Grammar:Graphemics

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◀ Rules Grammar of Tovasala:
Graphemics
Morphology ▶

({{{s}}})

Orthography

Characters

Standard Latin convention, as well as English, possesses an alphabet of 26 letters:

a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z

In Tovasala, there are 25:

a b ch d e f g h i j k l m n o p r s t u v w x y z

The ch digraph substitutes the c, which is otherwise reserved for imported surnames and terms, as is q. Familiar examples of the two stray letters' use can be found in Cousteau and QWERTY.

Tovasala has no c in its native words, as the letter is better represented by its common phonetic equivalents of k, s, and z.

The language uses the same numbers as the Latin script, viz 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9.

Diacritics

In Tovasala, a variety of diacritics are used to represent various sounds and assist in letter-marking. As in French, these variants are not part of the language's standard alphabet.

Type Letters Function
a e i o u b ch d f g j k l n p r s v y z
Acute á é ȷ́ ń ŕ ś ý ź
  • á is only attested in the Tovasala transliteration of Shimajiro (Shimájiro; しまじろう).
  • é is automatically placed at the end of nouns whose roots end with Cl/Cr, gm/gn/sm/sn, or Vh (as in otré, "a different one"). Its use in other roots is subject to arbitration.
  • ȷ́ is used to mutate the root-final g before another j (/dʒ/) in compounds.
  • ń is attached to a vowel-initial word after a preceding termison, or the end of a native word before an imported term.
  • ŕ (/ɾ/) is used to mutate the root-final l before morphemes containing another l as their second or later letter (i.e. in nẽrŕaili [educational; nẽrl + -ail + -i]).
  • ś is used to mutate the root-final z before affixes starting with ch, h, k, m, n, p, t, or another s.
  • ý denotes the /ɪ/ sound at the end of select few roots, raugbý- (rugby) among them.
  • ź denotes the /ʒ/ ⟨zh⟩ sound in Meurźé (Mars), mokeźe (landmine), and voreźe (dam).
Grave è Only used when e precedes a consonant and another e at the end of some words (e.g. aumbrède [young human], toapète [small stone = pebble]). In words ending with -eche, the last e is marked with an acute instead.
Breve ă ĕ ĭ ŏ ŭ Distinguishes certain root formations from other existing valid combinations. An example is the place name Jămăika, which otherwise means "a female who should be jamming" (jam- + -aik [conditional/subjunctive termison] + -a).
Circumflex â ê î Indicates that the vowel is pronounced exactly like its English literal (/eɪ/, /ɪ ~ iː/, /aɪ/).
Macron ā ē ī ō ū Signifies the start of syllables in some words.
Tilde ã ĩ ũ
  • ã is based on Portuguese -ão, whose IPA sound /ɐ̃w̃/ is similar to Tovasala /wɔ/ ⟨wau⟩. Found thusly in words such as buãnge (gong) and Guãdloupe (Guadeloupe).
  • , ĩ, and ũ denote the /ɜː ~ ɝ/ sound found in English words such as herd, hurt, and cure.
Umlaut ä ë ï ö ü Placed on the first unaccented vowel of certain common roots, whose last letter then becomes the next morpheme's first consonant in certain compounds.
Underdot The underdotted vowels help distinguish root-final -ar/-at/-et/-id &c. from their regular conjugation/affix counterparts; and also substitute the standard -e in internationally recognised neuter nouns. Found in words such as chauklạite (chocolate), Magyạre (Hungary), praujẹte (project), and kasinọ (casino).
  • In compounds involving said international nouns, an underdotted l or r follows the root plus original vowel before the next morpheme. Thus, kasinoḷinti (in the casino); mangaṛseulu (exclusively in the manga).
  • A preceding o plus underdotted r help buffer certain consonant clusters in compounds, as in plajoṛtugu (outside the beach).
Dot ġ Only used to mutate and soften the root-final j before another g (/g/) in compounds.
Hook ɓ ƈ ɗ ƒ ɠ ʝ ƙ þ ѵ
  • In compounds, the ƒ is used to mutate the root-final v before h, s, t, z, or another f.
  • Respectively transforming v before b/d/g/j/k/p are ɓ, ɗ, ɠ, ʝ, ƙ, and þ. (The first four are borrowed from the International Phonetic Alphabet, the fifth from Cyrillic, and the last from Scandinavian/Old English.[1])
  • ƈ optionally substitutes the ch diagraph in forms such as ƈuzar (cook), ƈinƈila (chinchilla), and sandwiƈe (sandwich).
  • ѵ, which transforms f in front of another v, also originates from Cyrillic.

Punctuation

Tovasala carries the same inventory of punctuation marks found in various Indo-European languages. Its quotation marks (wilemètes, «») are borrowed from French; other symbols ([{<- — _ , ; : . ... ? ! & @ * # % $ € £ ¥ ¢ † ‡ § ~ + × ÷ = º / \ |>}]) remain as-is. (For usage examples, see Grammar: Word classes § Referential pronouns and Grammar: Syntax § Quotations and punctuation.)

Phonology

Tovasala boasts a highly phonemic orthography, meaning that its graphemes correspond to the sounds they represent almost all of the time.

Letters

The language is pronounced in much the same way as English, as are most of its letterals. All letter names are adapted from existing roots with different meanings.

Letter Sound Name IPA symbol(s) English example(s) Tovasala example(s) Meaning(s) of example(s)
Standard
A ah ade /æ/ art, cat santaline mistletoe
/a/ aumbra woman
/eɪ/ day flâme fire
/ɑ/ bar mongar consume
B bey bive /b/ bay bivar, obène, roubi be, house, red
CH chu chuze /t͡ʃ/ chat chimèle jelly
D dee dèye /d/ delight dostar, sliedar get, slide
E ey ède /ɛ/ egg esine, houbène this, highway
/eɪ/ maunstré monster
/iː/ develop dêvelopar develop
/ɜː ~ ɝ/ herd rgim so/because/therefore
/Ø/ choose maunde world
F eff frole /f/ fair fasili, sif, baufale easy, if, buffalo
G gee guve /g/ go gaunde, rogeli relative, green
H hoal hine /h/ humble hanadu, mehoute there, kiwi
/Ø/ uh-oh flohe flea
I ee ide /ɪ/ interval, bid int, siprande in, surprise
/i/ beli beautiful
/aɪ/ ice hîdrole water
/ɜː ~ ɝ/ circle sĩrkauze circus
J jay joale /d͡ʒ/ jack jodé, plajé shoe, beach
K kay kuãrte /k/ kennel korte, eskole line, school
L ell /l/ long lezar, dumale read, cheetah
M em /m/ m'ilk molen, dubime though/despite, bear
N en nide /n/ nest nakole, ńaistar, lubone story, make, throne
O oh oaspe /o/ owned ond, studiōle without/-less, studio
P pey puete /p/ pray parlar, sèpe speak/talk, seven
R ar roaze /ɹ/ rest riānte, jerowe parent, manatee
/ɾ/ besneŕelde tradition
S ess sẽrte /s/ simmer sakũrạs, sauvar, vasiti cherries, save, intentional
T tee /t/ tote, boot toute all/everything
U ub usté /u/ accuse ulem under/below
/ɜː ~ ɝ/ hurt hũrkar squat
V vee /v/ advance vieslar, suavé whistle, kiss
W wee touvvé /w/ wink weste, chowé, tuwalu west, roof, apparently/from the looks of it/seems that...
X eks exande /ks/ exit sorèxe shrew
Y yel yorbe /j/ yellow yoale, yuglane, fluyé, choyaide yawn, walnut, flow (of liquid), pet
/ɪ/ hairy ye tea
/i/ hockey haukýe hockey
/Ø/ choyprini about pampering
Z zed zège /z/ zone zouvère animal
/ʒ/ mokeźe landmine
Imported
*C seeta seutène /k/ magic
/s/, /z/ cite
*Q cue kuba /kw/ quite

Clusters

Consonants

Another four digraphs are represented. (Even though sch uses three characters, it comprises two letters in Tovasala—s and ch.)

Combo IPA symbol English example Tovasala example Meaning of example
Digraphs
SH /ʃ/ shilling rosholar decide
SCH /ʃ/ Schultz bescherar conjugate
NG /ŋ/ sing lingaili linguistic
NY /ɲ/ Like canyon kanyaune canyon

Ten triple-consonant clusters, all sibilant, are also permitted in words:

Combo IPA symbol English example Tovasala example Meaning(s) of example(s)
Consonant triples
SCHL /ʃl/ schlepping
SCHM /ʃm/ schmaltz
SCHN /ʃn/ schnauzer
SCHR /ʃɹ/ Schroeder
SCHW /ʃw/ Schwartz
SHR /ʃɹ/ Shrove shroute collapse
SKR /skɹ/ scream skribar write
SPL /spl/ splash resplobe refrain
SPR /spɹ/ spree edouśprini about two children
STR /stɹ/ strudel strubar, straude build, street

Vowels

In addition, the language possesses four monophthongs (vowel pairs represented by single sounds); eight diphthongs (vowel pairs sounded together); one semi-diphthong (which acts as either a monophthong or diphthong); one triphthong (comprising three phonemes); and eight hiatuses (vowel pairs sounded separately).

Combo IPA symbol(s) English example(s) Tovasala example(s) Meaning(s) of example(s)
Monophthongs
AU /ɔ(ː)/ caulk, gauze maunde world
/ʌ/ Like mull saume sum
IE /i/ Bernie, fiend mietire metre
OU /ʊ/ ghoul bouklar, woufe defend, woof
Diphthongs
AI/É /eɪ/ aim Paipo, livré Pope, book
EU /ju/ feud pleuve, jeure rain, rude/offensive
Î /aɪ/ nice sîgloane cyclone/hurricane/typhoon
OA /oʊ/ foal poartar carry
OI /ɔɪ/ boil pointe point
UA /wa/ squad nekuamadi at the lady cat's
UE /wɛ/ pueblo kuelendar torment/torture
UI /wɪ/ squid kuibiène thief/robber
Semi-diphthong
EA /iː/ appeal, jeans voanealde, gleazar, musikeande airplane, order/arrange, musical instrument
Triphthong
UE /wɛə/ Like swear suertide luck
Hiatuses
/a.o/ Like aorta Bilbne Bilbao
EI /eɪ.ɪ/ deity mâyauneize mayonnaise
/ɛ.o/ Like eon dze awe
/ɪ.æ/ industrial tevolku on the table
/ɪ.ɛ/ Diego Dvo, veyne, poliezna God, watcher, policewoman
/ɪ.o/ Like lion vanle radio
/ɪ.u/ diurnal dve kite
/o.ɛ/ poem pze poem

Inventories

Tovasala carries almost the same individual phonemes as those of English—26 for consonants and 16 for vowels. (Corresponding graphemes are bolded.)

Consonants Labial Dental Alveolar Postalveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal m [m] n [n] ny [ɲ] ng [ŋ]
Stop Voiceless p [p] t [t] k [k] - [ʔ]
Voiced b [b] d [d] g [g]
Affricate Voiceless ch [t͡ʃ]
Voiced j [d͡ʒ]
Fricative Voiceless f [f] th [θ] s [s] sh [ʃ] h [h]
Voiced v [v] z [z] ź [ʒ]
Approximant Plain l [l] r [ɹ] y [j] w [w]
Labial ui [ɥ]
Vowels Front Central Back
Close i/ie/ea [i(ː)] u [u(ː)]
Near-close i [ɪ] ou [ʊ]
Mid e [ɛ] é [e] V [ə] /ĩ/ũ [ɝ] o [o] au [ʌ/ɔ/ɒ]
Open a [æ] a [a(ː)] ar [ɑ]

IPA correspondence

IPA a æ ɑ ɒ b d e ɛ ɜː ə f g h i ɪ j ju k ks l m n ŋ ɲ o ʌ ɔ(ː) ɔɪ p ɹ ɾ s ʃ t θ u ʊ v w ɥ z ʒ
Grapheme(s) a a a au é b d j é e/è ẽ/ĩ/ũ ai/â/é a/e/i/o/u f g/ġ h i i ea/ê/ie/ý y eu k x l/ḷ m n/ń ng ny o oa au au oi p r/ṛ ŕ s/ś sch/sh t ch th u ou v u/w ui z ź

Termisons

Tovasala has six uniliteral termisons, of which five (a, i, o, s, and u) are always pronounced in full at the end of words. Depending on the word, e is either pronounced or left silent, as shown in these tables for the roots ed-, otr-, miegal-, and sandwich-. S always follows a vowel termison (except for u) in plural forms.[2]

Example 1: ed- (young/youth)
Form IPA English meaning
ède ɛd youngster, kid, lad, tyke
èdes ɛds youngsters, kids, lads, tykes
edo ɛ.do boy
eda ɛ.da girl
edi ɛ.di young
edu ɛ.du youngly (Rare)
Example 2: otr- (other/different)
Form IPA English meaning
otré o.tɹeɪ another one
otrés o.tɹeɪs others
otro o.tɹo another one (masculine)
otra o.tɹa another one (feminine)
otri o.tɹi different
otru o.tɹu differently
Example 3: miegal (ferret)
Form IPA English meaning
miegale mi.gæl ferret
miegales mi.gæls ferrets
miegalo mi.gæ.lo ferret hob
miegala mi.gæ.la ferret jill
miegali mi.gæ.li ferret-associated
miegalu mi.gæ.lu like a ferret
Example 4: sandwich- (sandwich)
Form IPA English meaning
sandwiche sænd.wɪtʃ sandwich
sandwiches sænd.wɪ.tʃɪs sandwiches
sandwichi sænd.wɪ.tʃi sandwich-associated
sandwichu sænd.wɪ.tʃu like a sandwich

Stress

In most Tovasala words, stress falls on the final or lone syllable: nâye (dog), touvarde (two million), pla (beach), koulibré (hummingbird), sutelar (deceive/trick).

Many causative verbs exhibit stress before the -inz suffix used to form them, as in frolinzar (enlighten).

Morphophonology

Ablaut

Some Tovasala roots exhibit ablaut, a morphophonological process otherwise known as apophony. Ablaut involves the change of vowel sounds to form different words.

Indo-European

The more predominant type, Indo-European ablaut, uses i [ɪ] ~ a [æ] ~ au [ɔ] to convey deixis; the most important examples are listed below.

Base root (e) Proximal (i) Medial (a) Distant (au) Etymon(s)
English meaning
aubem aubịm aubam aubaum Iteri lʌboli (little)
size small midsized big
aulshem aulshịm aulsham aulshaum French ault + Croatian dužina
height short medium tall
aulxem aulxịm aulxam aulxaum French ault + Latin proximus (nearest)
altitude low medium high
dolshem dolshịm dolshaum dolshaum Croatian dužina
length/distance short medium long
esen esin esan esaun Estonian ese/Finnish esine
thing this that yon
*hen hin han haun Basque hemen (here)/han (there)
place/location here there yon(der)
proxem proxim proxam proxaum Latin proximus
proximity/closeness near far beyond
woshem woshịm wosham woshaum Lower Sorbian wob (during) + Croatian dužina
duration short medium long

Gender-based

This pattern, involving e [ɛ] ~ o [o] ~ oa [oʊ] ~ a [æ], is only found in the gender adjective series.

Base root (i) Neuter (e) Masculine (o) Unisex (oa) Feminine (a) Etymons
English meaning
sugim sugem sugom sugloam sugam Estonian/Veps/Vèro sugu; cf. Finnish suku
grammatical gender

Allomorphy

Tovasala's most predominant allomorph is the neuter noun marker, -e, and its plural counterpart -es.

  • -e itself is unvoiced (/Ø/) in many nouns, such as paundale (zebra; /pɔn.dæl/), proximade (vicinity; /prok.sɪ.mæd/), and esène (thing; /ɛ.sɛn/).
  • It takes on the pronunciation of /eɪ/ as in French, when marked as in words like abilidé (ability; /æ.bɪ.lɪ.deɪ/) and livré (book; /lɪ.vɹeɪ/).
  • The plural -s (/s/) is always pronounced: paundales (zebras; /pɔn.dæls/), bevaurdes (beverages; /bɛ.vɔɹds/); esènes (things; /ɛ.sɛns/); vĩrkaslés (impeachments; /vɝ.kæ.sleɪs/).
  • In certain words whose roots end with z, -e remains unvoiced in the singular, but is sounded as a soft i (/ɪ/) in the plural: mahuze (water well; /mæ.huz/) → mahuzes (water wells; /mæ.hu.zɪs/).
  • -és is mandatory for plurals of roots ending in -ech. Those ending in -ich adhere to the normal rules for -e(s): sandwiche (/sænd.wɪtʃ/) → sandwiches (/sænd.wɪ.tʃɪs/).
  • Except in the case of -èCe forms, verbal nouns always end with (/eɪ/): manké (eating; /mæn.keɪ/), sauté (jumping; /sɔ.teɪ), lèze (reading; /lɛz/), noagèle (swimming; /noʊ.gɛl/).

Movable Ń

Tovasala employs a special character, ń, which buffers hiatuses between words in similar fashion to Ancient Greek's "movable nu", and carries no semantic meaning.

  • When native words are involved, the ń is placed at the start of the following word: un'eda ńeskoladi (a girl at school), Sovalu ńaistait tuortiles (Please make the cakes).
  • If imported or capitalised terms follow native words, then ń is attached to the latter's termison: Senoroń Obama (Mr. Obama), Jaunoń Updike (John Updike), Guimbrovrageń: Aulttemi Pleuƒfoareste (FernGully: The Last Rainforest).
  • Vice versa, the regular procedure applies: Clementine ńättrulat motemoanime ńausik naulotra haizat. (Clementine warms my heart like no other lady can.)

Phonotactics

Key: C = Consonant; V = Vowel; M = Monophthong; D = Diphthong

Tovasala's syllable structure is (s)(C)2(V|M|D)2(C)2(s|z); common syllable patterns include CVC, CDC, CV, CCV, sCCV, VC, VCC, and VCCs. Standalone roots and affixes follow a (s)(C)2(V|M|D)2(C)2(z) pattern; CVCVC, CVC, CVVC, CDC, and VC are prevalent. Standalone termisons are either an s (plural) or (V|D)(C(C)).

All words must have at least one vowel; abbreviations and uniliteral roots are exempt. Words cannot start with /ks/ (⟨x⟩) or /ŋ/ (⟨ng⟩).

Onset

The onset of a Tovasala word can only reach up to three consonants ( (s)(C)C ), with /b t͡ʃ d f g h d͡ʒ s v ks z/ ⟨b ch d f g h j s v x z⟩ prohibited as the second one in any given cluster; words and roots beginning with vowels omit onsets.

Permitted onset clusters in Tovasala
First consonant Second consonant
/k/ ⟨k⟩ /l/ ⟨l⟩ /m/ ⟨m⟩ /n/ ⟨n⟩ /p/ ⟨p⟩ /ɹ/ ⟨r⟩ /t/ ⟨t⟩ /w/ ⟨w⟩ /j/ ⟨y⟩
/b/ ⟨b⟩ /bl/ ⟨bl⟩ /bɹ/ ⟨br⟩ /bw/ ⟨bu + V⟩ /bj/ ⟨be+u⟩
/t͡ʃ/ ⟨ch⟩ /t͡ʃj/ ⟨che+u⟩
/d/ ⟨d⟩ /dɹ/ ⟨dr⟩ /dw/ ⟨du + V⟩ /dj/ ⟨de+u⟩
/f/ ⟨f⟩ /fl/ ⟨fl⟩ /fɹ/ ⟨fr⟩ /fw/ ⟨fu + V⟩ /fj/ ⟨fe+u⟩
/g/ ⟨g⟩ /gl/ ⟨gl⟩ /gɹ/ ⟨gu⟩ /gw/ ⟨gu + V⟩ /gj/ ⟨ge+u⟩
/h/ ⟨h⟩ /hj/ ⟨he+u⟩
/d͡ʒ/ ⟨j⟩ /d͡ʒw/ ⟨ju + V⟩ /d͡ʒj/ ⟨je+u⟩
/k/ ⟨k⟩ /kl/ ⟨kl⟩ /kɹ/ ⟨kr⟩ /kw/ ⟨ku + V⟩ /kj/ ⟨ke+u⟩
/l/ ⟨l⟩ /lj/ ⟨le+u⟩
/m/ ⟨m⟩ /mj/ ⟨me+u⟩
/n/ ⟨n⟩ /nj/ ⟨ne+u⟩
/p/ ⟨p⟩ /pl/ ⟨pl⟩ /pɹ/ ⟨pr⟩ /pw/ ⟨pu + V⟩ /pj/ ⟨pe+u⟩
/ɹ/ ⟨r⟩ /ɹj/ ⟨re+u⟩
/s/ ⟨s⟩ /sk/ ⟨sk⟩ /sl/ ⟨sl⟩ /sm/ ⟨sm⟩ /sn/ ⟨sn⟩ /sp/ ⟨sp⟩ /st/ ⟨st⟩ /sw/ ⟨su + V⟩ /sj/ ⟨se+u⟩
/ʃ/ ⟨s(c)h⟩ /ʃl/ ⟨schl⟩ /ʃm/ ⟨schm⟩ /ʃn/ ⟨schn⟩ /ʃɹ/ ⟨s(c)hr⟩ /ʃj/ ⟨s(c)he+u⟩
/t/ ⟨t⟩ /tɹ/ ⟨tr⟩ /tw/ ⟨tu + V⟩ /tj/ ⟨te+u⟩
/v/ ⟨v⟩ /vl/ ⟨vl⟩ /vɹ/ ⟨vr⟩ /vw/ ⟨vu + V⟩ /vj/ ⟨ve+u⟩
/z/ ⟨z⟩ /zl/ ⟨zl⟩ /zw/ ⟨zu + V⟩ ⟨zw⟩ /zj/ ⟨ze+u⟩

Nucleus

A nucleus consists of either a vowel (V), a monophthong (M), or a diphthong (D). Vowels end all Tovasala articles, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs. One diphthong, /eɪ/ (⟨é⟩), is found in all basic tense augments ( (C)CD ) and neuter nouns containing it at the end ( (s)(C)CD ).

Coda

The coda consists of at least one consonant; as with onsets, up to three are allowed ( C(C)(s|z) ). In clusters, /ɹ w j/ ⟨r w y⟩ are prohibited as the last possible letter. All bare roots end with codae, as do adpositions, conjunctions, and some interjections.

Permitted coda clusters in Tovasala
Penultimate consonant Last consonant
/b/ ⟨b⟩ /t͡ʃ/ ⟨ch⟩ /d/ ⟨d⟩ /f/ ⟨f⟩ /g/ ⟨g⟩ /d͡ʒ/ ⟨j⟩ /k/ ⟨k⟩ /l/ ⟨l⟩ /m/ ⟨m⟩ /n/ ⟨n⟩ /p/ ⟨p⟩ /s/ ⟨s⟩ /t/ ⟨t⟩ /v/ ⟨v⟩ /ks/ ⟨x⟩ /z/ ⟨z⟩
/b/ ⟨b⟩ /bs/ ⟨-bes⟩
/d/ ⟨d⟩ /ds/ ⟨-des⟩
/f/ ⟨f⟩ /fs/ ⟨-fes⟩ /ft/ ⟨-ft⟩
/g/ ⟨g⟩ /gs/ ⟨-ges⟩
/k/ ⟨k⟩ /ks/ ⟨-kes⟩
/l/ ⟨l⟩ /lb/ ⟨lb⟩ /lt͡ʃ/ ⟨lch⟩ /ld/ ⟨ld⟩ /lf/ ⟨lf⟩ /lg/ ⟨lg⟩ /ld͡ʒ/ ⟨lj⟩ /lk/ ⟨lk⟩ /lm/ ⟨lm⟩ /ln/ ⟨ln⟩ /lp/ ⟨lp⟩ /ls/ ⟨-les⟩ /lt/ ⟨lt⟩ /lv/ ⟨lv⟩ /lks/ ⟨lx⟩ /lz/ ⟨lz⟩
/m/ ⟨m⟩ /mb/ ⟨mb⟩ /mt͡ʃ/ ⟨mch⟩ /mf/ ⟨mf⟩ /mg/ ⟨mg⟩ /md͡ʒ/ ⟨mj⟩ /mk/ ⟨mk⟩ /mp/ ⟨mp⟩ /ms/ ⟨-mes⟩ /mt/ ⟨mt⟩ /mv/ ⟨mv⟩ /mks/ ⟨mx⟩ /mz/ ⟨md⟩
/n/ ⟨n⟩ /nb/ ⟨nb⟩ /nt͡ʃ/ ⟨nch⟩ /nd/ ⟨nd⟩ /nf/ ⟨nf⟩ /ŋ/ ⟨ng⟩ /nd͡ʒ/ ⟨nj⟩ /nk/ ⟨nk⟩ /np/ ⟨np⟩ /ns/ ⟨-nes⟩ /nt/ ⟨nt⟩ /nv/ ⟨nd⟩ /nks/ ⟨nx⟩ /nz/ ⟨nz⟩
/p/ ⟨p⟩ /ps/ ⟨-pes⟩ /pz/ ⟨pz⟩
/ɹ/ ⟨r⟩ /ɹb/ ⟨rb⟩ /ɹt͡ʃ/ ⟨rch⟩ /ɹd/ ⟨rd⟩ /ɹf/ ⟨rf⟩ /ɹg/ ⟨rg⟩ /ɹd͡ʒ/ ⟨rj⟩ /ɹk/ ⟨rk⟩ /ɹl/ ⟨rl⟩ /ɹm/ ⟨rm⟩ /ɹn/ ⟨rn⟩ /ɹp/ ⟨rp⟩ /ɹs/ ⟨-res⟩ /ɹt/ ⟨rt⟩ /ɹv/ ⟨rv⟩ /ɹks/ ⟨rx⟩ /ɹz/ ⟨rz⟩
/s/ ⟨s⟩ /sk/ ⟨sk⟩ /sp/ ⟨sp⟩ /st/ ⟨st⟩
/t/ ⟨t⟩ /ts/ ⟨-tes⟩ /tz/ ⟨tz⟩
/v/ ⟨v⟩ /vs/ ⟨-ves⟩

Graphotactics

A native Tovasala word can begin with any letter except x, which is reserved for foreign imports. (C and Q are likewise absent from its alphabet.) Words can end with any letter depending on the word class and plurality, but roots and stems must end with any consonant except plural marker s.

Double vowels (aa, ee, ii, oo, uu) are forbidden outside imports; double consonants (such as bb, ll, and vv) are only permitted natively in compounds.

Intra-letter changes

See also: Grammar:Stem change chart

In forming compound words, several letter combinations may appear awkward if not checked. As a result, Tovasala has several insertion/mutation rules to prevent them from surfacing, as the table below demonstrates:

  • -z and -v before certain initial letters
  • -v-C ̡ before b, d, g, j, k, and p
  • -f before another v
  • Insertion of -oṛ- between difficult consonant clusters
Last letter in compound root #1 First letter in compound root #2
a b ch d e f g h i j k l m n o p r s t u v w y z
b ba bb bch bd be bf boṛg bh bi boṛj bk bl bm bn bo bp br bs bt bu bv bw by bz
ch cha choṛb choṛch choṛd che chf choṛg chh chi choṛj chk chl chm chn cho choṛp chr choṛs choṛt chu chv chw chy choṛz
d da db dch dd de df dg dh di dj dk dl dm dn do dp dr ds ddh du dv dw dy dz
f fa foṛb fch foṛd fe ff foṛg fh fi foṛj foṛk fl fm fn fo foṛp fr fs ft fu ѵv fw fy fz
g ga goṛb goṛch goṛd ge goṛf gg gh gi ȷ́j gk gl gm gn go goṛp gr gs gt gu goṛv gw gy gz
h[iln 1] ha hb hoṛch hoṛd he hoṛf hoṛg hh hi hoṛj hk hl hm hn ho hp hr hs hoṛt hu hoṛv hw hy hz
j ja joṛb joṛch joṛd je joṛf ġg jh ji jj joṛk jl jm jn jo joṛp jr joṛs joṛt ju joṛv jw jy joṛz
k ka koṛb koṛch koṛd ke koṛf koṛg kh ki kj kk kl km kn ko kp kr ks kt ku kv kw ky kz
l la lb lch ld le lf lg lh li lj lk ll lm ln lo lp lr ls lt lu lv lw ly lz
m ma mb mch md me mf mg mh mi mj mk ml mm mn mo mp mr ms mt mu mv mw my mz
n na nb nch nd ne nf ng nh ni nj nk nl nm nn no np nr ns nt nu nv nw ny nz
p pa pb pch pd pe pf pg ph pi pj pk pl pm pn po pp pr ps pt pu pv pw py pz
r ra rb rch rd re rf rg rh ri rj rk rl rm rn ro rp rr rs rt ru rv rw ry rz
t ta tb tch tth te tf tg th ti tj tk tl tm tn to tp tr ts tt tu tv tw ty tz
v va ɓb ƒch ɗd ve ƒf ɠg vh vi ʝj ƙk vl vm vn vo þp vr ƒs ƒt vu vv vw vy ƒz
w wa wb wch wd we wf wg wh wi wj wk wl wm wn wo wp wr ws wt wu wv ww wy wz
x xa xoṛb xch xoṛd xe xf xoṛg xh xi xoṛj xoṛk xl xm xn xo xp xr xoṛs xt xu xoṛv xw xy xoṛz
y ya yb ych yd ye yf yg yh yi yj yk yl ym yn yo yp yr ys yt yu yv yw yy yz
z za zoṛb śch zoṛd ze zoṛf zoṛg śh zi zoṛj śk zl śm śn zo śp zr śs śt zu zv zw zy zz
  1. ^ Found mainly in foreign place names.

For roots which end with a consonant followed by l or r, a regular -i- interfix is added before a consonant-initial root in compounds. Root-final clusters following this rule include bl, fl, kl, pl, sl, br, fr, kr, pr, and tr.

Notes

  1. ^ Þ is otherwise represented by Ƥ/ƥ, which does not display on some browsers or operating systems.
  2. ^ A special variant, -uez, precedes roots in complex case-oriented inflections. Its dual counterpart is -ouz.
◀ Rules Grammar of Tovasala:
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