I have a few main inspirations and goals for the language:Jackk wrote:I imagine it would have been colonised shortly after Britain - as it is much smaller, pretty much everyone on the island was Romanised. Although there were frequent invasions throughout the rest of the first millenium, by the Angles and Saxons first, then by various Norse invaders, the islanders held out much better than the Britons. This was partly because the island was a less appealing colonisation target, being smaller, and partly because they had more cultural ties to Rome. The (yet unnamed) island had at this time a very strong literary tradition, owing to the many monasteries present. Like what happened to the Normans, any invaders tended to adopt the Romance language of the island, although there is at least as much Germanic influence on the language as there was on French.
- I am taking ideas from Norman French and other northeatern Gallic languages, like like keeping hard "c" before "a" - like mercat - and shifting stress codaless /o/ > /ou/ (> /u/) instead of French's /o/ > /ou/ > /øw/ > /ø/.
- I kinda want Boralian to be even less typical of Romance languages than French is, seeing as it is located right on the edge of the Empire.
- I would like the sound of the language to be quite different from the stereotypical "beautiful" French or Italian. This aesthetic is exemplified in the sentence jo t'aif deiç letr scrit. /d͡ʒoˈtef dɪt͡ʃ ˈlɛt skɾɪt/ "I have written ten letters to you."
Pous-jo isignair ci ch'jo saib rei?
/ˈpust͡ʃo iˈzajne ˌt͡ʃɪk d͡ʒoˈzɛb ɾi/
pous jo isign ci ch' jo saib ri
can-1s.PRS 1s.NOM teach-INF that REL 1s.NOM know-1s.PRS NEG
Can I teach what I don't know?
This sentence illustrates a few grammatical and phonological points:
- Boralian, like French and German, uses inversion to form questions. This strategy is about as common as the alternative, which is to use the construction Veir ch'jo pois, literally "True that I can", which however requires the subjunctive.
- Boralian lost final /r/, lengthening the preceding vowel (e.g. veir /vi/), or just disappearing (e.g. vaðr /vaθ/). This I have found that this change alone makes many words sound completely unromantic, like aveir /a'vi/ "have".
- Boralian never lenited palatised k/g/t/d as far as French did. Compare French chambre /ʃɑ̃bʀ/ to Boralian cam /kam/, and ciel /sjel/ to cel /t͡ʃɛl/.
- Verbs are negated with the particle rei ( < L rem "thing"), in the same manner that spoken French has the word pas. There are a few exceptions, most notable the verb stair /ste/ "to be", whihch is special and its own thing and I am putting off trying to work it out.