Practical Course in Verdurian - Lessons 7 & 8

Intro Contents 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Glossary

Hepe urek Seventh lesson [To Index]

Im prusin In the bar Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

Nanes voite im prusa, ásue, deside žöh. Rihe zdesy er cečel im prusin—ya šri fsë, řo eu šönĭ redelcĭ. Parete dy ci-vëčerán řo esme bostene.
So pruso ilun de žöh lië. Nanes pite. Vremya beluana frälina voite im prusa. Pilače im šorun prusei.
—Este Enäron, ila ásuire zdesy, ore Nanes.
Soa frälina že er ásue u Nanesán. —Verae, mis, kiam že so pruso.
Dëkuy, Enäron, ore Nanes. Zaftra, soa perë šerë e lë.
—Emai! mis Nanes. Kiel läde? Et nomai Nanes.
Soa frälina řo mis niš.
—Ašeu dy ai ti-atüčy ke ambre piflec tilkem im prusin, mis Nanes. Ä řo! Nikagdá řo dénuo voitao im prusin. Soĭ prusĭ et večü tana.
So pruso zen ride.
—Yanu redelcem com len, mis Nanes. Šöna ac řo pratecolë. Řo ašeu dy so vin e dobre zdesy? Eššane vuleu otál prander zdesy. Ai sul e triste ci-vëčerán...
Soa frälina ilet rihe er rize pavece, ac řo mis niš.

—Ei tana eyurë, mis Nanes. Fäsulĭ frälinĭ řo valü niš, apros dy et lelnai! So uestu ke eř levate esme tana lereže.
Soa frälina pite vin lië. Řo ilun rihe nun.
—Pyeru! Parete dy eř važru. Iy skukaeu, eššane? Šrifao telem prusa, e lyö creče, er řo e ret. Ambreu legua? Legua caë e bogaty.
Soa frälina ya pite vin lië, teke, plate pruson, er fäse prusii.
Nanes ilat rihe ke fäse.
—Lelnei, Pavel? Řo ai nikagdá bostene! Tana řo et ambrre. Ar, ilat večru...
—Řo tana, mis so pruso. Ci-frälina že de Ismahin. Řo sfahe soa Sfaha.

Nanes comes to the bar, sits down, orders a mead. He looks around the bar— he knows everyone already; there are no pretty women. It seems that he will not be lucky today.
The innkeeper gives him his mead. Nanes drinks. Just then a beautiful girl enters the bar. She blinks in the darkness of the bar.
Great Enäron, let her sit here, prays Nanes.
The girl comes and sits down next to Nanes. “Glass of wine,” she says, when the innkeeper comes.
Thank you, Enäron, says Nanes. Tomorrow, the first beer is for you.
“Hello!” says Nanes. “How are you? My names is Nanes.”
The girl says nothing.
“You’re thinking that I’m some rascal, that I like to romance chicks in bars,” says Nanes. “Oh, no! I never come into bars— they disgust me, really.”
The innkeeper laughs to himself.
“I admire women like you,” says Nanes. “Pretty, but not talkative. Don’t you think the wine is good here? Perhaps you want to dine here as well. I’m rather sad and lonely tonight...”
The girl looks at him, smiles slightly, but says nothing.
“You truly are lovely,” says Nanes. “The other girls are worth nothing, after I see you! The man who kisses you will truly be a happy man.”
The girl drinks her wine. She is no longer looking at him.
“I’m sorry! It seems that I’ve offended you. Or perhaps you’re bored? I know another bar, it’s very pleasant, and it isn’t far. Do you like soup? Their soup is delicious.”
The girl finishes drinking her wine, stands up, pays the innkeeper, and leaves the bar.
Nanes looks at her as she leaves.
“Did you see that, Pavel? I’m never lucky! She sure didn’t like me! Yes, I disgusted her...”
“Not exactly,” says the bartender. “That girl is from Ismahi— she doesn’t speak Verdurian.”

Loži Words Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

cečel there
ci-vëčerán tonight
com like (preposition)
dénuo habitually, continually
dy that (complementizer)
kiam when
nikagdá never
nun now
otál also
ti- some
vremya then, at that time
zaftra tomorrow
zdesy here
bostene lucky
creče pleasant
este great
eyure lovely
fäsul other, remaining
pav small, little
pere first
pratecole talkative
sul alone
tele another
čivi pain
Enäron chief of pagan gods
kyole dress
legua soup
levati kiss
leve lip
prusi bar, inn
pruso innkeeper
sfahe speech
soa Sfahe Verdurian ("the Speech")
šerë beer
šoru darkness
verae small glass of wine
vin wine
ambrir like, have a taste for
ašir think
ásuir sit down
cüzir close
desider order
fäsir leave
levatir kiss
orer pray
paretir seem
piflec flirt
pilačir blink
pitir drink
platir pay
pluyer rain
prander have dinner
pyerir regret, be sorry
ridir laugh
rizir smile
sfahen speak
skukair be bored
teker stand
uvir open
valer be worth
važir hurt
večir disgust
voitec enter
vulir want
yanir admire

Vuî Sounds Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

Let's go over the rules for stress: It's very common for conjugating a verb, declining a noun, or even changing the gender of an adjective to change the stress:

Mörî Culture Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

The traditional religion of the Caďinorian lands is Caďinorian paganism. There are a dozen major gods and any number of minor ones, but the chief ones are:
Enäron, ruler of the gods, god of the sky and weather
Išira, his wife, goddess of light and the stars, patron of navigation and marriage
Caloton, the god of the sun and daytime
Fidra, his wife, goddess of the moons, of nighttime, and of winter
Řavcaena, goddess of agriculture and of spring, patron of farmers
Ažirei, goddess of the sea, understandably important for a seafaring state
Mëranac, god of fire and the afterworld
Vlerë, goddess of love

When Nanes tells Enäron that tomorrow's first beer is for him, he is not proposing a toast, but promising a sacrifice: he will buy a beer and pour it over an altar of Enäron's. Paganism tends to be terribly practical; if Enäron did not cooperate in making the girl sit next to him, Nanes would have been capable of punishing his god by depriving him of a sacrifice.

The other major religion of Verduria is called Eleďát, which originated in Avéla some six hundred years ago, and is zealously monotheistic. Its adherants normally pray to Eleď, the active manifestation of their god. The population in Verduria is a little more than half pagan.

Aluatas Grammar Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

Verbs in -r. If the infinitive of a verb ends in -er or -ir (the third and last Verdurian verb conjugation), its present tense is formed as follows:
vulir want teker stand
-u vulu I want teku I stand
-eu vuleu you (sing.) want tekeu you stand
-e vule he or she wants teke he or she stands
-um vulum we want tekum we stand
-o vulo you (pl.) want teko you stand
vulü they want tekü they stand

Note that pyeru, which we learned in lesson 1 as a conventional expression for "I'm sorry", is a regular form of pyerir 'regret'.

To form the past tense, you use the same personal endings, but insert -r- before them:

vulir want teker stand
-ru vulru I wanted tekru I stood
-reu vulreu you (sing.) wanted tekreu you stood
-re vulre he or she wanted tekre he or she stood
-rum vulrum we wanted tekrum we stood
-ro vulro you (pl.) wanted tekro you stood
-rü vulrü they wanted tekrü they stood

Some of the verbs in this lesson have irregular past roots:

Finally, imperatives are formed in the same way as for all other verbs, by adding the personal endings to the infinitive: tekereu 'stand!' pitirü 'let them drink!' Note the similarity to the past tense, which however is missing a vowel: tekru 'I stood', tekereu 'stand!'

Sentences as complements. With some verbs, the object is not a noun but an entire sentence (which is said to be a subordinated clause). The subordinated clause is marked with the particle dy:

Ašu dy so malsfaom pyere loži lië. I think the barbarian regrets his words.
Ihano miže dy řo žanne. Ihano said he wasn't coming.

Dy corresponds to 'that' in English. But 'that' is optional, and dy is required.

If you want to refer to an entire sentence with a pronoun— "I didn't say it"— do you use ilu or ila? Neither; you use a special neuter pronoun il, accusative iler:

So pruso řo iler aše. The innkeeper doesn't think it.
Ihano řo iler miže, ac Susana. Ihano didn't say it— Susana did.
Il e ďaye. That is correct.

Impersonal expressions. Many sentences don't really have a subject. In English one must be supplied anyway, but in Verdurian you just leave it out. (You use the third person singular verb forms, though— by process of elimination; nothing else makes sense.)

Parete dy Ihano e nrüsk. It seems that Ihano is a fool.
E agoläm dy suzanei soa milka. It's important that you remember the sausage.
Pluye. It's raining.

Don't be tempted to insert il on the model of il e ďaye; il always refers to a specific previous sentence.

'There are'. A special form of impersonal expression is an existence formula. In English you use 'there is' or 'there are'; in Verdurian you just use e or eu without an explicit subject at all.

E malsfaom im prusin. There's a barbarian in the inn.
Eu ďinî žöhî u malsfaomán. There's three meads in front of the barbarian.
Rho e šual? Isn't there a horse?

In the past tense, the irregular fue or fueu is used for predicative sentences (saying what kind of thing something is); the regular forms esne or esnu are used for existential sentences (saying that something exists):

Esne prusi u hutorán Pavelei. There was an inn near Pavel's farm.
Soa prusi fue pava er sala. The inn was small and dirty.

Nouns in -e and -i. Nouns ending in -e or -i are always feminine. Here's how they decline in the singular:

nom -i prusi čivi levati -e sfahe leve kyole
acc -a prusa čiva levata -a sfaha leva kyola
gen prusë čivë levatë -ei sfahei levei kyolei
dat -in prusin čivin levatin -en sfahen leven kyolen

The accusative ending is -a, just as for nouns in -a (but for these declensions that produces a difference between nominative and accusative). The -ei genitive is reminiscent of the masculine declensions we've learned. And note that the dative is formed by adding -n to the nominative.

The plural endings are:

nom prusî čivî levatî sfahî levî kyolî
acc -em prusem čivem levatem -em sfahem levem kyolem
gen -ië prusië čivië levatië -ië sfahië levië kyolië
dat -in prusin čivin levatin -en sfahen leven kyolen

These are exactly the same as for nouns in -a, except for the dative of nouns in -i, whič is -in rather than -en (yes, the same as the singular form).

Onteca Exercises Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

1. Translate into Verdurian:

Raheli's dress is pretty. She has another dress in the city. Her lips are beautiful and her kisses are very pleasant. I like the inn's mead, but I say the wine came from a horse. I don't understand the speech of the barbarians. It gives me a pain to hear what leaves their lips.

There's a man at (ne) the door. It seems that he's from Vyat. Is there a boat that goes to Vyat? I don't think so ['it']. It's raining today and it was raining when I left Pelym. I think it's good for the farm that it's raining.

2. Take the text from the second or third lesson and rewrite it in the past tense.

3. Write a joke or a very short story, in Verdurian of course. If you're at a loss for a subject. try one of these:

Ihano's first visit to a bar. Susana's parents want her to marry Pavel but she's in love with a barbarian.A farmer gets lost in the city.

Zhoce urek Eighth lesson [To Index]

Prosizel Errukán An expedition to Erruk Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

Uestu voite im Corona, soa muďe žensatë prusi im Verdurian. Řo ambre soa Corona, ilu; e tro bocžene, er řo ambre dy tu ilet lele. Ac iše probesomi, er řo e pruso ke e muďe dobre tróuen tali uestom dy ne Coronan.
So pruso, Abend Monteneon, ilun emaye. —Ai snugá tuë; kiom tu vule? Šerä, čena, atun, ti-belgomi?
So uestu rihe arastece Abend; ac ciberde dy Abend santélece misote. Abend dénuo misote.
—Šerë, mis. Abend ilet amete soan colnáen. Parete dy fsë im Verdurian e im colnáen. Fsë siča sfahe e fsë siča pite.
So uestu lele telem ke parete esan druk lië. —Ihano! iskriče.
—Kaidrot! iskriče Ihano. Žanenei, ásuireu u sen.
Kaidrot (prokena so uestu zet nomne tana otál) ásue u Ihanon. Deside šerä de řežžinan.
—Sen acireceo, Ihano, er esmai lyö bogaty, mis Kaidrot.
—Vulu esan bogaty, mis Ihano.
—E řük gašul, ke zet nome Erruk, po ďinin dënšaduin až Verdurian-mažtanan. Šadmam de mažtanan, cum par iy pan cumyonomin. Lelmam kiom lelmam. Ředao dy tróumam er värecem er alcalä.
—Řo nkašai väreca, mis Ihano. Ac— tu mis dy eu cečel ďëfkĭ... Sen mizeceo dy ďëfkĭ řo tam kekmu er crežmu hosti taë!
—Apros hepdënán esmei otál bogaty, dy racontĭ ďëfkuë řo len esmu niš. Acireceo nun! Tróumei an iy ďuni uestom, oticunësem er tayem, er sen rëcmo ne Andorotán soán malsfaomán, apros ďunin dënin.
—Lädmai cum mun, mis sitrece soa řežžina.
—Ab Enäronán! Ci-prusi e tro bocžene, er soĭ řežžinĭ acinu kiom tu řo can mis, iskriče Kaidrot. Ac kio ei nun, tilka, acřo väreca tan, prokena šris soa taina taë? Řo ei belgom, acřo redelcë!
Advečel lië: soa frälina prene tecaa er ilat clasme sur metta— moleze rukavam Kaidrotei ad metta.
—Pro sfahen lë, lačai metan tecaa esë im brakán lë, mis soa řežžina. Ac len esmai inyë, druk esë. Řo kekai nikagdá cumyonom!

A man enters the Corona— the most popular inn in Verduria. He does not like the Corona, himself—it is too crowded, and he does not like to be seen. But he is looking for some followers, and there is not a better place to find such men than at the Corona.
The innkeeper, Abend Monteneon, greets him. “I am your servant! What do you want? Beer, a meal, a room, some mercenaries?”
The man looks closely at Abend; but decides that Abend is only joking. Abend is always joking.
“Beer,” he says. Abend shows him to the common room. It seems that everyone in Verduria is in the common room. Everybody is talking and everybody is drinking.
The man sees another who seems to be a friend of his. “Ihano!” he calls out.
“Kaidrot!” exclaims Ihano. “Come, sit by me.”
Kaidrot (for thus indeed was the man’s name) sits by Ihano. He orders a beer from the servant girl.
“Listen to me, Ihano, and you will be very rich,” says Kaidrot.
“I want to be rich,” says Ihano.
“There is a ruined castle, Erruk, three days’ ride from Verduria-city. We will ride there from the city, with four or five companions. We will see what we will see. I believe that we will find both dangers and treasure.”
“I am not afraid of danger,” says Ihano. “But— it’s said that there are monsters there... tell me that monsters will not kill us and eat our bones!”
“In one week you will be so rich that stories of monsters will be nothing to you. Now, listen. You will find one or two men, trustworthy and brave, and you will meet me at the house of Andorot the barbarian, in two days’ time.”
“I will go with you,” says the servant girl, suddenly.
“By Enäron! This inn is too crowded, and the servants hear what is not said to them,” exclaims Kaidrot. “But what are you now, wench, except a danger to us, since you know our secret? You are not a warrior, but a woman!”
For answer, the girl takes a dagger and swings it onto the table— pinning Kaidrot’s sleeve to the wood.
“For your speech, I should put my dagger in your arm,” says the servant-girl. “But I will be kind to you, my friend. I never kill a companion!”

Loži Words Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

acřo except
araste careful, painstaking
až X po Y Y (distance) from X
dénuo always, habitually
gašul ruined
ne at (a place)
otál such, so
oticunëse trustworthy
prokena because
santélece only, just, merely
sitre sudden
tal such
taye brave
tu impersonal pronoun
žensate popular
advečel answer
alcalë treasure
atun room
dalu king
brak arm
cumyonom companion
čena meal
dënšadu one day's ride
ďëfku monster
host bone
metta table
probesom follower
racont story
rukavo sleeve
řežžina servant girl
řük castle
snugá servant
šerë beer
taina secret
tecai dagger
väreca danger
acirec listen (to someone)
ciberden decide
clasmir swing (a weapon)
colnáe common room
emayec greet
iskričen exclaim, cry out
išan seek, look for
kekan kill
lačan should
metan put
misoten joke
molezen nail, hammer in
nkašan fear
rëcen meet
ředec believe
šadan ride

Vuî Sounds Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

It's time for a review. This table summarizes the pronunciation of each of the letters of the (romanized) Verdurian alphabet.
Letter as in Remarks
a father Never as in fate.
e bet Never as in meet. Doesn't end in a y sound. Never silent!
i machine Never as in shine.
o boat Don't let it end in a w sound as in low.
u loot Never with an initial y sound as in mute, or as in put.
î bit
ä aaah! Just like a, only longer. Not like German ä.
ë yet Don't forget the y sound. Palatalizes a preceding n or l.
ö schön German ö, French oe. Tongue says e while lips say o.
ü fünf German ü, French u. Tongue says i while lips say u.
b bed
c Scot Always hard: ce = keh not seh! Unaspirated.
č church
d do
ď that
f fat
g go Always hard: ge = gheh not jeh!
h -- Silent! (Unless used to represent č š ž ř ď without diacritics.)
k Iraq Arabic q, not unlike milk. Farther back in throat than c.
l law Always clear, never dark as in wall.
m me
n now Before a c or k, sounds like ng. (English n does this too.)
p spy Unaspirated.
r row Spanish r: single-tap trill. An English but not an American r is OK.
ř la rue French or German uvular r. Say h, move tongue forward and up.
s sassy Never voiced as in rose.
š shoe
t stun Unaspirated and dental, as in French.
v vow
y you Palatalizes a previous n or l.
z zap Never a ts as in German or Italian.
ž leisure Voiced counterpart of š.

Mörî Culture Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

The castle of Erruk (the name means 'southern castle') was built by the Caďinorian emperor Ervëa two thousand years ago, as part of a chain of fortifications across the entire Plain. It commanded the strategic confluence of the Eärdur and the Svetla, the two great rivers of the Plain, and faced the ancient city of Toṫios.

Today Erruk lies in ruins, and Toṫios as well. The ruins are picturesque, and the nearby village of Ďnseli does a brisque business in lodging, art supplies, blank ledgers for writing down poetic impressions, etc.

What lies in the dark cellars, dungeons, and caverns (many excavated by unknown hands or claws long after the ruin of the castle above) below Erruk? The treasure of the Caďinorian emperors, hid against the incursions of barbarians? Trinkets and coins lost through the centuries, or hidden away by treasure hunters, themselves peřaps now but skeletons adding to the subterranean gloom, their hoard availing them nought against the final despoiler, death? Or is it, as others say, merely the abode of monsters and nameless horrors?

Continue up the Svetla for two days and you'll come to Vyat, which has aptly been called "the Peoria of Verduria."

Aluatas Grammar Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

Future tense. The future tense is formed much like the past, with a consonant inserted between the verb root and the personal endings. In -n verbs you insert -m-, In -r verbs you insert -ret-, and in -c verbs you insert -t-:
lädmai I will go vulretu I will want elirtao I will live
lädmei you (s.) will go vulreteu you will want elirteo you will live
lädme he will go vulrete he will want elirte he will live
lädmam we will go vulretum we will want elirtom we will live
lädmo you (pl.) will go vulreto you will want elirto you will live
lädmu they will go vulretü they will want elirtu they will live

A few of the verbs we've learned have irregular future roots:

The only trick to using the Verdurian future is making sure you use it when the action takes place in the future; English has a tendency to get by with the present tense:
Zaftra fäsretu [future]. I'm going [present progressive] tomorrow.

Ilet lelmai kiam fäsreteu [future].
I'll see him when you go [present]— Verdurian literally has "...when you will go."

Dénuo. This adverb indicates a repeated or habitual action. Compare:

Siča pitre im Coronam. He was drinking at the Corona.
Dénuo pitre im Coronam. He was always drinking / He used to drink at the Corona.
Ya pitre im Coronam. He no longer drank at the Corona.
Pitre soa šerä im Coronam. He drank the beer at the Corona.

Ihano dénuo nkaše soi ďëfkom. Ihano is always afraid of monsters.

Ne, im, u. The preposition im indicates a position inside something: im veraen 'in the glass', im mažtanan 'in the city'.

Ne indicates a more abstract location at a particular place: ne ďerán 'at the door', ne hutorán 'at the farm'. It's also used for institutions: ne šriftanáen 'at the university'. And with a person as an object, it means at that person's home: ne Ihanon 'in Ihano's house, at Ihano's'.

And u indicates location near something: u mettan 'near the table', u ďerán 'by the door'. With a person, it implies that something is near enough to reach: if you say soa šerë e u Ihanon it means the beer is right next to Ihano, it's within his reach.

Nouns in -u and -ë. Nouns in -u are always masculine, and nouns in -ë are always feminine. Here's how they're declined in the singular:

nom -u uestu dalu baraďu alcalë šerë redelcë
acc -um uestum dalum baraďum alcalä šerä redelcä
gen -ui uestui dalui baraďui -ëi alcalëi šerëi redelcëi
dat -un uestun dalun baraďun -en alcalen šeren redelcen

Nouns in -u are easy, adding the typical accusative ending -m, genitive -i and dative -n to the nominative forms. For nouns in -ë, the forms are those of the -e declension, except that in all the cases but the dative there's a " sign on the first vowel.

The plural forms are:

nom uestî dalî baraďî alcalî šerî redelcî
acc -om uestom dalom baraďom -em alcalem šerem redelcem
gen -uë uestuë daluë baraďuë -ië alcalië šerië redelcië
dat -uin uestuin daluin baraďuin -en alcalen šeren redelcen

Plural nouns in -u are a little tricker. The plural -î is found for most nouns. The accusative and genitive are like nouns in -o, with -u- substituted for -o-. The plural forms for -ë nouns are exactly the same as for -e nouns, without any added " diacritics.

Another way of looking at -ë nouns: they work exactly like the feminine forms of Declension II adjectives (like dobre/dobrë).

The impersonal pronoun tu. The pronoun tu works much like French on, German man. It's an 'impersonal' pronoun, so it never refers to anyone in particular (with an important exception we'll get to below). In English we'd translate it with 'one', 'everyone', 'people', or even 'we' and 'you':

Tu dénuo läde ne Corona. Everybody goes to the Corona.
Tu aše dy baraďu esë e nrüsk. People think my brother is a fool.

Kiam malsfaomî keku cumyonom tuë, tu vule iskričen Enäronán.
When barbarians kill your partner, you want to cry out to Enäron.

Ac Enäron tana tu acine? But does Enäron really hear us?

Tu is often used where we'd use the passive in English:

Tu desidre soa šerä. Tu platne soa kuna.
The beer was ordered. The money was paid.
(Literally: Someone ordered the beer. Someone paid the money.)

Kaidrot řo ambre dy tu ilet lele.
Kaidrot doesn't like to be seen.
(Literally, he doesn't like that someone sees him.)

Here's its declension:

nom tu
acc tu
gen tuë
dat tun

As seen above, tu always takes third-person singular verb forms.

The formal 'you'. Tu has another, important usage, as a formal 'you'. As in many European languages, Verdurian prefers not to use the ordinary second person pronouns (le and mu) in formal situations, or with socially superior persons. Its replacement is the pronoun tu; when used in this sense the accusative becomes .

Tu e otál beluana dy soa cira dalui. You are as beautiful as the king's consort.
Tun domai so muďe dobrem atun prusë. I'm giving you the best room in the inn.
E tecai tuë im brakán esë, graženka? Is this your dagger in my arm, Ma'am?

Onteca Exercises Urek Loži Vuî Mörî Aluatas Onteca

1. Rewrite the text from a previous lesson entirely using the future tense.

2. Look over the texts from the previous lessons. Some of them should more realistically have used the formal tu instead of le. Which ones? Rewrite the appropriate sentences using forms of tu.

3. Write a continuation of the text for this lesson— What happened next? (You can answer this in terms of the next few minutes, or the next few days.)

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