

Person Singular Dual Plural
First finun fin hun eni hun
Second dinun den hun enich hun
Third danun (herself) dan hun enu hun
denun (himself)

Demonstrative Pronouns

Person Singular Dual Plural
'This'/'These' han (f.) i - rhan i - rhen
hen (m.)
hin (intangible)
'That'/'Those' hena/e (f./m.) i - rhani i - rheni
heni (intangible)


In Calineg, adjectives agree with the gender of the noun they modify. The also typically follow the noun as well: cethe ine, last man bena ina, last woman.

Adjectives undergo the soft mutation following feminine nouns: bena la, small woman (From lh- 'small' ).

  • The equative degree can be formed by adding –ad for a feminine or -ed for a masculine adjective, to the stem. Emphatic pronouns are used if necessary: i fena lad hinat, the woman as small as her.
  • The comparative degree is formed by adding –ach or -ech to the stem: bena lach, smaller woman
  • The superlative degree is formed by adding –af or –ef to the stem. The adjective must be preceded by the article. i feraf, the largest; i lhef, the smallest.

The demonstrative adjectives are enclitic. 'ma 'this'/'these' and 'na 'that/those' are affixed to the end of the noun the describe. The article must be used with the noun: i cethe'na, this man, i cethes'na "these men", i fena'ma, that woman, i fenas'ma those women.


In Calineg verbs are conjugated for voice, mood, tense, number, and person.

  • There are two voices: active and passive.

The active represents the subject as acting or being.

    Molo then.  
    Praise-1S. [SM]your-2D.
    I praise you two.

The passive represents the subject as acted upon.

    I am praised.
  • There are three moods: indicative, subjunctive/conditional, and imperative.
  • There are nine tenses: present, past, future (the simple tenses), imperfect, past imperfect, future imperfect, perfect, pluperfect, and future perfect (the compound tenses).

Personal Endings of the Active Voice

Person Singular Dual Plural
First o (-) -n -ch
Second -s -n- -g
Third -d/-t -m -th

Personal Endings of the Passive Voice

Person Singular Dual Plural
First -r -r-n -r-ch
Second -r (-r-s) -r-n -r-g
Third -r-d/-r-t -r-m -r-th

The Active Simple Tenses

Number Person Present Imperfect Future Imperative
Singular 1st o a i -
2nd es as is us
3rd ed/et ad/at id/it uch
Dual 1st en an in -
2nd ene ana ini un
3rd em am im um
Plural 1st ech ach ich -
2nd eg ag ig uch
3rd eth ath ith uth

Preverbal Particles

To negate a conjugated verb the negative particle na proceeds the verb and causes a nasal mutation (NM) on the verb. Potentially confusing for English speakers, is the use of positive particle mi, often encountered in the literary register. It causes the soft mutation. The use of mi varies widely in different dialects and in some contexts may be used only for emphasis.

    Na murad eam habe e'r natha.                                         Mi furad eam habe e'r natha.
    NEG. [NM]throw-PAST.3.FEM.S. her[AM]son-NOM.S. in the stream-NOM.S   POS. [SM]throw-PAST.3.FEM.S. her[AM]son in the stream.
    She did not throw her son in the stream.                             She threw her son in the stream.

Verbal Nouns

The verbal noun is a special verb form that is declined only for gender like an adjective. The verbal noun can behave in a similar manner to an infinity or gerund in English. In Calineg, the verbal noun is also used to form the compound tenses as well as a noun or an adjective.

  • Molo 'to praise' forms the verbal nouns:
    mola 'praising' (feminine subject) and mole 'praising' (masculine subject)

Bod 'to be'

Bod 'to be' is highly irregular. In addition to having inflected forms of the preterit, future, and conditional, it also maintains inflected present and imperfect forms which are used frequently as auxiliaries with other verbs. Bod also distinguishes between affirmative, interrogative, and negative statements for each tense.

Present Past Future Conditional
Affirmative Negative Interrogative Aff. Neg. Inter. Aff. Neg. Inter. Aff. Neg.
Singular First dwi rwi dim idwi? reni deri dim oni? fithi fithi dim ithi? gweni nang weni
Second dach rach dim idich? reti deti dim oreti? fithiti fithiti dim ithiti? gwenati nang wenati
Third ma/e da/e dim ida/e? retha/e detha/e dim oretha/e? fitha/e fitha/e dim itha/e? gwena/e nang wena/e
Dual First dan rho dim idon? ron deron dim oron? fithon fithon dim ithon? gwenon nang wenon
Second den rhe dim iden? ren deren dim oren? fithen fithen dim ithen? gwenen nang wenen
Third man rha dim idan? ran deran dim oran? fithan fithan dim ithan? gwenan nang wenan
Plural First dani rani dim idani? rethi deni dim oreni? fitheni fitheni dim itheni? gwenani nang wenani
Second dachi rachi dim idachi? rechi dechi dim orechi? fithechi fthechi dim ithechi? gwenachi nang wenachi
Third manu danu dim idanu? renu denu dim orenu? fithenu fithenu dim ithenu? gwenu nang wenu

The affirmative forms presented above are actually abbreviated forms of the formal roots. The conditional does not have unique interrogative forms. Additionally, Calineg does not have one word for ‘yes’ and ‘no', but instead uses modified verb forms in response to direct questions. However, they are all omitted here for the sake of clarity.

Becasue a soft mutation always follows the verb phrase, the negative particle dim appears as thim in most sentences.

    Da'r anera thim en tama.
    Is-FEM.S. the young-woman-NOM.S. [SM]NEG. PROG. die-FEM.
    The young-woman is not dying.


Adverbs are unique because the do not decline to agree with the verbs they modify. Most adverbs are formed from the same stem as the corresponding adjective and a null suffix.


    Ma'n rheda ber.                  Ma'n fera.
    Is-FEM.3S. PROG. run-FEM. slow.  Is-FEM.3S. PART. [SM]slow-FEM. 
    She is running slowly.           She is slow.


Some prepositions decline for grammatical gender. They are called personal prepositions. They must be memorized because they are highly irregular. The radical form of a preposition is used before nouns and adjectives to from prepositional phrases.

Personal Prepositions

Radical 'Me' 'You' (s.) 'Her'/'Him' Dual 'Us' 'You' (pl.) 'Them'
Ag 'at' agam agat aga/e agan agi agof agu
Am 'about/for' amdana amdanat amdana/e amdon amdani amdonon amdonin
Ar 'on' arna arnat ara/e arn ari archi arnun
As 'out of' asam asat asa/e asan asi asod astu
At 'to'/'towards' atam atat ata/e aton ati atoch atin
Chug 'towards' chugam chat cha/e chun chuci chuch chucu
Dan 'under' danam danat dana/e danan dani dachi danu
E 'in' emi eti eda/e eden edihi edif edin
Gan 'with' gen geni genna/e genon geneni genoch genenu
In 'to' imi ito ifa/e inen ini ichi inu
Id 'between' idmi iditi idiha/e idin edra edar etar
O 'from'/'of' ono onat ona/e on oni onich onu
Rom 'before' roham romat roma/e ron romi roman romu
Nes 'next' nesam neset nesa/e nesan nesi nesan newu
Thar 'over' tharam tharat thara/e thon thomi tharan tharu
Ti 'by means of' tam tat ta/e ton tithi tin tinu
Um 'around/about' unam umat uma/e uman umi umaf umu
  • All personal prepositions cause the soft mutation (SM), except for ti 'by means of'.
  • The dual form of the preposition is used in all cases.


Calineg uses a vigesimal (base-twenty) counting system. Numerals precede the nouns they modify. The noun, however, remains in the singular. Ordinals on the other hand, follow the noun they modify. The construction requires the article. Compare:

    Caded una mura flodes.                            Caded i mura una flodes.
    Enjoy-3S. one daughter-NOM. [SM]flower-ACC.PL.    Enjoy-3S. the daughter-NOM. one [SM]flower-ACC.PL.
    One daughter enjoys flowers.                      The first daughter enjoys flowers.
English Calineg
zero dim
one un (m.) una (f.) (una causes SM)
two du (m.) dua (f.) (both cause SM)
three tri (m.) tir (f.) (tri causes AM)
four ped (m.) pad (f.)
five pum
six che (causes AM)
seven sath
eight weth
nine na (causes NM)
ten deg
eleven nec
twelve dutheg
thirteen trec
fourteen pesec
fifteen pemtheg
sixteen wec
seventeen sac
eighteen duna
nineteen noc
twenty gan


Sentence Structure

In an inflecting language like Calineg word order is theoretically optional. Practically, however, Calineg is head initial so the verb normally occupies the first position in neutral sentences, with the subject following. In English, the verb is the second main idea and it separates the subject from the complement—either the object or a phrase dependant on the verb. Unlike English, Calineg is VSO in affirmative, interrogative and negative sentences.


    Me'r cethe ar na.
    Is-1S.MASC. the man-NOM.S. on ship-NOM.S.
    The man is on a ship.


    Ide'r cethe ar na?
    Is-1S.MASC. the man-NOM.S. on ship-NOM.S.
    Is the man on a ship?


    De'r cethe thim ar na.
    Is-1S.MASC.NEG. the man-NOM.S. [SM]NEG. on ship-NOM.S.
    The man is not on a ship.

Simple sentences are formed around a conjugated verb.

    Rhetha'r ar bade a lida Gale.
    Travel-1S.IMP. the on [SM]length-NOM. and width-NOM. [SM]Calen-NOM.
    I travelled the length and breadth of Calen.

Compound sentences are formed from a form of to be and a verbal noun linked by a complement marker (en or wed).

    Me'r cethe’n bone dure.
    Is-1S.MASC. the man-NOM.S. PROG. open-MASC. door-ACC.S.
    The man is opening a door.
    Me'r cethe wed bone dure.
    Is-1S.MASC. the man-NOM.S. PERFECT open-MASC. door-ACC.S.
    The man has opened a door.

Caineg is head initial and therefore dependent phrases must begin with a verb in a similar manner to the use of that in English. In the present tense the infinitive of the verb to be is followed by the subject of the dependant clause or preceded by a possessive pronoun. Compare:

    Fitho bod i mabe'n lhere.                        Cetho ea bod en bala.        
    Know-1S. to-be the son-NOM.S. PROG. read-MASC.   Believe-1S. her to-be PROG. ill-FEM.
    I know the son is reading.                       I believe that she is ill.

In the past tense the verb to happen is used instead.

    Meno darfa'r masa'n celura.
    Want-1S. happen-FEM. the girl PROG making-pots-FEM.
    I want the girl to have been making pots.

In the future or conditional tenses, however, the appropriate verb is used.

    Fomeno fitha'r anera'n bera pere chirra.
    Hope-1S. Is-3.S.FEM.FUT. young-woman PROG cook-FEM chicken-ACC.S. curry-FEM.
    I hope the young-woman will be cooking curry chicken. 

While the verb typically occupies the first position, this is only a general rule in Calineg. The rule is consistent enough, however, to make deviation from it noticeable. Therefore, Calineg often draws attention to a focused element by moving it from its more expected position to the beginning of the sentence. In the colloquial register, word order is more ridged and misplaced elements often undergo a soft mutation. When the subject occupies the first position it is dependant on an understood “is”, and therefore must be followed by a relative clause.

    I fena'n ta.
    The [SM]woman-NOM. PROG. come-FEM.
    (It is) the woman (who) is coming.

When the verb is emphasized, it is placed first in the infinitive (verbal noun), and linked to the verb to do in the relative clause. In informal speech the to be verb may be used instead. Compare:

    Ta gwened.                  Ta ma!
    Come-FEM. does-3S.FEM.      Come-FEM. is-1S.FEM.
    She is coming.              She is coming!

Because of the head initial nature of the language certain structual patterns are generally the case as well. First, adjectives and other modifiers tend to follow the noun our phrase they modify. Adverbs and adverbial phrases that modify the time, manner, and place of the action usually follow the sentence, in that order.


All instances of mutations in Calineg can be divided in to either contact or grammatical mutations. Contact mutations occur following a relatively small number of high frequency words such as prepositions, numerals, and the complement markers. Instead of being caused by a preceding word, grammatical mutations fulfill a syntactic function.

Gramatical Mutations

In Calineg, because neutral sentences are VSO in structure, a soft mutation (SM) is used to separate the subject phrase from the complement. This most fundamental rule of Calineg grammar can be summarized as: Subject Phrase[SM].

    Bonet i cethe thure.
    Open-3.MASC.S. the man-NOM.S. [SM]door-ACC.S.
    The man opens a door.

There are two potential points of confusion. English speakers must remember that the idea of the subject is expanded in Calineg to include the verbal endings and places where the subject is in the speaker’s mind but not explicitly expressed.

    Cadet dun mos dan brole.
    Gave-way-3.MASC.S. [SM]at-that-time habitually under [SM]battle.
    He gave way habitually in battle at that time. 

There are a few words that are immune to this rule. The intensifiers tra and mor are common examples.

    Rethe’r res tra male.
    Was-3.MASC.S the affair-NOM.S. very bad-MASC.
    The affair was very bad. 

Generally, any element outside its natural grammatical position will undergo the soft mutation. This has numerous practical applications.

    It finad darfa tama’r wiri.
    [SM]So [SM]find-Past-3.FEM.S. happen-FEM. dieing-FEM. the gentleman-ACC.S.
    So it was that death found the gentleman.

For example, genitive relationships are expressed by apposition. The indefinite noun undergoes the soft mutation.

    Me’n mos chomedire
    Is-3.MASC.S. PART custom-NOM.S. [SM]fighter-NOM.S.
    It is a fighter’s custom.

Emphatic elements undergo mutation for this reason as well.

    Che minduch!
    [SM]Home-ACC.S. go-INTER.S.!
    Go home!

Nouns undergo a soft mutation to form the vocative case.

    Bures, minduch e che!
    [SM]Young-men, go-INTER.S. to [SM] home-ACC.S.
    Young-men, go home!

Contact Mutations

The complement markers cause a soft mutation on proceeding nouns and adjectives.

    Ma'r fena'n bride.
    Is-1FEM.S. the [SM]woman-NOM.S. PART. [SM]poetess-ACC.S
    The woman is a poetess.

Most prepositions also cause the soft mutation.

    Hared ag bona.
    Arrive-3FEM.S. at [SM]boat-Nom.S.
    She arrives at a boat.

The article causes the soft mutation on feminine nouns.

    Genad i gatha nes gamasa.
    Born-PAST3FEM.S. the [SM]cat-Nom.S.Fem. near [SM]river-bend-Nom.S.
    The cat was born near a bend in a river.

Certain numerals also cause mutations. Un/una one and du/dua two cause the soft mutation, while tri three and che six causes the aspirate mutation and na nine the nasal mutation.

    Rhicath che fure gope.
    Formed-PAST3.Pl. six [am]boy-Nom.S. [SM]troop-ACC.S.
Six boys formed a troop.