18 January 2010

Tehafek, ze'e hak

It was a lazy friday afternoon. So what's the natural thing for a sane person like me to do? Make up a language, of course.

Of course it didn't come quite out of the blue. There's been a seed of an idea buried in my head for a good while, with one or two thoughts about the basic mechanics of the language. But I'd never really thought seriously about making it reality.

When I decided to give it a shot, the language almost seemed to create itself. Things just fell into place naturally, over the past weekend. Of course it's very, very far from being anything like complete. But I think I've already got down most parts of a workable grammar and some primitive vocabulary. There's no name for it yet, apart from 'Tehafa', which is just the word for 'language'.

Here's a rendition of Bashō's famous haiku:

esu etuu valap
valaga ada'e tabep
la'o ratap

(old small lake
frog leaps in
water’s sound)

The question now is, of course, what am I going to do with it? The natural option is of course to use the language as the basis for a fantasy world. I already have Wyrmvoid, of course, but that is tailored for D&D style high fantasy. This should be something more personal, more original. And it should be a lasting world, not something I'll discard when the next neat idea comes along. It's not like I'm going to make up a new language every weekend.

(The post title translates as: 'I speak, therefore I am.')

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