Ring A: 2/18: Volapük

Jim Henry
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[ Volapük | Smooth English | From Da Mätz se Basa | Grammar | Vocabulary | Abbrevs. ]

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Med ta lüg nifüpa

Ün göd semik ün dekul, love süt de stopöp nibuda, kanoy logön jenöpi at.

Pul, kel binom kleiliko pö täv äl jul, stanom fo buid gada, e labom su jot oka hikati bigik e rediki. Nim leigavetom oki skiliko, du pul steifom ad lemufükön oni okao. Nu dalogoy omi plu e plu dredäliki, bi sevom, das nibud vo olükömon us suno. No tupom nonik kati. Balna, pladom lufuti bali oka sui buid, ab jiniko tuvom oni tu koldiki, so rofom oki sui bäkasakäd julana. Ven pos ekovenikom, nibud jula lükömon.

Pos atos, del kata pas enitedikon.

Smooth Translation

A remedy against winter depression

On a certain morning in December, across the street from a bus stop, you can see this scene:

A boy, clearly on his way to school, stands in front of a garden fence, with a big red tomcat on his shoulder. The creature is balancing skillfully while the boy tries to shake it off. Now you can see him getting more and more worried, because he knows the bus is sure to arrive soon. He isn't bothering the cat at all. At one point he gets one paw onto the fence, but seems to find it too cold, and pulls back onto the student's backpack. Just when he's gotten comfortable, the bus arrives.

The cat's day has just gotten interesting.

Translation from Da Mätz se Basa

A remedy against wintertime depression

One morning in the twelfth month, [one] can see the following scene on the other side of the street from the bus stop.

There is a youth obviously on his[?] way to school, in front of a garden fence, who has a big red tomcat on [his?] shoulder. The animal balances adroitly while the youth tries to shake it off. Now see him[?] [getting] more and more panicky, because the bus must arrive at the bus stop very soon. He doesn't bother the cat at all. At one point it gets a paw onto the fence, but seemingly finds it too cold, so pulls itself back on to the student's backpack. Just as he has made himself comfortable, the school bus arrives.

After this, the cat's day has really gotten interesting.


=== Verbs ===

Tense and aspect are indicated by a vowel prefix before the verb stem. Present imperfect is the default tense and usually not marked.

Person and number are indicated by pronominal suffixes on the verb. Moods other than the (default) indicative are indicated by suffixes following the personal suffix, except for the infinitive -ön which takes the place of the personal suffix. The standalone personal pronouns are identical to the personal endings of verbs, and are typically omitted when nominative.

=== Nouns ===

Noun stems end in a consonant. Cases other than nominative are marked with suffixed vowels. Plural number is marked with -s after the case vowel or directly on the stem if nominative.

Compound words are usually formed with the genitive case -a as an epenthetic vowel after the first root, but other case vowels can be substituted according to semantics. Affixes are attached with no epenthesis.

=== Modifiers ===

Adjectives are marked with final -ik. The normal position for adjectives is after the noun they qualify. They do not agree with their head noun in case and number unless they precede the noun, or are separated from it by other words.

Adverbs are marked with -o, usually added to an adjectival -ik but sometimes directly to the root. Directional adverbs (quasi-allative and elative, like Esperanto "hejmen") can be formed by adding the accusative -i or genitive -a before the -o (omitting -ik).

See http://personal.southern.edu/~caviness/Volapuk/ for more resources. The best dictionaries are in the file archives of the volapuk Yahoo group, but I'm pretty sure I got all the words in this text into the lexicon below. I think I only listed the pronouns, case endings, and tense prefixes that are actually used in the text.


a               suff.           genitive case
ad              conj.           to, in order to (+ infinitive verb)
an              suff.           person associated with root (more
general than Esperanto -an, -ul)
at              dem.            this
atos            pron.           this (thing, event, situation etc.)
bal             num.            one
bi              conj.           because
bigik           adj.            big, thick, fat
binön           v.              to be
buid            n.              fence
bäkasakäd       n.              backpack
dalogön         v.              to look (at)
das             conj.           that
de              prep.           from, away from
dekul           n.              December
del             n.              day
dredälik                adj.            fearful, panicked
du              conj.           during, while
e               conj.           and ["ed" before vowels]
e               pref.           present perfect tense/aspect
e               suff.           dative case
fo              prep.           in front of, before
gad             n.              garden
göd             n.              morning
hi              pref.           he-, male, masculine
i               suff.           accusative case
ik              suff.           form adjective from noun stem
jenön           v.              to happen, to appear, to appear
jenöp           n.              scene, place where something happens
jinön           v.              to appear, seem
jot             n.              shoulder
jul             n.              school
kanön           v.              to be able
kat             n.              cat
kel             pron.           relative pronoun
kleilik         adj.            obvious, clear
koven           n.              comfort
labön           v.              to have
leigavetön      n.              to balance
lelüg           n.              sadness, depression
lemufön         v.              to shake (intr.)
logön           v.              to see
love            prep.           across, over
lufut           n.              paw, foot
lükömön         v.              to arrive, come to
med             n.              means, method, way
na              suff.           forms adverb: happening N times
naed            n.              time, moment, occasion
nibud           n.              bus (public transport vehicle)
nifüp           n.              winter
nim             n.              animal
nitedik         adj.            interesting
no              adv.            no, not
nonik           adv.            none, not any
nu              adv.            now
o               pref.           forms future tense of verb
o               suff.           forms adverb from noun or adjective stem
ok              pron.           self, oneself, himself... reflexive pronoun
om              pron.           he; 3d person masculine
on              pron.           it, he, she; 3d person neuter/inanimate/indifferent
oy              pron.           one (generic 3d-person, like Esperanto "oni")
pas             adv.            just, only just
pladön          v.              to put, to place
plu             adv.            more
pos             prep.           after (time)
pro             prep.           for
pul             n.              boy, youth
pö              prep.           at, in, on
pö täv          phrase          on the way; en route
redik           adj.            red
rofön           v.              to pull back
semik           adj.            certain, specified
sevön           v.              to know
skilik          adj.            skillful
so              conj.           so, thus
stanön          v.              to stand
steifön         v.              try, attempt
stopön          v.              to stop, halt
su              prep.           on, on top of, atop
sui             prep.           onto
suno            adv.            soon
süt             n.              street, way
ta              prep.           against
tu              adv.            too, too much
tupön           v.              to bother, disturb
tuvön           v.              to find
täv             n.              way, voyage, trip
us              adv.            there
ven             conj.           when
vo              adv.            indeed
äl              prep.           to, towards, directed to
öp              suff.           place
ön              suff.           infinitive mood of verb
ük              suff.           makes intransitive verbs transitive, like Esperanto -ig
ün              prep.           in, at, on (time)


adj.                            adjective
adv.                            adverb
conj.                           conjunction
n.                              noun
num.                            numeral
pref.                           prefix
prep.                           preposition
pron.                           pronoun
suff.                           suffix
v.                              verb

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March 19th, 2006
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