Jamastulu is the brainchild of Rob Hoelz, and is being created for an RPG to give one its cultures a more realistic feel. (And also to confuse the gamer!) It has an as-of-yet unnamed sister language, and both languages are descended from a conlang known as Proto-Jama until a better name is created. Rob is currently fleshing out the grammar of Proto-Jama and has already planned a great deal of sound changes to transform it into Jamastulu, and one of the other collaborators on the project is working to create the sister language.
Facts about Jamastulu
- Jamastulu is literally translated as "Tongue of the Desert."
- It is spoken by the Jamaskura (Shadows of the Desert).
- It has three genders (masculine, feminine, neuter) and around eight cases (currently being worked on), but suprisingly barely distinguishes number.
- In spite of its somewhat complicated noun system, its verbs are relatively simple, not inflecting for person or number.
The phonemes of Jamastulu are given with their transliteration and the X-SAMPA equivalent in brackets on the right.
|Plosives||p[p], pp[p_>]||-||t[t], tt[t_>]||-||-||tj[c], ttj[c_>]||k[k], kk[k_>]|
|Fricatives||-||v[v]||-||ss[s], zz[z]||s[S], z[Z]||sj[C], zj[j\]||-|
The following sounds are pronounced approximately as in English: p, t, k, m, n, v, l
Other sounds: tj, nj, sj, zj: Palatal versions of their dental/alveolar counter parts.
pp, tt, ttj, kk: Glottalized versions of their voiceless aspirated equivalents.
r, rr: Pronounced as Spanish r and rr respectively. (Tapped and trilled r)
ss, zz: Pronounced as English s an z respectively.
s: Pronounced as English sh.
z: Pronounced as s in the English word measure.
j: Pronounced as English y in yes.
The vowels are very similar if not identical to those of Finnish:
a - as a in father
e - as ay in day (only a pure vowel, not a diphthong)
i - as ee in feet
o - as oa in moat (also a pure vowel)
u - as oo in food
y - no equivalent in English, as ü in German über. (If you don't know how that sounds, round your lips while pronouncing Jamastulu i.)
ö - no equivalent in English, as ö in German schön. (If you don't know how that sounds, round your lips while pronouncing Jamastulu e.)
ä - similar to e in bed.
Jamastulu prefers open syllables, and each word (other than compounds) is usually no longer than two syllables in length. A Jamastulu word typically has the following structure:
(C)V(V)(C)(C)(ss, r)V(V)(ss, r, or N)
where C is a consonant, V is a vowel, and nasal is one of the nasals.
NOTE: Words cannot end in dipthongs.
Consonant clusters can only occur in the middle of a word in Jamastulu, and only the following are allowed:
N + S (where the two are at the same place of articulation)
N + r
N + ss
S + r
S + ss (except for tss)
N + S + ss
N + S + r
where S is a stop and N is a nasal.
Diphthongs can occur anywhere in the word other than the final position. The diphthongs of Jamastulu are the following:
ai au oi
ou ui uo
ua ue yi