Askeisk, a Scandinavian language (part 2)

<< Part 1 | Part 3 >>


Grammar

Askeisk’s grammar is pretty straightforward North Germanic. I did consider adding in some Irish influences, including some kind of initial consonant mutation, but I genuinely could not figure out how to make it work.

Nouns

Nouns have three cases (nominative, object, and genitive), two numbers (singular and plural) and three genders (masculine, feminine, and neuter).

The object case comes from the merger of the dative & accusative cases. For the most part, the object case declensions descend from the Old Norse dative declensions.

Nouns – Masculine

The masculine noun declension is basically identical to that of Old Norse:

 

Singular

Plural

 

Indefinite

Definite

Indefinite

Definite

Nominative

-(i)nn -(a)r -(a)rnir

Object

-(i)num -(u)m

-(u)num

Genitive

-s

-(i)nns -a

-(a)nna

Examples:

  • fadir “father” → fadrinn, fedrar, fedrarnir
  • hundur “dog” → hundinn, hundar, hundarnir
  • mauni “moon” → mauninn, maunir, maunarnir
  • ørn “eagle” → ørninn, ernar, ernarnir

Nouns – Feminine

The masculine and feminine declensions were too similar at first. I spent a while thinking about how to distinguish them instead of collapsing them both into common like Danish and Swedish, and came up with something I think is fairly unique.

The plural declension of feminine nouns exclusively contain front vowels. This causes /u/, /o/, & /ou/ to front to /y/, /ø/, and /øy/. I took this from what happens to the feminine forms of adjectives, which is something I came up with long before I decided to do this.

Many other random back vowels get fronted, but…it’s random. I don’t think I decided on an actual pattern for it.

 

Singular

Plural

 

Indefinite

Definite

Indefinite

Definite

Nominative

-(i)n

-(æ)r

-(æ)næ

Object

-i

-(i)ni

-(y)m

-(y)nym

Genitive

-ar

-(i)nar

-(æ)næ

Examples:

  • aska “ash” → askan, askær, askænæ
  • douttir “daughter” → douttrin, døyttrær, døyttrænæ
  • gaus “goose” → gausin, gæysær, gæysænæ
  • ull “wool” → ullin, yllær, yllænæ

Nouns – Neuter

Neuter nouns are the same in the nominative plural and singular (except for some occasional vowel changes). I did nothing interesting with this declension.

 

Singular

Plural

 

Indefinite

Definite

Indefinite

Definite

Nominative

-(i)t

-(i)n

Object

-i

-(i)nu

-(u)m

-(u)num

Genitive

-s

-(i)ts -a

-(a)nna

Examples:

  • barn “child” → barnit, børn, børnin
  • egg “egg” → eggit, egg, eggin
  • hus “house” → husit, hus, husin
  • navn “name” → navnit, nøvn, navnin

Personal Pronouns

Askeisk’s personal pronouns are nothing special. There are singular and plural versions, three genders in the third person, and possessive pronouns have different forms depending on the gender of the following noun.

Subject pronouns:

  • 1st person: jeg, veir
  • 2nd person: tu, eir
  • 3rd person masculine: hann, teir
  • 3rd person feminine: hon, tær
  • 3rd person neuter: tad, tau

I decided to keep the distinction between the third person plural pronouns because collapsing everything into neuter seemed to be a little boring.

Object pronouns:

  • 1st person: mig, oss
  • 2nd person: tig, ydur
  • 3rd person masculine: honum, teim
  • 3rd person feminine: hen, teim
  • 3rd person neuter: tad, teim

Here, the third person plural is the same in all genders, which it how it was in Old Norse.

Possessive pronouns:

  • 1st person singular: minn, min, mitt, minar
  • 1st person plural: vaur, vaurt, vaurar
  • 2nd person singular: tinn, tin, titt, tinar
  • 2nd person plural: ydar, ydart, ydarar
  • 3rd person masculine singular: hans, hansar
  • 3rd person feminine singular: henar, henrar
  • 3rd person neuter singular: tess, tessar
  • 3rd person plural: teirra, teirrat, teirrar

Only the 1st and 2nd person singular possessives distinguish between the masculine & feminine genders on the following noun. The 3rd person singular possessives don’t distinguish gender at all, just number.

Here are some examples with 1st person possessives:

  • køttrinn minn “my cat”
  • boukin min “my book”
  • augat min “my eye”
  • armarnir minar “my arms”
  • eidrinn vaur “our oath”
  • husit vaurt “our house”
  • beinin vaurar “our bones”

The third person possessive pronouns do not specifically refer to the subject or speaker; they can refer to absolutely anyone. Like with the other North Germanic languages, there is a separate set of reflexive pronouns – sinn, sin, sitt, sinar – which are used to clear up ambiguity:

  • køttrinn henar “her cat”
  • køttrinn sinn “her (own) cat”

“It”

Like the other pronouns, the Askeisk word for “it” is declined for case, number, and gender. The “default” form is tad.

 

Singular Plural

 

Masculine Feminine Neuter Masculine Feminine Neuter

Nominative

tann tøn tad tannar tønir

tad

Object tann tøni tadi tannum tønym

tadum

Genitive tanns tønar tads tana tønæ

tada

Adjectives

Like you’d expect, adjectives take on the case, number, and gender of the noun they modify. Adjectives with /a/, /u/, and /au/ in the masculine (the default form of the adjective) become /ø/, /y/, and /øy/ in the feminine.

Masculine nouns almost exclusively end in –ur. The feminine and neuter forms drop the –ur, and the neuter adds –t.

Examples:

  • daudur, døyd, daudt “dead”
  • fraul, frøyl, frault “free”
  • heitur, heit, heitt “hot”
  • reddur, redd, reddt “afraid”

Adjectives can “agree” with 1st and 2nd person pronouns by matching the gender of the person:

  • Jeg em gladur. “I (male) am happy.”
  • Jeg em glød. “I (female) am happy.”
  • Jeg em gladt. “I (neuter) am happy.”
  • Tu ert gladur. “I (male) am happy.”

For the plural versions of the 1st and 2nd person pronouns, the neuter forms of adjectives are used by default:

  • Veir eru gladt. “We are happy”
  • Eir eru gladt. “You are happy”.

Since adjectives have the same declensions as nouns, gladt is the same in the singular and plural numbers.

Comparatives & superlatives also have different forms depending on the gender of the adjective:

 

Comparative Superlative

Masculine

-ari -asti
Feminine -øri

-østæ

Neuter -ara

-ast


<< Part 1 | Part 3 >>

Camp NaNo July Results

This month was a lot. My A/C went out on July 2nd, and it wasn’t fixed until the 8th. I got very little writing done during that time period. After that was fixed, I…continued not to write very much.

I genuinely haven’t been very motivated to write this month. I’ve mainly been working on blog posts, and I’ve had quite a bit of success with those – I’ve written and scheduled 22 blog posts – but actual outlining for Broken Sword? I only wrote 2,849 words.

My original goal was 20,000 words. I changed that to 10,000 on July 20, since there was definitely no way I was going to reach 20k. This is actually the first time I’ve ever had to change a Camp NaNo goal.

I outlined myself into a corner with Broken Sword. I have a few options on how to start the next section of the story, but unfortunately, none of them seem any good. Outlining is essentially on hold until I figure that out.

I did, however, start re-outlining the first chapters of Samael, a story I first started writing in 2015. I reworked it into a setting I liked in 2019 and wrote the first four chapters, then stopped to focus on The Land of Two Moons and The Book of Immortality. I’ve been thinking the story over in my head this whole time, and now have some better ideas on how to start it and have certain ideas & themes carry on through the entire story.

Also, it’s a story that takes place in 2023 (in a cyberpunk version of our own world, with some fairly major differences) so I’d like to start finishing chapters and start posting it here sometime in mid-2022 at the latest.

Anyway, I ended this session of Camp NaNo with 11,964 words. Hopefully the next couple months of writing will not be as chaotic as this one.

2021_07 campnanowrimo