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7

As a matter of fact, Mandarin Chinese can be considered to be such a language - it treats every noun as a mass noun. Every noun requires a "measure word" for counting, like "bottle" in "four bottles of water" or "sheet" in "ten sheets of paper". Chinese has a considerable list of these (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Chinese_classifiers) but there's ...


6

The first thing is: Design not only one word for each geographical feature, use several of them. To give some examples from a natural language (German in this case): A mountain may have a name in -berg (which is frequent in the mittelgebirge) but also -spitze, -horn, -kopf, or -kuppe. Some beacon mountains have names of their own without an element meaning "...


5

Both Proto-Germanic and Proto-Slavic had the dual grammatical number. So you could just say that your conlang retained it the whole time. Alternatively you could say that it lost it and then subsequently borrowed it again from one of the Slavic languages which retained it. If you were after a specific source, Old Church Slavonic could be ideal because it ...


5

There are many factors that make actual real-world placename not look schematic (unless, maybe, you're looking at Japanese placenames...) Have many different etymological sources from names In practice, names have a lot of forms, and the younger the names, the more varied the forms: religious names (i.e. saints) and feasts, people names ("X's place", "X's ...


5

Yours is a very interesting and legitimate question, but in the light of what we know from the languages of the world, what you ask might not be what you mean to ask. Let me expand a bit below. To answer your question in brief: no, your language does not need a Dative, but yes, your language needs a device (or "construction" in Construction Grammar ...


4

It happens with sign languages - often there are two "versions" of a sign language, the first one (less official, natural) is generally used by the community and has its own grammar, the second one (more official, heavily constructed) parallels grammar (syntax) of the corresponding spoken language. E.g.there is the natural Polish Sign Language, and a rather ...


2

Yes. A language can treat all nouns as mass nouns and require classifiers when counting objects.


2

I think taking the dual retained in old Indo-European languages is a good idea. However, if your language is settled in Skandinavia, you could attribute it to contact with an Uralic language. While the dual was lost in some (e.g. Finnish), dual pronouns are present in Sami languages that go pretty far south and have been in that region for a long time. ...


1

It is reasonable, but I'm having trouble finding unambiguous precedent for it in natural languages. This handout shows the frequency of different orders of demonstratives, adjectives, nouns, and numerals in a sample of 528 languages. Demonstratives and determiners are not identical, but there is considerable overlap. The order Num-Dem-N-Adj is not attested....


1

Reasonable: sure! We do this in English, fronting the number for emphasis or for poetry. There's no reason why you couldn't do this as a matter of ordinary in your language. Five the orange balls that Johnny saw flew through air and bounced to jackadaw.


1

You might consider something like: "I gave you it" > "I gave it so that you recieved it" "I told you it" > "I said it so that you heard it" "I passed you it" > "I threw it so that you catch it"


1

Your lang, your rules. But generally speaking, no, you don't need a dative case. Funny thing is, you don't even need a dative case even if you were to wrack your brain and come up with handfuls of potential situations! Languages are funny that way. Those sneaky native speakers will just come up with some clever way of handling things!


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