Dlatci

While i have pretty much given up on working on the Dlatci language, as such, i am still very fond of the alphabet, which i will probably make use of at some point in the future.  It contains quite a lot of very nice diphthongs and sandhi.

There is a basic alphabet of twenty-six characters. These are broken up into groups of continuants (first row), stops (second row), liquids and nasals (third row), and vowels (fourth row).  (The velar continuant is grouped as a stop.) 


Voiceless obstruents are denoted with a horizontal bar. Sonorants (here considered liquids, nasals, or vowels) occurring between two voiceless obstruents are also barred, but barred sonorants are not voiceless and are not considered to be a separate letter from their unbarred counterpart, unlike the barred obstruents.

As a basic rule, any sonorant will become a ligature if followed by another sonorant with a common root stroke (a "below-the-line" stroke, again having both barred and unbarred versions depending on their proximity to unvoiced obstruents. These ligatures are not optional. Each half of the ligature is still considered a separate letter.  In all, the following sixteen ligatures are possible:


There are also diacritic vowels that may precede a character to form more diphthongs. (Diacritic vowels can only be used with other vowels; never with liquids or nasals.)

  • The root of u is shortened when a back diacritic (u or o) is added to it, making it look like a v. (However, since only vowels can take diphthongs, there is no chance of confusion.)
  • In the case of ligatures, the diphthong aligns vertically with the component it applies to. It is possible to have diacritics on both halves of a ligature.
  • All ligatures must condense as much as possible. So, for instance, "eloi" (about) is written as e, l+i, and o diacritic under the i, not e, l, o+i.
  • In the case of multiple diacritics, u and i are always read first, followed by a, e, and o. The "root" letter is read last.
And just for fun, here's a sample text: the first few verses of the chapter on Love from Kahlil Gibran's "The Prophet."


(A rough transliteration: dici almitru ʒdralaz, dlatcaðu dialx vai eloi laima. a ʒu caʒ rŋ kaþo ʒi, a rm ʒai padeʒaþ u þaðu. a mei a adla lapa ʒdralaʒ: dici laimu ðo kniruʒ, suigraðu ʒo, u o darui ʒi lei uþi xacui a telxui. a dici uailui ʒi þuni aiem ða, tcalaþa þoi, u o stixu um azarocai ʒi lei xauktuþ ðo. a dici dlatcuʒ, yalavra eloi ʒa, u o adlu ʒi lei caxalþuʒ valaʒoi ði, pe cactru iþu xraxtuþ guarxo. diti peio pe laimu ðo aŋknuʒ, a a ðo kroxaxtaʒ. peio pe uʒ te ðrumba ði, a a uʒ te nakcadaþa ði. peio pe puʒ rŋ ði calaþo a caðuʒ ʒaroi le ʒavloi ði xui bvraluþi ln viʒa, a a puʒ lŋ renaþoi ði a þoi cavratuʒ ia festraþa þii rm teþra.)