Oekin language

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Oekin is spoken by the aquatic race native to the lakes and rivers of the Minwan Basin to the northwest of the Last Continent. It is poorly understood and often even denied the status of a language by many humans due to being physically unpronounceable by the more dominant species. The anthropologist Miriam Braun spent decades with a Oekin tribe to codify its grammar and propose a method of translation between the two species, but due to political and cultural tensions between humans and Oekinel it has not been widely accepted apart from by a handful of diplomats.

Despite general opinion of it, Oekin is in reality a number of separate dialects, some of which are on the verge of differentiating into their own languages, though tribes are being forced together in recent years and many dialects are dying out. Described here is the most prominent Oekin dialect, Rieliko (Smallnose).

The common name and adjective for the language and species is Oekin (pronounced /wekɪn/ by Braun), as is the word for a single Oekin individual. The plural, used to refer to multiple individuals and Oekin cultures is oekinel (oekinits refers to two individuals), although other species use Oekin for both the singular and plural.


Miriam Braun's final paper before her death outlined a suggestion for a phonetic transliteration standard that would easily replace Oekin phonemes with human ones that could be recognized by a trained Oekin ear, or vice-versa by a human trained in the standard. Although this work has been largely dismissed, Braun's phonetic equivalents will be included here along with descriptions of Oekin vocalizations, as will probable graphemes suggested for an orthographic system.


Grapheme Oekin Braun
F Affricative puff of air produced by an incomplete closure of the front jowls over the bottom teeth and quick release. [f]
H Glottal sound, similar to human phoneme. [h]
C, K A repeatable click produced at the back of the mouth. [k]
T Ingressive sucking noise similar to CH but produced towards the front of the mouth with the tongue tip. [t]
L Growl produced at the back of the mouth. [ɫ]
R Rolling growl. [r]
M Placeless nasal. [m]
N Nasal produced with the tongue flat across oral articulators. [n]
S Coronal hiss. [s]
SH Dorsal hiss [ʃ]
CH Ingressive noise produced by running the flat tongue back over oral articulators. Described as a "nursing" sound. [tʃ]
TL Probably a coarticulated dorsal growl and coronal ingressive. [tɬ]
TS Coarticulated coronal ingressive and a nasal fricative-like sound. [ts]


Oekin vowels are very high-pitched and difficult to distinguish to human ears. It's more useful to visually observe tongue and jaw placement.

Oekin has a pitch-accent system that places either a high pitch on the first syllable and a low pitch on the second, or vice-versa. These accents are more important for social reasons than for comprehension, as whether a lexical item uses the first or second accent type varies greatly between even otherwise similar dialects.

Vowel length is phonemic.


Grapheme Oekin Braun
A Tongue low and back; jaw wide. [a]
E Lips spread, jaw close, tongue center. [e]
I Mouth barely open. Tongue probably anterior. [i]
O Sounds like an M. Lips pursed. [u]


Grapheme Oekin Braun
AI, AE Jaws close and lips stretch during production. [aɪ]
AO Jaws close from wide position and lips purse during production. [aʊ]
IE, IA Jaw opens and lips relax during production. [iə]
IO Lips purse from stretched position during production [ju]
OE Lips and jaws relax from pursed position. [we]
  • Although front-front have variable spellings, the only back-front diphthong in the language, OE, defaults to that spelling, even when formed by contact between O and a front vowel other than E.
  • Vowel length is phonemic.


Syllables can be V, VC, CV, CLV, CVC, or CLVC.


Oekin is relatively synthetic, postspecifying, with an SVO/VS word order (active-stative), four cases, three numbers, and two grammatical genders.


  • Noun>Verb: -yor
  • Verb>Active Person:-ti


Gender, number, and case are expressed in a single bound morpheme.

Masculine Feminine Dual Plural
Ergative/Absolutive ~ ~ ~its ~el
Dative re~ lie~ rel~its lier~el
Genitive ~alo ~ano ~ama ~am
Instrumental co~ lo~ coe~its lor~el

Possessive Suffixes

Gloss Suffix
1 singular ~e
dual ~etot
plural ~echio
2 singular ~o
dual ~tonet
plural ~tsio
3 masculine ~ail
feminine ~om
dual ~aral
plural ~otsis
  • Possessive suffixes precede any case suffixes.


Ergative/Absolutive Dative Instrumental
1 male lie relie colie
female me lime lome
dual iots reliots coets
plural echiol liechiol lorechiol
2 male lo roe coe
female moe lio loo
dual tonets reltonet coetonet
plural tsiol liertsio lortsio
3 masculine ail reil coel
feminine oem liem loem
dual aratl relatl coetl
plural otsits liertsits lortsits

Other Nominal Affixes

Gloss Affix
Diminutive ~iko
Intensifier ~aro


Oekin inflects for aspect (progressive, completed, contemplative), mood (conditional, potential, causative), person/gender/number, and voice (active, passive). The initial two inflections take the form of an infix before the first nuclear vowel, while the latter two are combined in a suffix.

Aspect and Mood

The following are infixes before the first nuclear vowel of a root. These infixes are also particles as inflections of "to be" (ar).

Progressive Completed Contemplative
Indicative ~ier~ ~el~ ~ierin~
Conditional ~iaf~ ~am~ ~iafin~
Potential ~(l)oem~ ~(l)of~ ~(l)oemin~
Causative ~(r)iech~ ~(r)is~ ~(r)iechin~

Ar, like other verbs, also agrees in terms of number, but not gender:

  • A dual subject places the suffix -a on the copula, and
  • A plural subject places the suffix -ot on the copula.


Verbs agree with the intransitive subject or the transitive object.

Active Passive
1 singular ~e ~en
dual ~eto ~eton
plural ~echio ~echion
2 singular ~o ~on
dual ~one ~onen
plural ~(i)o ~(i)on
3 masculine ~(a)i ~(a)ilen
feminine ~(o)i ~omen
dual ~ara ~aran
plural ~ot ~otsin

Agents of passive verbs are preceded by the particle fe.

Negative is an immediate prefix maich-


Adjectives follow the noun they modify. They agree with its gender or number with a suffix.

Noun Class Suffix
Masculine ~l
Feminine ~m
Dual ~r
Plural ~r

Suffix ~m also derives an adverb.



Ergative/Absolutive Dative Instrumental
masculine mi me me
feminine mi mo mo
dual tle tle tle
plural re re re

This is the proximal paradigm. The distal demonstrative is formed with a suffixed -n in the case of the masculine and dual, -t in the case of the feminine, and -s in the case of the plural.


Base-10. Follows noun. Ordinal derived using adjective suffix on final morpheme.

Arabic Oekin
1 mel (masc), men (fem)
2 tlo
3 crie
4 hof
5 colits
6 tsa
7 sho
8 ain
9 mio
10 crens
11 men crens
20 crestlo
30 crescrie
100 aomentli
200 aotlotli
222 tlo crestlo aotlotli


English Oekin
And him
From hoer
Here laer
Or le
There tsaer
Which, If, As shai

Open Class



Funerary Devotion

Given at birth, taken at death.
The red gives, the red takes away.
Glory to the mother who gave
Respect to her Earth through worthy battle.

Taren lofatlin, tomaren loshon.
Tierar amockene, tieromar amockene.
Rattol liemotsin ioke fiortin
Telar me liecaila cocaertac fracarom.

The Tower of Babel (Genesis 11: 1-9)

  1. Now the whole earth had one language and the same words.
    Mac caila room hiraritoe shiftsit mel him ranmeel arikiar.
    (Now the entire earth had one language and the same words.)
  2. And as people migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there.
    Him oekinel iriorot clicherits loroel tlaar, him moerel hirishaot reShinar, him siriesel tsaer.
    (And people made a migration via eastern waters, and they found land in Shinar, and they lived there.)
  3. And they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly." And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar.
    Him miramolot liemoekin enestim: "Hatar, chetiaretseto oerelchirets, him feroolicsamotsin room." Him hiraritot moerelchirets liecai.
    (And they said to the one next to them, Come, we will make building materials, and they will be burned completely. And they had building materials for stone.)
  4. Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth."
    Him miramolot, "Hatar, chetiaretseto elsis him moerelsis liehaiho, him chetiaretseto aila eliot, le clicherits iriorotsin liecaila room."
    (And they said, "Come, we will make a village and a building to the sky, and we will make a name for ourselves, or we will be made a migration across the whole earth."")
  5. And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of man had built.
    Him Tsiesa hirataroe laam fiasoe oelsis him moerelsis shai ionielechio chiriaretsot.
    (And God came down to see the village and building that our children built.)
  6. And the Lord said, "Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them.
    Him Tsiesa miramol, "Fias, arot ekinel men, him haritot hiftsit mel, him aroe aosem hoeterotsis. Him maichotsi shai fiolot ielarai maichenmialo liertsits."
    (And God said, "Look, they are one people, and they have one language, and this is only their beginning. And nothing that they want will be impossible for them.)
  7. Come, let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another's speech."
    Hatar, crieloleto laam him achieloeftileto shiftsitotsis, him oekinano enestim mirinamol maichieloecarim."
    (Come, we will go down and we will confuse their language, and cause them to not understand the speech of the person next to them.)
  8. So the Lord dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city.
    Maichamoloe, Tsiesa shiriotoe otsits liecaila room hoer tsaer, him maichiriaretsot oelsis.
    (As she said that, God split the people around the whole world from there, and they didn't build the village.)
  9. Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth. And from there the Lord dispersed them over the face of all the earth.)
    Shaichiotoe, ailaom iraroe Fafel, Tsiesa aichoefotiloe cailaama room shiftsit. Him hoer tsaer iriorotsin clicherits liecaila room fe Tsiesa.
    (As she split, its name was Babel, because God confused the whole world's language. And from there they were made to migrate across the whole world by God.)

Hávamál 93-95


No man should ever ridicule
another’s love.
The lure of a beautiful woman often snares
the wise while leaving the fool.

A man should not heap abuse
on another for something
that happens to many men.
Powerful love makes fools of heroes and sages.

Only your own mind knows what is dearest
to your heart. You must counsel yourself.
There is no worse illness for a sage
than losing love for himself.

Crie cresmie

Oekininca maifoonai maichashi
Sani retlmalo etnal.
Tloruna shimano loensiem tsoeminaacoe otsin
caroekin him loeminafiinoe taftaretl.

Hof cresmie
Retl maifoonai maichashi
Setl etna rof menran
Shai noehoi lieretl lautsi.
Sani fracarom riechoe natakisel him caroekinel liertaftaretlel.

Colits cresmie
Loemiso aosem roemistirai shai sanion tsetl
Rerinaoto. Sierinustuscuto lo.
Maicharai fiefoch fiel tser liecaroekin
Shai sloemaon sani relie.