Nagrgnda is a language isolate spoken by a community on a remote island off the coasts of Rajnlokem. Archaeological evidence suggests they may be related to now extinct peoples that thrived on the island of Rajnlokem and in some parts of the Urxan empire. Their language is believed to be the only remnant of a larger family that disappeared with their speakers when they were either driven to extinction or were assimilated by the proto-K'anerhtóh and the Urxa.
The consonant inventory consists of 21 consonants. Plosives and affricates contrast with voicing, as do the two co-articulated trills.
/p b t d c ɟ k g ʔ/ <p b t d c j k g '>
/t͡ɬ d͡ɮ c͡ç ɟ͡ʝ k͡ʟ̝̊ ɡ͡ʟ̝/ <tt dd cc jj kk gg>
/ʀ͡r ʀ̥͡r̥/ <x q>
/m n/ <m n>
/ɾ r/ <l r>
- Plosives and affricates contrast between voiced and voiceless. /t d t͡ɬ d͡ɮ/ are dental [t̪ d̪ t̪͡ɬ d̪͡ɮ].
- /n/ is also dental [n̪].
- /ɾ r/ are alveolar.
- /k͡ʟ̝̊ ɡ͡ʟ̝/ are velar lateral affricates.
- /ʀ͡r/ and /ʀ̥͡r̥/ are co-articulated alveolar-uvular trills; they are fairly rare and are thought to have appeared from Proto-Nargrgndic clusters */qr/ and */ɢr/.
- The nasals /m n/ and the trill /r/ can be syllabic, as in the name of the language.
The vocalic inventory of Nagrgnda is a relatively simple 3-vowel system.
/i ä u/ <i a u>
- /i/ is close front unrounded. It is realised /e/ in some environments, usually before trills.
- /ä/ is open central unronded.
- /u/ is close back rounded. It is realised /o/ in some environments, usually before trills.
- Vowel length is not phonemic.
- There are no diphthongs.
- Syllable structure is CV(C). The coda cannot contain an affricate or a co-articulated consonant.
- The glottal stop can appear anywhere and often word initially, as words cannot begin with a vowel.
- /ɾ/ → /l/ before and after /r/. /ɾ/ → ∅ before or after the co-articulated trills.
- /i/ → /e/ and /u/ → /o/ when before or after a trill.
Nagrgnda uses a combined system of pitch accent and tone. Tones are mostly found on verbs where they are used for conjugation. Nouns also use tones, albeit more sparsely, and other word classes hardly use them, if at all.
There are two register tones (unstressed/low and stressed/high) and four register tones (rising, falling, dipping and peaking). For the sake of clarity, I will use the following IPA diacritics for the tones:
- Low/unstressed: /i/
- Stressed/high: /ī/
- Rising: /í/
- Falling: /ì/
- Dipping: /ǐ/
- Peaking: /î/
Ma'gana /maʔgana/ "to speak" → mā'ganā /māʔganā/ "spoke"
Caxa /caʀ͡ra/ "to walk" → càxá /càʀ͡rá/ "walked"
Bu /bu/ "to see" → bǔ /bǔ/ "saw".
Tones can consequently be used in a number of ways, which will be developed in the grammar section of this thread. It will be posted when I have enough content to make a substantial post.