Nouns in Lortho have three distinct features:
- They are one of three genders: masculine, feminine, or neuter
- All nouns can be modified to denote case
- All nouns end in a vowel (with few exceptions)
There there are a couple nouns that do not follow the above rules for gender (this will increase as Lortho's lexicon grows):
Lortho has ten cases. The vowels in parentheses are added if the word ends in a consonant. The following word will be used for demonstration:
- woods, forest
|Accusative||-me||kansapthame||forest (direct obj.)|
|Dative||-mela||kansapthamela||forest (indirect obj.)|
|Genitive1||-nau||kansapthanau||of the forest|
|Lative2||-ina/ena3,4||kansaptaina||in/into the forest|
|Ablative||-nat||kansapthanat||out of/from the forest|
|Allative||-dan||kansapthadan||to/towards the forest|
|Prolative||-dar||kansapthadar||through/via/by way of the forest|
|Instrumental||-len||kansapthalen||using the forest|
1 -nau is the alienable genitive whereas -tho is the inalienable genitive as seen in the endonym Lortho.
2 The lative case also doubles as the locative case.
3 -ina is added to feminine and neuter nouns and -ena is added to masculine nouns
4 When -ina is added to a feminine noun, the final u changes to o creating the diphthong oi. e.g. kansapu tree -> kansapoina in the tree.
- chair, seat
Each noun is pluralized by adding a suffix:
- Feminine (-u) and Neuter (-a) nouns add the plural suffix -ne:
- Feminine: kansaphu (n. fem) tree; pl kansaphune
- Neuter: hadikha (n. neut) land, country; pl hadikhane
- Masculine nouns (-i):
- Regular masculine nouns will add the infix -en- before -i:
- Masculine nouns that end in -ni will add the infix -em-.
- olakhi (n. masc) boat; pl olakheni
- phorenni (n. masc) peak, summit; pl phoɾennemi
In Lortho, the definite article does not exist since the noun is inherently definite; i.e. the lack of the indefinite article indicates definiteness. The indefinite article is handled by using the numeral one, ikhi.
1 The 2nd person plural neuter, naman, is meant for addressing crowds or general audiences
Note: Lortho is a pro-drop language. In other words, the above pronouns are often omitted since the same information is grammatically inferred.
Verbs are conjugated in gender and in number which are governed by the subject (written or implied). For the most part the conjugations are simple and are formed through agglutination; however, there are slight fusional changes that occur when denoting aspect.
There are three main verbs in Lortho: -o verbs, -t verbs, and -n verbs. The conjugation tables below show a preview of how the regular verbs conjugate in each category. Conjugation in other tenses includes more fusional aspects.
The root is formed by subtracting the final "o."
| konpharo [kon.'pʰɑ.ɾo] to speak|
The root is formed by changing the final "t" to a "d."
| phramit ['pʰɾɑ.mit] to push|
The root is the same as the infinitive.
| shailan [ʃaɪ.'lɑn] to sit|
Although labelled irregular, the verbs still have a regular feel in that they still use the same personal endings; however, the root is derived slightly differently. One example is the verb harlan.
| harlan [hɑɾ.'lɑn] to be|
The indicative mood is the simplest of the moods and requires no extra suffixes.
The imperative form of the verb is simply the root with the vocative case (which can be either implied or explicit). Currently, this is still in development. I must discover the explanations of the imperative mood in first person plural and second person plural.
- famannu, konphar!
- Hey you, speak!
- fanamin, nathar namineme!
- Hey you, be quiet! (lit. quiet yourselves)
- konpharo (konphar-) v. to speak
- natharo (nathar-) v. to quell, pacify
- mannu pronoun you (fem. sing.)
- namin pronoun you (masc. pl.)
- shailan (shailan-) v. to sit
The subjunctive mood has many different facets. For now, we will talk about wants/wishes.
In the present tense, the expression of want is done by using the verb hankhan to want + infinitive.
hankhan-in kilo kansaptha-me
want -1MSG see.INF forest.N -ACC
I want to see (the) forest
The passive voice is formed by adding the suffix -im after the root before any other additional suffixes.
- madhit (madhid-) v. to give
madhid-ikh-i i khanishu-me u -mela
give- PST-3MSG PN.3MSG book.F -ACC PN.3FSG-DAT
He gave the book to her
- The verb agrees with the subject he (i).
madhid-im -ikh-u khanishu u -mela
give -PASS-PST-3FSG book.F PN.3FSG-DAT
The book was given to her
- The verb agrees with book since there is no subject initiating the action; however, book is still affected by the action, hence the accusative case.
Negation is accomplished by adding the prefix dha(k)-. The phoneme /k/ is added before verbs with either initial vowel or initial /h/, which in turn morphs into /kʰ/.
- konpharo (konphar-)
I do not speak, I am not speaking
- hankhan (hankhan-)
to want, wish
I do not want
- artemit (artemid-)
I do not continue
Adjectives behave a little differently than most natural languages. All adjectives are roots since they must agree in gender with the noun which they modify; however, they do not agree in number. For placement, adjectives must be placed in front of the noun which they modify.
The counting system is base 10 (i.e. decimal, 0-9). Cardinal numbers, like adverbs, do not take any suffix to agree with the noun they modify (cf. Adjectives). You can see the written numerals on the orthography page. Ordinal numbers are still a mystery.