Skip to main content
21 votes
Accepted

Are there conlangs using constructed sounds?

Click consonants are rare in natlangs, but rather popular in conlangs, though despite this, given the existence of things like !Xóõ reality is stranger than most fiction in this specific regard. ...
Gufferdk's user avatar
  • 2,367
16 votes

Are there conlangs using constructed sounds?

There's also the brilliant masterpiece kay(f)bop(t), which features the dextral lateral click (a click made on the right side of the mouth) the sinistral lateral click (a click made on the left side ...
Doorknob's user avatar
  • 721
14 votes

Are there conlangs using constructed sounds?

In Ithkuil, a geminate /h/ can be produced as a bidental fricative, a sound which is only attested in a single dialect of a single natural language. hh The geminated version of ...
J. Siebeneichler's user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

Can Pokemon language encode enough information to be a language?

From what I remember from the cartoon, Pikachu could only say certain permutations of its name, with any combination of vowels elongated. 3 syllables pikat͡ʃu 8 words 2 syllables pika 4 ...
as4s4hetic's user avatar
11 votes

What reasons would there be for not having a human conlang with only vowels?

A vowel-only language is surely constructable (and I think, learnable, too), but I am afraid that it will be instable against evolutionary pressure. Vowel sequences like /aua/ or /aia/ tend to ...
Sir Cornflakes's user avatar
  • 11.3k
10 votes

What reasons would there be for not having a human conlang with only vowels?

Well, there is always Solresol, which has several isomorphic representations, and some of those could be considered vowel-only (depending on the instrument used). For natlangs, there are whistled ...
Radovan Garabík's user avatar
10 votes

Which IPA phones can be made and understood underwater?

From reading the answers to the Worldbuilding SE you reference, I would draw the following conclusions: anything unvoiced goes out of the window. So no /f/, /p/, /k/, /t/, /s/ etc. They are pretty ...
Oliver Mason's user avatar
  • 4,133
10 votes

What reasons would there be for not having a human conlang with only vowels?

There are generally a lot fewer vowels than consonants in the phoneme inventory of human languages. That means, with fewer sounds you need to make the words a lot longer if you want to have a decent-...
Oliver Mason's user avatar
  • 4,133
9 votes

Four vowels, with no /i/ sound. Is it possible?

This would be very unstable in a human language. For an example of what happens when this vowel is missing, let's look at English's Great Vowel Shift. One of the first things to change was /i:/ ...
OpenAI was the last straw's user avatar
9 votes

Why would a language created by humans lack both the /k/ and the /g/ consonants?

Your list of phonemes doesn't include any closures at the velum. You could simply say one of the anatomical differences from modern humans is that they can't produce a full closure there. Maybe there'...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
7 votes

Four vowels, with no /i/ sound. Is it possible?

For a constructed language, this is definitely possible. It is not a natural choice but not completely unseen in natural languages, according to PHOIBLE 92% of the sampled languages contain the vowel /...
Sir Cornflakes's user avatar
  • 11.3k
7 votes
Accepted

Two different symbols representinɡ a phoneme

I would use a comma: ⟨k⟩, ⟨q⟩. The tilde is a reasonable option, since it means "alternates with depending on context" (i.e. /k~q/ is a phoneme where [k] alternates with [q]), but I also ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
6 votes

Which IPA phones can be made and understood underwater?

A while ago, someone on reddit tried to test this experimentally (using a bathtub). Here’s what they found: Vowels Overall, these were the hardest to distinguish (at least personally). ...
Sascha Baer's user avatar
  • 3,482
6 votes

Are there nasalized nasal consonants?

Nasal consonants are not nasal because you use any "nose muscles", but because the nasal passage is open and air is passing through it as well as the mouth. To my knowledge, the nasal passage does not ...
Sparksbet's user avatar
  • 3,431
6 votes

Are there conlangs using constructed sounds?

I recall some years ago, someone submitted a greeting for Conlangery that was a bunch of insect sounds. According to the conlanger it is meaningful, though I don’t vet greetings too thoroughly. Also, ...
George Corley's user avatar
6 votes

What's the purpose of vowels and consonants?

This is somewhat similar to "what's the purpose of odd and even numbers". Looking at the sounds produced in human languages we can distinguish two different ways of articulation, one where sound ...
Oliver Mason's user avatar
  • 4,133
6 votes
Accepted

Could [j] and [ʎ] coexist in the same language as distinct phonemes?

Sure. Italian does this. For a minimal pair, aglio /aʎ.ʎo/ "garlic" vs aio /a(j).jo/ "tutor". (There's no phonemic distinction between /jj/ and /j/ in Standard Italian.)
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
6 votes

How should a consonant (IPA) chart look for lip-less, teeth-less, non-humans?

Frame challenge: Don't rely on IPA symbols or IPA categorizations for being whose articulatory mechanisms don't match that of humans; the IPA was designed for human articulation. Having said that, you ...
Jeff Zeitlin's user avatar
  • 1,142
5 votes
Accepted

Why would a language created by humans lack the /j/ semivowel, and even the /i/ vowel?

One simple way to make this happen would be to make ogres unable to raise their tongues to the roof of their mouths. [i] and [j] both require that, so they are now impossible for ogres. Most of the ...
Cecilia's user avatar
  • 1,168
5 votes

In compound words/suffixed words, does the stress change?

This is really one of those times where the only viable answer is "it's completely up to you!" Sometimes the stress changes, sometimes it doesn't. This depends on the stress rules of the ...
elemtilas's user avatar
  • 3,255
5 votes
Accepted

What language uses the most amount of phonemes?

You're gonna have a hard time with "majority of the entire IPA". Non-pulmonic consonants are rare, and some consonants are hard to contrast (e.g. /β/ vs. /v/), while vowels are often highly allophonic....
Cecilia's user avatar
  • 1,168
5 votes
Accepted

Why would a language created by humans lack both the /k/ and the /g/ consonants?

Because it Just Happens Not To. Hawai'ian has free variation between [t] and [k]. The more standard pronunciation, reflected in spelling, is [k], but you can replace all the [k]s with [t]s and it ...
Logan R. Kearsley's user avatar
5 votes

Is a language in which a person will not have rhotacism, neither lambdacism when speaking it realistic?

To answer the actual question asked, lacking /r/ and /l/ doesn't seem especially odd. It's very plausible for /l/ to turn into /w/, for example, or for /r/ to turn into /z/ or /h/. But the rest of ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
5 votes

Executive phoneme list for human?

The problem is that phonemes are a theoretical abstraction. They only exist by contrast with something else, and what things contrast depends on the language. For example, if you look at an IPA vowel ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
4 votes

Why would a language created by humans lack the /j/ semivowel, and even the /i/ vowel?

Lacking /j/ and [j] is entirely plausible, no explanation needed. Attic Greek, for example, lost [j] and did just fine without it for hundreds of years. Lacking [i] is harder to explain. There's a ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
4 votes
Accepted

Is is okay that most consonant assimilations result in a phone whose dedicated letter doesn't exist?

I would argue that the orthography of your conlang is not just OK but really excellent given your description of the phonology. Why is this the case? It keeps the number of letters needed to write the ...
Sir Cornflakes's user avatar
  • 11.3k
4 votes

What sounds would snake-people be able to pronouce?

If they can independently control each half of their forked tongue(s) they have unique phonology accessible - double articulation in human languages is rare and only some consonant combinations are ...
Radovan Garabík's user avatar
4 votes

How does this phoneme inventory look?

The most important point is, this isn't a phoneme inventory! It's an orthography. When you list multiple pronunciations for a letter, especially in brackets [] rather than slashes //, it's not clear ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 4,606
3 votes
Accepted

Is lowering the tongue at word-ending a voiceless vowel?

Ultimately, if your vocal cords stop vibrating and you're still pronouncing the word (i.e. there's still breath moving through your vocal apparatus), then whatever phoneme you're pronouncing will be ...
elemtilas's user avatar
  • 3,255

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible