Rën ([ɾɛn]) is a language spoken by the people of the same name. The lexeme Rën can refer to any being and is the only animate noun in the lexicon. The language is also unique in that it lacks referential pronouns, instead preferring to use morphological markers to label and refer back to persons in discourse. This has philosophical significance to the people, who believe that all beings in the universe are only individuals on an illusory level, and in truth are reflections of the same single divinity, known as Rën. As a result of this and its polysynthesis, the language ideally come across as highly deliberate and philosophical.
The Rën script is an abugida, written in cursive, with the base consonants written first from left to right, and then the vocalic and other diacritics written over them, starting from the right.
Note that ‹h› has both a diacritic and a consonant glyph. The consonant is used in onset position, while the diacritic is used elsewhere. However, exceptions to this exist, such as for prefixes ending in a pharyngeal, ie the word ihaiacikëo would be written with ‹h› as a diacritic.
There exists another character that is treated as a consonant glyph, which is a monogram of the word Rën:
Consonants carry an inherent schwa that is deleted when the consonant may be analyzed in coda position, or when followed by a nuclear vowel.
|Plosive||Voiceless||p ‹p›||t ‹t›||k ‹k›|
|Voiced||b ‹b›||d ‹d›|
|Nasal||m ‹m›||n ‹n›|
|Fricative||Voiceless||f ‹f›||θ ‹z›||s ‹s›||ɕ ‹c›||x ‹x›||ħ ‹h›|
|Voiced||ʑ ‹j›||ɣ ‹g›|
|High||i ‹i›||u ‹u›|
|Mid||ɛ ‹ë›||ə ‹e›||ɔ ‹o›|
The pharyngeal fricative following a vowel may be analyzed as a fricative in coda position; or lengthening, pharyngealization, or laryngealization (creaky voice) of the vowel idiolectically.
- ‹g› does not occur word-initially (historically an intervocalically voiced /k/, later lenited).
- Oral voiced plosives do not occur word-finally. In cases that they otherwise would, they carry with them their inherent schwa.
- No limitation at this point on which consonants may form the onset or coda, but they must be singular. Inherent schwa is used to break up illegal consonant clusters.
- Regressive nasal assimilation (place).
- Pitch/stress is not phonemic but falls on the alternating syllable of a word. Stressed schwa is marked in poetry to point out alliterative quality.
In its infancy I am attempting to keep Rën relatively simple and regular. There was a case system, which I have nixed, seeing it unnecessary in the synthetic system in which it exists, being reduced now to a single oblique case. However, a few grammatical abnormalities will be kept:
- A lack of tense-aspect. The strong monistic philoosphy on which Rën is built views time as flexible and illusory; everything that happens is in the present.
- A default passive voice in a transitive verb, with marked active, making zero-subject sentences easier, as well as flexibility between traditional verbs and adjectives.
Ren lacks animate nouns in a general sense, instead identifying descriptors of a referent. It differentiates between descriptors using extended obviation, with animate referents identified by the vowel quality on a syllable in the stem, along with marking for inanimate referents, impersonal referents, and omnipresent referent (Rën). Referential morphemes are vocalic infixes, with their position specific to the stem. The stem Rën is the only true animate noun in the language and is used to refer to any animate individual, group of individuals, existence at large, and, most particularly, God. This fits with the monistic ideal of the language speaker, which does not acknowledge an inherent separation between individuals. It also allows for highly fluid storytelling without a necessary subject.
Following are the fixed referential infixes. Animate infixes may be any sequence of non-schwa vowels or semivowels, optionally ending in an obstruent — V[V/O] — the speaker chooses in their idiolect or dialect. Some dialects may disallow ‹ë›, semivowels, or obstruents.
In some dialects, and frequently in poetry, the inanimate infix is always pronounced even in places where schwa would normally be deleted, is stressed, and is latinized as ‹é›.
The definite, as well as the distal, are a suffix -n, though uncommonly used except when referring to an earlier or unclear subject.
Words lack any tense or aspect. A mood system exists as a series of suffixes.
- Indicative (it is dropped.) -- unmarked
- Conditional (if it is dropped...) -- ide
- Hypothetical (it will...even if it is dropped.) --
- Jussive (it should be dropped.) -- ima
- Energetic (it must be dropped.) -- mëa
- Optative (it is desirous that it be dropped.) -- wile
- Potential (it may be dropped.) -- cin
- Inferential (it seems to have been dropped.) -- ic
- Dubious (it might have been dropped.) -- made
Basis - ila-
Causative - bha-
Comparative - fas-
Complementizer - ih-
Interrogative (particle) - ka
Inverse (Active Voice) - a-
Negative - ri-
Oblique - -z or -iz following /s/, /z/
Reciprocal - pai-
Reflexive - pes-
Similitude - zali-
Superlative - fehl-
Verbal Noun - -cen
No man should ever ridicule
Fehlmorje ahra acahn iara riacian
SUP-dear.IN mind.1 AC-know.1 mind.3 NEG-AC-know.3
|One1 should not be ridiculed|
For one's1 love
One1 should not be abused
It is dearest, one1 is a mind, one1 knows; another3 is mind, another3 does not know,
Sabhé (There is Nothing)
|There is no Rën|
There is no time
There is no virtue
Rën is benevolent
Universal Declaration of Human Rights
|All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience
and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
|Kelrënah fazah mufahta jahfente resinze sajze.
Dahna keranaz samraz.
Piaiwahrimeh ecasiz Rënah.
|every-Rën.1 give_birth.1 free.1 equal.1 dignity.IN-OBL right.IN-OBL \
give.1 reason.IN-OBL conscience.IN-OBL \
REC-act-JUS unity.IN-OBL Rën.1
|Every Rën is born, is free, is equal, in dignity, in rights.|
They are given reason, conscience.
They should act to one another with unity, the Rën.
|There once was a wren who had made his nest in a garage. He lived there with his family. One day he and his mate went out to look for some food to bring their chicks, leaving the young birds all alone.
After a while the father wren returned home.
“What’s been going on here?” he asked. “Has something happened? You children look scared to death!”
“Dad!” they said, “a big monster just came by. He looked so scary! He glared into our nest with his big eyes! That scared us to death!”
“I see,” he said, “Where did he go?”
“He went that way!”
“You children wait here,” said the father wren, “I’m going to teach him a lesson he won’t soon forget! Don’t worry, children. I’ll get him.” So he chased after the monster.
He turned a corner and saw a lion walking along, but the wren wasn’t afraid. He landed right on the lion’s back and started shouting at him. “Who on earth do you think you are coming to my nest and scaring my children to death?!”
The mountain lion didn’t listen to the wren though, but just kept on walking.
That annoyed the wren even more, and he started really shouting at the mountain lion. “You have no reason coming to my nest, and if you come back,” he said, “then you’ll really live to regret it! I don’t want to get violent,” he said lifting one of his legs into the air, “but I’ll break your back in a heartbeat!”
Having said that, he flew back to his nest.
“There’s nothing to worry about now, children,” he said, “I’ve taught him a lesson. He won’t be coming back.”
|Rënahz, sagijun, hahrëzu bige kerëjiz. Bhidah rënësiz. Uwiaz, abilwë, axojwë bhojanze dësna, fëslet ikësli, nësri pësloka.
"Nin xen?" Ahswali. "Pëslokic egrëstolze!"
Kogësne hax. "Wagihjaigi fikujai! Asëidpailok! Wajaikoz ataizam hësrëzu! Pëslok egrëstolze!"
"Ah," atahdu. "Wapni jaina?"
"Zësiraima," atahdu. "Saixa paziz rianansai! Ricalëskima, uwës. Iaiaikibhe." Pitcai.
Ruxnez jahna, taizam: warënai, wamaixlabhe, wamaixaci, wadhaile, saire; ripahlok. Zairihz zaminah iacikai: "Nin rënaiz, aiuna hahrëzuz uwës pëslok egrëstolze?!"
Risahnaë, saire, saire.
Fastiahaj, fasiacikai: "Rikairana aiunaz hahrëzuz. Wailatidhe," atahdu, "pajaidim! Riëhisafahwile..." ahswali, latah hax, "zairih tirëh zanze!"
"Ricalëskima, umës," ahswali. "Saixa paziz. Riwailat."
|Rën.1-OBL, small-wing.IN, nest.1 build.IN garage.IN-OBL \ live.1 Rën.2.OBL \ love.3-OBL AC-two.4, AC-search.4 food.IN-OBL give.2, leave.2 alone.2, young.2 frighten.2
wait.2, wait.2 ... return.1
"What happen.IN?" say.1 \ "frighten.2-INF cry.2-OBL!"
beak.2 raise.IN \ "evil.5 come.5! AC-very-frighten.5! large-eye.5-OBL AC-look.5 nest-2! frighten.2 cry.2-OBL!"
"Ah," say.1 \ "Where go.5?"
"wait.2-JUS," say.1 \ "teach.5 lesson.IN-OBL NEG-AC-forget.5! NEG-worry.2-JUS, love.2. punish.5" chase.5
corner.IN-OBL come.1, see.5: large-Rën.5, large-claw.5, large-tail.5, walk-5 \ NEG-frighten.1 \ back.5-OBL land.1 shout.5: "What Rën.5.OBL, come.5 nest.1-OBL love.2 frighten.2 cry.2-OBL?!"
NEG-listen.1, walk.5, walk.5
COMP-annoy.1, COMP-shout.5: "NEG-reason.5 come.5-OBL nest.1-OBL \ return.5-COND," say.1, "regret.5! NEG-violent.1-OPT ..." say.1, foot.1 raise.IN, "back.5 break.IN second.IN-OBL!"
"NEG-worry.2-JUS, love.2," say.1 \ "teach.5 lesson.1-OBL \ NEG-return.5"
|There was a Rën1, with small wings, his nest built in a garage. He lived with others2. With his lover, the two of them searched for food they2 were given, who were left alone, young and frightened.
They2 waited, and waited, and he returned.
"What happened?" he said. "You seem frightened to crying!"
They raised their beaks. "It was evil! And it was very frightening! With its large eyes it looked at our nest! We were frightened to crying!"
"Ah," he said. "Where did it go?"
"In that direction it went!"
"You should wait," he said. "It will be taught a lesson it will not forget! You should not worry, love. It will be punished."
To a corner he came, and it was seen: It was a large Rën, had large claws and a large tail, and was walking. He was not frightened. On its back he landed and shouted at it: "What is it to you that you come to my nest and frighten them whom I love to crying?!"
It did not listen, and walked, and walked.
He was more annoyed, and shouted more at it: "You do not have a reason for you to come to my nest. If you return," he said, "you will regret it! I do not want to be violent..." he said and his foot was raised, "your back will be broken in a second!"
To his nest he flew.
"You should not worry, love," he said. "It was taught a lesson. It will not return."