Ring B: 2/20: Tatari Faran

H.S. Teoh
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[ Tatari Faran | Smooth English | Interlinear | Grammar | Vocabulary | Abbrevs. ]

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Tatari Faran

kueharan naritai'i ihirasan imaisinan tsen utu sei.

jiras baranis ijiinan bunaheibikas te' iti hamra epan pai tatitis nikefatai samanan arapas ipai haras ko aram.

kapi ipai hamra kiran pesa'atan ka heka sumanan atuan aram. daha tara'is apa ei tsuni kauhi burut karat sei ira. kiran tara' ka kapa pera kauhi fisei daha atu ta'an, fei sei paka tumitai pepai tsit. tara' ka hena juerat pai nikefatai arapas no, hena sa isi mahinai puru kumai kiki, diti iti isi upitai kefatai samanan so. fei kei piana' irei hike. tara' ka kakai jiras me pata' feis sa heka ita, pata' sa paka imis juju', fei sei hena akuka hujai tara'an na, simuini sahu kapi ipai tsi. kana iti upitai kefatai samanan so dakat.

bara baranis kauhin sa kueras puru eka nari.

Hear it

Smooth Translation

A funny story to soothe your winter depression

One morning in the twelfth month, the following was seen in the street at the pickup point of the guardian's chariot.

There, a young man, an apprentice, was in front of the hedge of a garden. On his shoulder was a fat, red lynx cat. The young man tried to get it down from his shoulder, but it always balanced well. He looked at the pickup point and became more and more anxious, because soon the guardian's chariot will arrive. It continued to pester him. Once, he managed to get its paw on the fence, but the paw [became] cold, and it (the lynx) climbed on his sack, and made itself comfortable there. At that time, the guardian's chariot arrived.

The rest of the lynx's day must had been even more hilarious.


kueharan    naritai'i         ihirasan           imaisinan  tsen
kueharan    naritai-'i        i-hirasan          imaisin-an tse-n
funny_story to_cheer_up-INFIN AUX_CVY-depression winter-GEN 2sp-GEN

utu         sei. \\
utu         sei
in_order_to CVY.FEM

jiras baranis      ijiinan  bunaheibikas  te'  iti  hamra epan
jiras baran-is     ijiin-an buna-heibikas te'  iti  hamra epan
one   morning-PART moon-GEN two-ten       ORD  when see   can

pai   tatitis          nikefatai       samanan      arapas
pai   tatis-is         ni-kefatai      saman-an     arap-as
place street\PART-PART AUX_RCP-chariot guardian-GEN pick_up-REL_CVY

ipai haras         ko       aram. \\
ipai haras         ko       aram
at   the_following ORG.NEUT COMPL

kapi  ipai hamra kiran     pesa'atan   ka       heka  sumanan
kapi  ipai hamra kiran     pesa'at-an  ka       heka  suman-an
There at   see   young_man foundry-GEN ORG.MASC hedge guardian-GEN

atuan       aram. daha     tara'is  apa ei   tsuni kauhi burut
atuan       aram  daha     tara'-is apa ei   tsuni kauhi burut
in_front_of COMPL shoulder 3sp-PART on  also find  lynx  fat

karat sei     ira.  kiran     tara' ka       kapa     pera kauhi
karat sei     ira   kiran     tara' ka       kapa     pera kauhi
red   CVY.FEM COMPL young_man 3sp   ORG.MASC put_down try  lynx

fisei        daha     atu          ta'an,     fei sei     paka
fi=sei       daha     atu          ta'an      fei sei     paka
that=CVY.FEM shoulder taken_off_of down.COMPL 3sp CVY.FEM but

tumitai    pepai  tsit. tara' ka       hena juerat pai
tumitai    pepai  tsit. tara' ka       hena juerat pai
to_balance always COMPL 3sp   ORG.MASC and  look   place

nikefatai       arapas          no,      hena sa       isi
ni-kefatai      arap-as         no       hena sa       isi
AUX_RCP-chariot pick_up-REL_CVY RCP.NEUT and  CVY.MASC therefore
mahinai puru kumai        kiki, diti           iti  isi     upitai
mahinai puru kumai        kiki  diti           iti  isi     upitai
worry   more increasingly COMPL a_little_while when because arrive

kefatai samanan      so.      fei kei     piana'  irei     hike.
kefatai saman-an     so       fei kei     piana'  irei     hike
chariot guardian-GEN CVY.NEUT 3sp ORG.FEM disturb continue COMPL

tara' ka       kakai jiras me   pata' feis     sa       heka  ita,
tara' ka       kakai jiras me   pata' fei-s    sa       heka  ita
3sp   ORG.MASC cause one   time paw   3sp-PART CVY.MASC hedge on

pata' sa       paka imis juju', fei sei     hena akuka hujai
pata' sa       paka imis juju', fei sei     hena akuka hujai
paw   CVY.MASC but  cold COMPL  3sp CVY.FEM and  climb sack

tara'an  na,      simuini         sahu kapi  ipai tsi.  kana iti
tara'-an na       si-muini        sahu kapi  ipai tsi   kana iti
3sp-GEN  RCP-MASC CVY.FEM-comfort REFL there at   COMPL now  when

upitai kefatai samanan      so       dakat. \\
upitai kefatai saman-an     so       dakat
arrive chariot guardian-GEN CVY.NEUT COMPL

bara      baranis  kauhin   sa       kueras puru eka  nari. \\
bara      baran-is kauhi-n  sa       kueras puru eka  nari
remainder day-PART lynx-GEN CVY-MASC funny  more must COMPL


Sentence Structure

The types of statements in Tatari Faran: In the indicative mood, the word order for these statements are:

Note: whether or not a noun phrase is the subject is independent of the noun case. Noun case determines the semanticrole of the NP relative to the verb/predicate, and is independent of the syntactic subject role.

The above applies to standalone clauses. Within complex constructs, the following modifications take place:


Tatari Faran verbs are mainly isolating, except in subordinate clauses, where they conjugate for the role of the head noun in the subordinate clause, and in infinitive clauses, where the infinitive form of the verb is used.

Adverbs are often used where English would use an auxiliary verb. For example, tsana epan - I can speak; tsana irei - I keep speaking; tsana bat - I stop speaking.


Tatari Faran complements are words appearing at the end of an indicative clause whose sole purpose is to strengthen, reinforce the sense of the verb or predicative adjective, and give a firm conclusion to the utterance. Although the lexicon gives the meaning of a complement, the glossed meaning is only meant to add nuance and overtones to the main predicate, and should not be taken literally.

Every verb and every adjective is paired with at least one complement. Sometimes, the choice of complement can decide which of a verb's different meanings is intended. Sometimes, a verb may be paired with a complement not usually used with it, in order to color the verb with a nuance not usually associated with it.


Nouns are marked for two sets of cases: the 3 core cases, and the secondary cases. With the 3 core cases, there are TWO ways a noun can be marked for them:
  1. Primary case marking:
    • Indicated using case clitics at the end of the NP (after any adjectives, subordinate clauses, and other modifiers). Case clitics are inflected for case and gender.
    • Primary case marking is used for NP's in the main clause.
  2. Auxiliary case marking:
    • Marked using a case prefix attached to the noun.
    • These case prefixes only inflect for case, not for gender.
    • Auxiliary case marking is only used in subordinate clauses.
The 3 core cases are: originative, conveyant, receptive. These cases are chosen according to the *semantic* role of the noun, and is independent of whether the NP is the syntactic subject.

In verbs of motion, the originative denotes the starting point of the motion, the conveyant denotes the person/thing undergoing the motion, and the receptive denotes the destination of the motion.

Sensory verbs are divided into two categories:

  1. Active directing of the sensory organs towards a particular object: originative = person doing the sensing; receptive = object. E.g., juerat - to look.
  2. Passive receiving of sensory information from an object: originative = object which is sensed; receptive = person receiving the sense. E.g., hamra - to see.

In verbs of transferrence, the originative is used for the giver, the conveyant for the gift, and the receptive for the recipient.

Nouns are also inflected for secondary case:

  1. The genitive denotes possession, source, or belonging. It is formed by suffixing -n to vowel-final nouns, and -an to consonant-final nouns. E.g., san faran - person of Fara (person from Fara), fuan bata'an - wife of the chief.
  2. The partitive denotes subset or a component relationship. For example, pika bunaris - hand of the woman, bunas sanis - two of the men. The partitive is formed by suffixing -s to vowel-final nouns, and -is to consonant-final nouns. However, if the final consonant is _s_, it mutates into _tis_ instead. For example: panis -> panitis (not *panisis).
  3. The appositive, or compositive, denotes equivalence with the head noun. It is formed like the genitive, but with an additional i- prefixed to the noun. For example: huu iteken - I, Teke; diru ihinan - servant girl. (Compare: diru hinan - girl of the servant.)
  4. The absolutive: the noun appears with no case marking. This is only used in statements of equivalence.

Nouns may optionally be marked for plurality using the prefix he-. However, this is usually used only for emphasis; so a singular noun may refer to either singular or plural (must be inferred from context).


Note: 'animate' refers mainly to humans and close pets. Other animals are usually considered 'inanimate'.

The 3rd person pronouns are often used as demonstratives, and as such, modify the noun they refer to. E.g., diru tara' sei - that girl; tiki fei - that rabbit.

The demonstrative mei, unlike fei, is used for both animate/inanimate nouns: diru mei - this girl; tiki mei - this rabbit.

Note: fei does not contract when used as a pronoun, but is prone to contract when used as a demonstrative.


Adjectives follow the noun, but precede the case clitic. This also applies to genitives, partitives, appositives, and relative clauses.

Subordinate clauses & Infinitives

Relative clauses are embedded between the head noun and its case clitic. The relative verb appears at the end of the relative clause, and is inflected for the case function of the head noun in the relative clause. The arguments to the verb appear between the head noun and the verb, and use auxiliary case marking (i.e. with prefixes).


kiran     nihuu     hamrakan sa
young_man I-AUX_RCP see-ORG  CVY
The young man that I saw.
Standalone equivalent:
kiran     ka  hamra huu na  [aram]
young_man ORG see   I   RCP COMPL
I see the young man.

Infinitives are formed with the infinitive verb appearing first, followed by any argument NP's in auxiliary case marking, followed by a neuter case clitic. Example:

tapa'i ihuu nibuara so - the going of me to the volcano
(i.e. my going to the volcano).

Infinitives in TF are essentially gerundives, as is shown above.


Tatari Faran postpositions are the equivalent of English prepositions, except that they follow the noun they modify. Tatari Faran has a rich set of postpositions describing different spatial and temporal relationships with the main predicate. Nouns governed by a postposition lose their case clitic in the main clause; in subordinate clauses, governed nouns are always conveyant. Postpositions are normally unaccented in speech (their lexical stress position is pronounced only in relative clauses).

Postpositional phrases may also modify nouns. In this case, it appears where a relative clause would. Its governed NP appears in auxiliary case marking. It may also govern an infinitive, in which case the infinitive phrase omits the neuter case clitic.


buara matsite'i ibaan ipai sa
The volcano where the old lady perished.


Ordinals are formed using the particle te': noun numeral te'.

samat jiras te' - the first man
samat bunas te' - the second man

Numerals of different orders of magnitude (powers of 5) may be composed by stringing together their roots, in small-to-large order:

jiras(1) + kuanas(20) = jirakuanas (21)

Numerals belong to the more general class of quantifiers. Quantifiers are used in the following ways:

noun quantifier
Indefinite cardinal. E.g., "two men appeared" - samat bunas.
quantifier partitive-noun
Definite cardinal. E.g., "two of the men came" - bunas samatis.
quantifier me
Multiplier (once, twice, ...):
kakai jiras me - do it once
kakai bunas me - do it twice
kakai pita me  - do it a few times

Points of caution

Cultural context

The following notes may help in interpreting the intent of the text.

In most villages in the Fara, children are essentially home-schooled and learn their family's trade, which in most cases is either farming or hunting. Very few have the opportunity to learn another trade. However, in the larger towns, recent technological achievements made it compelling to introduce an apprenticeship system to the community, whereby young people, mostly in their mid- to late-teenage years, may become an apprentice to learn a special trade with a master. This system mostly applies to new trades such as metallurgy, mechanical engineering (in its primitive form, of course), and construction. Sometimes, a particularly kind master would send a chariot, or drive one himself, to pick up the apprentice who may live far away at the outskirts of the town, for his lessons.



-an gen. suffix.
-as rel. cvy. suffix.
-'i infin. suffix.
i- aux. cvy. case marker.
-is part. suffix.
-n gen. suffix.
ni- aux. rcp. case marker.
si- fem. cvy. conjunctive v. prefix.
-tis part. suffix.


ahai compl. to do something, whatever, whatsoever. Etym: _hai_, "thing", "something".
akuka...anan v. to climb (a ladder, a tree).
anan compl. "upwards", "up to the top".
aram compl. to behold.
arap...ikat v. to pick up, to take (something). Taker in rcp., thing taken in cvy., place or person taken from in org..
asai compl. reddeningly, of a crimson, bloody color.
apa post. on, on top of, resting on.
atu post. falling off of, taken off from, plucked out from.
atuan post. in front of, ahead of.
bara quant. (1) (indefinite) some of, a part of, a subset of; (2) (definite) the rest of, the remainder of.
baran masc. n. (1) morning, daybreak; (2) day.
bunas num. two (2).
burut...sarapi adj. fat, well-fed (of animals, esp. for eating).
daha masc. n. shoulder.
dakat compl. to transact, to complete a negotiation, to consummate.
diti iti adv. in a little bit, in a few moments, soon.
ei (1) nominal conj., "and", "also". Follows case clitic of modified NP. (2) adv. "also". Note that it can only occur in adverbial position in this usage, not as a conj..
eka adv. (1) strong imperative marker, "must"; (2) surely, obviously.
epan adv. "able to", "it is possible for", "can".
fei (1) 3rd pers. inanim. pron. it; (2) dem. n. that, those. Used only for inanim. things. Used both as sg. and pl.; the pl. _hefei_ is only used when one desires to emphasize its plurality.
fisei contraction of _fei_ and _sei_.
hamra...aram v. (1) to see. Seer in rcp.. (2) to be seen, to appear.
haras dem. n. (1) adj. the next, the one following; (2) adv. the following, as follows. Forward-pointing demonstrative.
heibikas num. ten (10).
heka neut. n. hedge, fence, enclosure.
hena conj. "and then".
hike compl. (1) to bring bad news, to bring ill, to cause trouble. (2) to cause discomfort. (3) to be in discord.
hiras compl. fading, fainting away, wearing off.
hirasan neut. n. depression, chronic unhappiness, weariness, (mental) fatigue.
hujai masc. n. a sack, a bag.
ia compl. to be content.
ijiin fem. n. (1) moon; (2) + num., month.
imaisin fem. n. winter, cold season.
imis...juju' adj. cold, freezing.
ipai post. at, in, within the boundary of (a location).
ira compl. (1) to be seen, to be found.
(2) to be (only in statements of being).
irei adv. to continue to, continuingly, to resume to.
isi conj. "because", "therefore". (See grammar notes.)
iti temp. post. when, during, at (a particular time).
itu compl. to cast a stare on.
jiras num. one (1).
juerat...itu v. to look at, to stare at.
juju' compl. shivering.
ka masc. org. case clitic.
kakai...ahai v. to cause, to take action, to make, to do. A generic verb that can refer to a wide variety of actions. Doer in the org., things being acted on in the cvy., and the result of the action in the rcp..
kana (1) temp. adv. now, at this time, immediately. (2) temp. post. case marker, this time.
kapa...pa' v. to let go of, to drop (an object), to cast down or cast away.
kapi neut. n. there, over there, that place.
karat...asai adj. red.
kauhi fem. n. lynx cat, esp. the most common white-furred lynx native to Fara.
kei fem. org. case clitic.
kefatai neut. n. horse-drawn chariot.
kiki compl. excited, agitated.
kiran masc. n. young man, youth.
ko neut. org. case clitic.
kueharan fem. n. rumour, anecdote, children's story, joke. Etym.: kuera (to laugh) + maharan (story, history).
kueras...nari adj. funny, prone to laughter.
mahinai...ia v. to feel the want for (a person), to think of (a loved person) continually, to have (a person) in the heart.
mahinai...kiki v. + infin. to fret, to worry, to be anxious.
me adv. (how many) times.
muin compl. soothing.
muini...seira v. to soothe, to comfort.
na masc. rcp. case clitic.
nari compl. to feel funny or happy.
naritai...muin v. to cheer up, to make (one) happy, to cherish, to comfort.
no neut. rcp. case clitic.
pa' compl. to strike the ground.
pai neut. n. place, location.
paka conj. but, however.
pata' masc. n. foot, paw.
pepai adv. always, all the time.
pera adv. to try to, to attempt to.
pesa'at neut. n. (1) foundry, forge; (2) generic term for the place where apprentices are trained by their mentors.
piana'...hike v. to disturb, pester, or annoy; to cause a commotion.
puru cmp. adj. more, more of.
puru kumai adv. more and more, increasingly.
sa masc. cvy. case clitic.
sahu refl. n. myself, yourself, him/herself, itself. Reflexively refers to subject NP.
saman n. guardian, caretaker. A person in charge of watching over persons, children, or the proceeding of a certain operation to ensure that no disruptions occur.
sarapi compl. to be cooked deliciously.
sei fem. cvy. case clitic.
seira compl. restful, serene, comforting.
so neut. cvy. case clitic.
suman fem. n. farm, plantation, garden.
ta'an compl. "down", "down to the bottom"; hitting the ground, falling on the ground, reaching the floor.
tara' 3rd pers. sg. anim. pron.
tatis neut. n. path, way, street.
te' ordinal marker
tse 2nd pers. sg. pron.
tsi compl. to dwell.
tsit.1 compl. to be pinched, to stick together, to fasten.
tsit.2 compl. expertly, skillfully, perfectly.
tsuni...ira v. (1) to find; (2) to exist (used of inanim. objects), to be (in a certain place). The cvy. case is used for that which is found.
tumitai...tsit v. to balance (oneself), esp. on one foot.
upitai...dakat v. to arrive, to come.
utu post. + infin. for the purpose of, in order to.


adj. adjective
adv. adverb
anim. animate
aux. auxiliary
cmp. comparative
compl. complement
conj. conjunction
cvy. conveyant
etym. etymology
fem. feminine
gen. genitive
infin. infinitive
masc. masculine
n. noun
neut. neuter
num. numeral
org. originative
part. partitive
pers. person
post. postposition
pron. pronoun
quant. quantifier
rcp. receptive
refl. reflexive
rel. relative
sg. singular
temp. temporal
AUX_CVY auxiliary conveyant
AUX_ORG auxiliary originative
AUX_RCP auxiliary receptive
COMPL complement
CVY conveyant
FEM feminine
GEN genitive
MASC masculine
NEUT neuter
ORD ordinal
ORG originative
PART partitive
RCP receptive
REFL reflexive
REL_CVY relative conveyant

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January 30th, 2006
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