The language with the least effort-demanding phonology ever!
There are five consonants:
- <m n> are straightforward [m n], tho the latter may vary further back to [ɲ] or [ŋ]. They have syllabic counterparts.
- <h> is generally [ɦ]. Can become a voiceless nasal when occurring before the syllabic nasals. [j] is an acceptable variant before a vowel.
- <f> varies within the [ɸ ~ ʍ ~ β ~ w] ballpark. It does not occur word-initially.
- <:> (yes, a colon) is a glottal stop [ʔ]. There is no contrast with a zero initial (never written in that position).
As well as one true vowel, written as <-> (a dash). The quality may be anything from a nasal shwa [ə̃] to your average [a]. (Given the situation pretty much any value would be understandable, be it [y] or [l̟] or [s̟], but naturally, anything that contrived would sound incredibly silly.) There is contrastiv length, written by two dashes. A word-final vowel is not written.
A word can only consist of syllables with a vowel, or syllables without.
In a vocalic word, three consonant clusters are possible across syllables: <mf hm hn>. Adjacent long/closed syllables are disallowed, as are final consonants.
A non-vocalic word has a maximum lenght of two syllables, of the structure (glottal consonant)+(nasal consonant)+(optional word-final glottal stop). A syllable without a following (coda or internasalic) glottal stop is somewhat longer in duration and written with a duplicated nasal consonant. So for example <hmm>, <mmhn:> or <hn:nn>, but not <mhn> or <hmm:m>.
There is no single copula as such: the choice depends on the mood of the utterance. Affirmation (replies, previous information etc.) is express'd with mm, assertions (new information) with -, and negation (of both affirmation and assertion) with n--.
Principally grammatical. To increase clarity, not all of the 40 possible word-shapes are used.
- mm (affirmation; usually pronounced with initial [ʔ])
- hmm (reserved as discourse filler)
Monosyllables (again principally grammatical)
- - (assertion; usually pronounced with [ʔ]; can be clitickized)
- m- (1st person / proximativ pronoun)
- h- (interrogativ pronoun)
- -- (reserved as discourse filler)
- n-- (negation)
- -:- (request, command)