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For the Sak language, see here. For the Tarise with Teeth, see here.

Tarise was a language spoken in Taryte between 1085 AD and 1900 AD, whereupon it began to divide into many dialects. Some dialects had begun splitting off even earlier than this, but were considered the same language until 1900 for political reasons. The rise of the Star Empire led to the recognition of the dialects as independent languages.

Proto-Tarise divided into five languages spoken along the tropical coast where the rainfall was greatest. Here, people lived closely packed together and had a tense relationship with the Empire of Amade??? to the west and a somewhat more peaceful relationship with Wax to the east.

Further inland, there were also five languages, but these had spread from just one of the coastal languages, and therefore they were much more similar to each other than were the five coastal languages.

In later times, Taryte invaded the Thunder Empire and began settling the cold plateau to their north. They defeated the Thunderers quickly, and spread their language to the two new provinces they built on the plateau. These were also derived from the same branch that had spawned the inland languages, but due to geographic separation, it soon went its own way and divided into two more languages, thus bringing the total number of languages spoken in Tarise to 12 by the time of the consolidation of the Empire of Halasala.

Pre-Thaoa (1085) to Proto-Tarise (1900)

The consonant inventory was:

                       BASIC                             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

Unlike Fojy, the tone of one syllable was not predictable from the syllable before it: two low tones could occur in a row, and there were more than two tones. Thus, in the sound change list below, descriptions like "after a high tone" are defined narrowly, rather than, for example, also applying before a low tone.

Note that the inherited fricatives /h hʷ/ are velars, as in Khulls, and 're spelled with x.

  1. The voiced fricatives g gʷ shifted to Ø w. However, the fricative allophones remained, and therefore came to also replace original Ø~ʕ. For example, syllable final -u merged with original gʷ, and obtained the velar frication as an allophone after a stressed vowel.
  2. The stops p t b d shifted to h s g z unconditionally, with palatalization and labialization both preserved. Preexisting č ǯ merged with the palatalized coronals. xʲ , hʲ, and sʲ were still distinct.
  3. All unstressed syllables became CV only, with no tones.
  4. The sequence ʷə shifted to ʷu.
  5. The vowels ə i shifted to i yi unconditionally.
  6. The long falling tone vowels ā ī ū became high tone à ì ù unconditionally. They did not acquire glottalization.

Note that labialization is preserved. The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:                   m  w              
Alveolars:           s  z  n  l
Palatals:                     y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ (Ø)     
Postvelars:          h  g       

But consonantal allophony was very powerful, even alternating between stop and fricative realizations of /s z/.

SEE Tarise for remainder of sound changes.

Thus there were only two proper stops in the language: /k ḳ/. The fricatives /s z/ preserved allophones [t d] when before [a] and not after a closed syllable, but there is still no [ti] or [tu] in any environment. Likewise, the velars /k ḳ x/ were allophonically uvular before [a], palatal before [i], and true velar before [u]. However, this uvular opposition was not significant because in most cases the contreasast wias wth kʷ not k.

The inherited /ki/ gap is filled by the shift of /kə/ > /ki/; primordial /ki/ by this time had shifted to /sʲi/.

There were three vowels: /a i u/, on two tones. A vowel could be followed by /i/ or /u/, even if another consonant was in the coda.

Tropical Rim daughter languages I-III

Syllabic consonants are preserved. In some daughters, disyllabic consonant sequences such as /-isi-/ contract into single syllabic consonants, while unstressed monosyllables like /si/ become simple, nonsyllabic consonants. The vowels also had widely spaced allophones, largely due to a contrast between /i/ and /yi/ and between /u/ and /wu/.

Some of these languages might actually have begun splitting apart prior to 1900 AD.

Proto-Tarise (1900) to Tropical Rim I

This is the westernmost language, and has the warmest and wettest climate as well as the smallest habitat.

The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:                   m  w              
Alveolars:           s  z  n  l
Palatals:                     y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ (Ø)     
Postvelars:          h  g       

And the vowels were

Short vowels:          a  e  i  o  u  
Long vowels:          aa ee ii oo uu 
Falling diphthongs:      ae ei ao ou

NOTE: There will probably need to be more vowel changes here.

Tones were still preserved.

  1. The sequences se ze sa za so zo shifted to te re ta ra to ro when not after a closed syllable.
  2. The vowel sequences e ee ae ei shifted to ya yaa ai yai.
  3. The velars k ḳ shifted to q q̇ before any /a o/.
  4. The falling diphthong iu shifted to ū.
  5. All g shifted to ʕ. Then ʕʷ (phonetically /ʕu/) shifted to w.
  6. The vowel sequences o oo ao ou shifted to u uu au uu. Note the asymmetry with the previous shift evolving /e/.
  7. The sequences ky ḳy shifted to ć unconditionally. Then ty ry became č ž.
  8. The sequences xy hy merged as ś unconditionally. Then sy zy became š ž.
  9. The voiced alveolar stop d shifted to r unconditionally.
  10. After any palatal or postalveolar consonant, the labial glide w disappeared to Ø.
  11. The vowel sequences ai au shifted to ē ō.
  12. The labialized nasals mʷ nʷ ŋʷ shifted to m̄ n̄ ŋ̄.
  13. The labial approximant w shifted to b.
  14. The voiced fricative z shifted to d. It may have become a dental by this time, as with n̄~ṇ.

Therefore the consonant inventory was

Labials:                   b   m           m̄ 
Alveolars:     t       s   d   n   l   r   n̄ 
Postalveolars: č       š           ž   
Palatals:      ć       ś           y
Velars:        k   ḳ   x       ŋ           ŋ̄   kʷ  ḳʷ  xʷ
Uvulars:       q   q̇   h           ʕ           qʷ  q̇ʷ  hʷ

The vowel inventory was

Short vowels:          a     i     u  
Long vowels:           ā  ē  ī  ō  ū 

All diphthongs had been eliminated by previous shifts. The vowel system can be analyzed as just /a i u/ since the long vowels have only one tone. In this case, the five longs would be analyzed as /ā ai ī au ū/. This is similar to the situation in nearby Amade.

This language is in the transitional zone between the "wet" languages of the equatorial zone and the "dry" languages of the deserts and savannas to the north. Both groups consider the dry languages to have a harsh sound, but the speakers of the dry languages point to Leaper which they say has an even more harsh sound because of its pharyngealized vowels and frequent use of ejective consonants. The ejectives of Tropical Rim I only appear where the parent language had also had an ejective, whereas in Leaper, new ejectives appeared from sequences of a high tone plus a voiced stop.

Proto-Tarise to Tropical Rim II

Probably spoken in the extreme southwest, but not influenced by Kxesh.

The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:                   m  w              
Alveolars:           s  z  n  l
Palatals:                     y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ (Ø)     
Postvelars:          h  g       
  1. The sequences se ze sa za so zo shifted to te re ta ra to ro when not after a closed syllable.
  2. The sequence iu shifted to ū. This did not include /ju/ inherited from earlier /igu/.
  3. The velars k ḳ shifted to q q̇ before any /a o/.
  4. The sequences ae ao shifted to ai au.
  5. The vowel e in any context shifted to ya. The /y/ was not present if the preceding consonant was /w/ or a labialized consonant.
  6. The vowel o in any context shifted to a true schwa ə.
  7. The sequences mw nw ŋw shifted to m̄ n̄ ŋ̄.
  8. The sequences xy hy sy merged as š. Then ky ḳy ty merged as č.
  9. The sequences ry gy ŋy ly shifted to ž ž ň ł.
  10. The labial approximant w disappeared after consonants; intervocalically, it was shifted to g.
    The disappearing /w/ may create more consonants than just /m̄ n̄ ŋ̄/, but note that none of the neighboring languages did this.

Thus the consonant inventory had become:

Labials:                   m        m̄        
Alveolars:     t     s  z  n  l  r  n̄
Palatals:      č     š  ž  ň  ł  y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ        ŋ̄  
Postvelars:    q  q̇  h  g

And the vowel inventory was /a i u ə/.

Proto-Tarise to Tropical Rim III

This language may have some Qaš-like characteristics.

Proto-Tarise (~1900) to Qaš (3700)

This language ends up with a phonology similar to Leaper but very different phonotactics. Leapers consider it to sound harsh, and Qaš considers Leaper to sound harsh as well.

Cladistically, this is simply Tropical Rim IV. However, it is listed here separately because its sound change list is far longer than the others and because it spawned daughter languages of its own.

The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:                   m  w              
Alveolars:           s  z  n  l
Palatals:                     y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ (Ø)     
Postvelars:          h  g       

Qaš has a very long list of sound changes, but most of them are conditional, and up to three conditions can be present. Even this list is far fromcomplete, as it currently (May 2020) only lists changes in the onset, not the coda, and ignores the vowels as well. The total rate of change is similar to or greater than that of Leaper.

  1. In unstressed syllables, the vowels i u merged to the schwa vowel ə, which was spelled as /i/. Thus, the vocoids of unstressed syllables had a six-way contrast between /a ya wa ə yə wə/. However, this schwa vowel soon became silent (Ø) in many positions. There were no unstressed long vowels.
  2. The labialized nasals mw nw ŋw all merged to m. The palatalized nasals mʲ nʲ ŋʲ shifted to ň.
  3. The sequences sy zy ky ḳy shifted to š ž č č .
  4. The sequences xy xw shifted to hy hw.
  5. Before the vowel [a], the velars k kw ḳ ḳw x became uvulars q qw q̇ q̇w ħ. In the same environment, s z (but not the labialized forms) shifted to t d. Thus, in stressed syllables, /t d/ and the uvulars occurred only before [a], while plain /s z/ and the velars occurred only before [i u].
  6. The unstressed schwa vowel disappeared when adjacent to a stressed syllable. The fricatives h g (but not /x/) disappeared when they came to occur after a stop or another fricative. Thus sequences like /ta ka/ were restored.
  7. The voiced fricative z shifted to r before a vowel.
  8. The sequences sw zw lost their labialization and thus became s z.
  9. In word-initial position before a nasal, the consonants ŋ l s z g disappeared while the dorsal fricatives h x changed position. xl hl shifted to lx lh.
  10. In pretonic position before a stop, the fricatives x h made that stop voiceless and aspirated, and then disappeared.
  11. The clusters km ḳm qm q̇m became labialized to kʷm ḳʷm qʷm q̇ʷm.
  12. An h bordering any tautosyllabic stop or fricative in either direction made that other consonant voiceless, and then disappeared.
  13. In pretonic position, the nasal clusters mn mŋ nm nŋ ŋň shifted to n m m ń ń. Note the asymmetry of the last two clusters.
  14. In pretonic position before a nasal, the palataloids š ž y hy all merged as ň.
  15. Nasals occurring in pretonic position before any /ň/ disappeared.
  16. The consonant clusters rg rz rl rň shifted to z dz zl dň.
  17. In pretonic secondary position after a nasal or /l/, the voiceless sounds s q k x shifted to h. In the same environment, the consonants z ḳ q̇ became silent.
  18. The voiced velar fricative g disappeared to Ø when occurring in a cluster of any kind. Labialized forms left their coarticulation and then disappeared.
  19. In pretonic position before any /t d s z/, The dorsals x k ḳ kʷ ḳʷ shifted to k; in the same position, the dorsals q q̇ qʷ q̇ʷ shifted to q.
  20. Any nonlabialized dorsal stop before /ň/ shifted to č.
  21. The cluster žz shifted to ž. Any other cluster of a palataloid fricative followed by a sibilant shifted to š.
  22. Palatalized stops followed by primordial sibilants shifted to .
  23. In pretonic secondary position after a dorsal stop, the coronals t d s z shifted to s. Thus the original sample of 36 different consonant clusters was reduced to a contrast between /ks/ and /qs/. (This does not interfere with the shift above that produced /kš/ because that sibilant was shifted out of the reach of this shift.)
  24. The nasals m n ň ŋ disappeared in word-initial position after an /ň/, /č/, or any dorsal stop.
  25. The nasals m n ŋ disappeared in word-initial position after the coronals /t d r/.
  26. In a syllable onset, the ejective stops ḳ q̇ became aspirated to k q when following any /t d r s z h x k q hʷ kʷ qʷ/. They also became aspirated when preceding any /k q x/.
  27. In pretonic position, the clusters ld lt shifted to dl tl.
  28. In pretonic secondary position after any palatalized sound, the voiceless dorsals x k ḳ q q̇ shifted to č and deleted the preceding consonant.
  29. Velars preceding uvulars became uvular. Uvulars preceding velar stops (but not fricatives) became velar.
  30. In pretonic secondary position after any /t d r s z/, the voiceless dorsals k ḳ x shifted to ć .
  31. All consonants disappeared before a pretonic /ć/. (There may have been clusters involving /č/ that did not delete.)
  32. The true palatals ć ń shifted to č ň before the front vowel /i/, and to k ŋ otherwise.
  33. The nasals m n ň ŋ became the voiced stops b d ǯ ġ in pretonic position before the coronals /t d l/.
  34. In pretonic secondary position, the voiced stop d was deleted to Ø when occurring after another voiced stop.
  35. A voiced stop or fricative bordering an /s/ in either direction became voiceless.
  36. All non-dorsals were delabialized. Thus the labialized coronals tʷ dʷ shifted to plain t d and labialization disappeared on all bilabials and palatals.
  37. The pretonic clusters tň dň ňt ňd shifted to č ǯ č ǯ. td dt shifted to t.
  38. The pretonic coronals d r shifted to t before any /s/. tz shifted to ts.
  39. The pretonic coronals d t r s z disappeared before any /d t q/. (But note that /sd/ and other mismatched pairs did not occur.)
  40. The lateral l disappeared after /ǯ/ or any labialized consonant.
  41. All tautosyllabic geminates were simplified to singletons.

The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:       p  b           m (Ø)    w           
Alveolars:     t  d     s  z  n  l  r
Palataloids:   č  ǯ     š  ž  ň  ł  y                   
Velars:        k     ḳ  x  g  ŋ        kʷ ḳʷ            
Postvelars:    q     q̇  h              qʷ q̇ʷ

Unlike the other Tarise languages, Qaš had many consonant clusters, and the unified Tarise syllabary was useless to write Qaš. Instead, they adopted an alphabetic script from the Gold people.

Proto-Tarise (~1900) to Tropical Rim V ("River People")

The consonant inventory at this time was:

Labials:                   m  w              
Alveolars:           s  z  n  l
Palatals:                     y      
Velars:        k  ḳ  x     ŋ (Ø)     
Postvelars:          h  g       

The possible codas were /n l x k ḳ/, and there were three rare syllabic nasals, /ṁ ṅ ŋ̇/.

  1. In bisyllabic roots, if the vowel in the second syllable was /i/, then u in the first syllable changed to uj.
  2. The sequence ai shifted to ei.
  3. In closed syllables (including the high tone, which had developed final /ʔ/ by areal influence), the vowels o i u shifted to a e ə (IPA /æ ɪ ʊ/).
  4. Syllabic nasals between consonants all shifted to ə.
  5. All stressed vowels became high-tone; thus tones were eliminated. The tones left no effects on surrounding consonants, and the allophonic affricates that appeared for some fricatives did not survive.
  6. The clusters ks kt kl kx kh kg all merged as k.
  7. The sequences ḳya ḳye ḳyi ḳyo ḳyu ḳyə became ta če či to tu tə.
  8. Then, gy became y and hy xy merged as ś.
  9. All codas were deleted; note that a previous shift had made all vowels in closed syllables into /a e ə/.
  10. In unstressed syllables, the mid vowels e o shifted to i a. (The same as Pabappa's much later word-final shift.)
    This may need to be modified, just like in Pabappa, so that they harmonize with the stressed vowel instead. The 2010 writeup for this language had assumed that closed syllables existed eve n in unstressed position, and harmonized them the other way.

Note that o is an IPA cardinal [ɑ]. The only rounded vowel is /u/.

This language may be associated with the Crystals, but it is not their main language. More to the point, this is the language of the River People who rescued a troop of orphans in the year 4190 and then moved with them into a hillside campground in the tropical empire of Kxesh. Thus the language may survive inside Kxesh and sprout a second daughter language. However, the hillside settlement was very small and the orphans had little reason to spend time learning a new language when they were busy trying to gather food.

It is possible that tones could survive with a very low functional load simply because all of the languages surrounding TR-V in all directions preserved their tones. (The loss of tone was originally intended to happen while the language's vowel inventory increased, but I didn't understand sound changes very well at the time.)

River People Syllabary

The River People spelled their language with syllables that fit into a 12x12 grid, reminiscent of the much older 10x10 grid that had been used to spell Tapilula. There were many gaps in the River People grid, even though such syllables existed; the River People chose not to create glyphs for the less common syllables, instead using digraphs. For example, the uncommon sequence /sa/ was spelled as /sə/ + /a/; the schwa sound never occurred before another vowel.

  yi    i   ye    e   ya    a   yo    o   yə    ə   yu    u
  li   ḷi   le   ḷe   la   wa   lo   wo   lə   wə   lu   wu
  mi   ṃi   me   ṃe   ma        mo        mə        mu
  si   ṣi   se   ṣe        ṣa        ṣo   sə   ṣə   su   ṣu
  ti        te        ta        to        tə        tu
  zi   ẓi   ze   ẓe   da   ẓa   do   ẓo   zə   ẓə   zu   ẓu
  ni   ṇi   ne   ṇe   na   ṇa   no   ṇo   nə   ṇə   nu   ṇu
  ki   ḳi   ke   ḳe   ka   ḳa   ko   ḳo   kə   ḳə   ku   ḳu                                           
  xi   x̣i   xe   x̣e   xa   x̣a   xo   x̣o   xə   x̣ə   xu   x̣u
  ŋi   ŋ̇i   ŋe   ŋ̇e   ŋa        ŋo        ŋə        ŋu
  hi        he        ha        ho        hə        hu
  gi        ge        ga        go        gə        gu

All consonants are palatalized before any /e i/ unless marked with a dot. The degree of palatalization is greater for /l s t z n x ŋ/ and less for /m k h g/. Before other vowels, the underdot marks labialization on all consonants except k, where it marks glottalization and (perhaps) an articulation slightly further back.

All of the palatalized consonants are distinct from each other and from the reflexes of the earlier palatalization. Note that /hi/, /gi/, /ki/, etc are the reflexes of the *non*-palatalized forms of the earlier language, but came to be weakly palatalized because they were unpaired.

The syllables on the left-hand columns (the ones Romanized without dots) are more common than the right-hand ones; that is, /mʲi/ is more common than /mi/, and so on.

Vowel sequences other than the diphthongs were rare because of the earlier shifts of /jV wV/ to the syllables with coarticulated consonants.

Spelling rules

The syllabary above does not list all of the possible syllables in the language. There are no separate symbols for combinations like /ńa/, etc. since these are much rarer than the ones with /e/ and /i/, and because a sequence of /ńe/~/ńi/ + /a/ (or any other vowel) would never occur.

Loanwords with a nonpalatalized consonant before a front vowel use the right-hand glyphs. There is no means of indicating tone or foreign consonants in loanwords; the closest native sound is used instead.

Stress is unmarked, but teachers sometimes use double vowels or a vowel followed by a schwa.


This area may have traded hands between the Crystals, the Leapers, and the Stars several times. It was almost certainly Leaper territory after 2668, falling to the Crystals sometime in the next few centuries, and perhaps back and forth once or even many times before the Stars took over in the early 3700's. The Crystals then conquered both the Stars and the Leapers, pushing the Leapers hundreds of miles up the coast and eliminating Star-held territory entirely.

The Stars and probably the Leapers also had many Lenian slaves, and in fact these Lenians may have been the first settlers in the area (if this is Pēles), but each time the Crystals took over, these slaves would have joined the war on the Crystals' side and many would have themselves become Crystals. This is why the Crystals were a dark-skinned tribe in Baeba Swamp but became lighter-skinned towards the equator. This also means that any Lenian slaves in the area by 3700 would not have been direct descendants of the original Pelesians.

If this is Pēles, then yet another language was once spoken there: Bait.

Each of these groups had at least one language of their own; the River People language here may belong to any of the above groups except the Lenians. It is possible that this is the language of a people who saw many occupation armies sweep in and out and maintained their language even as they were forced to change their party identification. Because they lived at the mouth of Tarise's largest river (which is also much larger than any rivers in AlphaLeap's original territory), they may have had an uncommon ability to resist occupiers.

The Crystals' primary language was Khulls,[1] but this was not their ancestral language, and they had adopted it to enhance their transnational appeal. The Leapers also did this; the Stars, however, were primarly monolingual throughout their history, learning new languages only to engage in trade.

Tropical Rim V (3900) to Castle on a Cloud

  1. After a vowel, sĭ tĭ kĭ ḳĭ changed to š č č č .
  2. Unaccented long vowels and diphthongs were reduced to the monophthongs o i u .
  3. All long vowels became short; however, diphthongs such as /ai/ remained.
  4. All final vowels in bisyllabic roots were deleted. If the vowel deleted was /ĭ/, the vowels in the first syllable changed from o a e ə̈ to ei ei i ĭ.what is ĭ? ə̈?
    NOTE ON POLITICS: This is about 4800 AD *if* the parent language was 3900 AD.
  5. In compound words and certain inflected forms, the second vowel in the word was deleted if the resulting consonant cluster was acceptable ("the Debra shift"). If the second vowel occurred between two labial consonants, the first labial consonant was deleted.
    This shift, and everything below it, assumes the speakers had radically shifted northward into Poswob territory. If not, the language must have gone extinct around 4800 AD.
  6. Before front vowels (including ʉ?), the velar stops k ġ were fronted to the postalveolar affricates č ǯ, which were considered single phonemes rather than clusters.
  7. Voiced stops became prenasalized after a tense vowel; lax vowels before voiced stops became allophonically tense but did not gain prenasalization.
  8. Unstressed ʉ became a true schwa. The script was now written with the old /ʉ/ series as the inherent vowel (previously it was schwa).
  9. Sequences of /a/ + vowel came to be velarized; if the consonant was velar, it became labiovelar.

If the language is still around by this time, it must be between 6800 and 7950 AD, with the latter date being the original planned construction.

Proto-Tarise (~1900) to Sub-Amade

This is set up on the assumption that some of the "1085" colonists also settled in Amade. If so, they may have also settled in Lobexon, which currently has no assigned language other than the aboriginal Star languages.


  1. "The Crystals were ethnically Baeban, but they taught their children three different languages: Xap (from Baeba), Asup (from Qololof), and Moonshine."