Naming & Naming Languages

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spanick
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Naming & Naming Languages

Post by spanick »

eldin raigmore wrote: 08 Oct 2020 19:39 Would you like to start a “naming languages” thread, or keep it just to Yemya?
I thought this was an interesting idea and deserved its own thread. I've seen a thread or two about naming conventions in conlangs in the Conworlding subforum.

This thread is a place to discuss naming conventions used in your conlang for people, places, objects, countries, etc. It's also a place to talk about naming languages, conlangs which are developed only for the purpose of naming things and which generally lack substantial grammar.
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eldin raigmore
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by eldin raigmore »

I saw a YouTu.be worldbuilding video about place names in two bordering countries.
Theoretically it should work even in more countries.

You have the civilized resource-rich highly-habitable part of your continent (or sometimes island) divided into probably two linguistic (cultural?) areas; Youristan and Theirania.

For each of them you come up with a list of 8 or 12 or 20 first syllables and 8 or 12 or 20 last syllables and 4 or 6 or 8 middle syllables. Try not to let there be much overlap between Yourish and Theirese.

For each of several places on Your side, roll an appropriate die to pick one of Your first syllables and another to pick one of Your last syllables. Randomly decide whether to also roll a die to pick one of Your middle syllables.

Do the same for each of several random places on Their side, only using Their syllables, and maybe Their dice.

Now you have two collections of names that sound like they go together.

If you notice that some few names on one side sharing a syllable seem to be attached to places sharing some feature — say, hills or valleys or wooded areas or grassy areas or plains or rivers or lakes — decide that that’s meaningful and redistribute the names to reinforce that.

If a river runs through or along both sides, you might want Your name for that river and Their name for it to sound similar.
Say the name of the river is Foo Bar in both Yourish and Theirese. Maybe for Them Foo is a proper name borrowed from Old Yourish, and Bar is Theirese for “River”, so They feel like They’re calling it “Foo River”. But for You, Foo is Yourish for “River”, and Bar is a proper name borrowed from Classical Theirese; so Your people think You’re calling it “River Bar”.
Or something.

If the map isn’t that big or detailed, you might have six or eight first syllables and six or eight last syllables and four or six middle syllables on each side. Or even four or six first syllables and four or six last syllables and just one middle syllable which will randomly be included or omitted.

Essentially, for Them and Theirania and Theirese at least, you’ll assign the names first, then figure out what if anything they mean, then rearrange them to preserve that. On Your side you may eventually want a more extensive language, especially if you’re planning anthroponyms as well as toponyms.

....

I think that the worldbuilder and language-constructor may want some placenames that are two words long, or four syllables long. If so you can still randomize them by varying the method I saw.

I’m sorry I can’t give credit to the Youtuber whose video I saw. I don’t even know if they thought up this method.
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by eldin raigmore »

Speaking of toponyms and hydronyms:
Misr, Missouri, Mizu, and Mysore, among others, sound a bit alike, though they’re not three of them from the same language family, and no two from the same language.
Is there any relationship between them, or three of them, or even two of them?
Are there other placenames or hydronyms or names, similar to some of these?
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All the -nyms: place, language, and ethnicity names

Post by silvercat »

How do you come up with endonyms for the language and people? I'm pretty sure like 90% of ethnonyms mean 'the people', but does anybody have some interesting examples, either natural or conlang?
my pronouns: they/them or e/em/eirs/emself
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Re: All the -nyms: place, language, and ethnicity names

Post by eldin raigmore »

Hey, silvercat!

Why didn’t you put your post on
This
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7363
Pre-existing thread, which already has one answer (probably not the best answer) to at least one of your questions?

If it’s alright with you I’m sure a mod will be willing to merge your thread-founding post here, into that thread!
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by eldin raigmore »

Hi, @silvercat!
Would you rather merge this
viewtopic.php?p=304838#p304838
post of yours into the pre-existing thread here?
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Re: All the -nyms: place, language, and ethnicity names

Post by silvercat »

I thought there was something distinguishing them, but I don't remember what now, so probably they should be merged
my pronouns: they/them or e/em/eirs/emself
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by Khemehekis »

The Txabao are a nomadic desert tribe. As a result, I call them Txabao, which means "(the) travelers" in their native language.
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by spanick »

Ho-Chunk (Siouan tribe from Wisconsin and now also in Nebraska, which is an Anglicization of Hoocąk) is usually translated as “sacred voice.” hoo means ‘voice’ but -cąk is a little less clear. cąąk actually means outdoors. I doubt there’s much connection to that word. The suffix -cąk however does appear in the word wakącąk ‘sacred’. However, it’s the first morpheme waką that actually means ‘sacred’, so I’m not sure how this etymology actually plays out.

They also have a more complete name for themselves: Hoocąk waazija haci ‘the sacred voice [people] of the pines’ (literally ‘sacred voice [people] pines dwell’).

The word for ‘person’ is wąąkšik and generally is only used for Indians, but not exclusively Hoocąk.
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Re: Naming & Naming Languages

Post by Reyzadren »

Names do not mean anything in my conlang. The name of the language refers only to the language itself in the conworld, and is known to have originated to show its phonotactics.
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