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Bodin Lesson #1
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Pronunciation, Pronouns, Plurals
This public article was written by pachelbel, and last updated on 18 May 2019, 03:32.

[comments] Carmabe sakhani stusi dannan cushuscein lasmasun Bodin.
Welcome to the first lesson on the  Standard Bodin language.


Standard Bodin (or translated literally, language of the lords of Boden) is the international diplomatic language of the small planet Clespix I aka Boden, one of the two orbiting the red giant Clespix. (The other planet, Sennix, is ice-covered and inhabited only by microbes.)

Bodin's speakers are humans, descendants of the original terraformer/colonizers 15000 years prior. The current state of society is akin to the European Renaissance, had the science and technology rediscovered from ancient times included fertilizer, computing, and spaceflight. Technological leaps forward are destabilizing Boden's feudal social structures, with the ruling nobles struggling to adapt to the changing times. A new era is on the horizon, and only the heavens know what it will bring.

But for now, 35000 years in their past, have fun learning Bodin.


The Bodin writing system is still in progress and I barely use it anyway so you're just learning the romanization for now.

Bodin syllables cannot have a null onset (no consonant before the vowel) unless they are at the beginning of a word, and even then there are very few words that do. So when reading a Bodin word, the syllable breaks will occur such that every syllable begins with at least one consonant. E.g., serakh /sɛ.ɾäx/ "down onto", kheisatorni /xɛɪ.sä.to̞˞.ni/ "lawyer".

Vowels and Diphthongs (+ RR)

a - /ä/ normally, /ə/ at end of word
e - /ɛ/
i - /i/ normally, /ɪ/ before n or before word-final consonant cluster
o - /o/ when syllable-final, /o̞/ otherwise
u - /u/ when syllable-final, /ʊ/ otherwise

ar - /ä˞ /
ir - /i˞ /
or - /o̞˞ /
ur - /u˞ /
rr - /ʀ̩/
  • Bodin considers this sound a vowel, as it can form the nucleus of a syllable.
  • Could also be a trilled /ʢ̩/, as I can't hear the difference well enough to tell what I'm pronouncing it as.

ei - /ɛɪ/
oi - /ɔɪ/
ui - /ʊɪ/
ia - /jä/

Consonants and Consonant Clusters
b - /b/
c - /k/
d - /d/
kh - /x/
l - /l/
m - /m/
n - /n/
p - /p/
r - /ɾ/ only before a vowel/diphthong. After a vowel & before a consonant, see the rhotacised vowels above.
s - /s/
sh - /ʃ/
t - /t/

ch - /t͡ʃ/
ts - /t͡s/
csh - /kʃ/
x - /ks/

Bodin's personal pronouns (psych, there are no other kind) are as follows:
1st exclusivemi - Imire - we two (not you)misu - we (not you)miro - all of us (not you)
1st inclusive/reflexivedu - (x)selfdure - you and Idusu - you and weduro - you and all of us
2nddo - youdore - you twodosu - you (pl.)doro - all of you
2nd imperativebe - you, do X!bere - you two, do X!besu - you (pl.), do X!bero - all of you, do X!
3rd animateda - he/she/eydare - the two of themdasu - theydaro - all of them
3rd inanimatena - itnare - those two thingsnasu - those thingsnaro - all those things
Generaldi - one, someonedire - a couple peopledisu - some peoplediro - everyone

The most important ones for a beginner are in bold.

The possessive form of any pronoun is formed by adding -n to the end. E.g.: min "my", don "your", dan "his/her/eir".

The inanimate/animate distinction in 3rd person is pretty intuitive - animals, people, and anything that's sentient are animate, everything else is inanimate - but there are a couple exceptions:
- Body parts and organs are animate
- Individual bugs, spiders, and other small invertebrates are inanimate, but their colonies/hives/swarms are animate
- Countries and cities are animate
- Corpses are animate

Cases & Plurals
Bodin nouns and pronouns decline for number and for the genitive case.

In general:
  • The dual of any noun (or pronoun) is formed by adding the suffix -re. (The Bodin dual is used only for natural pairs, not just any two things/people - see this article.)
  • The plural of any noun (or pronoun) is formed by adding the suffix -su.
  • The collective of any noun (or pronoun) is formed by adding the suffix -ro.

Depending on the sounds that the word ends with, these endings change slightly - see the grammar tables.

The genitive/possessive case form of any noun or pronoun is formed by adding the suffix -n. This suffix goes after any dual/plural/collective suffix that may be present. (e.g. doren "you-two's", misun "our (but not your)")

Note: Bodin has a strict VSO word order and usually drops the copula. More on this later.

Greetings and Phrases
Shoi. - Hello (informal).
Shokho. - Goodbye (informal).
Carmabe sakhani ___. (enter.IMPImperative (mood)
good.ADVZAdverbialiser (syntax)
turns word into adverb
___) - Welcome to ___.
Chitamodon? (name.QInterrogative
.2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
.GENGenitive (case)
?) - What is your name?
Chitamin ___. (name.1SFirst person singular (person)
speaker, signer, etc.; I
.GENGenitive (case)
___) - My name is ___.
Tinarkhudo Enclish? (understand.YNYes-no question (mood)
interrogative requiring yes or no answer
.2SSecond person singular (person)
addressee (you)
English?) - Do you speak English?

Worldbuilding Basics
boden - n. ground, earth
Boden - ppn. the planet inhabited by Bodin speakers
Bodin - adj. of Boden, from Boden (used in English to refer to the  Standard Bodin language)
Bodins - ppn. a person from Boden, a speaker of Bodin
Sennix - ppn. Boden's sister planet, often visible in the night sky
clespix - n. sun
Clespix - ppn. the star around which Boden and Sennix orbit
Calespin - adj. of Clespix, from Clespix/the Clespix star system including Boden and Sennix

carma - v. enter
tinar - v. understand, speak (language), know (person)

chita - n. name
cushuscei - n. language
kheisatorni - n. lawyer
lasme - n. lord, noble (irregular, declines as lasma-)

-khu - question suffix for asking a yes/no question about the word it is attached to
-mo - question suffix for asking an open-ended question about the word it is attached to
-i - can be suffixed to any adjective to turn it into an adverb
-r - common (though not universal) verb ending
-n - universal adjective ending (though not all words ending in -n are adjectives)

Everything Else
sakhan - adj. good
sakhani - adv. well
serakh - prep. down onto, down towards
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