Lenian languages

From FrathWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

The Lenian languages are a polyphyletic cultural grouping of related languages that descend from Tapilula but exclude branches that acquired divergent characteristics.


Tapilula (0) to Proto-Dreamlandic (1320)

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ      mʷ  mbʷ mpʷ     w
Spread bilabials:      p   b   m   mb  mp     (Ø)         
Alveolars:             t       n   nd          l
Rounded alveolars:     tʷ      nʷ  ndʷ     
Velars:                k   ḳ   ŋ   ŋġ      h   g


Shared changes

  1. Before a low tone, the fricatives h g shifted to kʷ kʷʕ. Before a high tone, they disappeared.
  2. The dependent phonemes kʷ kʷʕ shifted to p pʕ if bordering any /u ə/ in either direction, and otherwise to k. Note that /o/ did not trigger this shift.
  3. Before a low tone, the lateral approximant l shifted to r. This did not affect the dental form (if there was one).
  4. Before a high tone, the voiceless stops pʷ p t tʷ k became the fricatives hʷ f s hʷ h. This did not apply to the emphatics.
  5. Voiceless prenasalized sequences were reanalyzed as nasal + fricative. Voiced prenasalized sequences were reanalyzed as nasal + stop. Thus they were no longer phonemic. Nevertheless, they continued to occur in the syllable onset rather than splitting between the onset and the preceding coda.
  6. >ā.
  7. The emphatic stops pʕ ḳ shifted to pp kk except in absolute initial position.
  8. The voiceless alveolar stop t affricated to c before the high vowels [i ə u].
  9. The vowels a e i all shifted to palatalized forms ya ye yi. If one of the non-labialized consonants p m f t n s k ŋ h l r preceded, it became palatalized to pʲ mʲ fʲ č ň š ć ń ś ł ŕ. But palatalization of /l/ was not marked in spelling. Meanwhile, the long vowels ā ē ī shifted to yā yē yī (not *yaya, etc).
  10. The rounded alveolars tʷ nʷ became kʷ ŋʷ.
  11. The high central vowel ə shifted to i.
    Note that this shift opens up a three-way contrast of /t/~/č/~/k/ before [i], and the following shift adds [ə] and [a]. However, there was only a two-way contrast before [u]. This may be seen as related to the labialized phoneme /kʷ/ and might even trigger the loss of /u/ in some daughters.
  12. The mid vowels e o shifted to ə a. This did not affect, and was not affected by, whether the previous consonant was labialized or not; the respective allophones shifted in tandem.
  13. Tones were eliminated.
  14. Syllabic consonants were resolved as sequences of /i/ + consonant, and assimilated to the place of articulation of a following consonant.
  15. The root-initial geminates pp ppʲ ćć kk shifted to singletons p pʲ ć k if there was another heavy syllable in the word.
  16. All prenasalized consonants became voiceless with a stopped release.
  17. The sequence ʷi shifted to i.

Thus the vowel inventory at this time was /a i u ə/, and the consonants were:

                       CONSONANTS                 VOWELS
Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ      w              a i u ə
Plain bilabials:       p   m   f  (Ø)             a i u              
Spread bilabials:      pʲ  mʲ  fʲ  y              a i   ə
Alveolars:             t   n   s   l   r          a i u               (/ta ci cu/)
Postalveolars:         č   ň   š  *l  *r          a i   ə             (/ča či čə/)
(Palatals:             ć   ń   ś    )             a i   ə
Velars:                k   ŋ   h                  a i u
Labiovelars:           kʷ  ŋʷ  hʷ                 a i u ə

Thus the full set of four vowels was contrastive only after rounded consonants. However, /l/ and /r/ break this rule. There was also a sequence /mfʷ/.

At this point, around the year 1320, the language divides into two dialects: one for the western end of the peninsula, where travel between the north and south coasts is easy; and the other branch for the central and eastern areas, where travel is more difficult and daughter languages tend to divide more quickly. The eastern branch is called Nuclear Dreamlandic, but this is often shortened to just "Dreamlandic".

Dialect breakup

However, it is possible that all of the diversity arose in the western and central areas, and that the division between them was political rather than tribal. Thus North Dreamlandic would be simply a branch of one of many subgroups from the West or center.

Changes unique to Western Fojy

  1. The voiceless non-sibilant fricatives f fʲ h hʷ shifted to Ø Ø Ø w.
  2. The palatalized labials pʲ mʲ shifted to p m.
  3. The bare vowel u shifted to ʉ. Then wa shifted to wo. Neither of these shifts were phonemic.

Changes unique to Nuclear Dreamlandic (1495)

  1. The mid vowel ə, which occurred almost entirely after palatalized consonants, shifted to a. Thus, the vowel inventory was reduced to /a i u/, with frequent sequences of /ya wa yi wu/ but no others.
  2. The true palatals ć ń ś shifted to č ň š .

At this stage the language had 95 syllables, considering the clusters /mp nt nk pp kk ćć/ to be singles. The syllabary contained signs for

  a    i    u    ya   wa   yi   wu
 pa   pi   pu   pya  pwa  pyi  pwu
 ma   mi   mu   mya  mwa  myi  mwu
 ta  (ci   cu)  tya       tyi
 na   ni   nu   nya       nyi
 sa   si   su   sya       syi
 la   li   lu   lya       lyi
 ra   ri   ru   rya       ryi
 ka   ki   ku        kwa       kwu
 ŋa   ŋi   ŋu        ŋwa       ŋwu
 ha   hi   hu        hwa       hwu
 fa   fi   fu
mpa  mpi  mpu  mpya mpwa mpyi mpwu
nta (nsi  nsu  nsya      nsyi)
nka  nki  nku       nkwa      nkwu
ppa  ppi  ppu  ppya ppwa ppyi ppwu
kka  kki  kku  kkya kkwa kkyi kkwu

Nuclear Dreamlandic (1495) to Dolphin Rider (4108)

Dolphin Rider is the language also known as Neamaki.


  1. The labiovelars kʷ ŋʷ hʷ shifted to pʷ mʷ fʷ unconditionally.
  2. The sequences ya wa shifted to ye o.
  3. In a closed syllable, the vowels i u lowered to e o. Long vowels did not shift.
  4. The sequence āi shifted to ē.
  5. Between vowels, the sequence ta shifted to ra.
  6. The prenasals mp nt nč ŋk shifted to voiced stops b r r g.
  7. The voiceless coronals t č š shifted to s . Meanwhile ň shifted to n.
  8. The palatalized labials pʲ mʲ fʲ became f m f. Thus palatalization was defeated.
  9. The sequences hi hu shifted to si fu. Then ŋi shifted to ni.
  10. The velars h g ŋ (including in clusters) disappeared to Ø.
  11. The sequences of ow uf uw shifted to ō ō ū ū. However, the geminate /ff/ did not participate in this shift.
  12. Any remaining singleton f disappeared to Ø.
  13. Labialization was defeated. Any remaining w shifted to b.
  14. The geminates pp ff ss kk shifted to p s s k . Thus /f/ was eliminated.
    At this point, the consonant inventory was /p m b n s l r k/ and the vowels were /a e i o u/. Long vowels /ā ē ī ū/, but not /ō/, were fairly common. This occurred around the year 3370. After this, the language became conservative.
  15. All vowels in hiatus became short.
  16. The vowel sequences au ao eo oa oe shifted to ō. Thus the word for dolphin became /pōpō/. /ua uo/ remained, but they were rare, mostly coming from earlier /ufa ufo/.

Nuclear Dreamlandic (1495) to Proto-Baywatch (3370)

These languages were spoken in colder climates, rubbing up against Thunder and Moonshine settlements. The speakers were generally of blonde hair and blue eyes, perhaps even more so than the stereotypically blonde Thunderers.

Initial phoneme inventory:

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ      w              a i u  
Plain bilabials:       p   m   f  (Ø)             a i u              
Spread bilabials:      pʲ  mʲ  fʲ  y              a i     
Alveolars:             t   n   s   l   r          a i u               (/ta ci cu/)
Postalveolars:         č   ň   š   ł   ř          a i                 (/ča či čə/)    
Velars:                k   ŋ   h                  a i u
Labiovelars:           kʷ  ŋʷ  hʷ                 a i u  


  1. The sequences ya wa shifted to ye wo.
  2. In word-initial position, the sequence su shifted to hu.
  3. The sequences ti tu shifted to si su. (This includes all /č/.)
  4. The velars k ŋ shifted to t n. Then ň also became n.
  5. The sequence āi shifted to ē.
  6. The sequences ha hu shifted to a u. However, any new eu iu shifted to ē ī (not /ō ū/).
  7. The sequence hi shifted to si.
  8. Before a consonant, the sequences nu tu lost their vowel, creating prenasalized and geminate consonants, which always assimilated. Triple consonant sequences reduced to doubles; the specific sequence tussi became tti due to the [č] allophone of /t/ in this position.
  9. The spread labials pʲ mʲ fʲ shifted to p m b unconditionally.
  10. The labial fricative f shifted to b in all positions.
  11. The sequences ai ei oi merged as ē.
  12. The palatal glide y shifted to w if after /u/, and otherwise to Ø.
  13. The sequences au eu ou merged as ō.
  14. The sequences wo wu shifted to o u. Any other /w/ also disappeared.
  15. Long vowels followed by geminate consonants became short.

If both labialized consonants and prenasalized consonants are analyzed as clusters, the phonology would be

Bilabials:       p   m           b   
Alveolars:       t   n   s   l   r     

And the vowels /a e i o u/ in both short and long forms. The geminates /pp ss tt/ still remained, and there were sound gaps of */te so bo lo ro/, except in a few rare words where contraction of long vowels before geminates had created new short vowels there.

Proto-North Dreamlandic (3370) to Nunabetari

  1. The sibilant sequences sa se si so su shifted to pa te ti o u .
  2. Remaining r shifted to b.

Proto-Baywatch (3370 AD) to Playwatch (4138 AD)

This is the language spoken in the eastern corner of Dreamland, traditionally vulnerable to invasion. The Dolphin Riders invaded and conquered it in 4108, but their reign was short-lived, as the Players invaded in 4138 and subdued the entire native population. The Players also lasted only 40 years, so the native language persisted as they were conquered by the Matrix, who survived for about 30 years.

  1. The long vowels ē ī ō ū (but not /ā/) shortened to e i o u.
    This was originally below.
  2. Before a vowel, the sequences om um shifted to ōm ūm.
  3. The alveolar nasal n shifted to m unconditionally.
  4. The alveolar flap r shifted to l in word-initial position, and disappeared to Ø elsewhere.
  5. The sequences ma me mi mo mu shifted to nasal vowels ã ẽ ĩ õ ũ before a singleton consonant UNCONDITIONALLY!!!!!!!!!!.
  6. Prenasalized consonants bled into the preceding vowel and then denasalized.
  7. The sequences uoa uoe uoi uoo uou shifted to uwa uwe uwi uō ūō.
  8. The sequences ii uu shifted to ī ū. This included shifts from triplets like /auu/, etc.
  9. After any vowel, the sequences oa oe oi (independent of nasalization) shifted to wa we wi. Nasalized w shifted to .
  10. After a vowel, the sequences ua ue ui uo (independent of nasalization) shifted to wa we wi wo.
  11. All consonants became labialized before any /u/.
  12. Before a nasal vowel, the labial approximant w shifted to .

The consonant inventory at this time could be analyzed as

Bilabials:    p   b       w   w̃
Alveolars:    t       s   l


All syllables were CV. Thus a consonant chart can be created:

  a   e   i   o   u   ã   ẽ   ĩ   õ   ũ
 pa  pe  pi  po  pu  pã  pẽ  pĩ  põ  pũ
 ba  be  bi  bo  bu  bã  bẽ  bĩ  bõ  bũ
 wa  we  wi  wo      
 w̃a  w̃e  w̃i  w̃o      w̃ã  w̃ẽ  w̃ĩ  w̃õ 
 ta  te  ti  to  tu  tã  tẽ  tĩ  tõ  tũ
 sa  se  si  so  su  sã  sẽ  sĩ  sõ  sũ
 la  le  li  lo  lu  lã  lẽ  lĩ  lõ  lũ

Longs are analyzed as sequences here and thus not shown. Longs can either be aa or aã~ãã; there is no *ãa.

Daughter languages of Playwatch include Mysticeti and probably others spoken by very small populations. Shifts include ĩ ũ > e o, ẽ ã õ > a, and w~ y~ > m n. Note, though, the languages that merge the nasal vowels retain the original allophones of preceding consonants. Thus, for example, becomes ka, not *ta. Thus, the distinction between /t/ and /k/ becomes phonemic.

There are other languages descended from proto-Baywatch; these are spoken in areas outside Dreamland, and may not survive beyond 4138, since the Players used this territory to invade Dreamland.

Playwatch to Mysticeti (~5100 AD)

  1. The sequences eu oi shifted to iu ui.
    This could be accompanied by shifts like /opē/ > /epe/, but this shift would then have to be moved up to before the loss of inherited vowel length.
  2. Vowels in closed syllables became long, unless the vowel occurred immediately after another vowel that was already long.
  3. Word-final nasals disappeared.
  4. The vowel sequences ai ei merged as ē. Then au ou merged as ō.
  5. The sequences mp nt pp tt shifted to m n p t. (Probably also ss > s.)
  6. The sequences tui nui shifted to pi mi.

Thus the consonant inventory was

Bilabials:    p  m        b
Alveolars:    t  n  s  l  r

And the vowel inventory was /a e i o u/ of both short and long varieties. Thus, the phonology was exactly the same as it had been 1800 years earlier, despite the changes. However, there were no longer any closed syllables.

There could be p>f here, and s>s, and then interchange of the resulting sounds to get rid of sequences of vowels.


Tapilula (0) to Proto-Subumpamese (1700)

The consonant inventory of Tapilula was

Rounded bilabials:                     hʷ  w
Spread bilabials:      p       m   b   f  (Ø)
Alveolars:             t       n   d       l
Rounded alveolars:     tʷ      nʷ  dʷ         
Velars:                k   ḳ   ŋ   ġ   h   g
  1. The aspirated velar stop k became č before the vowel /i/. If another vowel followed, the /i/ disappeared. This happened even if the /i/ was accented.
  2. When a "velaroid" consonant (k ḳ ŋ h g l) followed an accented high tone vowel, the vowel metathesized, leaving a superheavy syllable with both a two-vowel sequence and a coda consonant. Thus, for example, /àli/ > /ail/. These closed syllables were all high-toned, and are thus written without tone marks. Thus, for example, aa implies àa.
  3. A schwa before another vowel in any syllable disappeared. Thus əa əe əi əo əu əə shifted to a e i o u ə. This happened in both open and closed syllables.
  4. The sequences iu and ui shifted to ə̄.
  5. The double-vowel sequences aa ee ii oo uu əə shifted to the single vowels a e i o u ə in closed syllables only.
  6. The sequences ii uu əə (which now occurred only in open syllables) shifted to əi əu ə.
  7. The sequences ie uo shifted to i u in open syllables only.
  8. The remaining double-vowel sequences aa ee oo, which occurred only in open syllables, shifted to the long vowels ā ē ō.
  9. The sequences ai ei oi merged as ei; the sequences au eu ou merged as ou.
  10. The vowels /u i e/ caused adjacent consonants, in both directions, to become labialized, palatalized, and prepalatalized. The last shift applied only to velars. Labialization and palatalization could stack.
  11. The sequences ìa ìo ìə shifted to ī.
  12. The sequences ùa ùo ùə shifted to ū. ə̄ also shifted to ū.
  13. The sequences ei ou, in both open and closed syllables, shifted to ē ō.
  14. Syllable-final h shifted to x.
  15. Any fw>hw,then f>h
    Note on politics: Vuʒi split off here.
  16. The three syllabic nasals ṁ ṅ ŋ̇ all merged to ən.
  17. The velar ejective became q. Then kq qk shifted to qq.
  18. The cluster xhʷ became .
  19. All tones on unstressed syllables are released by spreading the tone of the accented syllable across the word.
    In a two-syllable root, the unstressed syllable acquires the opposite tone from the accented syllable.
    Classifier prefixes and auxiliary verbs all become low tone.
    In compounds, there is no sandhi.
  20. The fricative śʷ s̀ʷ shifted to s. Then ś s̀ became š.
  21. The nasals ń ǹ shifted to ň. Then mʷ nʷ ňʷ ŋʷ all merged as m.
  22. The sequences km qm shifted to kʷ qʷ.
  23. Voiced palatal stops and fricatives all merged as y.
  24. The sequences iy ey, on any tone, shifted to ī ē. <---QUESTIONABLE. most of this would have been from ĭg.
  25. Labialized palataloids shifted to velar. lʷ łʷ > w.
  26. The labialized alveolar stops tʷ dʷ shifted to pʷ bʷ.
  27. Unaccented final short schwas were deleted. (In nouns, they were retained because they were not always final. Therefore, this shift applies mostly to inflections.)
  28. The sequences ʷe ʷi ʷə ʷu, on any tone, shifted to e i ə u. Thus labialization remained distinctive only before /a/ and /o/.
  29. Mismatched diphthongs such as /eī/ shifted to /ēi/. Generally these were from a lost final -g.

Thus the proto-Subumpamese language had the consonants

Rounded bilabials:    pʷ  bʷ          w 
Bilabials:            p   b   m                   
Alveolars:            t   d   n   s   l             
Postalveolars:        č   ǯ   ň   š   ł           
Palatals:             ć               y
Prevelars:            c̀        
Velars:               k   ġ   ŋ   x   g
Labiovelars:          kʷ  ġʷ      xʷ  gʷ
Uvulars:              q           h              
Rounded uvulars:      qʷ          hʷ

All consonants were labialized before any /u/ and palatalized before any /i/. However, sequences like si~ši remained distinct. Consonants were also labialized *after* any /u/, so there is no contrast between /upwa/ vs /upa/, even over morpheme boundaries. This means that labialization was contrastive only in a very restricted environment, since the consonant, the following vowel, and the preceding vowel must all be on the list.


The high vowel sequences were / yi ə yə wu/. Thus, it is almost but not quite analyzable as a single vowel /ɨ/.


See Subumpamese languages for details of the languages that do not survive the Vegetable War.

Proto-Subumpamese (1700) to FILTER (3141)

As this is said to be an extremely conservative language, the first two changes on the list might cover the 600 years needed before FILTER starts branching. And then, if it remains very conservative for the next 800 years as well, there may be only one language after all, with differences only in dialect.

This is the only branch to preserve labialization, but it is also the only branch that survives 2668, so retention comes to be seen as normal.

  1. The high front vowel i, on all tones, shifted to ʲi. This had already happened in the proto-language, but was not phonemic. Note that this is different from earlier shifts that moved the consonant. For example, /ki/ became /kʲi/ here, but not /ći/. Also, this shift applied to labials.
  2. All consonants bordering a /u/ in either direction became labialized. That is, u > ʷuʷ. This shift had also happened in the proto-language but was not represented in the orthography. However, the simple spelling /u/ remained, so "u" implied "ʷuʷ". There was, at this time, no /u/ that occurred outside this environment.
  3. The high central vowels ə ə̄ changed to i ī unconditionally. Thus, the palatalization
    The classifier prefix /yi-/ was dropped from the grammar except in bare form. (That is, e.g. bo-yi- became just bo-.) This was not a sound change, but expanded the environments in which palatalized consonants could occur.
  4. When bordering a uvular in either direction, the vowel i (on any tone) shifted to ʉ~u, which are the same phoneme, but the ʉ spelling indicates specifically that the surrounding consonants are not labialized.
  5. Syllable-final nasals ŋ ň changed to match the place of a following consonant, and changed to n if word-final.
    Note on politics: this may be 2371.
  6. The prevelar stop changed to ć.
  7. The high tone vowels à è ì ò ù came to be spelled á é í ó ú.
  8. The mid vowel sequences o ʲo shifted to ʉ ʲe.
  9. ea ae>ʲa ā.
  10. On a low tone, the high vowels i u (including all ʉ) become ultra-short and are sometimes dropped.
  11. The long vowels ā ē ī ō ū shifted to á é í ó ú, thus merging with the primordial high tones. (This is why the orthography was changed.)
  12. The sequences čʲ ǯʲ ňʲ šʲ łʲ shifted to ć ǵ ń ś y.
  13. The sequences ŋʲ xʲ gʲ hʲ shifted to ń ś y ś. Then ġʲ shifted to ǵ.

Palatalization can be analyzed as consonant + /j/ or as a property inherent to the consonant. Since some palatalized consonants occur in the coda, this analysis is most convenient:

                      PLAIN                      PALATALIZED
Rounded bilabials:    pʷ  bʷ          w 
Bilabials:            p   b   m                  pʲ  bʲ  mʲ 
Alveolars:            t   d   n   s   l          tʲ  dʲ  nʲ  sʲ   
Postalveolars:        č   ǯ   ň   š   ł           
Palatals:            (ć               y)         ć   ǵ   ń   ś   y
Velars:               k   ġ   ŋ   x   g          kʲ   
Labiovelars:          kʷ  ġʷ      xʷ  gʷ         
Uvulars:              q           h                         
Rounded uvulars:      qʷ          hʷ

All consonants are labialized before and after any /u/ (not /ʉ/); the labialized consonants listed in the table above are those that can appear in other contexts. If the u~ʉ contrast is neutralized by analyzing labialization as phonemic, then all consonants would have labialized variants, even the palatalized ones.

Unlike most other languages, inflections in FILTER did not change the stress pattern, since there was no stress pattern ... e.g. kʉ́pʉ "pine", genitive kʉ́pʉs, rather than e.g. Khulls-like kàpa~kapas.

Note the four-way contrasts between t~tʲ~č~ć, d~dʲ~ǯ~ǵ, and s~sʲ~š~ś. These were distinguished by tongue shape as well as place of articulation.

Proto-Thaoa (1085) to Paleo-Pabappa (~1678 AD)

See Paleo-Pabappa#Southwest for a related language also spoken here.

Initial phoneme inventory:

                       PLAIN                         LABIALIZED
Bilabials:             p   b   m   f   v                     mʷ      w  
Alveolars:             t   d   n       l             tʷ  dʷ  nʷ            
Postalveolars:         č   ǯ           y                       
Velars:                k       ŋ   h   g   ḳ                 ŋʷ  hʷ  gʷ

Note that the inherited /h/ sound was a true /h/ in the onset, but variable in the coda.

The vowel inventory was

Short vowels:          a  e  i  o  u  ə
Long vowels:          aa ee  ī oo  ū 
Falling diphthongs:      ae ei ao ou
                            əi    əu

This list may have to be cut somewhere in the middle, with the full list applying to just one subbranch and ending around the year 2668.

  1. The voiced coronal obstruents d ǯ merged as r.
  2. The sequenvces ae ao shifted to ai au.
  3. The labialized obstruents tʷ dʷ gʷ shifted to pʷ w w.
  4. The velar ejective merged to k.
  5. The sequences č kč merged as s; preceding vowels retained their tones.
  6. In word-initial position, the voiced velar fricative g shifted to y.
  7. The labialized nasals mʷ nʷ ŋʷ merged as .
    NOTE ON POLITICS: Highland Pabappa breaks off here.
  8. In syllable-final position, the sequences uk un uh shifted to ukʷ umʷ upʷ . (This is called the "uh-oh" shift because it shifts /uh/ and some primordial /oh/.)
  9. In syllable-final position, the sequences ik in ih shifted to iš iň iš .
  10. In all positions, the voiced velar fricative g disappeared and lengthened the preceding vowel. This often occurred in the second element of a diphthong or intervocalically.
  11. The velars h hʷ came to spelled x xʷ.
  12. f fʷ v shifted to h hʷ g.
  13. The clusters kx kh (and their labialized counterparts) shifted to k.

Thus the final consonant inventory of proto-paleo-Pabappa was

Rounded bilabials:    pʷ  mʷ      hʷ  w
Spread bilabials:     p   m   b
Alveolars:            t   n   r   s   l
Palataloids:              ň       š   y
Velars:               k   ŋ   g   x        
Labiovelars:          kʷ          xʷ    
Postvelars:                       h   

And the vowel inventory was

Short vowels:          a  e  i  o  u  ə
Long vowels:          aa ee ii oo uu 
Falling diphthongs:         ai    au
                            ei    ou
                            əi    əu
 

Paleo-Pabappa (1678) to Puroupwa (2672 AD)

This language derives its name from the Paleo-Pabappa word oroupʷa "limestone", as it is spoken in a mountainous area filled with many steep limestone cliffs.

  1. The velars k ŋ x shifted to č ň š.
  2. The postalveolars ň š depalatalized to n s except before /i/.
  3. The sequence ʷoo shifted to ʷuo.
  4. ʷa ʷe ʷi ʷo ʷu ʷə > o o i o u u, including in diphthongs.
  5. In closed syllables, all diphthongs and double vowels were reduced to their first vowel.


Thus the consonant inventory was

Labials:         p   m   b       w  
Alveolars:       t   n   r   s   l 
Palataloids:     č   ň       š   y  
Velars:          k           h   g       

The vowel inventory was

Short vowels:          a  e  i  o  u  ə
Long vowels:          aa ee ii oo uu 
Falling diphthongs:      ae    ao  
                            ei
                      oa oe oi    ou
                            əi    əu


Paleo-Pabappa (1678) to Pombi (2672 AD)

This language will need a new name.

  1. The velars k ŋ x shifted to č ň š.
  2. The postalveolars ň š depalatalized to n s except before /i/.
  3. The sequence ʷoo shifted to ʷuo.
  4. ʷa ʷe ʷi ʷo ʷu ʷə > o o i o u u, including in diphthongs.
  5. In closed syllables, all diphthongs and double vowels were reduced to their first vowel.


Paleo-Pabappa (1678) to Pipaippis (3200 AD)

The starting date is very vague because the four languages split apart slowly.

  1. The velars k ŋ x shifted to č ň š.
  2. The postalveolars ň š depalatalized to n s except before /i/.
  3. The sequence ʷoo shifted to ʷuo.
  4. ʷa ʷe ʷi ʷo ʷu ʷə > o o i o u u, including in diphthongs.
  5. In closed syllables, all diphthongs and double vowels were reduced to their first vowel.
  6. Frics became stops after a high tone.
  7. The schwas ə ə̄ changed to u ū unconditionally.
  8. All labialized consonants change to plain bilabials.
  9. Voicing distinction disappears entirely. This was actually triggered by a new voicing of stops after low tones, but because this change removed the last remaining environment that could host a minimal pair, there was no longer any phonemic contast.
    NOTE ON POLITICS: This is 1900 AD.
  10. Prevocalic sequences pi mi fi shifted to t n s (with no following glide). Thus the prevocalic glide /j/ was completely eliminated except in isolation.
  11. Intervocalically, bʷ b ž g shifted to w Ø y Ø.
    Note, there is no /ž/ at present because the source language was changed.

Pipaippis (3200) to Haswaraba (8773 AD)

As described currently, this language far outlasts the extinction of all other Paleo-Pabap languages, and may need to be cut down at a very early stage.


  1. All word-final vowels became short.
  2. Tones were eliminated.
  3. Before any /i/, the consonants p m t n l r k shifted to pʲ mʲ č ň ł ř ć.
  4. Before any /u/, the consonants p m t n l r č ň k shifted to pʷ mʷ tʷ nʷ w bʷ kʷ ŋʷ kʷ.
  5. The short vowels a i u ə all merged as a.
  6. The long vowels ā ī ū ə̄ shifted to a i u ə.


Proto-Hipatal (0) to HP-1 (2600 AD)

This language is spoken in tropical rainforests of a chain of larger islands. It is one of the few groups to contain people who live more than a mile away from the seashore.

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  bʷ  mʷ  mbʷ mpʷ     w
Spread bilabials:      p   b   m   mb  mp     (Ø)         
Alveolars:             t       n   nd          l
Rounded alveolars:     tʷ      nʷ  ndʷ     
Velars:                k   ḳ   ŋ   ŋġ      h   g
  1. The high central vowel ə shifted to match the next vowel in the word. This also included the labialization of the initial consonant; thus, for example, /təpʷu/ > /tʷupʷu/.
  2. The voiceless aspirated velar stop k shifted to h unconditionally. Ejectives and labialized forms were unaffected by this change.
  3. The labialized consonants lʷ gʷ shifted to w .
  4. The labialized alveolars tʷ nʷ ndʷ shifted to kʷ mʷ mmʷ.
  5. Schwa disappeared between a nasal and a following stop or fricative; if there was a fricative, it became a stop.
  6. Initial schwas disappeared.
  7. The ejective stops ḳ ḳʷ shifted to k kʷ.
  8. Any remaining schwa ə shifted to i.
  9. The rounded vowel o shifted to a unconditionally. /u/ became unrounded, but there was no change in spelling.
  10. The mid vowel e shifted to ə unconditionally.
  11. The prenasalized voiced stops mbʷ mb nd ŋġ ŋġʷ shifted to the double nasals mmʷ mm nn ŋŋ ŋŋʷ.
  12. The voiced velar sounds ŋ g disappeared to Ø Ø. This did not affect the geminate /ŋŋ/.
  13. The labialized approximant shifted to w .
  14. Double nasals were reduced to singles.

Thus the consonant inventory of HP-1 was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ             

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with the labialized stops /pʷ kʷ/ appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/. The voiceless fricative /h/, the only fricative in the language, was highly variable in pronunciation, often being labialized or palatalized or both.

HP-1 (2600 AD) to Pamā

This branch shifts all of its labialized consonants to pure labials, and then grows new labialized consonants from sequences like /awa/ and /ua/.

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ             

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with labialized consonants appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

HP-1 (2600 AD) to Nannapànnu

This branch shifts all consonants forward in the mouth.

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ               

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with labialized consonants appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

  1. The alveolars t n l shifted to f m w.
  2. The velars k ŋ h shifted to č ň s.
  3. Labialization was lost.


HP-1 (2600 AD) to Lākaha (4400 AD)

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ              

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with labialized consonants appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

  1. The velars k ŋ h shifted to č ň š unconditionally.
  2. Labialization was lost.
  3. The sequences àa àə ə̀a shifted to ā. Then ăa ăə ə̆a shifted to â, and ə̀ə ə̆ə shifted to ə̄ ə̂.
  4. The postalveolar fricative š shifted to s.
  5. The sequences ìa ìə ùa ùə (where the first vowel has a high tone) shifted to èa ìe òa ùo.
  6. The vowel sequences ìi ùu became ī ū.
  7. The vowel sequences ĭə ŭə (equivalent to /iə̀ uə̀/) shifted to yè wò.
  8. Before a vowel, remaining i u shifted to y w.
  9. The vowel sequences ài ăi àu ău shifted to ē ê ō ô.
  10. The vowel sequences ə̀i ə̆i ə̀u ə̆u shifted to ī î ū û.
  11. The sequences ky ŋy ty ny sy ly shifted to č ň č ň š y.
  12. The sequences tw nw sw lw shifted to p m f w. All other consonants preceding /w/ shifted to labials.
  13. Remaining post-consonantal /w/ and /y/ were deleted.
  14. The sequences èa ìe òa ùo shifted to ya ye wa wo. (Tone may have been influenced by surrounding syllables.) Meanwhile ùi ìu shifted to wi yu.
  15. All sounds preceding a /w/ again became labials.
  16. All post-consonantal /w/ and /y/ were deleted.

The circumflex is an ad-hoc symbol for a long low tone. However, it may make sense to retain the circumflex vowels as sequences, as there are other sequences that would arise at morpheme boundaries.

Thus the consonant inventory was

Bilabials:          p  m  b  f  w
Alveolars:          t  n     s  l
Palataloids:        č  ň     š  y
Velars:             k

And there were six vowels, on two tones, and could be short or long.

HP-1 (2600 AD) to Hahakànna

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ            

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with labialized consonants appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

  1. Before a vowel, i shifted to y.
  2. Labialized consonants defeated any following /y/.
  3. The velar sequences ky ŋy hy shifted to č ň š. The alveolar sequences ty ny ly also shifted to č ň ł.
  4. Labialization was lost.
  5. The postalveolar fricative š shifted to s.
  6. The sequences py my by shifted to č ň y.

Thus the consonant inventory was

Labials:              p   m   b   w
Alveolars:            t   n   l       s
Palataloids:          č   ň   ł   y   
Velars:               k   ŋ           h

HP-1 (2600 AD) to Tākapi

The original consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b       
Alveolars:             t   n   l    
Palatals:                      y 
Velars:                k   ŋ  (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ                

The vowel inventory was /a i u ə/, with labialized consonants appearing before all four vowels. There were syllabic nasals /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

  1. Single nasals metathesized across a vowel to form clusters with the next consonant. These all became homorganic; here, a /w/ behaved as a labiovelar, thus the resulting cluster was /ŋw/.
  2. The clusters ŋw ŋh nl shifted to ŋʷ h l. /mb/ remained.
  3. Double nasals shifted to singles.
  4. The syllabic nasals ṁ ṅ ŋ̇ shifted to um un uŋ unconditionally.
  5. The sequences aa aə əa , on all tones, merged as ā. əə shifted to ə̄.
  6. Any h bordering an /i/ in either direction shifted to s.
  7. The sequences ii uu shifted to ī ū if the first tone was high; otherwise they shifted to yi ʷu.
  8. Any low-tone i before a vowel became a palatal approximant y.
  9. The sequences ty ky ny ŋy sy ly shifted to č č ň ň š ł. (/hy/ > /sy/ earlier.)
  10. Labial and labialized consonants swallowed a following y.
  11. The approximant shifted to w. The alveolars tʷ sʷ nʷ changed in a split shift to kʷ hʷ mʷ.


Thus the consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ  mʷ  bʷ  w    
Spread bilabials:      p   m   b  (Ø)   
Alveolars:             t   n   l       s
Palatals:              č   ň   ł   y   š   
Velars:                k   ŋ      (Ø)  h
Labiovelars:           kʷ  ŋʷ          hʷ   

The four-vowel inventory remained, but there were many more long vowels and vowel sequences than there had been before. The falling diphthongs were /ai au əi əu/.

Proto-Hipatal (0) to HP-2 (???)

This branch of the family is confined to smaller islands where the sea can be heard from any point on the island. The initial phonology was slightly different from that of Tapilula, generated by the following sound shifts:

  1. Before a low tone, the fricatives h g were fortified to kʷ ḳʷ. Before a high tone, they disappeared. Thus the language became entirely free of fricatives.
  2. Before a low tone, the lateral approximant l shifted to r.

At this stage the consonant inventory was

Rounded bilabials:     pʷ      mʷ  w     
Spread bilabials:      p       m   b       
Alveolars:             t       n   l   r
Rounded alveolars:     tʷ      nʷ       
Velars:                k   ḳ   ŋ  (Ø)        
Labiovelars:           kʷ  ḳʷ

There were six vowels, /a e i o u ə/, of which the last was a high vowel, not a true schwa. There were two tones. After a low tone, the stops were sometimes pronounced as fricatives in quick speech, but there was no phonemic contrast. The prenasalized stops /mbʷ mb nd ndʷ ŋġ mpʷ mp/ all occurred in root-initial position, but no classifiers began with a prenasalized stop, so very few words with initial prenasals were used. These are considered allophones of a homorganic nasal followed by a stop; however, they are of mixed origins.

The sequences /ʷe ʷi ʷo ʷu/ occurred, with the latter two being the most common.

If the labialized consonants are treated as clusters, the phonology reduces to

Bilabials:             p       m   w   b       
Alveolars:             t       n   l   r
Velars:                k   ḳ   ŋ      
  1. The consonants t n l r k ḳ ŋ become palatalized to č ň y y č č ň before any /e/ or /i/.
  2. Labialization was eliminated.

History

Lenian languages began to decline around by year 1900[1] when settlers from AlphaLeap spread the Gold language into Paba. Shortly thereafter, Nama invaded Subumpam due to a famine, and after the famine was over, the Star Empire invaded Subumpam and occupied it for several generations. Then, yet another nation, Litila, also invaded Subumpam and crushed the native population. Subumpam was only rescued from their catastrophe when the Tarpabap people, speaking a Gold-derived language, invaded Subumpam one last time and completely drove out the native Lenian languages.

Meanwhile, by this time, Lenian languages had spread into colder climates and begun driving out the aboriginal Repilian tribes, but they were being chased around by other tribes also growing northwards, and these tribes happened to speak Gold and Tarise languages. AlphaLeap invaded Paba again in the 3800s, and the submissive Pabaps allowed them to use Paba as a base to invade a much larger range of habitats, eventually controlling more than half of the humanly habitable land on the planet. AlphaLeap did not hold their empire for long, but when it collapsed, it was to a new tribe of people calling themselves the Paaapa, who spoke the language that would soon evolve into Pabappa.

Linguistic characteristics

The Lenian languages retain the classifier prefixes of Tapilula and have generally simple rules of grammar. Even the most complex nominal morphology is simpler than that of Pabappa. Verbal morphology is highly variable; some languages are extremely simple, while others retain much of the early Tapilula system, which is, nevertheless, fairly simple by comparison to that of Gold and the Tarise-Thaoa supergroup.

Notes

  1. or earlier