Harish language

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Harish language
Harle Tally
EthnicityHarish people
Native speakers24,000,000  (no date)
Language family
  • Central-Tzulhon
    • Harish language
Early forms:
Old Harish
CWS codexbf

The Harish language is a language spoken in Tzulhon by the Harish people, it is the de facto official language of Tzulhon.


The Harish language belongs to the Central Tzulhon branch of Tzulhonic language family. The only other surviving member of Central Tzulhon languages is the Niplandish language



The Tzulhonic family of languages, of which Harish is a member, are hypothesized to derive from a single ancestor language termed Proto-Tzulhonic, spoken sometime between 5,000 and 1,000 BCE (estimates vary). Over time, Proto-Tzulhonic split into various daughter languages, which themselves continued to change and diverge, yielding yet more descendants. One of these descendants is the reconstructed Proto-Central-Tzulhon, from which the Central Tzulhon languages developed around 1000 BCE-1 CE. Current models assume that some Proto-Central-Tzulhon dialects evolved during the first millennium BCE.

Old and Middle Harish

The earliest extant text in Harish is from the 6th century. The Harish language spoken in the period from the earliest record up to around 1100s is referred to as Old Harish. The Harish language spoken in the period from around 1100s up to the 16th century is referred to as Middle Harish. Following a period of unification, the Harish of the 16th to the 17th centuries is sometimes referred to as Classical Harish, although many linguists simply refer to Harish language from the 17th century to today as Modern Harish.

Throughout the Middle Ages and into the modern era, the most important influences on the Harish lexicon came from Ngerupic languages. Harish borrowed a considerable number of words from Ngerupic languages, especially from Middle Kwang, as well as a minor influence from other Tzulhonic languages spoken in other areas of Tzulhon.

The Kwang Logography was used as the working language of science, literature, law, and administration in the Republic of Tzulkeyo and later the Republic of Hareland during the middle ages; however, many lower class Harish people were illiterate due to fundamental differences between the Harish and Kwang languages, which greatly impeded the spread of knowledge and the understanding of laws and governmental orders among the commoners. To solve this problem, the Mani Abugida was introduced by merchants in the 8th century to write documents in Harish, and the Mani Abugida used among Harish speakers eventually evolved into the Onzo Alphabet. The name Onzo is from the Old Harish adjective omso, which is derived from the Old Harish word omi "people" and means "popular, of people" in Old Harish.




Labial Dental Alveolar Post-alveolar and Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasals m n
Plosives and Affricates p t͡s t t͡ʃ k
Fricatives f v s ʃ h
Sonorants r l j
Front Central Back
Close i u
Mid e o
Open a

Diphthongs: /ai/ /au/ /ei/ /eu/ /oi/ /ou/


The syllable structure is relatively simple, the maximum possible syllable is (C)V(C)

Only vowels or coronal consonants may end a word, and most words end in a consonant end in coronal sonorants /n/, /r/ and /l/.

Harish is a syllable-timed language, there are no obvious distinctions between stressed and unstressed syllables. The primary stress usually falls on the penultimate syllable of a word.

Morphology and syntax


The morphology of Harish is mostly analytic; however, few inflections remain.


Nouns don't decline for case or gender, but decline for number and definiteness.

Below is the decline for nouns:


  • indefinite singular: -o
  • indefinite plural: -i(older -io)
  • definite singular: -ato
  • definite plural: -azi(older -(a)zio)


  • indefinite singular: -yo
  • indefinite plural: -si(older -sio)
  • definite singular: -to
  • definite plural: -zi(older -(a)zio)


  • indefinite singular: -Ø
  • indefinite plural: -i(older -io)
  • definite singular: -(i)to
  • definite plural: -(i)zi(older -(i)zio)

There are relics of the older genitive case, but the genitive case only appears in some set phrases or in some formal writings before 1950.


Adjectives agree with nouns in number, but not in definiteness. The declinations of adjectives are the same as nouns.

Adjectives in Harish can be used as nouns directly, when an adjective is used as nouns, it means "someone/something that is ADJ" or "someone/something that has the characteristic of ADJ-ness".


Verbs conjugate for tense-aspect-mood, the personal agreements in older stages of Harish have been lost.

The conjugation of verbs are listed below:

  • Infinitive: -er
  • Present: -e
  • Present progressive: -azo
  • Past: -a/-at
  • Past progressive: -azau
  • Future: -o
  • Subjunctive: -u
  • Imperative: -i
  • Prohibitive: -in
  • Adverbial: -an
  • Potential: -eva
  • Desiderative I: -ana
  • Desiderative II: -ante

The subjunctive mood is used for counterfactual speech, and also used for the negation of a sentence in the past tense.

Most verbs are regular, there are only few irregular verbs, namely ever "to be(copula)", zur "to be(locative)", romer "to be not(copula)", and mer "to be not(locative)".

Conjugations of irregular verbs

Below are the conjugations of irregular verbs. There are no progressive forms for these verbs:

Form ever "to be(copula)" zur "to be(locative)" romer "to be not(copula)" mer "to be not(locative)".
Infinitive ever zur romer mer
Present sa zo san ma
Past kou zau koun mo
Future evo zuvo romo mavo
Subjunctive so zu samu mo
Imperative evi zoi romi me
Prohibitive evin zoin (romin) (men)
Adverbial evan zon roman mon

Derivational morphology

Derivational affixes

While the Harish language is partly analytic, several derivational affixes exist, and derivational affixes play an important role in creating new words.

The suffix -or

The suffix -or is used to create nouns indicating the agent of verbs, the nouns can be either animate or inanimate. For example:

  • zalver "to beg" + -or -> zalvor "beggar" (a person that begs)
  • mancher "to use" + -or -> manchor "user" (a person that uses something)
  • talter "to stack" + -or -> taltor "stacker" (a machine that stacks things)
  • toner "to make, do" + -or -> tonor "maker(a person that makes something), doer, agent(a person or thing that does something), factor"

This suffix can also be used on proper nouns to indicate somthing named after the proper noun, or used for the clipping of nouns. For example:

The suffix -o

The suffix -o is used to create nouns in general from verbs. It is a generic nominaliser, the meaning of the noun is usually something inanimate and can be either concrete or abstract.

This suffix is very productive in creating new nouns. For example:

  • hever "to advise" + -o -> hevo "advice"
  • ninkarter "to earn" + -o -> ninkarto "income"
  • hanter "to pull" + -o -> hanto "train(vehicle)"
  • ucher "to live" + -o -> ucho "life"
  • kemer "to collect" + -o -> kemo "collection

Most compounds in Harish are noun + noun compounds. In compound words, the final -o of a noun or an adjective is usually replaced with -a.

When verbs are used in compounds as an modifier, the gerund form is always used.


Word Order

The word order features are listed below:

  • Basic Word Order: Subject-Object-Verb(SOV)
  • Adpositions are postpositions
  • Conjuctions are in the final position of the clause
  • Negations precede the word they negate.
  • Adjectives, Relative Clauses, Demonstratives, articles, numerals, possessors precede the noun they modify.


To form sentential negation, the nagative adverb ma is put directly before the verb.

When negating a past event, the subjunctive mood instead of the past tense is used. For example:

  • i tosa - 3.SG come-PST - "he came"
  • i ma tosu - 3.SG NEG come-SBJV - "he didn't come"

Possessions within a Noun Phrase

To form noun-noun possession, the postposition i is used.

Alternatively, the 3rd person possessive pronouns are inserted between the possessor and possessee.

When the possessor is a personal pronoun, the possessive pronouns are used, and the possessive pronoun precede the possessee. Below are the possessive pronouns:

  • 1st singular possessive(my): ane
  • 2nd singular possessive(your): eme
  • 3rd singular possessive(his/her/its): ye
  • 1st plural possessive(our): nise
  • 2nd plural possessive(your): mise
  • 3rd plural possessive(their): ise

Possessive Construction in a Sentence

The Harish language does not have a verb for "to have", to indicate the meaning "X has Y", one uses a structure that can be translated into English as "Y is with X" or "there's a Y at X". For example:

  • ano mi zasko zeuvo zo - 1.SG with sharp-SG sword-SG be.PRES - "I have a sharp sword"(literally "A sharp sword is with me")
  • ano na zasko zeuvo zo - 1.SG at sharp-SG sword-SG be.PRES - "I have a sharp sword"(literally "There's a sharp sword at me")

Subordinating Clauses

One way to form the relative clause, the relative clause if placed before the head noun, without the use of linking words or specific inflections. The subject of the subordinating clause of a transitive verb, when it is not relativized, might be used with the possessive postposition i, or with the possessive pronouns when the subject of the subordinating clause is a personal pronoun.

When forming a noun clause, the word nin "matter" is used.

Verb framing

The Harish language is a verb-framed language, that is, the verb of a sentence usually shows the path of motion, and the adverbs or particles show the manner of motion.

The manner of a verb is often in the adverbial form.


To express resultative, one uses the structure "V2-INF ta V1" for the meaning "to V1 (N) to V2", and one uses the structure "N ADJ zeirer ta V" to indicate the meaning "to V N ADJ", with the the adjective ADJ denoting the state achieved by the N as a result of the event described by V.

For intransitive verbs, the one that undergoes the change indicated by the resultative strucutre is usually the subject; for transitive verbs, the one that undergoes the change indicated by the resultative strucutre is usually the object; for ditransitive verbs, the one that undergoes the change indicated by the resultative strucutre is usually the indirect object.

For example:

  • ai fichato ruto zeirer ta zonka - 3.PL wall-DEF.SG red-SG become-INF towards paint-PST - "they painted the wall red."
  • roivo nitato petarto seler ta fecha - bad-SG male-DEF.SG dog-DEF.SG die-INF towards beat-PST - "the bad man beated the dog to death."
  • namlato arto raher ta poza - wolf-DEF.SG house-DEF.SG fall-INF towards blow-PST - "the wolf blew the house until the house fell." / "the wolf blew the house down."
  • taitazorto tainazorto Kvankisko unter ta taita - teacher-DEF.SG student-DEF.SG Kwang.language-SG understand-INF towards teach-PST - "the teacher taught the student Kwang until the student understood it."


Most words of the Harish language are inherited from Old Harish; however, there are a significant amount of words that can have their origins be traced back to Ngerupic languages, especially Mani and Kwang languages. Ngerupic loanwords have form a large amount of the vocabulary. Most of the Ngerupic words are borrowed before the modern era.

Some words in Harish

Personal Pronouns:

  • 1st person singular(I/me): ano
  • 2nd person singular(you(sg)): emo
  • 3rd person singular(he/she/it): i
  • 1st person plural(we/us): niso
  • 2nd person plural(you(pl)): miso
  • 3rd person plural(they/them): ai
  • reflexive(self): ke

Interrogative pronouns:

  • who: amo
  • what: mato
  • which: mazo
  • where: mazo zeyo na
  • when: mazo haiso na
  • how: maka
  • why: mala
  • how much/how many: matan pancho

Indefinite pronouns:

  • anyone/anybody: etaramo
  • anything: etevo
  • any: eto
  • someone/somebody: heramo
  • something: heyevo
  • everyone/everybody: ozaramo
  • everything: ozevo
  • every: ozo


  • this: het
  • that: sat
  • these: heti
  • those: sati
  • here: zar
  • there: sar


  1. one: ezo
  2. two: anko
  3. three: samo
  4. four: xacho
  5. five: paro
  6. six: eitoro
  7. seven: rimaro
  8. eight: tomo
  9. nine: meizo
  10. ten: toho
  11. eleven: ezanovo
  12. twelve: ankanovo
  13. thirteen: samanovo
  14. forteen: xachanovo
  15. fifteen: paranovo
  16. sixteen: eitoranovo
  17. seventeen: rimaranovo
  18. eighteen: tomanovo
  19. nineteen: meizanovo
  • twenty: hilzo
  • thirty: samastar
  • forty: xachastar
  • fifty: parastar
  • sixty: eitorastar
  • seventy: rimarastar
  • eighty: tomastar
  • ninety: meizastar
  • hundred: aitar
  • thousand: ziko

Writing and literature

The Harish language is written in the revised Onzo Abugida, the revised Onzo Abugida was created in 1950 by the Linguistic institute to adapt the phonology of modern Harish.

Historically Harish was also written in the Kwang Logogram, but the use of the Kwang Logogram has declined after the education reform in the mid 20th century, but it is still occasionally used, and since 1985, logogram has become a mandatory part of the education again.