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Thread: Constructing a New Germanic Language

  1. #11
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    If the object of this idea is to Germanise your use of English, wouldn't it be more worthwhile to promote the habitual use of words with Germanic instead of Roman roots, avoid phrases which are a product of the devolved way of speaking English, and so on? (notice I didn't use 'et cetera' )

    If you can't get a community to drop the use of some Latin-derived words, you're not going to get them to speak a new language, and the former will be hard enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Todesengel View Post
    I'm going to have to burst your bubble. It's sort of pointless. Esperanto never was successful and a new Germanic language won't be either. Some people can't even speak their own language properly, let alone learn a new, constructed one.
    A quote by Tolkien regarding languages and their "liveliness" :
    It was just as the 1914 War burst on me that I made the discovery that 'legends' depend on the language to which they belong; but a living language depends equally on the 'legends' which it conveys by tradition. ... Volapuk, Esperanto, Ido, Novial, etc, etc, are dead, far deader than ancient unused languages, because their authors never invented any Esperanto legends...
    If this language is used to translate works of Germanic legends and is firmly rooted into them, it could very well live beyond a simple interest.
    And in the perspective of a united Germanic world (if some people like to entertain that idea), it could be a great tool for communication.

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    Senior Member velvet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rainman
    Just have words that don't sound the same. I see English de-evolving right now. For example route which I say it how its spelled is starting to be pronounced "root". Which we already have a word "root".

    Anyway no actually my point was many people can't speak English properly.

    I would bring back some older forms like in Biblical english- closer to German. I would just eliminate things that seem to have no use like arbitrary gender. I would keep gender where it has a purpose (his/her) basically the same as modern English.

    Besides the obvious potential for improvement- it's about setting yourself apart from others.
    You really should get rid off the jewish/biblical BS out of your head...

    Anyway, another spelling try:

    You say the spelling does not reflect how it sounds. So why write it 'root' and not 'rut'? This would be how it sounds.

    Or the word recipe, which doesnt even follow the english pronunciation rules, it would be ressipi, when spelling it how it sounds, whereas receive would become 'resief' or maybe, to reflect the sharp s ressief or even rezief (I use the german pronunciation with intention here to show you the absurdity of your plan).

    Another thing is with c and k. In latin the k didnt exist, and for example the k in norse languages can also be spoken 'shj', making the city Linköping in Sweden to a spoken Linshjöping. The ä in finnish is completely different from the german or the swedish ä, there are letters æ and ø, which dont reflect anything even near to german or english letters, same goes for the combination of kj. And when you start to consider gaelic language you can forget about all german or english pronouncitation rules.

    So which rules do you want to follow? Which concept of the letters? Although they look the same, they are in fact not the same. That is the basic problem, and then you have to re-concept about 50.000 words, and again, even the relatively small amount of new invented words in nynorsk wasnt accepted widely.

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    Senior Member rainman's Avatar
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    What's wrong with middle English or Old English? It is basically the same as German. Thy or thoyn (not sure how to spell it) instead of Du or Dein. Thou see'est (middle english) - Du seest (modern German). ?? I don't see the problem. The English pronounciation is actually closer to the older Germanic way than modern German.

    My basic spelling would be the same as the English sounds. C would be the "ch" sound. S would be used for when a c sounds like an s and a K for when it has a K sound. Sh would be the same. Soft j like deja' vu would be j. Hard j like in jack would be "dj". Long vowels would "oh" for boat. "oy" for "I", ei for "boy". ew for boot etc. Ei is short for ewoy (point- pewoynt) At the end of words the "H" may be omitted like in "So" or spelled with it.

    So instead of writing like this I would write like this:
    Soh insted ov royting loyk this Oy wuld royt loyk this.

    Instead of spending three years on spelling and grammar a child could spend one. The other two years could be spent learning something productive like engineering, mathmatics, philosophy etc. Many college graduates still struggle with spelling, grammar etc. because it is so illogical and contradictory.

    We would not pronounce things like in Swedish or anything it would be mainly English like with some minor German/old English/Norse influence. The language would be primarily based on an improvement of modern English with some stronger Germanic influence from other Germanic languages- maily German itself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rainman
    So instead of writing like this I would write like this:
    Soh insted ov royting loyk this Oy wuld royt loyk this.
    Okay, when I speak what you wrote you sound like someone with a very broad and swollen yankee accent.
    Uhm, sorry, but I dont think that I would want your language

    Quote Originally Posted by rainman
    We would not pronounce things like in Swedish or anything it would be mainly English like with some minor German/old English/Norse influence. The language would be primarily based on an improvement of modern English with some stronger Germanic influence from other Germanic languages- maily German itself.
    No insult meant, but to me it seems that you struggle yourself with your mother language's rules, and because you dont really understand the rules in your own language you have trouble to understand another language's system and rules, and your 'logic', that is mainly based in your own struggle, tells you that you would be able to talk to people from another country when there would be a 'common germanic language'.

    Neither german nor english are 'germanic' languages, that would be old norse and islandic. Both english and german are very very latin. Your new language would bring us further away from our ancestor's tales and myths, we wouldnt be able to read them anymore. I dont even talk about the ignorance of all the northern (including gaelic, finnish, basque,...) languages, when you force a language upon them, which follows mainly your own likes and dislikes.

    Again, a language is much more than just a tool to communicate.
    A language reflects a society's structure, it gives identity and offers savety for the people. It is an overall applying socio-psychological system. Not at least BECAUSE it reflects the local tribe's own development to a society.

    As said before, teach the people properly, educate them bilingual starting as early as possible, that people become able to think and dream in at least two languages. And since english has established itself as world language anyway, why not use it?

    Dont get me wrong, I respect that you want to use your energy to form something, as you stated before, but there are many things that would be more useful, and more urgent problems to solve than a 'united germanic language'.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Uncle Seany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rainman View Post
    We would not pronounce things like in Swedish or anything it would be mainly English like with some minor German/old English/Norse influence. The language would be primarily based on an improvement of modern English with some stronger Germanic influence from other Germanic languages- maily German itself.
    Personally, I favour complexity over simplification, on the grounds that strictly educated, non-degenerate language involves complex pronunciations.

    For example, I talk in what amounts to reactionary upper crust RP English and a harsh-sounding 1930s Northern Hochdeutsch type of German, which I think is ideal for resonant oratory.

    Practically, this means pronouncing words such as ‘pity’ with the ‘y’ sounding precisely like the ‘i’, ‘superman’ and ‘suit’ having a different ‘y’ sound in them, and still using words such as ‘shall’ when the average person says ‘will’. When it comes to German, it means I sound like a Nazi newsreader, the speech is clipped without glides or slides in them.

    Were I to attempt a codification into unambiguous loose phonetics, I would need more letters than the Latin alphabet has to offer. þ and ð are just the beginning, for instance, I think there ought to be an attempt at enforcing different pronunciations for ‘ph’ and ‘f’, the former involving the lower lip movement from English, the latter involving the pursed lips from German. I cannot even accurately transcribe the sounds using the International Phonetic Alphabet, there are potentially several hundred letters required.

    What do you think, too fascist?

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    Senior Member rainman's Avatar
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    Building a Language

    I really would like to build a practical language for our folk. Some people may say it is uneeded but it is something I would find immensely useful.

    I would like to take Old English which is practically mutually understandable with Old Norse and Old German but I generally like the Saxon based dialect, but take Old English as a basis for this language. Modify it to some degree with modern English, modern German or other old Language if it seems to make the language superior. We don't have to stay exactly true to the old form- we should try to improve upon it where possible, but in a way that is consistent with the language. Some minor latin influence and such is acceptable so long as it doesn't destroy the beauty and soul of the language (modern English, Norwegian, German etc. has Latin influence for example). Possibly I would simplify the language in some ways like modern English because I can't see a real strong purpose for arbitrary gender with nouns and verbs for example and the three forms of the word "the" like in German. I want to cut back on the need to memorize a lot of arbitrary things (like irrational spelling) and focus on a language of logic, thinking and utility, as well as poetic beauty.

    Sort of similar to the Israelis bringing back Hebrew though in modified form. The second thing would be to create an easy and consistent spelling system, which I already invented based on our letters. Basically spell everything how it sounds.

    Take this language and put together a book, audio tapes, videos etc. where people can learn it. Begin translating literature in this book. Because it will be closer to the old languages it would also make it easier for people to read the old rune poems and such.

    I would just need someone to take the project who is familiar with the old languages and perhaps modern German along with modern English who can draw upon this rich assortment of background and work out a modern useful language. I really feel that in many ways modern English and possibly to a lesser degree modern German is probably the best language out there to use, but it just needs to be tweaked a little bit to become more logical. From there some of the dumbing down of recent ages needs to be undone and then a little bit of a return to our historical roots.

    I don't really think it would need to be vastly different from modern English. Just need to be an improvement upon modern English and something more reflective of Germanic culture in general and bring back some of the old words and forms that seem to be better. Obviously the language shouldn't be too hard to pronounce or understand for a modern speaker or else people wont be able to learn it well and transition over to it. If you take Old English for example it looks very foreign but if you transliterate it into modern spelling it starts to look familiar. So in its final form it wouldn't seem too overly exotic.

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    Senior Member Soten's Avatar
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    So are you just looking to bring back Anglo-Saxon English?

    Or are you trying to construct your own different language?

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    One possible step in this direction that I have for a long time thought would be awesome, would be to bring back the thorn (þ) and eth (ð). I mean, it's just orthographic, but I think it would not only be a cultural nod to our roots, but it would just plain make the language simpler (in the sense of a greater correspondance between orthography and phonology).


    You know, there was an attempt that started in the late 1800's to create an artificial language -- Esperanto -- and it's gotten quite a following over the years. I like many of the ideas that it uses, ideas to simplify grammar and pronunciation and make it easier to learn.

    The biggest problem with Esperanto is, in my opinion, where it gets its linguistic roots from. In an effort to be "a-cultural", it borrows from a wide range of European languages. Huge mistake, in my opinion. I would love to see someone make a similar effort in constructing a "planned language" like Esperanto, but using Germanic roots.

    If you are serious about this project, definitely take a look at Esperanto.... it will give you some ideas for things to follow, as well as things to avoid!!!

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    Senior Member rainman's Avatar
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    a) I dont care about forcing others to learn the language. If people find it useful they will use it. I find it useful.

    b) there are no resources for learning Old English, Old Norse etc. or very little. So we can't even understand rune poems etc. posted.

    c) It would be a "new" language almost identical to what already exists. I don't think it would make sense to overly obsess on bringing back a historical language when in certain instances it would be impractical. I also don't think it makes sense to create something entirely new. I find Latin to be a highly civilized language and some minor influence is acceptable, but that influence already exists in modern English, Norwegian, German etc. There are lots of ideas different people have which is based on modern language and their understanding of the historical languages. A group of people could hammer out the details.

    d) I see language as a tool. I find it pointles to waste mental energy memorizing arbitrary things. I could tell you that it is lingustically only accpetable to do a cartwheel, lick your lips, blow a raspberry, solve for the square root of pi, then scream the word help when you need help. But this doesn't reflect a greater intelligence on behalf of the speaker or creator of the language but rather inefficiency. I think for the most part English has done a good job at becoming a more efficient language in comparison to most other European languages. I can't find a practical use for arbitrary gender associations and such for example. In this way I would like it to be highly based on English grammar. I also think in general the words of English are more efficient rather than the long words that German sometimes uses. At the same time a slightly more complex structure, similar to modern German would be acceptable. Bringing back dich and dir for example. Some words from English are better, some from German or from Old English etc. they would have to flow together. The creators of the language would have to decide. In general though I'd like to bring it a bit closer to the older form where we can understand the old rune poems and stuff a little better.

    What I mean in regards to the low classes not speaking it: almost all literature is geared at the intellectual class. When was the last time you heard someone write in a style such as this: "I be trifin n*gga. Yous a gettin me feelin lik um skeet skeet. skeet skeet fool. I's a feelin skeet skeet" (you always have to repeat the same thing like ten times). Honestly my normal day to day speech habits are highly dumbed down just because they have to be given the people I communicate with. I write in a different manner more reflective of the literature I read and the audience its directed at. Only in that capacity am I speaking of a language for a more intellectual crowd. In other words MTV would not be broadcasted in this language nor would it be used in the ghetto.

    Frankly I think it would be a fun project.

    about Esperanto- English is a constructed language. Most of the rules, words etc. were invented by philosophers, clergy etc. It is said that skaespear alone changed the language significantly and coined new words. Norwgian is a constructed language, German is a constructed language etc. These language differences are not natural but arrise from history. Originally the Germanic languages centered much more closely around a Germanic idea and that's what I mean about bringing it closer to this nucleus.

    Simply publish the work and whoever likes it can learn it and use it. Forget trying to force it on people.

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