Norze (for lack of a better name)

What follows is a grammar of the main constructed language I use. In some ways it's more of a creole, I guess. Vocabulary is very fluid. I may use a form of a German word or I may use a Spanish or French one.

Alphabet: a æ b d dj e f g h i j k l m n nj o œ p r s sj t tj u v w z zj

Pronunciation: The vowels are long or short.
The vowels are pronounced:

Long vowels occur in open stressed syllables. Short vowels occur everywhere else, but note what happens to unstressed e above. The vowel æ is like the a in English bat. The vowel œ is like the u in luck. Most, but not all, words with æ and œ are from English.
There are several words which are never stressed in normal speech and have an e which is pronounced like schwa: de 'the', et 'the', en 'a, an', me 'my', de 'your', de 'of', de 'you', se ''s' (possessive particle), se 'his, its', re 'her' (rare). Compare ze 'sea' which rhymes with English say.
The consonants are generally as in English. But dj is like the j in jump; j is like the y in yarn; nj is like Spanish ñ; sj is like English sh; tj is like English ch in church; and, zj (a rather rare sound) is like the z in English azure. Though it is not considered a letter, ch is used for German ch, as in Bach, or Spanish j, as in jalapeño. This is more often spelled (and pronounced) with an h. Very rarely the ts sound of German z is transliterated tz or even c, but this sound usually becomes s in Norze and is so spelled.

Stress and Accent Marks: Stress is on the first syllable in German, Dutch, Danish, and English words. There are a handful of words with (usually verbal) prefixes (be-, a-, ge-, fer-, etc...) which are stressed on the second syllable. Words in -a and -o (almost always of Spanish or Portuguese origin) are stressed on the next to last syllable. If a word does not follow these rules an acute accent is placed over the stressed vowel.
The other accent mark is the circumflex. It has three uses:

  1. The main use is to mark a long vowel in a closed syllable: hûs 'house'
    In this use it always marks stress as well.
  2. It marks a long e, usually in final position and usually in a word of Spanish, Portuguese, or French origin: kotjê 'car'
    In this use it does not necessarily mark stress.
  3. Very rarely it marks a sound like the aw in raw. This sound is not used by all speakers and is replaced by long a: or la 'law'.

Definite Article: In the singular, the common gender form is de; the neuter form is et. In the plural, it is always de. Some speakers always use de.
Before a vowel de becomes d'. After a word ending in a vowel et becomes 't.
The definite article is generally used as in English, except that it is often used before abstract nouns: et live or et lîp 'love'.

Indefinite Article: en. If en follows a word ending in a vowel, en becomes 'n.

Neither the definite or indefinite article is used after the preposition de 'of': de tâp de kotjê 'the hood of the/a car'.

Noun: The noun is made plural by adding -e to the noun if it ends in a consonant. Nothing is added if it ends in a vowel.

Gender: There are two genders: common and neuter. Nouns referring to humans and pets are common. Inanimate nouns, animals, and plants are neuter. Thus the gender system has broken down from the parent languages. German das Kind (neuter) 'child' is de kin, and die Nacht (feminine) 'night' is et na. Complicating matters is that some speakers reckon all nouns as common gender.

Possession: This can happen in several ways.

  1. The preposition de 'of' can be used: de hûs de me sœster 'my sister's house'. However, this tends to be used more often if the possessor is a thing and not a person. If a person is the possessor, then the preposition a 'to' is usually used: de hûs a me sœster.
  2. The possessive adjective can be used with the preposition a in this formula: a me sœster re hûs. Literally this is 'to my sister her house'. The prepositon a is optional here: me sœster re hûs (or me sœster se hûs - see below).
  3. The possessive particle se can be used: me sœster se hûs.
    Complicating the above is that re 'her' is usually replaced by se which is the possessive particle and can also mean 'his, her, its, their'.


Pronoun: Here are the personal pronouns:
PersonSubjectEmphatic SubjectObjectDisjunctivePossessive Adjective
1st sing.jiikmia mieme
2nd sing.dedudia diede
3rd sing. masc.æeeîna h-îmse
3rd sing. fem.sisisi or iea h-iere or se
3rd sing neut.etiteta h-îm or a h-itse


The verb is greatly simplified as it does not conjugate for person or number.

Verb TypeInfinitvePresentPastPresent Participle/GerundPast Participle
Infinitive in -elivelivelivedelivengelive(de) or jelive(de)
Infinitive in -nzênzene
There are five forms for a verb: the infinitive, the present tense, the past tense, the present participle-gerund, and the past participle.
Except for a few verbs (often verbs whose infinitives end in -n), the infinitive and present forms are identical and end in -e: live 'to love', ji live 'I love'.
If the infinitive ends in -n, an -e is added for the present: zên 'to see', ji zene 'I see'.

The present participle and gerund forms are always identical. It is formed by adding the suffix -en to the stem: liven 'loving'.

The past tense form takes the ending -ede which is added to the stem: ji livede 'I loved'.
The past participle is formed by adding the prefix ge- or je- and the suffix -ede to the stem: jelivede 'loved'. Recently, the je- has become more common than ge-.