Morphology of Silindion


  Case Usage:

  1. Nominative: indicates the subject of a verb.

  2. Accusative: indicates the object of a verb. It also indicates motion through a place or time, and is used with prepositions such as ‹ono› 'through', ‹pero› 'across' or ‹erë› 'during'.

  3. Genitive: indicates the possessor. It is also used with various prepositions, such as ‹ess› 'inside of' or ‹omë› 'because of'.

  4. Dative: indicates the indirect object and the person or thing for which an action is done. The last usage is called the Benefactive use, and, in Old, Middle and some High Silindion texts, is indicated by adding an extra ‹-r› to the dative ending.
    Example: nistanu 'to the king' (dative)  =>  nistanur 'for the king' (benefactive).

  5. Ablative: indicates separation, and is mostly used to translate 'from'. It is used with prepositions such as ‹ka› 'away from' or ‹eis› 'from out, out of'.

  6. Locative: indicates place. It is used with prepositions such as ‹o› 'in', ‹a› 'at', ‹emë› 'on', ‹eiva(n)› 'within', ‹ina› 'near' and many others. Metaphorically it also indicates time, and thus is used with prepositions like ‹nor› 'before'.

  7. Allative: indicates motion towards a place. It is used with prepositions like ‹noro› 'towards' or ‹noss› 'into'. It is also used as the animate agent in passive sentences.

  8. Comitative: means 'together with'. If two or more nouns are animate, they may be connected by adding the comitative suffix to the last noun.
    Example: pëa mëamma 'a father and a mother'.

  9. Instrumental: indicates the instrument with which something is done, or how something is done. Thus it means both 'using X' and 'by doing X'. It also indicates what something is made out of.

  10. Copulative: is attached to a noun or interrogative pronoun to form sentences meaning 'X = Y'.
    Example: i nar lavando 'the man is a hunter'.

  11. Essive: is attached to a predicate nominative or interrogative pronoun to form sentences meaning 'It = Y'. That is, when the predicate nominative is the only element present.
    Example: kirmeihya 'it is my ship' (< kirma 'ship').
    The essive also means 'as' or 'when', such as in the sentence: nópië, asui Eril nëa némpian niva 'as a poet, Eril created many beautiful poems' (< nopio 'poet'). Finally, in Poetic High Silindion only, the essive may be used to derive an adjective from a noun. However, in Low Silindion this is done with the adjectival. In some poems, the essive seems to have the same meaning as the relative, depending on translation.

  12. Relative/Topical: indicates the topic of the sentence. In this sense, it can be translated as 'as for X' or 'about X'. Most of the time however, the relative is used to derive an adjective meaning 'X-like', such as the word ‹rilitma› 'jewel-like'. The relative is also used to mean 'as X', after an equative adjective. Another use of the relative is to mean 'but' after the conjunction ‹në› 'and'. However, this use is restricted to sentences of the form 'X, but as for Y'.
    Example: ihyotma, ë niva, në tahyotma, ïe núkil 'today, (it) is beautiful, but (as for) yesterday, (it) was cloudy' (< tahyón 'yesterday').

  13. Adjectival: derives an adjective from a noun. Mostly the meaning is transparent, such as in the following examples:
    vierya émëa 'forest paths, paths of the forest' (< ema 'forest').
    nerendo núkëa 'wilderness dweller, dweller in the wilderness' (< nuko 'wilderness').
    However, sometimes the meaning is not that obvious, such as in the following examples:
    sílnëa 'silver' (< silni 'star').
    ílië 'holy' (< ilë 'god').

Case Endings:

Basic case endings are as follows:

Singular Plural
Nom: -i/-ya
Acc: -n -in/-yán
Gen: -di -iri/-yari
Dat: -nu -inu/-yanu
Abl: -lim -ilim/-yalim
Loc: -vi -ivi/-yavi
All: -nna -inna/-yanna
Com: -mma -imma/-yamma
Ins: -u -iu/-yo
Cop: -r -ir/-yar
Ess: -i -ii/-yë
Rel: -tma -itma/-yatma
Adj: -ya/-ye/-ëa -iye/-yëa

All of these basic endings are altered drastically when applied to the various stem classes.


In total there are 19 stem classes (with several sub classes), divided into Vowel Stems and Consonant Stems. There are 9 Vowel Stem classes and 10 Consonant Stem classes.

  1. Vowel Stems.

    These are words with stems ending in ‹-a›, ‹-o›, ‹-u›, ‹-i› and in High Silindion ‹-e›, and whose stems and nominatives are identical (with the exception of the ‹-e› stems whose nominatives end in /e/ rather than /E/).
    Examples (click on the word to see the full paradigm):

    1. O Stem: famo- 'willow'.

    2. EO Stem: órëo- 'tongue'.

    3. A Stem: kira- 'stone'.

    4. OA Stem: koa- 'dog'.

    5. U Stem: ainu- 'snake'.

    6. I Stem: turni- 'night'.

    7. ËA Stem: miélëa- 'mother-moon'.

    8. E Stem: lune- 'evening'.

    9. IE Stem: laivie- 'lioness'.

  2. Consonant Stems.

    These are stems which end or ended with a consonant. The main characteristics of these stems are: plurals in ‹-ya›, adjectival always in ‹-ëa›, copulative in ‹-ar› or ‹-ra›, and vowel harmony in some stem types in the accusative, allative and comitative.
    Examples (click on the word to see the full paradigm):

    1. AY Stems: stems ending in ‹-ë› (< -ay). In Low Silindion, all ‹-e› stems and all words whose nominative ends in ‹-ë› (except IE stems) become AY stems. A characteristic of these stems is an added  ‹-a› in some of the endings.
      Example: passë- 'crow'.

    2. SS Stems: stems ending in ‹-ss›, alternating with ‹-t› or zero. Those words exhibit voyel harmony with the first syllable (example: accusative ‹sehwentë› 'wound' ~ ‹kanta› 'denial' - nominative ‹kass›).
      Example: sehwess- 'wound'.

    3. S Stems: these are words which end in ‹-s› which alternates with ‹-r› and zero in some forms. In the locative, the ending becomes ‹-phi›.
      Example: aros- 'spruce'.

    4. R Stems: stems ending in ‹-r›. They exhibit the same type of vowel harmony in the accusative as in SS stems, except a vowel combination such as ‹-ëo› counts as a back vowel. They also show vowel harmony also in the comitative and allative cases (example: accusative ‹mer-në› 'mountain' ~ ‹lëor-na› 'time' - nominative ‹lëor›).
      Example: mer- 'mountain'.

    5. N Stems: stems ending in at least one ‹-n›. Sometimes these words have two stems, both ending in ‹-n›. Other times there are two stems one of which doesn't end in ‹-n›. Nominative is formed in two ways: for 1-stem words, the nominative is the bare stem. For 2-stem words, the second stem is suffixed with the last vowel of the first stem. They show voyel harmony in the accusative, allative and comitative cases (example: accusative ‹sulon-na› ~ ‹yomen-në›, allative ‹suln-anna› ~ ‹yomm-enna›).
      Examples: ivan- 'home' (1-stem), sulon-/suln- 'river' (2-stem), yomen-/yomm- 'night/night sky' (2-stem).

    6. L Stems: these include all words whose nominative singular ends in ‹-l›.
      Example: tarkil- 'sky'.

    7. ST Stems: this is a rare stem type occurring in ‹ost-› 'wind' and a derivative ‹lutost-› 'lute'.
      Example: ost- 'wind'.

    8. T Stems: stems ending in ‹-t› whose nominative singular ends in ‹-tV›. Except for the nominative, copulative, essive and adjectival, they are conjugated like SS stems in High Silindion. In Low Silindion, they are transferred to AY stems, by analogy with their nominative singulars. They exhibit vowel harmony like SS stems.
      Example: velet- 'knot'.

    9. D Stems: gerunds (or nouns which can be translated as gerunds) whose nominative have the form ‹-V(n)na›. Stems of all such words end in ‹-d›, alternating in a few forms with zero, and in the plural with ‹-n›. Another type of D stem is the word ‹ëan› 'thing'.
      Examples: lond- 'hunt', ëand- 'thing'.

    10. Irregular Stems: a small amount of words have irregular stems. The most common are ‹nan› 'light' (‹nal(d)-›), ‹nirnë› 'order' (‹nir(n)-›) and ‹ur› 'day' (‹uro-›).
      Examples: nal(d)- 'light', nir(n)- 'order', uro- 'day'.