The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

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Iyionaku
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The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Iyionaku »

What's the longest and the shortest word in your conlang?

To have an opportunity to compare the words properly, here are some "rules":

1) Only lexemes count; if your language is agglutinative or polysynthetic, only lexical entries should be used.
2) Only words that are already in the lexicon can be used; you shouldn't create new formations on the fly just to have an impressive, long word.
3) For the shortest word, only independent words can be used, no clitics or affixes.

I'm gonna start with Yélian:

The longest words in the current Yélian dictionary are, with 16 characters each:

niveatsfròstunʻa [nɨˌʋeːɐt͡sɔ̈stˈunʔɐ] - to be in hibernation mode
futbalaustrálian [ˌɸubɐlaʊ̯sˈtɾaːlɪ̯ɐn] - Australian football

The shortest words in Yélian that are not clitics are u, a generic temporal preposition, and iy (which is only one letter in Yélian), meaning "through".

I'm looking forward to see which crazy words you all have come up with!
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Pabappa
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Pabappa »

Interesting idea. Poswa has many words that are simply CV, but I do have a lexical entry for i "to feel, touch with a body part". Whether it really constitutes a word is open for question, since it changes to /ž-/ in all inflected forms, and to /j/ or /l/ when lexically combined with another word.

Poswa is polysynthetic, yes. The longest word base I have right now is pobbawempas "alliance; soldiers helping each other" or pwimbipubwa "range of a species, series of habitats" but the latter would be shorter according to the rules of Poswa spelling, in which /Cw/ sequences are considered to be single consonants.

In Late Andanese the longest word right now is a tie between huputapupu, "to toddle, walk unsteadily" and tulakiputa "pear". These are almost certainly cognates and I probably created them on the same day.

Late Andanese has many single-character words, but its alphabet is syllabic, so it considers CV sequences to be just as short as single vowels. Examples of single-character morphemes are a "cloud, to hide" and u "leaf". They would be understood given the proper context but cannot be used alone since nearly all Andanese nouns require a classifier prefix.
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Allekanger »

Pabappa wrote:
03 May 2020 12:02
Interesting idea. Poswa has many words that are simply CV, but I do have a lexical entry for i "to feel, touch with a body part". Whether it really constitutes a word is open for question, since it changes to /ž-/ in all inflected forms, and to /j/ or /l/ when lexically combined with another word.

Poswa is polysynthetic, yes. The longest word base I have right now is pobbawempas "alliance; soldiers helping each other" or pwimbipubwa "range of a species, series of habitats" but the latter would be shorter according to the rules of Poswa spelling, in which /Cw/ sequences are considered to be single consonants.

In Late Andanese the longest word right now is a tie between huputapupu, "to toddle, walk unsteadily" and tulakiputa "pear". These are almost certainly cognates and I probably created them on the same day.

Late Andanese has many single-character words, but its alphabet is syllabic, so it considers CV sequences to be just as short as single vowels. Examples of single-character morphemes are a "cloud, to hide" and u "leaf". They would be understood given the proper context but cannot be used alone since nearly all Andanese nouns require a classifier prefix.
I just love all of this. I really want huputapupu and tulakiputa to be cognates.

I think the longest word in Ivook is QKOKLNK akoklanak, which means 'space range'. Although the word HNMEQGSIN hanmeiagsang (uh... 'national protected area'?) was created after I saw the thread, while I was working on the administrative divisions of Uhok. I guess the shortest word is any of the single vowel words: Q a 'then, and, so', O o 'what', U u 'under', E e 'one, person'.

The word for 'space range' written in Ivook abjad:

Image

QKOKLNK
akoklanak

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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Birdlang »

Birdish
u /ʊ/ and ó /o/ are the 2nd and 3rd person singular pronouns. The plurals are uwu and ówó /ʊ.wʊ/ /o.wo/ which aren’t the shortest but are noteworthy for obvious reasons.
Longest
There are a lot of compound words due to the nature of Birdish.
Like
yācyawīngśyamī /jaː.t͝ɕjə.wiŋ.ɕjə.miː/ is an archaic word for airport (ng is considered a single letter). The word êróport is more commonly used though nowadays /eː.ɽo.pɔɻt/
kāwīngśyatômī /kaː.wiŋ.ɕjə.toː.miː/ is an archaic word for airplane. The word jet /d͝ʑɛt/ is used nowadays which is much shorter.
klërpyāk-klërpyûk /kləɻ.pjaːk.kləɻ.pjuːk/ is the name of an avian wing flapping dance.
Ꭓꭓ Ʝʝ Ɬɬ Ɦɦ Ɡɡ Ɥɥ Ɫɫ Ɽɽ Ɑɑ Ɱɱ Ɐɐ Ɒɒ Ɓɓ Ɔɔ Ɖɖ Ɗɗ Əə Ɛɛ Ɠɠ Ɣɣ Ɯɯ Ɲɲ Ɵɵ Ʀʀ Ʃʃ Ʈʈ Ʊʊ Ʋʋ Ʒʒ Ꞵꞵ Ʉʉ Ʌʌ Ŋŋ Ɂɂ Ɪɪ Ææ Øø Ð𠌜 Ɜɜ Ǝɘ

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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by lsd »

I work on a triple S philosophical language (1 Sound=1 Sense=1 Sign) where each sign is a lexeme and where there is no difference between words and text...
So shortest words have 1 sign, longest 289 at this day (according to the biggest text conserved I can find)...

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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Reyzadren »

I shall choose 1 word amongst several word entries that have the same length. Additionally, these are only the words that I have documented irl without counting longer words that may exist ic.

A shortest entry: /az/ (2 graphemes) = is

A longest entry: /'gərdɔʃɔun/ (9 graphemes) = No equivalent in English. Approximately translated to "cube in the sky" or "surreal polyhedron observing us", like these pictures: Cube, Fallen cube, Polyhedron
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Imralu »

The shortest words in Iliaqu are easy:

a (n) something (NOM.3S.NSPEC.INAN)
e (n) something (ACC.3S.NSPEC.INAN)
i (n) someone (ACC.3S.NSPEC.ANIM)
o (v) be an entity, be a thing, be something, exist
u (n) someone (NOM.3S.NSPEC.ANIM)

It's harder for me to search for the longest word in my dictionary. The longet I've just stumbled across now is

manamoxohei plum-headed parakeet, Psittacula cyanocephala (from mana 'parrot', moxo 'face', hei 'warm-coloured')
Glossing Abbreviations: COMP = comparative, C = complementiser, ACS / ICS = accessible / inaccessible, GDV = gerundive, SPEC / NSPC = specific / non-specific, AG = agent, E = entity (person, animal, thing)
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Khemehekis
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Khemehekis »

The shortest words in Kankonian (all one letter long in the Kankonian alphabet):

a to exist; also used to indicate "there is" or "there was", when conjugated
e to be
e in; confined to
o or
o one, you (generic pronoun)
ou nobody, no one

And the longest word:

yabilkarentlasimitlaloisuphustthabfash serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (usually shortened to its initialism yeta testa loil testa)

This is 38 letters in the Roman alphabet, and 35 in the Kankonian alphabet.
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My Kankonian-English dictionary: 65,595 words and counting

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Iyionaku
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Iyionaku »

What do my other, less evolved conlangs do in that aspect?

The longest Caelian words in the dictionary are, with 12 characters each:

siduovokuyv "deal! agreed! settled!" (but you could say this is an inflectional form)
pürnyemilzar "sandwich"

Caelian's shortest words are, with two characters each:

ëd "additionally; plus"
ës "more; Comparative particle"
ëz "and (between nouns)"
"too"
"no"
"not"
öz "too; Elative particle"
ür "exclusive or"

Scrabble players would have fun in this language, I guess.

In Anto, the longest word is nenotiswajse "unnoticed", with 12 characters. The shortest words are a "one", u "silent" and r "to purr"

In Bath'aso, the shortest word is E, the jussive particle. The longest word is hannzħodrusht with 13 characters, meaning "cinema".

And lastly, in Paatherye, the shortest word is ū, a reflexive particle, while the longest word is phījakharsame "to go back; to come back", also with 13 characters.
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Iyionaku
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Iyionaku »

Khemehekis wrote:
05 May 2020 06:59

yabilkarentlasimitlaloisuphustthabfash serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (usually shortened to its initialism yeta testa loil testa)

This is 38 letters in the Roman alphabet, and 35 in the Kankonian alphabet.
Kankonian never ceases to amaze me. Not the fact that you have a 35 characters long word, but the fact that a conlang exists with words for concepts I haven't even heard about in real life.
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Khemehekis »

Iyionaku wrote:
05 May 2020 10:53
Khemehekis wrote:
05 May 2020 06:59

yabilkarentlasimitlaloisuphustthabfash serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (usually shortened to its initialism yeta testa loil testa)

This is 38 letters in the Roman alphabet, and 35 in the Kankonian alphabet.
Kankonian never ceases to amaze me. Not the fact that you have a 35 characters long word, but the fact that a conlang exists with words for concepts I haven't even heard about in real life.
[:D]

I've been put on a number of psychiatric drugs, and am taking Risperdal (risperidone) and Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) as of now. You can read about SNRI's here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serotonin ... _inhibitor

And if you like Kankonian, you might want to sink your teeth into Mark P. Line's Classical Yiklamu.
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Squirrels chase koi . . . chase squirrels

My Kankonian-English dictionary: 65,595 words and counting

31,416: The number of the conlanging beast!

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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Mándinrùh »

Atili has a number of single-letter words:

a: Proximate singular intransitive imperfective of ko "to stand"
e: Relativizer
ë: Complementizer, irrealis marker
i: Inanimate singular possessive pronoun, 1st-person singular intransitive or proximate-object imperfective of ko
o: Proximate singular inanimate-object imperfective of ko
ö: Vocative marker
u: Inanimate plural possessive pronoun, Proximate plural inanimate-object imperfective of ko

The longest word in my Lexicon is kimulotili, which actually means "word." That said, there are longer words using affixes and derivations. I can come up with kimulotiliu "words," but also revkesilzubakalsuu "meanwhile they (obviate) repeatedly write it down."

revke<sil>z-ubakalsuu
write<repeatedly>-OBV/INAN.SIM.PL

Where SIM is the simultaneous aspect, which functions as a limited-scope non-past imperfective in certain constructions.
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Creyeditor
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Creyeditor »

I have to admit that I am not so much a vocabulary guy. But anyway, here they are.

Kobardon
has an indefinite singular object pronoun <o> meaning something like someone, something in the accusative case. The longest roots have maximally five characters because of syllable and root structure constraints. These include roots like:
<frimf> two
<brámp> jump up
<tremb> wild
<trent> godly
<trénd> art.

These roots do not occur in isolation however, they need to be obligatorily inflected. So you could get the nominal singular indefinite form with six letters:
<frimfa> a second one
<brámpa> a jump
<tremba> a wilderness
<trenta> a deity
<trénda> an art

If we include derivational stem forming infixes we could get slightly longer forms, with theoretically up to 11 stem letters and 12 word letters. Usually, you only get up to 7 letters, like in the following examples.

Birárva
b<ir>árv-a
<ABSTR>-love-INDEF.SG
love (as an abstract concept)

Nidagon
ni<da>g-on
<AUG>human-DEF.SG
humanity

Demidai
de-mi<da>i
3SG-exist<AUG>
It is true.

Fádava
fá<da>v-a
nightmare<AUG>-INDEF.SG
a big nightmare

Fátuva
fá<tu>v-a
nightmare<ELA>-INDEF.SG
bigger/biggest nightmare

I know I should not create new words, but this would be one of the longest words if it existed.

Brirabádampa
br<ir><ab>á<da>mp-a
<ABSTR><ACT.NMLZR>jump<AUG>-INDEF.SG
an upsurge
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Re: The longest and the shortest word in your conlang

Post by Curlyjimsam »

Viksen has a few words which consist of just one phoneme: a "one" (number), á "at, to", e "he/she", i "one" (impersonal pronoun), u "I", ai /i/ "oh yes!", au /u/ "same".

The longest word in the lexicon at the moment is tig·wódég·obadu "the Age of Dawn". The longest noncompound word is tuagazjindjin "cosmetician". The longest monomorphemic word is daralayenu "holy scripture" (this is a compound in Imperial Naktic, from which it derives, but the individual morphemes are not transparent in Viksen).
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