How to Construct a Language: Part 2

I am back again with new updates. I made several changes to Nysaerith. I added stress marks, accented letters and constructed more words. Starting from now, I shall use the phonetically correct pronunciation Nysâerith.

I am also working on the linguistic family of Nysâerith. I created a direct successor of Nysâerith that I call Therfanzir (IPA: /θrfanzir/). It was spoken by the people of the sunflower valley. It deserves its own post.

The Story So Far

In a fantasy universe, Nysâerith is the language of the magic itself. It binds the world and guides it. Words in Nysâerith have real magical power. Those who speak become one with the world, and the world bend to their will. They are called mages. There were many mages in the early days. They could move mountains, call upon storms. However, soon their desire for power corrupted them. They fought and massacred each other until no-one who truly understood Nysâerith was left alive.

Many years have passed since then. Now Nysâerith is only preserved in ancient runes and in the incantations that were passed down orally. As the language evolved, its magical power also waned significantly.

Now you might wonder if all it takes is to muster a language to become an expert mage, wouldn’t everyone just become mages? The answer is no. Nysâerith is a magical language. Understanding Nysâerith is same as understanding the intricacies of nature. As a result, interpretation of Nysâerith comes from how one observed the world. It varies from person to person. Two speakers of Nysâerith may not understand each other, despite speaking the same language. Think of it as two people expressing the same feelings in two unrelated languages, like English and Japanese. The feelings are there, but expressed differently.

This is why repeating another mage’s spells won’t have the same effect. When incantations are passed down across the generations, they gradually lose effectiveness as the background information is forgotten. That being said, the closer two people are (say in a family, a tribe, or a kingdom) the more likely they are to understand each other.

What you see here can be called my interpretation of Nysâerith.

Major Changes

  • Dropped some of the consonants that I did not use such as /ð/ and /ʒ/
  • Added accents for short and long vowels
  • Included front high rounded /y/ sound
  • Added stress marks. Nysâerith syllable stresses are quite predictable. Here are some rules for stressing:
    • Monosyllabic words are never stressed.
    • Certain sounds such as /ʋ/, /x/ are always stressed except in monosyllabic words.
    • No two consecutive syllables can be stressed.
    • If none of the rules above are violated, syllables with long vowels are stressed.
    • If none of the rules above are violated, the stress falls on the second syllable in disyllabic and polysyllabic words.
  • Added 20 more words



Word Inventory

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