Karakat languages

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Karakat
Geographic
distribution:
Boroso
Linguistic classification:Mherdic
  • Karakat
Proto-language:Proto-Karakat language
CWS code
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Distribution of the Karakat languages.

The Karakat languages are a small branch of the Mherdic languages, consisting of three languages spoken in the northern Fals Empire.

Its three extant members are Akiaian Karakat, spoken in the western Karakat Confederation by around 2 million; Arvian Karakat, in the east by around 1.4 million; and the now-endangered Saarian Karakat in the eastern Pels Kingdom with fewer than 9000 remaining speakers.

Until 700 AD the family consisted of two languages, spoken by the Buist people, and the ancestors of the modern-day Karakat peoples. All extant Karakat languages descend from Old Karakat, while Buist is now extinct. Karakat separated into a southern and northern dialect in the 9th century, when a number of Karakat tribes migrated to the north, and later formed the Karakat Confederation. By 1300, Northern Karakat began to diverge into two groups of dialects, Akiaian and Arvian, which has resulted in the two northern languages in modern times.

Akiaian and Arvian share a large degree of mutual intelligibility owing to their separation having only occurred within the last 500 years, additionally due to phonological conservatism and relative isolation from outside influences. Saarian is the most dissimilar, having been influenced in both phonology and vocabulary to some degree by Pelsic and more recently heavily by Thaaft.

The Buist language existed until around 800AD, when its speakers were subjugated under Pelsic society and Pelsic became their primary language. Remains of Buist speakers were either eradicated, or were ousted to the south, where they assimilated into As culture. Written records in the Buist language are scarce, limited to three short texts. After 880AD, there are no more mentions of Buist. Saarian (southern) Karakat survived Pelsic overlordship, but having been heavily influenced by its neighbours has greatly decreased its intelligibility with the northern Karakat languages, and additionally is now an endangered language since Thaaft became a mandatory language class in lower education in the early 1900, further exacerbated by the 2017 act that made Thaaft the sole educational language throughout the country.

Below is an example of some cognates between Karakat languages.

English Saarian Akiaian Arvian
drink v siːr ɑzər ɑsøɾ
five ɛis ɑgz ɑgɛdz
forest pioːd b͡vɑzə biwɑd͡zø
house ikuim gumi gumi
person duk zuɣ d͡zuɣ
fall v nor nuɣr nuɣɾ
fals orɑs urɑʝ uɾaʒ
kav doiv dəv tøw
tribe om əmu imu
again ʋɛi bɑɣd bɑht

Examples of loans present in Saarian that aren't present in other Karakat languages:

English Thaaft Pelsic Saarian Akiaian Arvian
then -- je ji ɑɟɑ wɑt͡ʃ
ask -- wiŋ u.ig ɟiɣiz t͡sɑis
thing -- ɲɑj jɑɪ ɛdə ødø
now - beŋ pig ɟbɑɣd diʒbɑd
country/land gɔːt -- guːd ɑmɟ ɑmuʃ
beast gɨːfu -- gifuɪ ɟidəni t͡sitønɛ
bring nɔg -- dog ɣli ɣli
crocodile/alligator ʃɑkɑlt -- sɑkɑːt ɑnərʝ hɑnørʒ
clean adj ɔːʋɪɾ o.ir (ɟ)uʝɣən guɣøn

Taxonomy

Proto-Mherdic language