Conlang Relay 15/'Yemls
by Jeff Jones
i: ViDr K d: BER
- i: poLxf K But: WOI Eaez sKM PDoU NrA-d EYOaez UsM CTaG YOd.
- YOa: GxPf K d: DuBERx.
- yEJ d: AmL-a UN,, d: BER^m.
- a: JMxom K VrM LBERm d: jOL NeS UN VrM-a.
- d: DuWOI EYOPQxQ-a, EYOPXonr LBER-a.
- d: TmPm qO ZEM 1 jePn.
- d: FENxm LHeb-d RE Nfk: YOJMHeb qO jfL.
- yEJ s: EJ AReHxr LBERm dd EJ Amojxr CT.
- s: DoUr LGM EJ wYzBt EJ jfL UN YOd dd.
I've Seen Them Dance
- I noticed people moving using the sound of their own voices and not using music played by others.
- Nobody helped them learn dancing.
- However, they're giving everything: they really dance.
- Someone can even assume that their style of dancing is the most joyful and pleasant of all.
- They know how to move unhindered, having not been shown any dancing.
- They turn as if they should be parts of one living thing.
- Doing so makes them so happy that they just can't act differently.
- But it's made the dances beautiful and sad.
- It has created something complicated and different from anything else out of them.
Notes on the Translation
I've simplified the text somewhat, eliminating untranslatable parts.
Smooth Translation of Previous Text
Someone's Observation of Seeing How They Dance
This person noticed that instead of self-movement together with music, people were moving themselves with the sound of their own voices. They're completely self-taught at dancing.
However, they're giving everything in one's own movements, toward which they permit them their creativity and physical possibility - they really dance. It can even be assumed that their style of dancing is the most joyful and nicest of all. Because their formal education doesn't exist, they know how to move freely. They turn themselves as if they should be a single living thing. This makes them so happy that they just can't act otherwise.
But it adds this combination of beauty and sadness to the dances; it creates something out of them which is complicated and different from anything else.
'Yemls is an agglutinating SVO language written using a syllabary which resembles the alphabet.
The most important thing to know is that any content word can appear in either the verb position (V) or as part of a noun phrase (S or O). Note that words within noun phrases may also have objects.
The inflectional morphology is strictly verbal. Singular and plural aren't distinguished.
There's no case marking. The role a subject or object phrase plays depends on the argument structure of the verb or the head word of which the phrase may be an object. Each content word has a basic argument structure which applies when no grammatical voice prefix is used; this is listed in the vocabulary. The first letter indicates the role of the subject, the second indicates that of the first object, and the third indicates that of the second object. These are left blank (or indicated with a (-)) for objects that can't occur. The letters are used also in most of the definitions; this should clear up what the letters stand for.
The grammatical voice prefixes A, P, C, and L rearrange the argument structure. The L prefix puts the subject in front of the first object. The A, P, and C prefixes move the A, P, and C objects, respectively, to the subject position. The original subject isn't deleted, but moved to one of the object positions. An A subject will end up as the second (in some case only) object, while a P or C subject will end up as the first object. An AP subject acts like an A subject.
The subject is always followed by (:). In clauses where the subject has been omitted, (:) is attached to the preceding conjunction. The omitted subject is (here) the same as the matrix subject.
The pronouns ii, dd, aa, and ss have different forms depending on where they appear. The full forms are used as independent object pronouns. The hyphenated forms (-i, -d, -a, and -s) are used as enclitic objects, and the other single character forms (i, d, a, and s) are used as subjects.
See the vocabulary for additional notes.
The argument structures here are simplified; only the relevent parts are given. The words are in syllabary order, I'm afraid!
Affixes and Clitics
- prefix marks secondary predicate and certain adverbials
- prefix changes argument structure, making P the subject
- prefix verbal noun
- prefix changes argument structure, making C the subject
- prefix knows how to do (makes a dynamic verb static)
- prefix be possible
- prefix logical negative
- prefix changes argument structure, making A the subject
- suffix retrospective (perfect) aspect
- suffix past tense (all perfective in this text)
- suffix habitual
- suffix to become (applied to static verbs; the resulting stem is dynamic)
- suffix indicates that the property is inherent
- infix used for emphasis
- encl. follows last word of subject
- conj. and (usually precedes each clause, including the first) Conjoined clauses may have a common subject which comes before the first EJ.
- AP AP dances
- P person
- P C P is aware of C
- P C P is happy (C = stimulus)
- C P C is P's style (P can also be a clause)
- P C P sees C
- P - A P is sad (A = cause)
- A P C A tells C to P
- AP AP moves
- C C is complicated
- conj. followed by degree
- C - A C is beautiful (A = cause)
- C thing, something unknown or hard to categorize
- AP AP turns
- AP C AP plays/performs C
- pron. refers to an earlier C argument (in same sentence)
- pron. 3rd person
- A P C A creates P from C
- P P is joyful
- P P is alive
- P C P is different from C
- pron. refers to what's just been said, or the situation it describes
- C sound
- A P C A shows, demonstrates, acts out C for P
- P C P assumes C
- C P C is part of P
- pron. 1st person
,NeS: C C is nice or pleasing
- conj. introduces result
- C P C is voice of P
- pron. other
- pron. nobody, nothing
- conj. but, however
- conj. as if
- A P C A hinders P by means of C
- conj. complementizer introducing full clause
- A P A uses P
- pron. indefinite
- A P C A gives C to P
- A - C A helps C be accomplished
- C music
- quant. all (can also act as pronoun or determiner)
- AP AP acts or does or behaves
- quant. one