|arMikikxan, Ŧarmosahit arKikxanax
|~30 million (2019)
|Official language in
Areas where Arkihanakh is spoken at home by a majority of people
regions where Arkihanakh is spoken at home by a significant minority
the Povan Union, in which Arkihanakh has co-official status
Arkihanakh (almikiḳann, arMikikxan /ɐːmɪkɪkxɐn/) is an Adzo-Neviric language of the Adzamic branch spoken predominantly in the Povan constituent country of Arkihan by approximately 30 million people, of which approximately 25 million are native speakers. It is co-official in the Povan Union, within which it is the third most spoken language behind Ledzib and Ailmudenic.
Arkihanakh is a member of the Adzamic branch of the Adzo-Neviric language family, itself a branch of the Ekuo-Lahiri language family.
Arkihanakh arose after speakers of Old Adzamian settled the region, and the Neviran conquest separated Arkihan from Tabiqa.
|t d t͡s*
|k g k͡x*
|s z ʃ ʒ
|i: ĩ: ɪ ɪ: ɪ̃
|u: ũ: ʊ ʊ: ʊ̃
|e: ẽ: ɛ ɛ: ɛ̃
|o: õ: ʌ ʌ: ʌ̃
|ɐ ɐ: ɐ̃
- /t͡s/ and /k͡x/ are technically allophonic with [ts] and [kx], but they behave as their own phonemes phonotactically.
- /r/ isn't allowed after vowels.
- Long vowels can only occur in stressed syllables.
- Stress is not phonemic and only occurs in the initial syllable.
- The language is (C)(C)V(C)(C), and /n/ can occur instead of a vowel.
- All consonants, other than /h/, /ɦ/, and /j/, are palatalised by following front vowels. Likewise, they are also labialised by following back vowels.
- /x/ surfaces as [ç] before voiceless obstruents (with the exception of velar sounds) and word-finally.
- /x/ surfaces as [ɣ] when adjacent to voiced obstruents.
The Western dialect of Arkihanakh, also called the Kar or Kidev dialect, is the dialect spoken primarily in South Arkide, but also in the city of Vuxkofukx. This dialect merges the dental fricatives /θ/ and /ð/ with the alveolar sibilants /s/ and /z/ respectively. The voiced /ɦ/ is dropped entirely, leading to instances of vowel hiatus. It is also the only major dialect not to feature allophonic palatalisation and labialisation of consonants before certain vowels.
The Arkot dialect is the second most spoken dialect of Arkihanakh, spoken in its historical capital of Arkot. Some people, especially older folk, refer to it as the Maźet ("True") dialect, a name which has been largely discredited. It is the only dialect in which voiced /ɦ/ still has its original quality. A newer feature of the Arkot dialect is that the long /ɑː/ has rounded to something more like [ɒː] or [ɔː], and the /ɐ/ vowels have been backed to [ɑ] to fill its place.
The least widely spoken major dialect, the Irmežayržix dialect (confusingly known amongst some as the 'Southern dialect') is spoken in a region that encompasses about half of Irmežayržix. It is most well known for being the only major dialect to still have nasal vowels. Like with the Western dialect, /ɦ/ is dropped everywhere and the dental fricatives merge with the alveolar ones. Optional prodropping, now common in the Central and Southern dialects, originated in the Irmežayržix dialect; prodropping in this instance refers to the phenomenon where first, second and third person nominative pronouns are dropped before proximal, medial and distal present tense verbs respectively.
The Central dialect is spoken in parts of Aržexzo and the city of Irvužibvik. Like with the Irmežayržix dialect, it features optional prodropping and elides /ɦ/. Its most distinguishing feature is that the allophones /tʲ/, /dʲ/, /sʲ/ and /zʲ/ are realised as [t͡ʃ], [d͡ʒ], [ʃ] and [ʒ] respectively, a feature it shares with the Tayelekro dialect.
The Southern dialect, also known as the Kihaneto dialect, is the most commonly spoken dialect and is the one taught in most schools across Povania. It is associated with the urban south, and is spoken in the capital of Povania, Saromos. It features optional prodropping, albeit this is often seen as a feature of lower-class speech in regions of Saromos and Uvath. Otherwise, it is immensely similar to the Western dialect. Allophonic palatalisation and labialisation of certain consonants are frowned upon in Uvath, but common elsewhere.
The Taryekro dialect, known also as the Zazibvo dialect or Taryeko ("Eastern") dialect, is the dialect spoken in most of Irzazibv and significant areas of Ailmudenje. It has undergone a significant vowel shift, where vowels that in older forms of the language would be nasalised /ɑ̃ː/, /ẽː/, /ĩː/, /õː/, /ũː/, /ɐ̃/, /ɛ̃/, /ɪ̃/, /ʌ̃/, and /ʊ̃/ had all shifted to qualities that more resemble [ɑ̃ː], [ĩː], [ãj̃], [ũː], [ãw̃], [ɑ̃], [æ̃], [ɛ̃], [ɑ̃], and [ɔ̃] respectively, and have since lost their nasal quality. This means that the word dẽšõk ("brain"), pronounced [dʲɛʃʌk] in most other dialects, is, in the Taryekro dialect, pronounced [d͡ʒæʃɑk]. The Taryekro dialect is also the only dialect in which the /ɦ/ phoneme is shifted to the glottal stop [ʔ].
Arkihanakh is highly fusional, with many of the agglutinative affixes of Old Adzamian having fused into a large number of affixes that convey very specific meanings.
There are 159 pronouns in Arkihanakh that mark case, class, number, and for first person plural pronouns, clusivity. A rare feature that occurs in the language is that second-person pronouns mark for natural gender, albeit use of the gender-neutral pronoun máɦ to refer to all second-persons is growing. On top of that, there are 17 interrogative pronouns, one of which surfaces as a prefix. There are also 15 obviative pronouns which suffix onto their respective verbs.
Nouns are marked for case and number. The singular class suffix in Old Adzamian merged with the root noun, so in modern Arkihanakh it is impossible to tell a noun's class from its root alone. It is also significant debate as to whether Arkihanakh's 'noun class' system even counts as a noun class system at all; agreement only occurs with pronouns, which replace the noun rather than modify it. There are many nouns placed into seemingly random classes and thus represented with seemingly random pronouns, which leads many to believe Arkihanakh is still in the process of losing its class system.
Verbs are inflected for location, tense, aspect and mood. Some verbal morphology includes circumfixes.
Sentences are either SOV or OSV depending on noun class. More animate nouns come first, and they get more inanimate the further through the sentence you go. The verb always comes last.
Arkihanakh is written in the Adzo-Neviric script. Spelling is phonemic.