Meó language

The Meó language is a language spoken within the nation of Meó as well as within its former colonies and throughout the Malaeze Sea. It is the official language of the Meó Amalgamate. It has millions of speakers. It is ultimately derived from Ancient Meó

Phonology

Consonants

PULMONIC Bilabial Alveolar/Dental Palatal/Post-alveolar Velar
Nasal
m mʲ
n nʲ
ɳ ɳʲ
ŋ ŋʲ
Voiceless Stops
p pʲ
t tʲ
tʂ tɕ
k kʲ
Aspirated Stops
pʰ pʰʲ
tʰ tʰʲ
tʂʰ tɕʰ
kʰ kʰʲ
Voiced Stops
b bʲ
d dʲ
dʐ dʑ
g gʲ
Voiced Continuants
v vʲ
l lʲ
ʐ zʲ
(j)
Voiceless Continuant
(ʍ) (ʍʲ)
(ɬ) (ɬʲ)
ʂ sʲ
x ç
Tap or Trill
ɾ ɾʲ

Many consonants have a high degree of allophony, such as /ɲ ɲʲ/ which has the post-vocalic/intervocalic allophone [ɻ̃ ɻ̃ʲ~j̃] in fast speech. The voiced continuants tend to be closer to approximants, and the voiceless continuants closer to fricatives. /ʐ/ varies between [ʐ~ɻ̝~ɻ] with [ɻ̝] (a non-sibilant fricative) being considered the most correct.


PULMONIC Bilabial Alveolar/Dental Palatal/Post-alveolar Velar
Nasal
m my
n ny
ṇ ṇy
ṅ ṅy
Voiceless Stops
p py
t ty
c cy
k ky
Aspirated Stops
ph phy
th thy
ch chy
kh khy
Voiced Stops
b by
d dy
j jy
g gy
Voiced Continuants
v vy
l ly
z zy
(y)
Voiceless Continuant
(hv) (hvy)
(hl) (hly)
s sy
h hy
Tap or Trill
r ry

Palatalised consonants are written Cy or C' at the end of words - mya, am'.

Vowels

Vowels Front Mid Back
Close
ɨ
u
Mid
ɘ
o
Open
a

/ɘ, o/ reduce to /ɨ, u/ in unstressed syllables

/ɘ/ is written -e, /ɨ/ as y (ÿ if adjacent to another vowel, or to distinguish from the palatalising y; ty /tɨ/, tÿa /tɨa/, tya /tʲæ/. This is not necessary with i and e as they imply /ʲ/, that is yi and ye represent /ɨji/ and /ɨje/ respectively, not /ʲi/ and /ʲe/). /a/, /o/, and /u/ are written a, o, and u


Vowels Palatal Front Mid Back
Close
ʲi
ʲʉ
Mid
ʲe
ʲɵ
Open
ʲæ

/ʲi/ and /ʲe/ are written i and e, /ʲʉ/, /ʲɵ/, /ʲæ/ as yu, yo, ya.

Only palatal vowels may follow palatal consonants, and only plain vowels may follow plain consonants. Therefore /mʲʉ/ and /mu/ are allowed but */mʉ/ and */mʲu/ are not.

Tone

Meó has five tones;

  • Low - mè
  • Mid/default - me
  • High - mé
  • Rising - mě
  • Falling - mê

Naming System

The naming system is as follows;


[guardian deity title] [given name] [parent of same gender name] [maternal clan name] [paternal clan name]

e.g. Ahkɨn Soinkot' Hrezvinn Qoli Phlyi


It is common practice to omit the parent's name when referring to someone, and maternal clan names when a man is being spoken about or paternal clan names when a woman is being spoken about.

The guardian deity is one of the five sacred deities of the Meó religion of Siela. It is an important part of the name as it determines which honorific one must use when addressing a person, detailed below. The first form (ending in -n), is the neutral/polite form and generally the most common, the -va form is for people who have a maternalistic relationship to the addressee (i.e. mothers/grandmothers talking to children and vice versa), whilst the -di form is similarly the paternalistic form. It is generally reserved only for familial relations and is often considered rude or patronising to use outside of these contexts. There are in addition a series of honorifics stemming from the "-n" form. There are many nuances in the honorifics of Meó.

Guardian Deity Base form Maternalistic form Paternalistic form
Akya kyan kyava kyadi
Amako (m)akon mava madi
Akhe khen kheva khedi
Amiru min miruva mirudi
Aahko ahkɨn ahkɨva ahkodi

Vocabulary

Most vocabulary derives from the Proto-Meo-Succlythian Language, though much of the vocabulary traces its origin to the Fertile Tongue, especially words related to the ocean, and later through Htaevic influence much of the sophisticated vocabulary of Meó comes from languages derived from the fertile tongue (cf. English and French/Latin).

Meó Word Meó Meaning Fertile Tongue Root
ntyu ocean nityū
syum bay kasyūm
tyu beach creek tyua
ramɨ island rama
kunkɨ riptide kūnka
saurelan sand sārilan
hraulɨ beach sand irālu
hliulɨ reef ulīla
tauzɨ lagoon (rarely; bay) tausau
kya region khya
zhanɨ canal asyanu