A Láadan Microgrammar

The sounds you’ll need….

a as in father
e as in bell
i as in bit
o as in home
u as in dune, soon

th as in think
zh as in pleasure
b, s, sh, m, n, l, r, w, y, h, d (as in English)

lh –a sound that doesn’t exist in English, made by pressing your tongue against the roof of your mouth, drawing back the corners of your mouth as you would for a smile, and then saying “sh.”

Tone: An accent mark over a vowel means that it has high tone. For English speakers, this means that you should give it slightly higher pitch and more emphasis, the way you would a stressed syllable. (With computer software that doesn’t support accent marks, we use a capital letter — so “LAadan” is equivalent to “Láadan.”)

Some grammar facts you’ll need….

1. Adjectives and verbs are the same in Láadan.

2. Láadan has no words for “a, the, an.”

3. When you make a Láadan verb plural, only the verb changes.

4. The basic order in Láadan is verb or adjective, then subject, then object; sentences begin with a Speech Act word and end with an Evidence word.The negative follows the verb or adjective.

Using the language….

Choose a Speech Act word:

Bíi (statement)
Báa (question)
Bóo (request)

Choose a time word:

ril (present)
eril (past)
aril (future)
wil (hypothetical, as in “let there be….”)

Choose a verb:

di (say, speak)
hal (work)
áya (beautiful)
óoha (weary)
néde (want)
sháad (go, come)

Choose a Subject phrase:

le (I)
ne (you)
be (she, he, it)
rul (cat)
with (woman)
omid (horse)
mahina (flower)
ana (food)
withid (man)

Choose an Evidence word:

wa (true because perceived directly)
wáa (true because from a trusted source)

Now, make a sentence….

Bíi eril hal with wa. (The woman worked.)
Bíi eril óoha with wáa. (The woman was weary.)

Or make a question…

Báa eril hal with? (Did the woman work?)

Use the negative (ra)…

Bíi eril hal ra with wa. (The woman didn’t work.)

Choose an Object phrase and add the Object ending (TH after vowels, ETH after consonants)

Bíi ril néde rul anath wáa. (The cat wants food.)
Bóo ril di ne Láadaneth. (Please speak Láadan.)

To make a plural, add “me-“…

Báa ril meháya mahina? (Are the flowers beautiful?)