Slovianko - a super-easy language

Joined: September 19th, 2010, 10:55 am

May 17th, 2016, 9:11 pm #1

Since the Slovianto project seems not to be developed any more, I've decided to make out another language that would be super-easy for non-Slavic people as a first step in getting to know the wonderful Slavic languages world.
I'm going to make this language just in a bit more naturalistic way than Slovianto proposed it.
I've made some lessons on Memrise. If you'd like to participate with me in that project or have any suggestions / ideas, just let me know.
Glasovanje je čista gluposť. Voting is a pure nonsense.
Pi?em slovjansky. I write Slovianski.

http://www.conlangs.fora.pl/index.php
http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/dynami ... onary.html
http://dict.interslavic.com/index.jsp
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Joined: April 20th, 2016, 9:55 pm

May 18th, 2016, 5:47 am #2

I just started your course. That is good that you are working on this. I have enjoyed the Slovianto courses on Memrise and now I have been starting to learn Slovak as well. I like the direction you seem to be taking. My suggestion to consider is adding definite and indefinite articles to any language for foreigners if there are no declensions. Maybe have a simple definite article language marker like te, or use suffixes (and a hyphen to add emphasis) in a Bulgarian style. Can I suggest for "the": ten, ta, to, and ti? And use the demonstrative pronouns toj, ta, to, te? I am not sure how true but some colloquial dialects are using a similar style, such as Sorbian?
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Joined: September 19th, 2010, 10:55 am

May 18th, 2016, 6:00 am #3

Well... actually there is no need to do that distinction.
1. Yes : Bulgarian (+ Macedonian) uses definite / undefinite (seems it's an influence of Greek or Latin) definite articles (what interesting put as a suffix after a noun !),
2. But it is not the situation we've got in the rest of the Slavic world :
there are no such special words as English articles a or the in all other Slavic languages (take Polish, Russian, Slovak or Sorbian, you name it)
3. Yes, we can use sometimes words like ten ( / *toj ), ta, to instead of "the" while translating from English or German.
4. But you have to realize that in general they are just what they are : demonstrative pronouns for 'this / these' (or 'that / those').
Glasovanje je čista gluposť. Voting is a pure nonsense.
Pi?em slovjansky. I write Slovianski.

http://www.conlangs.fora.pl/index.php
http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/dynami ... onary.html
http://dict.interslavic.com/index.jsp
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Joined: April 20th, 2016, 9:55 pm

May 18th, 2016, 5:04 pm #4

I was thinking in terms of creating a new pidgin Slavic language but that doesn't seem necessary. Well, I encourage you to continue with the course that you have started. My other suggestion is, if you have the desire to pursue this, is to turn Slovianko in future lessons into a dialect of Interslavic (as a foreign language for non-Slavic people). Then people could practice and learn the vocabulary and also all the declensions of Interslavic. I think Slovianko and Interslavic could be great learning tools. I have been studying Slovianto and it has helped me now that I am starting to learn Slovak with the basic vocabulary.
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Joined: October 23rd, 2007, 9:20 pm

May 18th, 2016, 11:13 pm #5

bandziol20 wrote:Since the Slovianto project seems not to be developed any more,
Well, how much is there to develop, really? The purpose of Slovianto is not to be pretty or elegant, just to have no more grammar than is strictly necessary. It's not meant for serious written texts, but for communication on a very basic level. If it's primitive, that's because it's supposed to be that way. A bit like how the wee bairns (or absolute beginners) talk: "Ja lubić piękny kobieta". Any Pole would understand this, now wouldn't he?

Mind, Slovianto is basically what Slovianski-P was originally meant to be (before it was "bulgarized", that is), i.e. using infinitives and the like.

But I've been thinking a bit about Slovianto as well, recently. What I am actually thinking of is subdividing it into levels:
* Slovianto I – no gender, no cases, all plurals -i, all adjectives also -i, infinitives only
* Slovianto II - short explanation about gender, still no cases, m/f plural -i, n plural -a, adjectives -i/-a/-o/-e, one simple conjugation
* Slovianto III - same as Slovianto II, but now with cases. I'm thinking of the same system of four declensions that Slovianski used to have in the beginning (before soft consonants, y, o/e rule etc. were introduced).

This Slovianto III would pretty much be reinventing Slovianski-N, though. Mind you, I'm quite happy with what Interslavic has become, but it's not quite what we had in mind when we started Slovianski - exactly ten years ago a few days from now (see http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/slovianski_2006.html)

In addition, I'm currently working on a set of basic words.
wrote:I've decided to make out another language that would be super-easy for non-Slavic people as a first step in getting to know the wonderful Slavic languages world.
I'm going to make this language just in a bit more naturalistic way than Slovianto proposed it.
I've made some lessons on Memrise. If you'd like to participate with me in that project or have any suggestions / ideas, just let me know.
To be honest, I would strongly advise against starting any new versions of the language, and especially against making courses for them. IMO that's the last thing we need. Mind, Slovianto was never intended to become a real language of any kind, but merely a dumbed-down sort of Slovianski for tourists and the like, people we don't want to teach gender and cases simply because they don't need them.

However, I'm more than willing to discuss possible changes in Slovianto. I'm not particularly attached to it, although I can see its use.


Človeku, ktoromu je trudno s soboju samim, verojetno to? bude trudno s vsim inim.

Slovianski - Словянски - Словјански
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Joined: September 19th, 2010, 10:55 am

May 19th, 2016, 5:37 am #6

Hi Jan, thanks for coming. A lot of time.
IJzeren Jan wrote:Well, how much is there to develop, really?
I don't know, if you know, tell me about it. For me it's not developed enough. (But to what extense it should be ? Only God knows. Man won't know until he gets through.)
wrote:The purpose of Slovianto is not to be pretty or elegant, just to have no more grammar than is strictly necessary. It's not meant for serious written texts, but for communication on a very basic level. If it's primitive, that's because it's supposed to be that way. A bit like how the wee bairns (or absolute beginners) talk: "Ja lubić piękny kobieta". Any Pole would understand this, now wouldn't he?
Well... you wanna bet ?
I think some people like to learn foreign languages because of how they look and how they sound. I think total ignoring of that aspect is quite problematic : Why should I use a language that it seems to be so ugly, clumsy, forgotten by God etc. ? And people want to talk with run away screaming ? What it would say about me if I try ? Let me see how it sounds :
wrote:a dumbed-down sort of Slovianski for tourists and the like, people we don't want to teach gender and cases simply because they don't need them.
My point is that esthetics in language matters, and improves effectiveness of learning.
(It seems to me, that someone (you guys) come to the conclusion that if only you don't care about Slovianto, the language would be easy just like that, as if "of its nature". IMO: it wouldn't. It would be stay rather dark and gloomy monster hidden in the cave.)
That's is why Slovianko is nothing such you've listed describing Slovianto. It's for the people who would like to learn Slavic languages of their music, but find it very hard at the first glance for grammar, cases etc.
As for its purpose, I would say, Slovianko is a first step aid with learning Slavic languages, to grasp the general concept of them and... to prepare for their beauty (Slovianski included ).
In short : say NO to "robot-Slovio-talk" or "damned primitive tourists".
wrote:To be honest, I would strongly advise against starting any new versions of the language, and especially against making courses for them.
I was expecting you would rather oppose it and thanks for your honesty with me. The cricumstances, however, were such that I was asked for checking the Slovianto course on Memrise and my heart went down with it just as I've looked what was like.
wrote:But I've been thinking a bit about Slovianto as well, recently. What I am actually thinking of is subdividing it into levels:
* Slovianto I – no gender, no cases, all plurals -i, all adjectives also -i, infinitives only
* Slovianto II - short explanation about gender, still no cases, m/f plural -i, n plural -a, adjectives -i/-a/-o/-e, one simple conjugation
* Slovianto III - same as Slovianto II, but now with cases. I'm thinking of the same system of four declensions that Slovianski used to have in the beginning (before soft consonants, y, o/e rule etc. were introduced).
Quite interesting what you're talking about. What are the conclusions so far ? Me seems the 2nd level is quite promising, but it's only my intuition.
wrote:In addition, I'm currently working on a set of basic words.
OK, that's interesting.
wrote:However, I'm more than willing to discuss possible changes in Slovianto. I'm not particularly attached to it, although I can see its use.
Since I don't know what exactly you've got in mind and vice versa, I think an honest approach by this moment would be : let's both work on our projects and check out what works.
---
Anyway, I myself declare any help with Slovianto (of whatever case) if you'd like to go on with this project.
Glasovanje je čista gluposť. Voting is a pure nonsense.
Pi?em slovjansky. I write Slovianski.

http://www.conlangs.fora.pl/index.php
http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/dynami ... onary.html
http://dict.interslavic.com/index.jsp
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Joined: September 19th, 2010, 10:55 am

May 19th, 2016, 6:32 am #7

The problem I've got now is about the word 'horse'. Since I use only three fonts : č, š, ž, so there is no ň. So it seems to be preferable to write konj instead of koň.
Now, the problem arises how the plural number should look like. Since there's no i-y, so it seems to me that it should be konji in order to distinguish it from telefoni with a hard end consonant; maybe, you've got other thoughts ?
Glasovanje je čista gluposť. Voting is a pure nonsense.
Pi?em slovjansky. I write Slovianski.

http://www.conlangs.fora.pl/index.php
http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/dynami ... onary.html
http://dict.interslavic.com/index.jsp
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Joined: October 23rd, 2007, 9:20 pm

May 19th, 2016, 1:38 pm #8

bandziol20 wrote:I think some people like to learn foreign languages because of how they look and how they sound. I think total ignoring of that aspect is quite problematic : Why should I use a language that it seems to be so ugly, clumsy, forgotten by God etc. ? And people want to talk with run away screaming ? What it would say about me if I try ? Let me see how it sounds :
Do people like to learn foreign languages because they like the look and sound of them? I dunno, undoubtedly there are some. But in general, people learn languages only because they have to, or at least because it's very practical for them to know them. Slovianto is not meant for language lovers, it's merely there for people who want to be able to make themselves understandable without learning more grammar than it takes to read in ten minutes.
wrote:As for its purpose, I would say, Slovianko is a first step aid with learning Slavic languages, to grasp the general concept of them and... to prepare for their beauty (Slovianski included ).
The problem with aesthetics is that it's always a matter of taste. Besides, the beauty of Russian is something completely different as the beauty of Slovene.
wrote:I was expecting you would rather oppose it and thanks for your honesty with me. The cricumstances, however, were such that I was asked for checking the Slovianto course on Memrise and my heart went down with it just as I've looked what was like.
That's possible, I've taken a short look, but since I am not very familiar with Memrise, I don't really know how it's built up, except for constantly repeating the same few short sentences over and over again. This is not the sort of learning that I like for myself.

The reason I'm opposing the idea of yet another new project within the project is not that I am worried about rivalry or somesuch (as a matter of fact, I always enjoy discovering new projects). It's quite simply that all those different versions of the same language are counterproductive. You are a relative newcomer here, but there have been times when we had Slovianski-N, Slovianski-P, Slovianski-S, Prostij Slovioski, Srednij Slovioski, Polnij Slovioski, Prostoslovjanski, Pidžinoslovjansk, and that was even before Novoslověnsky entered the scene. Frankly, it has been a hell of a job to bring all these things together into a more flexible grammar and orthography. Why? First of all, because it's confusing for potential learners. And secondly, because developing several grammars, several dictionaries, several resources and maintaining several communities is just a terrible waste of time and efforts.

That's also why I always distinguish between Interslavic and Slovianski. Interslavic grammar was made in such way that it Slovianski, Slovioski and Novoslověnsky would fit in (not every detail, but the most important things). I am not particularly happy with every solution myself, but if a few minor adaptions that go against the design principles (for example, -nije instead of -nje, or -sky instead of -ski) could effectively put an end to Novoslověnsky being developed and promoted as a separate norm, then that's a price I'm more than willing to pay.

So the last thing we need at this point, IMO, is any new "norms" that are based on people's different preferences. That's the only reason why I've introduced Naučny Medžuslovjanski, actually, so that everyone can use this grammar and this dictionary and leave out things he doesn't like. This project has been there for ten years now, and discussions about š vs sz vs. sx, or delanje vs. dělańje vs. dielanije, or piat' vs. pet vs. pęť, just keep coming back, even though the conclusion is always known in advance, namely that all options are basically okay and that it's nothing but a matter of taste. NMS was really just meant to put an end to these recurring discussions.

But that said,
wrote:
wrote:But I've been thinking a bit about Slovianto as well, recently. What I am actually thinking of is subdividing it into levels:
* Slovianto I – no gender, no cases, all plurals -i, all adjectives also -i, infinitives only
* Slovianto II - short explanation about gender, still no cases, m/f plural -i, n plural -a, adjectives -i/-a/-o/-e, one simple conjugation
* Slovianto III - same as Slovianto II, but now with cases. I'm thinking of the same system of four declensions that Slovianski used to have in the beginning (before soft consonants, y, o/e rule etc. were introduced).
Quite interesting what you're talking about. What are the conclusions so far ? Me seems the 2nd level is quite promising, but it's only my intuition.
Well, let me start with telling you that the idea of a three-level grammar has been there from the beginning (ca. 2010). The original idea was this:
* a simple level (Slovianski-P, Prostij Slovioski, Pidžinoslovianski), which became Slovianto
* a medium level (Slovianski)
* a more "naučny" level (Novoslověnsky).

Well, Slovianto was done in one Monday afternoon, and except for a few modifications over the years, it hasn't changed much since that time. The trouble was only that Novoslověnsky, as it turned out, didn't really fit for the role as upper level, because whereas its grammar was indeed richer and closer to OCS, it was quite the opposite with phonology and orthography (which were more simplified than Slovianski). That's why I've been concentrating most on the upper level, and it also explains why its phonology and orthography are mostly based on Slovianski, while most of the grammar is based on Novoslověnsky.

It also means that the medium level hasn't really been developed much. The way I see it, it should be something like Slovianski-N used to be in the beginning, i.e. with gender, cases etc., but almost fully regularized and definitely without apostrophes, o/e rule and the like. Basically the thing I called "Slovianto III" in my previous post.
wrote:Since I don't know what exactly you've got in mind and vice versa, I think an honest approach by this moment would be : let's both work on our projects and check out what works.
---
Anyway, I myself declare any help with Slovianto (of whatever case) if you'd like to go on with this project.
Sure, why not?
Človeku, ktoromu je trudno s soboju samim, verojetno to? bude trudno s vsim inim.

Slovianski - Словянски - Словјански
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Joined: April 20th, 2016, 9:55 pm

May 20th, 2016, 3:22 am #9

I would like to see Slovianto III/ Slovianski-N added to the Interslavic language project. Add my vote in favor of that option. I think if an intermediate language level is added then Slovianto is good just the way it is. I think Slovianto I will be unnecessarily simplified. Other people may disagree. It seems from reading comments from people trying to learn Slovianto, they are looking for a structured course because they are starting from scratch with zero Slavic language knowledge. The Memrise practice exercises are helpful in that regard.
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Joined: September 19th, 2010, 10:55 am

May 20th, 2016, 4:07 am #10

wrote:it's merely there for people who want to be able to make themselves understandable without learning more grammar than it takes to read in ten minutes.
I have some doubts whether it's possible with these magic ten minutes (sounds like the Saint Graal taken from Esperanto), but... keep on trying it.
wrote:The way I see it, it should be something like Slovianski-N used to be in the beginning, i.e. with gender, cases etc., but almost fully regularized and definitely without apostrophes, o/e rule and the like. Basically the thing I called "Slovianto III" in my previous post.
Hm... I think I would like to see it first, at least some samples. I think it would be good to test it on Memrise. If it fails, you can always delete it and try once more.
wrote:I would like to see Slovianto III/ Slovianski-N added to the Interslavic language project. Add my vote in favor of that option. I think if an intermediate language level is added then Slovianto is good just the way it is. I think Slovianto I will be unnecessarily simplified.
Well, ok.
(I just wonder in case of Slovianto III, why introduce even 4 declension stuff when the phonology are kept undeveloped. I think there could be a crash, but maybe not... As I've already mentioned I have to see in process.)

---
It's hard me to explain, but my main concern in case of Slovianko is a learning goal (preparing for learning Slovianski or any other Slavic language, broadly speaking), and I define it as :
1. not to oversimplify the grammar, i.e. not introduce mock simplifications, so that those pieces of information first accomplished will be still profitable on the later level of study
2. concentrate on things, other Slavic phenomenas that a student still feel he is speaking Slavic language not any other volapuk, i.e. words that look like Slavic and set in sentences that look like Slavic.
(The closest idea to it as Ijzeren listed would be sth about Slovianto II. )
Glasovanje je čista gluposť. Voting is a pure nonsense.
Pi?em slovjansky. I write Slovianski.

http://www.conlangs.fora.pl/index.php
http://steen.free.fr/interslavic/dynami ... onary.html
http://dict.interslavic.com/index.jsp
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