- 1 introduction
- 2 phonology
- 3 syntax
- 4 lexicon
- 5 phrases
- Kalo (taken from caló) is intended to be a minimalist artlang, not an auxlang. It draws primarily on vocabulary from the five most spoken languages in the world; Mandarin, Spanish, English, and Arabic (Hindi is used sparingly although it is spoken by more speakers than Arabic). The grammar is mostly isolating with very few elements of inflection, mostly to show plurality or possession. The goal is to have around 1000 words.
- Notable features:
- highly analytical grammar
- invariance between word types
- only 14 (base) sounds, 9 consonants, and 5 vowels
- simple phonotactics, or syllable structure (C)V(N)
- only ~1000 core words
- easy-to-follow word compounding
Kalo has nine consonants (/p, t, k, s, m, n, l, j, w/) and five vowels (/a, e, i, o, u/). Stress is mostly word final.
Kalo uses English alphabetical order: a e i k l m n o p s t u w y
There are two diphthongs [ai̯] ai, and [au̯] au. These are rare and typically only occur word-finally.
All syllables are of the form (C)V(N), that is, optional consonant + vowel + optional final nasal, or V, CV, VN, CVN.
- Classical Arabic is primarily VSO, but MSA (Modern Standard Arabic) tends to be SVO, favoring full agreement over partial.
- Chinese is classified as an SVO language. Transitive verbs precede their objects in typical simple clauses, while the subject precedes the verb.
- Spanish unmarked word order for affirmative declarative sentences is SVO; however, as in other Romance languages, in practice, word order is mostly variable.
- English word order is almost exclusively SVO.
- Hindi is primarily an SOV language.
Based on the above information about the main source languages for Kalo, it is primarily an SVO (subject-verb-object) language. Modifiers generally follow what they modify, as do prepositional phrases and subordinate clauses.
- wa toma - 1S consume - I eat. (SV)
- wa amo ko - 1S love 3S - I love her. (SVO)
- o pan toma - DO food consume - The bread is eaten. (OV)
Words in Kalo tend to function in multiple roles. * elefen.org/vocabulo_fundal.html
- kai - should; ought to; need to; have to (ZHO 該)
- ni kai ila - 2s should go - You should leave.
- ke - number marker (ZHO 個)
- kisa - maybe; perhaps; possibly (SPA quizá)
- le - past tense marker [PST] (ZHO 了)
- wa toma le - 1s consume PST - I ate.
- ma - what; which; question marker [Q] (ARA/ZHO ما/嗎)
- ne - no; not; negative; neither (ENG nay)
- o - direct object marker [DO] (JPN を)
- sa - future tense marker [FUT] (ARA سَـ)
- nilo ne wite sa ko - 2pl NEG see FUT 3sg - You all will not see her.
- se - reflexive marker [REFL] (SPA se)
- ko se lawa le - 3s REFL wash PST - She bathed herself.
- wa - I; me [1sg] (ZHO 我)
- ni - you [2sg] (ZHO 你)
- ko - person; individual; adult / he; she [3sg] (ZHO 個)
- ayo - whichever; whatever; any/something [INDEF] (ARA أي)
- Possession is shown with the particle te - of; from, or with the suffix -yo - have; possess
- Plurality is marked with the suffix -lo - a pile
- asi - like this/that; as [such]; thus; so; therefore (SPA así)
- awa - or; either; other (ARA أو)
- e - and; also; too; as well (SPA/ZHO e/和)
- ita - if; whether (ARA إذا)
- me - but; however; although; yet (FRE mais)
- kan(a) - yes; be; exist; live; occur; thus (ARA/HEB كان/כן)
- maka - do; make; cause; happen (ENG make)
- pana - become; come from; derive from (HIN बनना)
- pote - be able; can; possible; potential (SPA poder)
- suya(u) - need; require; necessity; a must (ZHO 需要)
- wan - want; desire; wish (for) (ENG want)
- yo - have; possess (ZHO 有)
- arrive; come (back); enter
- depart; leave; exit; go; travel; walk
- raise; rise; lift
- stand; stay
- know (a fact)
- know, be acquainted with
- make a mistake, err
- understand, comprehend
- laka - count; number; enumerate; numeral; digit; amount; sum (ARA رقم)
- lo - plural marker [PL] (ZHO 摞)
- nupa - enough; sufficient; appropriate (ENG enough)
- nulu - zero; 0; empty; nothing (SPA nulo)
- wa - one; 1; single; singular; alone (ARA واحد)
- li - two; 2; double; duo (ZHO 两)
- san - three; 3; triple (ZHO 三)
- si - four; 4 (ZHO 四)
- pen - five; 5 (ELL πέντε)
- we - six; 6 (PIE swéḱs)
- na - seven; 7 (JPN なな)
- pa - eight; 8 (ZHO 八)
- nun - nine; 9 (PIE h₁néwn̥)
- ye - 10; ten (KOR 열)
- aku/-ku - hundred; 100; many; much; a lot (JPN ひゃく)
- mila - thousand; 1000 (SPA mil)
- yewa - 11; eleven
- yeli - 12; twelve
- liye - 20; twenty
- liyesi - 24; twenty-four
- kuyeli - 112; one-hundred-twelve
- sankuweyepen (sanwepen) - 365; three-hundred-sixty-five
- anyo - year; 365 days (SPA año)
- note - night; darkness (SPA noche)
- saman - time; age; period; passing of events (ARA/HIN زمن/समय)
- yuma - day; daylight; 24 hour period (ARA يوم)
- ante - before; in front; forward; ahead; facing (SPA ante)
- ila - be toward; at; go; walk; travel; leave (ARA إلى/SPA ir)
- loka - place; location; point; spot (SPA local)
- nai - in(side); interior; during; among (JPN 内)
- po - by; for; through; across; about (SPA por/para)
- te - of; from; about (SPA de/ZHO 的)
- wela - out(side); exterior (SPA fuera)
- yu - in; at; to; by; than; out of (ZHO 於/于)
- pula - bad; spoiled; broken; to break down; wicked; evil (HIN बुरा)
- pula maso - "worse" >> pula ta - "worst"
- tipa maso - "better" >> tipa ta - "best"
Because of the ubiquity of a bilabial plosive and nasal being used for "father" and "mother" words respectively, the words used in Kalo sound, and look very familiar and possibly derived from any one of numerous languages. However, this section will explain how the Kalo words came to be, and indicate that all other words are gender neutral, unless modified by the gender affixes.
- apa - father; man; husband (-pa masculine gender)
- Mandarin: 爸 /pa˥˩/
- Arabic: أب /ʔab/
- Spanish: padre /ˈpadɾe/
- English: papa /ˈpɑː.pə/
- Hindi: पिता /pɪ.t̪ɑː/
- uma - mother; woman; wife (-ma feminine gender)
- Mandarin: 媽 /ma˥/
- Arabic: أم /ʔumm/
- Spanish: madre /ˈma.ð̞ɾe/
- English: mama /ˈmɑmə/
- Hindi: माता /mɑː.t̪ɑː/
- ami - friend; acquaintance; colleague (SPA amigo/a)
- amo - like; love; adore / affection; adoration; love (SPA amor)
- (i)pin - child; offspring; kid; daughter; son (ARA ابن)
- pinama - "daughter; niece" / pinapa - "son; nephew"
- pama - parent; mother; father (apa + uma)
- (s)aki - sibling; cousin; shared (grand)parents (ARA شقيق/أخ)
- akima - "sister; female cousin" / akipa - "brother; male cousin"
- sawa - spouse; husband; wife; sweetheart; mate; partner (ARA زوج)
- waya - adult; mature thing / grow; mature; develop (HIN वयस्क)
- Mr., sir, gentleman, lord
- Mrs., Miss, Ms., ma’am, lady
- pan - food; bread; sustenance (SPA pan/ZHO 飯)
- sosa - juice; sauce; gravy; dressing (ENG sauce)
- wino - alcohol; beer; wine; drink ~ (SPA vino)
- toma - consume; eat; drink (SPA tomar)
- Hello - salama (formal)
- ola (informal)
- How are you? - moto ni ma?
- Please (used to make a polite request) - po tipa ("for good")
- Thank you (very much) - tanka (ta)
- Yes - kan(a) (it is)
- No - ne
- Maybe - kisa