Soyagir language

From CWS Planet
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Soyagir
Soyagir
Pronunciationsojagiɾ~sojaxiʁ
RegionBoroso
EthnicityKirahak, Norgaseki
Native speakers20,000,000  (no date)
Language family
Mond-Iktic
  • Soyagir
Official status
Official language inNorgasek Republic
Regulated byNational Academy of Language
CWS code

The Soyagir language is a Mond-Iktic language spoken primarily in the Norgasek Republic and surrounding areas by approximately 30 million native and non-native speakers. It is the primary working language of the Norgasek Republic and is one of two official languages. Natively spoken by 20 million Kirahak, the dominant ethnic group in the Norgasek Republic, it is also the second language of 10 million more Norgaseki citizens. Soyagir is the language of inter-ethnic communication, government, higher education, and commerce. As the Standard Soyagir is the language of prestige in the Norgasek Republic, many other languages and dialects are becoming endangered.

Classification

The majority of linguists classify Soyagir as being part of the Mond-Iktic family, an isolated family spoken natively on the continent of Boroso, with only two primary branches and less than 9 living members, 7 of which are endangered. Soyagir is part of the Iktic branch, native to the Keman and Lakes region of the Norgasek Republic. The closest living relative of Soyagir is a member of the Insular branch of the family, spoken on the island of Cägäsem in the western area of Norgase. Out of the family, Soyagir is among the most linguistically conservative in terms of borrowed terms and grammar, while also the most widely spoken language.

History

The Urheimat of the Mond-Iktic family is not known, though due to the relative isolation of the daughter languages of Proto-Mond-Iktic, it is possible it originates in the region around the modern-day Norgasek Republic. An oral and recorded tradition shared among most tribes of both the Kirahak and Uruhak peoples describes a once-large village in the north or east where their ancestors once came from. The tradition details a great migration westward, where the people were led by twins who were both mythical chiefs, of which one twin lead the village west and one twin lead the village south. Modern anthropologists cite this as evidence for a north-eastern origin of the Urheimat of the Mond-Iktic family.

Soyagir has been spoken continuously in the Kema area since Kirahak settlers first reached the area, possibly around 3,000 years ago, though evidence of human habitation stretches far earlier. Written evidence of the language begins around 2,000 years ago, though it is unsure what language was being described, due to the evidence being logographic. The literary tradition of a complex pictorial-based logography continued until the introduction of foreign scripts from the north and south of the region, until the period of Classical Soyagir when foreign scripts were first introduced to the region. Prior, there was little contact with other people groups, with trading limited to the Urukot peoples. However, after contact with outside societies, a written literary revolution took place. Foreign scripts were generally rejected, though the Traditional Script, a semi-featural abugida was developed by the intellectual elite of Kema. This external influence on the region spurred the development of the nation-state, built on ethnic identity, and by 500 years ago, the dialect of the Capital, Soyagir, was enforced as the prestige spoken language, while the elite wrote using Classical Soyagir.

When the Kingdom of Kirahakot expanded to eventually dominate Urukot into the modern period of Norgase's history, the government continued to emphasize uniformity and standardization through language. Linguistic purity enforced by the Kingdom meant that effectively no foreign or "outsider" words were permitted in the standard lexicon. Instead, modern agricultural and technological terms were derived from native vocabulary, prefixes and suffixes. While full linguistic assimilation was not achieved by the Republican period around 200 years ago, Soyagir's status as the national and prestige language had firmly cemented, lasting to the present day.

Phonology

Phonemes

Bilabial Dental Alveolar Velar Uvular Glottal
Nasal m n ŋ
Plosive p b t d
Fricative
Approximant
Front Central Back
Close
Mid
Open

Phonotactics

Morphology and syntax

Nouns

Nouns in Soyagir are an open class of vocabulary and do not inflect except for number, of which there are only two: singular and plural. Plurality is only indicated in written or formal language, and there are a number of pluralizing processes based on noun type. Nouns are divided into the broad categories of "verb-derived" and "root." Noun cases are present in the language, though they are not marked by inflection and instead by particles preceding each noun. There are a number of productive affixes that can be used to derive new words from verbs, while noun-compounding is a typical method to derive new vocabulary as well. Interestingly, Soyagir has lost many root nouns in their independent form, a result of Classical Soyagir compounds replacing many roots.

Adjectives and Adverbs

All modifiers of words in Soyagir must be marked with the ligative particle a, and there is no grammatical distinction between adjectives and adverbs. Both can be derived from both nouns and verbs with productive suffixes. Adjectives differ from true verbs as they do not have infinitive endings, though they can be considered to be in the same class as copular verbs, as adjectives are able to stand alone with a subject.

Verbs

Soyagir verbs are agglutinative and conjugate to express tense, mood, voice, and transitivity in some circumstances. Soyagir is a pro-drop language, though verbs are not conjugated for person or number. The conjugation system is highly regular, with few irregular verbs.

Syntax

Most sentences follow a Subject-Object-Verb word order, and there exists a rigid structure for the placement of each syntactic argument in each sentence. In intransitive sentences, the word order is SV, with any oblique arguments following the verb.

  • ha - verb - (te) - KUN/HANA

where the subject is implied:

  • (te) - verb - (ha) - KUN/HANA

In transitive sentences, the word order is typically SOV, though the position of oblique arguments is dependent on the voice of the verb.

  • ha - da - verb-ACTOR - (te) - KUN/HANA

Ha meuk a song da Eyafimal te kenankan kerelodeim hana.

My mother asked Eyafimal at home.

  • ha - te - verb-PATIENT - da - KUN/HANA

Ha Eyafimal te kenankan kereloyëkim da meuk hana.

My mother asked Eyafimal at home.

Constructions involving more than 2 arguments:

X verb Y PREPOSITION Z

  • ha y - te z PREPOSITION - verb-PATIENT da x - KUN/HANA

or when the object is stressed

  • ha x da y - verb-ACTOR te z PREPOSITION.

When modifying nouns/relative clause:

  • a - da - verb-PATIENT - te

Ha anuk a da has noineyëkim a deikaš ikteim te kenankan

The person that I saw yesterday went home


Has da anuk a dë ikteyëk noines

I saw the man that went


When in a subordinate clause:

  • da - ya - ha - (da) - verb-AGENT - (te)

Vocabulary

Writing and literature