Dragontongue: A Beginners' Guide

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Nouns - Words for people and objects

In Dragontongue, nouns are always written in the same way. You don't need to worry about genders, endings, or anything like that.

Forest = duplraentmut
Sword = mytalculten
The big dark cave = du hwrghdra lroah

To make a noun plural, just add an 'a'. If it already has an 'a' on the end, add 'na' or 'ra'.

 Rocks = thudarkha
Cities = lroaraalona
The tall trees = du draplan entarkha

Conjunctions - Joining words

...just those handy little words like 'and', 'or', 'if' and 'so' that get used surprisingly often.

 and = kr

I like cheese = Mrh nynnakan fyranalon
I like chicken = Mrh nynnakan twytnonesor
I like cheese AND chicken = Mrh nynnakan fyranalon kr twytnonesor

or = nr

Tomorrow I will eat cheese for lunch. = Lanykk mrh crynkchrai fyranalon cwm dehwan crynk.
Tomorrow I will eat chicken for lunch. = Lanykk mrh crynkchrai twytnonesor cwm dehwan crynk.
Tomorrow I will eat cheese or chicken for lunch. = Lanykk mrh crynkchrai fyranalon nr twytnonesor cwm dehwan crynk.

but = brdh

I like cheese = Mrh nynnakan fyranalon
I don't like chicken = Mrh ne nynnakan twytnonesor
I like cheese but I don't like chicken = Mrh nynnakan fyranalon brdh mrh ne nynnakan twytnonesor.

because = brehynder

I don't like cheese because it's smelly. = Mrh ne nynnakan fyranalon brehynder ehr-ys schynal.

Some more handy little words:

if = zdr
with = trn
as/like = awm
so/therefore = ska
while/during = lyw
can = abyl
about = mn
that = crr
do = farin
there is = ilysa
there = il

Articles - 'the' and 'a'

In Dragontongue, there's no word meaning 'a'. If you want to say 'a cave', you just use the word for cave: 'crrhn'.

There is a mountain = Ilysa dhykkoar

'The' in Dragontongue is 'du'.

The Shadow = Du-Rkarnor ('the enemy')
There is the mountain = Ilysa du dhykkoar

There's no word for 'some' or 'any' in Dragontongue. Instead, just use the normal word.

Have you got any bread? = Farin yrh mit krbanon? ('Do you have bread?')
I've got some bread. = Mrh mit krbanon. ('I have bread.')

Adjectives - Words to describe things

21 handy ones:

good = bynn
bad = ykaka
beautiful = brenynor
happy = franyk
sad = nefranyk
easy = synpl
difficult = nesyn
normal = yssasyn
interesting = wukal
boring = newukal
strange = staenon
long = styllan
tall = gryllan
short = minlan
old = hivkha
young = nehivk
new = fyolon
fast = niou / rypid
slow = klam

Most adjectives go before the noun:

The green tree = Du nenomai entarkh
I have a fast horse = Mrh mit rypid nenyon.

I can't think of any that don't, but they'll only be strange in Dragontongue if they're strange in English.

Adjectives about 'who something belongs to' turn up a lot in normal writing.

my = mrhrn
your = yrhn (this one's used if there's only one of you)
his = rrhn
her = lrhn
its = ehryn
our = orhyn
your = yrhryn (this one's used if there's more than one of you)
their = krrnynn (this one's used if they're people)
their = ehrryn (this one's used if they're objects)

Adverbs - Words to describe verbs

In Dragontongue, adverbs are easy to write, but not as easy to detect when reading. There's no set ending (like '-ly' - quickly, hungrily etc.) like there is in English. You just have to know what words are adverbs. (Or look them up in the dictionary or whatever.)

(A fair few of my languages don't like adverbs. Dragontongue doesn't do a lot with them, and Aenonean used to just treat them like adjectives, which didn't really work. If you're wondering, Aenonean now has an extra five suffix glyphs for adverbs, which clears that up. Also, Urdis has always been adverb-friendly, due to the '-tr' suffix it's always used. Dragontongue, however, has always avoided most suffixes, inflections, and anything that makes it tricky to write, without constantly checking charts of verb endings ore whatever.

But hey, I just write the language. I don't really need to make it easy to read.

Anyway.)

Fairly often, if you know the adjective, you can use that as an adverb.

slow/slowly = slaakn
He speaks slowly = rrh raoredn slaakn

The strange lemon = Du byzral rozakh
She ate the strange lemon = Lrh mit mncrynru du byzral rozakh
Strangely, she ate the lemon = Byzral, lrh mit mncrynru du rozakh

very happily = rmryn rollynnal
quite happily = barnor rollynnal
too happily = tar rollynnal
almost too happily = olonr tar rollynnal

Comparatives and Superlatives - Comparing things

In Dragontongue, you can't say 'stranger' or 'strangest'; you have to say 'more strange' or 'the most strange'.

They are strange = Krrne ra byzral
They are stranger = Krrnr ra plra byzral (They are more strange)
They are the strangest = Krrnr ra du-plra byzral (They are the more strange)

'More strangely' or 'most strangely' are the same.

They talk strangely = Krrnr raoredn byzral
They talk more strangely = Krrnr raoredn plra byzral
They talk the most strangely = Krrnr raoredn du-plra byzral

More ways of comparing things:

He is taller than a house = Rrh ys plra draplan khynn dwyllomar
He is less tall than a house = Rrh ys myklm draplan khynn dwyllomar
He is as tall as a house = Rrh ys cwm draplan khynn dwyllomar
                           OR = Rrh ys cwm draplan cwm dwyllomar
                           OR = Rrh ys draplan cwm dwyllomar

Prepositions - More small handy words

Just use these in exactly the same way you'd use them in English.

to = tra
I'm going to Thirrtos = Mrh-r var tra Thrrtos

on = nnr
It's on the table = Ehr-ys nnr du elarkhn

in = y
It's in the cave = Ehr-ys y du crrhn

from = plfar
From Thirrtos to Ti-Reanos = plfar Thrrtos tra Tr-Ryanos

of = den
The Armour of Gold = Du Aroren-den-Gelt

for = drprn
It's for you! = Ehr-ys drprn yrh!
I've spoken Elvish for many years. = Mrh mit raoredru El-khynnraor drprn lrnkr hwhdeynareon.

at = arr
At Thirrtos = Arr Thrrtos.

Pronouns - I, you, him, them...

Pronouns are words that replace nouns - things like 'it', 'them', or 'that'. These are really handy little words, and show up a lot.

(I didn't realise how often pronouns really are used until I started writing Aenonean. It has one glyph, , that is used whenever there's a personal pronoun. It is definitely one of the most used glyphs. And, if you take into account impersonal pronouns (that, some, how etc.), that don't use the prefix, then it gets even more pronouny.)

Personal pronouns are pronouns about people, unsurprisingly.

I = mrh
you = yrh (used if there's only one of you)
he = rrh
she = lrh
it = ehr
we = mrhh
you = yrhr (used if there's more than one of you)
they = krrnr (used if they're people)
they = ehrr (used if they're objects)

To make things easy to write, these pronouns are always used, regardless of whether it's meant to be 'I', 'me', 'myself', whatever.

He threw it at the wall. = Rrh mit flynnrkhru ehr arr du iomarkh.
We think you should take them to El-Keriolan-Ablent = Mrhh bardm yrhr shrnydd snyklond ehrr tra El-Krriolan-Ablynt.

Verbs - Action words

Verbs are the only things in Dragontongue that have different endings for different forms of the word (with the exception of nouns, that use an '-a' to make things plural).

Verbs, if you don't already know, are words that say what is happening in the sentence.

The angry mob attacked the fortress. = Du raaggnak bhaatrybb mit raaynbatru du bhaomar.

The dragon flew around the mountain. = Du Wyrnorhendrydd mit sorhnru mnaru du skrynen.

It will be cold. = Ehr ysrai deynÓren.

The rest of the guide will be about using verbs in different tenses, and verby things like that.

The Present Tense

No new rules here; just use the verbs normally...

I sell armour = Mrh krchllan aroren
They have the Sword of Ăll÷kahellÓm = Krrnr mit du-Mytalculten-den-Ăll÷kahellÓm

...except for one verb: to be. It's a bit of a wacky one in a lot of languages, including English, and Dragontongue is no exception.

I am = mrh r
you are = yrh r (singular)
he is = rrh ys
she is = lrh ys
it is = ehr ys
we are = mrhh ra
you are = yrhr ra (plural)
they are = krrnr ra (people)
they are = ehrr ysa (objects)

I am finishing the carving. = Mrh r cwmnalr du iollcan.
They are shepherds. = Krrnr ra mehynl-krran.

The Future Tense

In Dragontongue, there are two ways of talking about the future. The first one is just 'I am going to do whatever'.

I am going to = Mrh r var
I'm going to have a barbecue = Mrh-r var mit crrkl-ynlancrn
You're going to destroy the city! = Yrh-r var krmmaln du lroaraalon!

The second one is closest to 'I will do whatever'. To use this tense, you need to put the verb ending '-rai' on the end of the verb.

First, I'll distract the guards... = Vonran, mrh rokhllynrai du hllerokha...
...then you will be able to rescue the prisoners! = Yllon, yrh ckylk-kyranrrai du kyptalvona!

You will sleep = Yrh zzyrronrai.
We will play chess tomorrow = Mrhh yllolamrai Chyss lanykk.

The Past Tense

Like the future tense, there are two different past tenses: the perfect tense and the imperfect tense.

The perfect tense is basically 'I did whatever' or 'I have done whatever'.

I fly = mhr sorchn
I flew = mrh mit sorchnru

The army of Orthanark marched to the fortress = Du bhaatmobnor den Orthnark mit clhynnru tra du bhaomar.

The trees were moving around! = Du entarkha mit ysaru varlynkhal!

The imperfect tense is 'I was doing whatever'.

I fly = mhr sorchn
I was flying = mrh war sorchn

There was a monkey in the tree = Ilysa war olykhl y du entarkh.
It was a big monkey, and it was eating a banana. = Ehr war-ys draplan olykhl, lia ehr war crynkch llybanakh.

You use the imperfect tense when talking about what was happening or what you used to do.

     - What you used to do regularly in the past:

I used to migrate every year. = Mrh war twysorch ynnana hwhdeynareon.

     - Descriptions about the past:

He was flying in the forest, when he crashed into a tree. = Rrh war sorchn y du duplraentmut, kharyn rrh mit krkrynchru ytra entarkh.

Notice how in that last sentence, there is both the imperfect tense (Rrh war sorchn y du duplraentmut) and the perfect tense (Rrh mit krkrynchru ytra entarkh).

Negatives

In English, you change a sentence to mean the opposite thing by adding 'not'. In Dragontongue, it's pretty much the same.

I am a dragon = Mrh r Wyrn˛rhendrydd.
I am not a dragon. = Mrh r ne Wyrn˛rhendrydd.

'Ne' gets contracted quite a lot in Dragontongue. (And English!)

was not = war ne
wasn't = warne / war-ne

He is not Rob = Rrh ys ne Rob.
He isn't Rob = Rrh ysne Rob.

There are a few more handy negatives that work in the same way...

not any more = nellyn
I don't go to Thirrtos any more. = Mrh var nellyn tra Thrrtos. (I go not-any-more to Thirrtos)

never = nekhyll
I never go to Thirrtos = Mrh var nekhyll tra Thrrtos.

neither = nekl
I neither go to Thirrtos nor to Ti-Reanos = Mrh nekl var tra Thrrtos nr tra Tr-Ryanos.

The Conditional Tense

And here we come to the last chunk - conditionals.

The conditional tense isn't used all that often. It's just 'would', 'could', stuff like that.

She would do it = Lrh wrdn farin ehr

That's the easy bit. Things get harder when you start using words like 'should', 'could', etc.

She could do it = Lrh wrdn abyl farin ehr (She would can do it / She would be able to do it)

She should do it = Lrh wrdn mit-tra farin ehr (She would have to do it)

...And things get even trickier when you start using the conditional in the past.

She would do it = Lrh wrdn farin ehr
                        +
She has done it = Lrh mit farinru ehr
                        =
She would have done it = Lrh wrdn mit farinru ehr

They could have attacked us by now = Krrnr wrdn abyl mit raaynbatru fyllkrnn

I know I should have fixed the trebuchet; I would have done it, but I was chatting to the archers. = Mrh sprydnar mrh wrdn mit-tra mit khlunnklnru du shywwmak; mrh wrdn mit farinru ehr, brdh mrh war chyttn tra du pyowhana.


CST/S v1.1 1x- cNRSH a y n! B+++ A-- E- L N1 Is/m/p k-- ia:+++ !p s m++ o P* S* Cthiotε

NaCl is a Strange Things Happen production.