Posted by & filed under Podcast.

Today, we all talk about the wonderful nuclear-fricitiveness of Ogami, a real life natural language in the Ryukyuan family.  It’s got lots of little bits to inspire you in your conlangs.  Enjoy!

Top of Show Greeting: Mandarin Chinese (translation help and recording by Starrie Li (李昕))

Featured NATLANG: Ogami

14 Responses to “Conlangery #71: Ogami (natlang)”

        • admin

          Mid back rounded lax (or [-ATR]) vowel. Although, I will say I think English [ɔ] throws me off partly because, at least the way linguists say it when making an example, there’s not that much rounding to it.

          • Kenneth N

            I tried to understand what word it would represent in the sentence in question: “Like heck they [ɔ]”

            The one I could think of is “Like heck they awe”, “Like heck they or”, “Like heck they ore”, and possibly one or two more – neither of which seems to make much sense.

          • Kenneth N

            I was thinking that to, but I think [ɔ] – short, mid-open and rounded – would be a very strange realisation.

            I was just afraid there may had been some pun that I missed…

  1. Avjunza

    Just a quick translation from my most recent project, Jtaraectozoru [tɕɐɹaɪktɔtsɔɹʉ].

    Rac jojsajs cacôgejton nu tumajnoe jaesajs jtapon. Tâ jaesajs raegen côro tumajnoe jtamen. Tâ cos catjon côro tâtae cohoc hacan.
    [ ɹɐk jɔɕɐɕ kakɔ̞̃ŋitɕɔn nʉ tʉmaɲɔɪ jaɪsɐɕ tɕapɔn. tɐ̃ jaɪsɐɕ ɹaɪŋɛn kɔ̞̃ɹɔ tʉmaɲɔɪ tɕamɛn. tɐ̃ kɔs katɕɔn kɔ̞̃ɹɔ tɐ̃taɪ kɔhɔk hɐkɐn. ]

    A man went into a cave because he thought there were bats there. He looked inside and there were no bats. He went home and told his son.

      • Rhamos Vhailejh

        Original English:

        A man went into a cave because he thought there were bats there. He looked inside and there were no bats. He went home and told his son.


        Duojjin Result:

        Vohovöl kyyrh’ajaanen, koskei skirissa’topeivalmen mika hei’jeimånen. Voholot ii’svennen, niin skiriskin ii’lyötönen. Huovöl ii’ajaanen, niin heina kallahöl ii’puhunen.


        (If anyone has been paying close attention to the comments I’ve been posting about Duojjin, they’ll notice some pretty serious inconsistencies, and that’s because Duojjin has probably changed more in the last two or three weeks that I’ve listened to these 71 podcasts than it has in the last two years. And no, I’m not kitchen-sinking every feature that’s discussed (faaaaar from it), but even then, there’s still SO much to consider.)


        Duojjin Morpheme Boundaries (without Assimilation):

        voho+övöl kyyrh+ajaa+inen,

        koskei skiri+essa+to+pei+aval+men

        mika hei+jei+må+inen.

        Voho+ollot ii+sven+inen,

        niin skiri+ski+n ii+lyötö+inen.

        Huo+övöl ii+ajaa+inen,

        niin hei+na kalla+öhöl ii+puhu+inen.


        Duojjin Grammatical/Morpheme Analysis:

        cave+ALLATIVE person.AGENT+go+do.PAST.PERFECTIVE

        because bat+NOM.PLURAL.AGENT+that+place+INESSIVE+is.PAST.PERFECTIVE

        what 3PS.AGENT+uncertain+brain+do.PAST.PERFECTIVE






        Duojjin IPA:

        vɔˈho.vʊl ˌkyːɾ.hɑˈjaː.nɛn kɔˈske skiˈɾisː.səˌto.peˈvɑl.mɛn miˈkɑ ˌhe.jeˈmɑi̯.nɛn

        vɔˈho.lɔt iˈzvɛnː.nɛn nin skiˈɾ iˈlyʊ̯.tʊ.nɛn

        ˈʍo.vʊl ˌi.ɑˈjɑː.nɛn nin ˈhe.nə ˈkɑlː.ləˌhʊl ˌi.pɯˈhu.nɛn


        Human Translation from Duojjin to English:

        To cave person went, because bats were there is what they thought. Into cave they looked, and no bats they found. To home they went, and to their son they told.


        (Note: In this translation, all of the pluralized pronouns are intended as gender-neutral singular pronouns. Duojjin doesn’t distinguish gender identity (not the same as grammatical gender, I understand that now, thanks to you guys) in pronouns, and so “they/their” is just the most humanly accurate translation available.)

        (Another Note: “To their son they told” would be more literally translated as “for their son they said”, but this wouldn’t express the proper connotation, despite being more “accurate”. This is because in Duojjin, you speak “towards” someone (“say” in the allative), but you tell “for” them (“say” in the intentive, which is a case I made up). Maybe it’s a benefactive? I’ve been trying to figure out the proper term for it for years. The phrase “give x to y” would use the intentive case as well (on y, specifically), but I’m getting into a tangent now. lol)

        (PS: Sorry for all the double spacing. It was behaving very strangely otherwise, and bolding things I didn’t want bolded.)

        (PPS: Sorry for the morphemes, David. =P)

  2. Roman Rausch

    1. Syllabic fricatives in Ogami did indeed come from voiceless vowels. Long ones came from voiceless vowels in two consecutive syllables. We were actually discussing this on the list recently:
    2. The pear story is a film which was shown to native speakers who were then asked to describe the events in their own words:
    CGI wasn’t as good at the time of shooting 40 years ago, otherwise I’m sure they would have included a child-eating snake monster of some kind. It still could have had a punchline, though.
    3. I’m quite certain that the Ogami nominative nu is cognate to the Japanese genitive no. This development is understandable when looking at subordinate clauses: In Japanese, sentences like [kimi ga] yuku miti ‘[lord GEN] go road’ (the road that my lord goes) were reinterpreted as [kimi ga yuku] miti ‘[lord NOM go] road’, with the genitive ga becoming nominative. Ogami seems to have done the same with the other genitive marker no, keeping ka (from ga) as genitive.
    You can easily see that /e/ and /o/ were raised to /i/ and /u/ in Ogami throughout by comparison to Japanese (which is also why the vowel system became so unbalanced).
    4. Check out this recording of a native speaker:
    The syllabic fricatives are actually quite seamless.

  3. Pontus Sandblom

    I may be almost three years late now, but I for one am most definitely listening to the show. In fact, it continues to be an invaluable source of information and inspiration!
    I would also like to say that, like “Iker” , I also didn’t think David would be staying on the show, but rather that you would be switching guests, but I’m thrilled that you got David on and that you got to “keep” him. I just love the work he’s done on the languages for Game of Thrones and Defiance, so much so that I’ve begun to draw inspiration from some of those into my own conlangs.
    Now I’d like to thank you all for your efforts, for keeping the show running! I am still trying to catch up.
    Thank you, from Sweden! (Since you asked about that recently:)
    //Pontus [ˈpʰɔn.tɵs]


Leave a Reply to Pontus Sandblom Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.