líänd-khadár: vampire (lit. “flame-stealer”); mythologically, a malicious, semi-corporeal creature which drains its victims of volition and the capacity for choice, before going on to consume the remainder of their thoughts and memories and leave them empty. In the modern day, considered a metaphor for entropy-as-depression.
caülgyrelef: compromise; agreement in which neither party receives what they want (from tratracalma traülgyr elefí, lit. “least worthless/unfavorable contract”, i.e., a bad deal but the least bad deal possible).
sédelélef: mutually beneficial agreement; agreement in which both parties succeed (from trasédelékith elefí, lit. “mutually pleasing contract”.)
Traditionally, a caülgyref is what you end up with if you are unable to make a sédelélef; which may not be the result of one party being an obstinate idiot, but usually is.
traäzik ulalath: literally “stony ignorance”, (or for the convenience of Tellurian readers, “stone stupid”, even though the backing metaphor is entirely different), the very special kind of stupidity self-inflicted by and on the extremely loyal, be it to contract, person, cause, or necessity, characterized by making extreme deeds and ludicrous plans appear logical, sensible, and sane.
See azkith, “loyalty”, from azik “stone” + ankithel “emotion, passion”.
(Incidentally, for the MLP:FiM watchers among my readers, Tanks for the Memories is pretty much exactly what an episode of traäzik ulalath looks like.)
demév: (from old Cestian deméthír, “wizard”) skilled practitioner, professional, one of notable expertise in a given area.
Casual descriptions of such expertise can be given using tra- compounds; however, various formalizations of these exist both general, such as alathdemév (loremaster), eléfdemév (obligator, “oath-master”), haindemév (warmaster), and mahademév (craftsmaster); and specific to individual professions.
Examples of this latter include alételídemév (pilot, “master of winds”); brandemév (blacksmith, “iron-master”), a specialty of nistrademév (smith, “forge-master”); riandemév (blademaster, meaning by extension a master of the martial arts); sashírdemév (fashionista, “master of glamor”) and leirdaërdemév (manipulator/intriguer/diplomat, “master of mist-games”).
rian: sword; blade used in war.
teirian: (from teir “honor” + rian) The “honorable sword”, the longer first-sword of the eldraeic Two Swords, wielded in the swordsman’s main hand. A traditionally-made teirian is an elongated S-curve five to six feet in length, of which two feet are the hilt, enabling it to be wielded either single-handed (in conjunction with the hanrian) with a lengthy reach, or double-handed with a wide grip. Both the lower edge and the pointward two-thirds of the upper edge are sharpened, as is the acute point, although the teirian is primarily a slashing weapon.
hanrian: (from hanel “useful” + rian) The “useful sword”, the shorter second-sword of the eldraeic Two Swords, wielded in the swordsman’s off-hand for parrying and secondary attacks. 18″ to 22″ long, with a heavy straight blade and a tapered point designed for thrusting attacks, it also serves legionaries as a multiple-purpose blade for non-combat functions.
ka idaseir qané trasunael xasessqár!: “bugger1 the seers!”; common expletive phrase, originating in Jussovy, used to respond to statements of poor odds, predictions of failure or certain death, claims that something is a doomed venture, a suicide mission, impossible, etc., indicating the speaker’s determination to go through with it anyway and trust their qalasír to carry the day.
Curiously enough, this often works.
- This is, of course, an idiomatic translation.
A more literal translation would be “may the seers engage in low-quality/unsatisfactory sex!”
This wasn’t what I intended to post next, but I’m still working on the “fleet carriers” post. In the meantime, have some more words.
So, among the basic words in a language, certainly for chemists, are those for various substances, and this is as true in Eldraeic as it is for any other language.
If we are to begin at the beginning, it would be with the classical elements, which in the Old Empires region were usually held to be six: air, fire (andra), water (alír), wood, metal, and stone (azik). But that is not quite enough to describe anything but what were, in the ancient days, considered the most fundamental substances, it being their combinations that gave rise to all the myriad components of the world.
And so, in the next step down, the first eldraeic alchemists divided substances into airs (gases), clays (“woody earths”, of which there seemed to be rather a lot), crystals (“metallic stones”, likewise), fires, metals, oils (“fiery waters”), salts (“stony waters”), waters, woods, and stones, thus:
- aessoth: a (type of) crystal; any crystalline (to the eye) substance
(from aesa “crystal” + oth “substance, stuff”)
- alíroth: a (type of) water; any watery substance
(from alír “water” + oth)
- azikoth: a (type of) stone; any stony substance
(from azik “rock, stone” + oth)
- claithalíroth: a (type of) oil; any oily substance
(“dark/shadowed water”, from claith “shadow” + alíroth)
- ésaeroth: a (type of) salt; any salt or similar substance
(“many little crystals”; from é [diminutive prefix] + aesa + oth)
- múszikoth: a (type of) clay; any clay-like or earthy substance
(from músel “soft” + azikoth)
- nistraöth: a (type of) metal; any metallic substance
(from nistra “forge” + oth)
- teliroth: a (type of) air; any airy substance, or gas
(from telír “sky” + oth)
- lethroth: a (type of) wood; any woody or fleshy substance
(from leth “life” + oth; note that lethroth includes both wood and meat, as the classical element does)
There is also:
- andradoth: a (type of) fire; any fiery substance
Resulting from the common ancient confusion that fire is an element, rather than a process. Although while not substances, it is still possible to consider various different types of fire (i.e., different combustion reactions) and arguably plasmas as subcategories of andradoth.
To provide a comprehensive list of substances would of course be a virtually endless task, but let’s simply start with the metals, of which there were a pleasantly limited number known in ancient days:
- andralis: uranium (“fire-metal”; it’s warm to the touch)
- arídanis: gold (“sun-metal”; from the color)
- ashínis: silver (“star-metal”)
- brans: iron; also bransael, steel, and telbrans (“sky-iron”), meteoric iron.
- glénis: tin (“key-metal”, so called because it unlocks the potential of other metals, such as copper and lead)
- morins: copper (“red-metal”; from the color)
- púlnónis: lead (“mass-metal”; obviously, it’s heavy)
- traäshínis alír (“star-metal water”): mercury
And there you are. Go forth, and talk about stuff!
lechné: sweat, perspiration; technically, lechné refers to any fluid intentionally used to carry heat away by evaporation, and so cooling water for planetary power reactors, liquid hydrogen coolant used for evaporative hull cooling, and so forth, can all be described as lechné, as well as the original referent, biological secretions used for this purpose.
maland: ash; from mal “past tense” + andra “fire”.
malandazik: cinder, clinker; from maland “ash” + azik “stone”.
syln i-malandazik: cinderpearl; an organic gemstone produced by the fungimals of Resplendent Exponential Vector, primarily from metallic and semiconductive elements in its extensive volcanic ash fields.
The two kinds of night…
ashíëmúr: “starlit night”; the night-half of the cycle in that half of the year in which Súnáris is in opposition to Lumenna, and the sky remains in twilight throughout the night, never becoming truly dark. From ashíël “star” + múrna “night”.
falsamúr: “black night”; the night-half of the cycle in that half of the year in which Súnáris is in conjunction with Lumenna, and the sky grows dark in truth. From falsan “black” + múrna “night”.
…the two natures of power…
arídaäsír: power; specifically, that power which arises from might, the power of lightning and the storm, the sword stroke, the crashing wave, the mighty engine, and the blazing sun. From arídan “sun” + asíran “power”.
chalíäsír: power; specifically, that power which arises from cunning, the power of the unforeseen gambit, the ingenious design, the perfect balance, the craftsman’s hand, and the gleaming moon. From chalíël “moon” + asíran “power”.
…the three kinds of loyalty…
traëlefí azkith: loyalty to one’s contract, oath, or obligations; from elefí “oath-contract” + azkith “loyalty”, itself from azik “stone” + ankithel “emotion, passion”.
traärgyr azkith: loyalty to merit, or rather, that loyalty to a person or group given fully and freely from respect for its worth. From argyr “merit” + azkith “loyalty”. Also sometimes seen as trabandal azkith.
traëstxijír azkith: loyalty to an abstract ideal, purpose, or necessity. Fromestxijír “wyrd, dharma” + azkith “loyalty”.
…and since we already covered loyalty, might as well give you these…
talisétäef: honesty; “converse with truth”, from talis “truth” + sétavir “converse (among a group)” + the state affix -ef .
carábrinef: generosity, liberality; “open-handedness”, from carás “open, accessible” + brind “palm (of the hand)” + the state affix -ef.
sefykith: laughter (as emotion, not sound), passing joy; from sef “spume, sea-foam” + ankithel “emotion, passion”.
merékith: kindness; from merel “gentle” + ankithel “emotion, passion”
dalínef: friendship. From dalín “friend”, plus the state affix -ef.
aelvthal: aesthant, from aelva “beauty” + thal “functional niche”.
arídamaen: dusk; from arídan “sun” + maen “fall”
arídaqerach: laser; from arídan “sun” + qerach “lightning”.
éändrycmesi: enlightenment, from andra “fire” + cmésí “kiss”.
ictoch: (expl.) “glitch”; colloquially, any annoying thing that you need to work on.
klaith: shadow; shade cast by a radiation-source.
laranlír: language; from laras “word(s)” + anlíril “song”.
mathalmin: crossroads, or intersection; from mathal “road” + minal “meet”.
traändra vandthel: “fire-anger”, wrath, specifically the noble rage of the righteous.
traëhain vandthel: “duel-anger”, the anger which requires satisfaction in battle, if not necessarily death (compare trasered vandthel).
traólmahara aelva: “the beauty of the remade”; that particular quality of beauty inherent in that which was broken and has been made anew. Also: an aesthetic philosophy similar to the Japanese kintsugi.
trasered vandthel: “blood-anger”, that fury which can only be quenched with the death of one party.
A couple of words that are likely to be relevant in explaining many of the complexities of explaining to the audience the background needed to understand Black Panther, when we get there:
mahamoníë: Colony; literally “made-polity”. Applies specifically to polities created ex nihilo on terra nullius; there are variants of the mahamoníë, such as the semahamoníë, the reciprocal colony exchanged by allies, or the covíënqármoníë, the “wealth-price colony”, founded on a free sale and a fair purchase, but neither nations admitted by mutual agreement (and thus peer constituent nations) nor acquisitions by force (see below), formal or informal, can be referred to as mahamoníë.
rianqármoníë: Conquest; literally “sword-price polity”. Applies to any polity annexed by force. Any territory previously occupied by a population and not admitted by mutual agreement is necessarily a rianqármoníë, whether the force is formal or informal, exercised in fact or in duress, etc., etc.
And thus the necessity to translate “colonizer”, as an epithet, into traän-rianqármoníë daráv for anyone to understand it properly.
leirlaras: (lit. “mist-word(s)”). A term referring specifically to words, phrases, paragraphs, or even entire works deliberately so constructed as to be void of meaning, misleading, or obfuscatory. Depending on circumstances, it may be pejorative (when used to describe a collocutor’s evasions, for example), or complimentary (describing a skillful piece of adversive diplomacy, likewise).
The etymology of leirlaras was, of course, deliberately selected in honor of Leiríah, eikone of mists, illusions, deceptions, trickery, wit, and intrigue.
maharargyr: maker’s merit; from mahav (make, maker) and argyr (quantized merit), the excellence which one accrues from a worthy creation.
Note: refers only to the excellence itself, rather than the repute derived from it. This latter is mahadársúnar, from mahav and dársúnar (glory), which in turn is from daráv (sophont) and súnar (brilliant, shining).
tramorán an-enlét: (lit. “red gift”) Related in concept to the trafidúr an-enlét (“blue gift”), that social manipulation in which a gift that cannot be balanced by the recipient with an equal gift is used to create a favor-debt, the tramorán an-enlét is an attractive gift designed to cause harm by the nature of its recipient. It should be noted that a gift harmful in and of itself is not a tramorán an-enlét; the essence of a red gift is that it could be used wisely and to beneficial effect, but the recipient is not one who will so use it.
Perhaps the best-known example of a tramorán an-enlét is the gift of fusion or orbital solar ergtechnology used to destabilize petroleum-dependent planetary economies, whose subsequent trajectory remains as predictable as it is clichéd.
So, we had already established one word for a celestial body. As you’ll recall, that would be:
From there, ancient astronomers gave us:
affíëníel: (from traäffiën ashíël, “dancing star”), planet; and
chalíël: (from trachálporis ashíël, “circling star”), moon.
And slightly less ancient ones provided:
alélazik: (from traälél azik, “sky-rock”), asteroid
But just to ensure that some recent distinctions are captured:
traäffíënel chalíël: true-moon, moon of a planet; and
trachalíël chalíël: moonmoon, moon of a moon; and even the unlikely
traälélazik chalíël: moon of an asteroid.
(Loosely inspired by a G+ post in which I contemplate trying to phrase Eldraeic self-concepts into Japanese pronouns and honorifics: I went with a baseline of watakushi-sama, if you’re curious.)
Did you know (you did not) that archaic – or bearing in mind that it’s a deliberately designed language, prototype – Eldraeic had no first-person pronoun? All self-references had to be done through illeism, with name, title, epithet, or some combination of the former.
“I” was just too damn self-effacing, don’ch’know; a puny pronoun unsuited to the truly magnificent magisterial awesomeness of – well, any one of us, really. Pronouns, after all, are substitutable; individuals are very much not.
(It’s also handy when it comes to matters of valëssef, since your choice of name, title, or epithet to use lets people know which of your facets you are manifesting at the present time, without resorting to wearing masks Chresytanri-style.)
Even third-person pronouns were typically replaced by names when referring to people, for reasons of respect and because by the same principle, it lets the person addressed know which of their facets is being addressed.
Second-person pronouns were… best avoided, really.
Modern Eldraeic, however, does have a first-person pronoun (val), usable in casual speech to save time, but much like the third-person, it’s an assignable variable; it’s customary to illeize when you first speak, and on all subsequent valëssef shifts, to let people track the changes. Third person usage has tracked this change in approximately the same way.
No-one will find it particularly strange if you go full illeist, though. It just moves you into an extra-formal register.
A quick word or two for your pleasure:
deshalír: beer, encompassing non-distilled brews made from grain- or grain-analogs, literally “grain-water”.
delékalír: wine, encompassing all non-distilled brews made from fruit, literally “pleasing-water”.
qerachalír: distilled spirits, literally “lightning-water”. (andrakalír, “fire-water”, had already been taken. By naphtha.)
…oh, and who could forget…
xindaralír: literally “explorer-water”, could be translated “scout brew”, and refers to whatever was cooked up by the first-in team out of stuff that looked fermentable. May or may not be delicious, hallucinogenic, toxic, or explosive, but hey, that’s why they’re doing science to it to find out.
Zymology is so a science!
(And yes, this taxonomy does imply that, so far as Eldraeic-speakers are concerned, rice wine is a kind of beer and cider is a kind of wine, while mead isn’t either. They don’t make the rules, they just enforce ’em.)
cagál (n.): faeces; excrement; shit; solid animal biowaste.
Note for translators: This is the word you’re looking for, which serves equally for technical, medical, and casual usage. It is not considered pejorative or vulgar per se, but certain comparisons or equivalencies may be depending on context.
Variants include tracagál hanat (shit-house, an outdoor biowaste disposal facility); tracagál neth (shittery, an indoor biowaste disposal facility, as distinct from the customarily separate lavatory [washing room]); mézcagál ([metaphorical] shit, archaic term for a useless substance, no longer in common usage due to its high value in ecopoesis and closed life-support systems); and traäshíël mézcagál (starshit, colloquial term for iron, and by extension, any common and mostly useless waste product).
el tramézashíël eslévár (n.): Empire of the Star; the largest and oldest eldraeic polity.
Broken up, this phrase reads: tra (DESCRIPTION OPERATOR) – méz (METAPHORIZATION OPERATOR) – ashíël (star) — eslév (empire) – ár (PREDICATION OPERATOR), which is to say in long-gloss, “the empire which is like unto a (metaphorical) star”. Replacing this with the English “of” is acceptably inaccurate for such an imprecise target language.
It should also be noted that eslév is linguistically unique, appearing only in this phrase (and abbreviations thereof: el eslév unambiguously refers to “the Empire”). It is not used to represent any of the other possible meanings of “empire”; the technical meaning of a union of multiple peripheral polities beneath one metropole, for example, is el vielmóniramóníë (loosely, “a commanding country-of-countries”).
It has no strict root-based etymology; rather, eslév is a nonce coined for its conceptual resonances: it resembles, for example, proto-Cestian words for “created” or “our creation”; Selenarian terms for “lunar crescent”; various Silver Crescent words with meanings approximating to “celestial”; a Veranthyran term meaning “propriety” or “high culture”, and so on and so forth.