The Nineteenth Conlang Relay

Naisek by Jeffrey Jones

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Text in Naisek

1. Nel ruseko emyato u glisom faidem.
2. Jilu dofsulu bahai, taujer kwarfam rusekum arkata "Cokmi faide jafti, ki campka?"
3. Taujer helpam ebarkata "Swido ga nisenki".
4. Parce po lixo testito.
5. Dorsa xarsatwe, arkator "Oruseko! Asenkor wix jafim faidem -- asenkor pone ebasenkor -- pone lementenkor pone arkenkor noi swil noku nisenwe."
6. Hali taujeli bosmatwe pone har parcer po har lixor soldator.
7. Lohen tola teido, har parcer ebuparata pone arkata "Ska parep yok him faidem pone ski mentep orxa toubi po gwalnol galbil po xofrel samil."
8. Taujer kwarfam rusekum arkata "Sepki lo xolurbwe mentax swil titsu!".
9. Helpar taujer ebarkata "Swido ga buxmitenko".
10. Lohen tola kuyu soudo, har lixor ebunatata pone arkata "Ska natep yok him faidem, pone ski mentep hifi lalfa po hifi folde po hifil insektal."
11. Kwarfar taujer arkata "Ga xolbwe ga mentax swil titsu".
12. Helpar ebarkata "Swido buxmitenko".

Glossary of Naisek

Only stems are cited.

ark- V say, tell
as- V go, come
bahai adv in the past
bosm- V agree
buxm- A happy
camp- V ask
cokmi D what kind (interrogative)
dofsu- NI year
dorsa pron when (relative)
ebark- V answer
ebas- V return
emy- V exist (passive of "have")
faide N hill
folde NIM grain
ga part no, not
galb- A green
gliso NI slope, slant
gwalno NI valley
h- D the (definite article)
help- D the other
hif- D the same
insekta- NA insect
jaf- D yon
ji Q much, many
ki pron (1st person singular dative)
kuyu Q 1 (temporal case)
kwarf- D 1st
lalfa NIM grass
lement- V look
lixo NA mouse
lohen conj after
ment- V see
nat- V walk
nel Q 2
nis- V know
noi pron 2nd person plural dative
noku conj (purpose)
orxa NH river, stream
parce NA bird
par- V fly
po conj and (joins phrases)
pone conj and (joins clauses)
rusek NI rock, stone
s- V (copula)
sam- A tall
sep- V wish
sold- V leave
soudo NI day (24 hours)
swido NI always
sw- Q all (plural forms)
t- pron 3rd person, declined like a determiner
tauje NA heart (metaphorical)
teido NI (short time)
tes- D that/those (verb form = "be there")
tol- V pass time
toub A wide, broad
xars- V hear
xofre- NI tree
xol- V can, be able
u prep at, near
wix prep to
yok prep across


A adjective
D determiner
Q quantifier
NA noun, animate
NH noun, heterogenous
NI noun, inanimate, count
NIM noun, inanimate, mass
V verb
adv adverb
conj conjunction
prep preposition
pron pronoun

Grammar notes for Naisek


o-      (vocative)
ebu-    back


-(i)t   makes an adjective into a stative verb.

-ax     infinitive
-ep     perfect participle  

-i/u/0  present tense (depends on adjacent consonants)
-a      past    tense
-en     future  tense     
-ur     contrafactual mood    

In addition to person and number, the verb endings mark the case of
the subject, which is either ergative, dative, or absolutive.

-ka     1st person singular ergative
-ki     1st person singular dative
-ko     1st person exclusive plural absolutive
-kor    1st person exclusive plural ergative
-bwe    1st person inclusive plural dative    
-(n)we  2nd person plural dative
-0      3rd person singular absolutive
-ta     3rd person singular ergative
-to     3rd person plural absolutive
-tor    3rd person plural ergative 
-twe    3rd person plural dative


Adjectives and determiners mark animacy immediately after the root:

-a      animate (adjective or determiner)
-i      inanimate (adjective or determiner)

Nouns, adjectives and determiners have endings marking number and case:

-0      singular absolutive
-a      singular ergative (consonant stems)    
-l      plural absolutive (vowel stems)
-li     plural dative
-lu     plural temporal     
-m      singular genitive (vowel stems)
-o      plural absolutive (consonant stems)
-r      singular ergative (vowel stems)
-tsu    plural partitive (vowel stems)

Heterogenous nouns take animate agreement in the ergative and dative
cases, and inanimate agreement otherwise.

The partitive marks the whole from which a part is selected.

Prepositions are followed by genitive phrases.

Due to the case-marking, the order of phrases within a clause is somewhat free.

English translation of Naisek text

1. There were 2 rocks on the slope of a hill.
2. Many years ago, the heart of the first rock said, "What kind of hill is over there, I ask myself?"
3. The heart of the other replied, "I'll never know."
4. A bird and a mouse were there.
5. When they heard, they said, "Hey rocks! We will go to that hill -- go and return -- and we will look and tell you everything so that you'll know."
6. The hearts agreed and the bird and the mouse left.
7. After a little while passed, the bird flew back and said, I've flown across the hill and I've seen a wide river and green valleys and tall trees."
8. The heart of the first rock said "I wish we could see all of that!"
9. The other heart replied, "We'll never be happy."
10. After 1 day passed, the mouse walked back and said, "I've walked across the hill, and I've seen the same grass and the same grain and the same insects."
11. The first heart said, "We can't avoid seeing all of that."
12. The other replied, "We'll always be happy."
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