Relay 10/R

List of translations

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anie - spirit (of a person)
astin - house
cora - to believe, to be convinced that something is true
cusali - whatever, what a thing
desa - to flee
dila - to make someone do (=irrealis) something, to cause lea dilynat (impersonal expression) - to happen
do - but
dolayna - to shout, to call out
dolyes - well (i.e. in a good way)
dona - to enter, to come into
doyadin - a long time
elsin - (collective plural) musical instrument
gaza - to be angry
hala - to sing
hanre - day
in - 1st person singular possessive pronoun "my"
ine - 1st person singular subject pronoun "I"
layna - to speak, to tell, to talk about
lei - 3rd person singular masculine pronoun "he, him"
lesne - child (articulate but before puberty, about 3-11)
li - 3rd person inanimate pronoun "it"
lish - evil, morally bad
liyat - this (thing)
loch - much, a lot
lyase - woman
lysa - to weep, to cry
le mosta - to come (literally: to get oneself)
musta (w. dative) - to fight (against)
na - negation for verbs
nane - mother
natay - never
navera - to be unable, can't
neda - to use a tool, especially creatively
ni - negation for everything except verbs
pura - to want, to wish
rasta - to think
sali - some, one or another
tate - father
tay - (conj) when, at the time that; (postpos. with locative) during
tysa - to stop, to cease
velin - necessary, need
zula - to be jealous, to envy

Ilaini (*)

Irina Rempt

Ring B

Na laynan "liyat lea dilnenat?" Li na coran.

Ine tay lesne, ni nane in velin na corun. Lyasi rasta naverayt.

Hanrie sali, tate asten ien donat. Ine halan purat. Lei doyadien tay elsinan nedat. Anie lish do le mostat so dolaynat. Anie tatea lysa loch dilat. Nane in anien mustat. Ine desan. Ania tyset dila naveran. Dolyes rasta naveran. Ilea na gazan, do zulan.

Cusali lea dilnenat! Natay na li laynesin.

I'm not saying "what happened?" I don't believe it.

When I was a child, I didn't believe my mother was necessary. Women can't think.

One day, Father came into my house. He wanted me to sing. He played an instrument for a long time. An evil spirit came and shouted. The spirit made Father cry a lot. My mother fought the spirit. I fled. I couldn't make the spirit stop. I couldn't think well. I wasn't angry, but jealous.

What a thing it was that happened! I'll never talk about it.

Grammar notes

Ilaini is relentlessly SOV, where O can range from nothing at all to a whole sentence.

There is no copula for the present tense. (in fact there's no copula at all; only past and future markers to use in sentences that lack both a finite verb and some indication of time, but that doesn't occur in the text)

Adjectives follow nouns; possessive pronouns are adjectives.

A sentence in which anything at all is negated usually also has the verb negated (for an elaborate discussion of this, see and The people who didn't go to the market)

When telling a story about something that happened in the past, the usual practice is to have the first sentence or two in the past tense and then go on in the present.

anie is "a person's spirit", which doesn't have existence separate from the person: there are no ghosts as such. People with appropriate gifts can send their spirit out and make it manifest, however, and other similarly gifted people can see it and interact with it.

dilnenat is the contracted form of dilynenat, with the weakest vowel elided. Strictly speaking -e- is the weakest vowel, but that would give the ambiguous dilynat without any trace of the perfective marker.

Verb markers

All infinitives (also the dictionary form) end in -a.


-en-perfective (the action is completed)
-es-inceptive (the action is beginning or about to begin)

The inceptive future is most often used for prophecies and expectations.


-a- present
-u- past
-i- future
-e- irrealis (it's a mood, but treated as a tense)


-n 1st person singular
-t 3rd person singular
-yt 3rd person plural

Nominal markers

Nouns and adjectives either have no ending at all (none in this text) or end in -V or -VC (restrictions on V and C are irrelevant here). In declining the noun the final consonant is unchanged; endings are infixed before it with assimilation if necessary.

Example with the locative:

hanre - day     hanrie - on (a/the) day
havin - night   havien - at night

-en dative/illative singular
-a accusative singular
-ie locative singular
-i nominative plural
-inan accusative collective plural

© Jan van Steenbergen, Irina Rempt, 27 Aug. 2004