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This public article was written by argyle, and last updated on 1 Nov 2015, 18:35.
Edievian orthography is relatively easy to understand, as most phonemes have a one-to-one ratio with graphemes. However, there are a few diacritics employed to distinguish consonants from one another and a few vowel sequences. Edievian uses the acute accent (´), grave accent (`), diaeresis (¨), circumflex (ˆ), and apostrophe (').
There are five consonants whose phonemic values are modified by the diacritics, listed below with their normal value and then the modified value:
- <c> - /k/ > /s̪/
- <g> - /g/ > /ʒ/
- <t> - /t̪/ > /t͡ʃ/
- <d> - /d̪/ > /d͡ʒ/
- <s> - /s̪/ > /ʃ/
Diachronically, this two-to-one phoneme to grapheme ratio is due to palatalization present in Edievian's mother language, but contemporary Edievian views all of them as separate phonemes.
[top]The Acute Accent (´)
To write the 'palatalized' consonants, an <i> is written immediately after the consonant in question, followed by a vowel with a <´>, called a mot aclem in Edievian:
- ciémae /'s̪e.mɛ/ (prosper)
- gión /ʒon̪/ (day)
- tió /t͡ʃo/ (very)
- Diápon /'d͡ʒa.pon̪/ (Japan)
- sióv /ʃov/ (map)
If the vowel following is a digraph (<ao> /ɔ/, <ae> /ɛ/), the accent falls on the first letter:
- diáomae /'d͡ʒɔ.mɛ/ (blame)
Note that both letters of a digraph may carry acute accents to show that the consonants before and after the digraph are modified:
- cosmaeciáéis /kos̪'mɛ.s̪ɛʃ/ (s/he will be holding)
If the modified consonant is at the end of a word, the final written vowel before the consonant wears the acute accent, and the <i> precedes the consonant:
- méic /mes̪/ (dogs)
- unáig /'u.n̪aʒ/ (here)
- maecíit /mɛ'kit͡ʃ/ (puppies)
- tamáid /t̪a'madʒ/ (plants)
- varóis /va'ɾoʃ/ (towns)
- baéis /bɛʃ/ (s/he is)
A nasal or liquid can intervene between the <´i> and the modified consonant:
- véils /vel̪ʃ/ (oars)
- locraedúirt /lo.kɾɛ'd̪uɾt͡ʃ/ (jobs)
- óins /on̪ʃ/ (bracelets)
- braecláins /'bɾɛk.l̪an̪ʃ/ (they will walk)
[top]The Grave Accent (`)
In the event that, orthographically, there are two consonants that can be modified as well as the <i>'s that could set off the modification, the grave accent (called a mot apren in Edievian) is used to 'point' to which consonant is modified:
- pendiàit /pen̪'d̪jat͡ʃ/ (bouts of painting), instead of *pendiáit /pen̪dʒait/
- ciòisc /kjos̪:/ (kiosks), instead of *cióisc /s̪ois̪k/
[top]The Diaeresis (¨)
The diaeresis is used to break up a sequence of written vowels that would ordinarily be parsed as a digraph, it is called a mot tiíos in Edievian. It is written on the second orthographic vowel:
- gaëmag /ga'e.mag/ (button), not *gaemag /'gɛ.mag/
- paö /'pa.o/ (spine), not *pao /pɔ/
[top]The Circumflex (ˆ)
The circumflex is used in two circumstances, and is called the mot gelotos in Edievian. The first is to 'point' that the consonants surrounding it both are modified, as opposed to just one or the other:
- tiâig /t͡ʃaʒ/ (you/he/she/it habitually gives), compare *tiáig /t͡ʃaig/ and *tiàig /t̪jaʒ/
- reciêic /ɾe's̪es̪/ (artists), compare *reciéic /ɾes̪eik/ and *recièic /ɾekjes̪/
The circumflex is also used in place of a diaeresis when the written vowel in question needs to wear an acute accent to mark consonant modification:
- laêins /'l̪a.en̪ʃ/ (you were pushing), compare to laéins - /l̪ɛn̪ʃ/ (s/he/it was touching)
- hatiáêins /ha't͡ʃa.en̪ʃ/ (you were coughing), compare to *hatiáéins /'ha.t͡ʃɛn̪ʃ/
[top]Final Consonant Clusters
The following final consonant clusters have specific pronunciations when modified:
- <sc> /sk/ becomes /s̪:/: aesc - éisc /ɛs̪k - es̪:/ (star - stars)
- <st> /st/ becomes /ʃt͡ʃ/: ost - úist /os̪t - uʃt͡ʃ/ (bridle - bridles)
- <ts> /ts/ becomes /tʃ/: cliots - cliúits /'kl̪i.ot̪s̪ - kl̪i'utʃ/ (key - keys)
- <cs> /ks/ becomes /kʃ/: mecs - míics /meks̪ - mikʃ/ (friend - friends)
- <ct> /kt/ becomes /kt͡ʃ/: deraect - deréict /'d̪e.ɾɛkt - d̪e'ɾekt͡ʃ/ (right - rights)
- <tc> /tk/ becomes /t̪s̪/: atc - áitc /at̪k - at̪s̪/ (I curse - you curse)
- <sg> /sg/ becomes /ʒ:/: iasg - iáisg /jasg - jaʒ:/ (core - cores)
A quick note of distinction: the affricate /t͡ʃ/ and stop + fricative sequence /tʃ/ are distinguished word-finally:
- iúit /jut͡ʃ/ (tails)
- iúits /jutʃ/ (hedgehogs)
[top]The apostrophe (')
The apostrophe (called pont ruales in Edievian) is used similarly to English and French, to indicate omitted written letters. It is used in the following scenarios:
Other situations that appear as losses of written letters do not warrant the use of an apostrophe, such as inflected prepositions, a-dropping verbs, or compound verb tenses (such as the negative passive, where two prefixes coalesced).
As with most languages that are written, there are some rules governing how everything is written.
The first rule is the i´ after rule. The i´ after rule states that if the <i´> to denote a consonant's modification can be written after the consonant in question, it will be. This often occurs in derivation, especially when derivational affixes are added to plural nouns:
- bóind /bon̪d͡ʒ/ -> bondiél /bon̪d͡ʒel̪/
nights -> nocturnal/nightly
- Fráinc /fɾan̪s̪/ -> franciáes /fɾan̪s̪ɛs̪/
France -> French
- artisiûic /aɾt̪iʃus̪/ - > artisiúciére /aɾt̪iʃus̪eɾe/
artichoke -> artichoke (plant)
Unlike English, which tends to capitalize anything, Edievian only capitalizes nouns ordinarily. The following are capitalized:
- Names of people - Nicolas Sarkozy, Ceg Elizabeth II (Queen Elizabeth II)
- City, town, village names - Uasiíncton, Laondon (Washington, London)
- Country names (but not derived adjectives) - Fráinc, Laös, but franciáes, laösaes (France, Laos; French, Laotian)
- Other geographic names (states, provinces, regions, etc) - Iorc Iol, Cebec (New York, Quebec)
- Acronyms and initialisms - SCA, IE (USA, EU)
- The first word of a sentence
- Nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in titles
Edievian makes use of quotation marks in a similar manner as does English, though the actual written marks are different. <„“> are used in Edievian, like many other European languages. When unavailable, "" are permitted, though not preferred.
Quotation marks are used for the following:
- Direct quotes, such as in a story or in an article (unlike English, a comma is not put before the quote)
- Key terms or words, meant to highlight the word instead of its meaning (ie, a discussion of "cat" [not felines, but the word "cat"])
- Caeltaen Mari „Naciáenobas ae diámáig.“
Maria said, "I don't want to go there."
- Váirs Retiágordromaec „Taaevaes“About the Demonym "Edievian"
Single quotes (‚‘) are used for quotes within quotes:
- Caeltaen Mari aec „Caev uastaen Telt ‚gaortales!‘. Osasiágaen gae!“
Maria told me, "Telt angrily yelled "damnit!". It scared me!
Like the majority of Europe, Edievian writing conventions state that decimals are marked with a <,>, so 1 Euro and 50 Eurocent would be written as 1,50 €.
The <.> is used to divide thousands, e.g., one-thousand two-hundred and seven 1.207.
Edievia is not part of the EU, but is an EFTA member and does accept the Euro as currency. The Euro sign is placed after the number, e.g., 5 €, 1.000 €. The Edievian currency is Paels (plural Péils), and is noted with Ᵽ, which also follows the written number.